A Day in the Life: Caroline – Persistent, Happy, Cloth Diapering Mama

Today our featured mom is Caroline.

How old are you?
30

What did you do (from a working perspective) before your baby arrived?
Previous occupation: Member Accounts Manager at Hollyburn Country Club. BBA majoring in Human Resources and Strategic Management. Administrative and financial background.

Are you currently at home with your baby/children or working in/out of the home?
Current occupation: happy housewife & mom of two  =)

How old is your baby?
Evan, 2 ½, 100% toilet trained
Rhyan, 11 months, 100% cloth diapered

When did you decide to cloth diaper?
I first thought I would try cloth diapering when I was still pregnant, despite my mother’s discouragement, friends’ shrugs, and blank stares.

When did you start cloth diapering?
When Evan was a few weeks old. I truly had no idea what I was doing, not having a single friend that used cloth diapers with their kids, but I really wanted to make it work. I went to The Bay (the only baby store I could think of) and bought three 5-packs of Kushies diapers. I brought them home and immediately put one on Evan. Within minutes the diaper was soaked and so was his outfit. I tried another couple diapers with the same result. I drove back to The Bay and bought two Kushies diaper covers – maybe he’s supposed to be wearing plastic pants over these cloth diapers? More tries, more leaks, and the diapers were HUGE. After about 15 tries I returned the unopened pack of Kushies, posted the used diapers and covers on craigslist, and went back to disposables.

It bugged me that I failed at cloth diapers. I looked into diaper services, gDiapers, and finally cloth diapers. I bought my first cloth diapers (little g pants & bumGenius pockets) secondhand off craigslist to keep costs down in case I really couldn’t make it work. Once I got the hang of it, I searched for a local company to buy new bumGenius pocket diapers from, and found New & Green.

What is your favourite diaper(s)?

As I mentioned, I’ve tried Kushies, gDiapers, and bumGenius pockets. I’ve also tried cotton prefolds and Bummis covers, hemp prefolds, Fuzzi Bunz pockets, Monkey Doodlez AIO’s, Thirsties pockets, and Babykicks Bumboo pockets. My favourite by far are bumGenius pockets – I use them during the day for a nearly foolproof staple. For overnights, nothing works better than two prefolds and a Bummis cover. I almost always use BioSoft flushable liners.

Tell us about your day

Sometime around 6:30 am –  Evan climbs into bed with my husband and me. We tell him it’s too early and try to convince him to sleep for another 45 minutes. Sometimes (like this morning) he does; other times he refuses and we put Sesame Street on while we groan and rub our eyes. Morning always comes too early. One of us pads into the kitchen to make tea and get Evan a sippy of juice and water.

7:45 am – Rhyan wakes up. I go to her room, turn her little heater off, and pull up her blinds while she giggles and claps her hands. I change her soaked, heavy (but never leaking!) prefolds-n-cover diaper and put her in a bumGenius pocket diaper. We go back to bed for one of my favourite activities of the day: nursing belly to belly in bed.

8:30 am – After Daddy goes to work, we all go into the living room for breakfast. (Our dining room has been turned into a playroom, so the dining table is in the living room – we’re in somewhat cramped quarters!) If I’m lucky, I get breakfast too, and if I remember I make myself some coffee.

9 am-10 am – The kids and I get dressed, brush our teeth, and generally get ready for the day. I guzzle a cup of coffee before I forget and it’s left somewhere to get cold. If it’s a diaper laundry day, I collect all the diapers from Rhyan’s room (there are two diaper pails to hold them all) and take them downstairs to the laundry room. I run a rinse cycle on warm-cold. Then, 20 minutes later, I run a full cycle on hot/cold using a tablespoon of Rockin Green detergent.

10:00 am – I change Rhyan’s diaper. We venture out of the house, usually to Maplewood Farm, the Aquarium, Nonna’s house, or a “libby ride” (bike ride on Evan’s little run bike) around the neighborhood.

12:15 pm – We return home for lunch. I run downstairs to the laundry room, hang dry all the diaper covers, and toss the inserts into the dryer for 50 minutes on warm. I make lunch and we eat lunch together.

1:00 pm – Evan goes to the bathroom and I change Rhyan’s diaper. Then we go into Evan’s room for two stories and one song. Evan then falls asleep for his nap in his bed while I take Rhyan out to the living room. I put on Snatam Kaur’s “Grace” (her sleepytime music) and nurse her until she’s drowsy, then put her in her crib for her nap (usually by 1:30 pm).

1:30 pm – 3:00 pm – A blissful, blissful break for Mommy. Time to check email, Facebook, clean up the morning’s mess, and put my feet up. I might take the diaper inserts out of the dryer and fold them if I’m feeling energetic, and leave them on the dining table for stuffing later. It takes about three minutes to sort and snap a load of inserts and I do it while watching The People’s Court (my secret weakness).

3:00 pm – Rhyan usually wakes up from her nap first. I change her diaper, we nurse again, then play quietly until Evan wakes up.

4:00 pm – If Evan hasn’t woken up by 4pm, I wake him up, usually by climbing into bed with him and drawing on his back. Sometimes he’s grumpy, but sometimes he wakes up with a giggle because I’m tickling his back.

4:15 pm – 6:30 pm – Playtime at home if it’s lousy outside, or a trip to the bike park or playground, often with Daddy. A diaper change for Rhyan happens sometime in there.

6:30 pm – I make dinner and by 7:00 pm we’re eating. We usually watch TV or a movie. Lately it’s been Garfield, day after day … sigh.

7:45 pm – I start running a bath and make a nighttime bottle for Rhyan. I let it stand in the kitchen while we’re in the bath so that all the bubbles in the formula rise to the top, otherwise she wakes up gassy and uncomfortable around 9:30 pm.

8:00 pm – I get in the bath with both kids. They love it and it’s a bit of a break for me too. Paul gets 15 minutes of blissful quiet to check his email and Facebook.

8:15 pm – We all get out of the bath. I go into the living room with a jammied, cloth-diapered Rhyan and give her her nighttime bottle. Paul reads Evan two books in his bedroom and sings him a song.

8:30 pm – Rhyan finishes her bottle and has a good burp. I nurse her until she’s drowsy, then put her in her crib.

8:45 pm – Both kids are in bed. Paul and I quickly clean up the kitchen and tidy up the living room and playroom.

9:00 pm – I head down to the laundry room and check the diaper covers. In the wintertime they’re usually still wet (the room is unheated), but in the summertime by evening they’re dry. If it’s winter I bring up just the inserts from the dryer, and if it’s summer I bring up all the diaper gear. My husband and I settle in the living room for an episode or two of How I Met Your Mother (we love PVR!) while we sort and stuff the diapers. Within five minutes or so, I’ve got a three-day supply of diapers for Rhyan.

Sometime around 10-10:30 pm we head to bed to do it all over again!

 

This interview was submitted February 2, 2011.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *