Tag Archives: Flushable Liners

Cloth Diapers in Daycare :: How to Make it Work

One of the most common questions we’re asked at our New & Green Cloth Diapering 101 workshops is about cloth diapering at daycare. Do daycares allow cloth? Which diapers are best? Do I need any special equipment?

From the bit of research we’ve done, it seems the vast majority of daycares in the Lower Mainland are happy to accommodate cloth-loving parents, provided the process is made easy for the care providers.  We definitely recommend that you “know before you go” – call your daycare (or prospective daycares) and find out what they specifically prefer so that you don’t end up buying diapers and supplies you don’t need. Also, check out the Real Diaper Association’s excellent tip-sheet for some great info.

Basically, when it comes to cloth diapering in a daycare, it boils down to this:

KISS (Keep It Simple, Silly): Make it as easy for the care providers as possible.

  • Use diapers that are most like putting on a disposable – either an All-in-One or a pre-stuffed pocket diaper with Velcro closures. Velcro closures make diaper changes both easy and speedy!
  • Have a zipper-closure wetbag big enough to hold all the diapers from the day. A bag with a hanging loop is extra handy.
  • Considering using a disposable liner such as Bummi’s Flushable Bio-Soft liners and pre-line all your diapers. This way, poop is easy to deal with for the care provider and you’re less likely to have super-poopy diapers coming home for you to deal with later! (Always a plus!)
  • Remember that some daycares require that everything belonging to the child must be labeled, including cloth diapers. You can either stick these labels right on the diapers or hand-sew a little tag onto the diaper to hold the label so that you can easily remove it later. Laundry-safe labels can be found by searching online for “children’s clothing labels” (or some such variation).
  • If you want cloth wipes used as well, consider having them pre-wetted in a travel-size disposable wipes container so they are easy to grab and ready to use.

Be prepared: About 93% of the daycares we surveyed on the North Shore  stated that they would be happy to use cloth diapers, provided they were shown how to use them. At your first meeting with the provider, bring along samples of everything you’ll be sending with your child and be prepared to show them how to use it. It often helps if you’re upbeat and positive, emphasizing how easy the process is!

Be flexible: If your daycare isn’t quite sure about cloth diapering – even after your enthusiastic tutorial – perhaps propose a trial period, say three weeks, in which to try cloth. Likewise, choosing a different type of diaper may help the daycare as well. Be flexible in accommodating their needs as well as your own – some of them may never have seen modern cloth diapers.

Be happy: We believe that choosing cloth is a wonderful, fun, and sustainable choice for you and your family. Extending that choice to other people who care for your children can require courage, wisdom, and knowledge – you should be happy knowing you’ve prepared yourself for this journey and your child will reap the benefits. Hip hip hooray!

There’s No Place Like Home…

Many parents who attend our workshops want to know how to use cloth diapers when they are away from home. They can visualize how the system would work at home, but out and about or more far fetched – away on holiday or camping? How does that work??

It can be done! Here are our best tips for daytrips & outings, vacations and camping.

Daytrips and Outings: Not hard – at all. And you don’t need to bring a suitcase of stuff. What’s in our diaper bag? We carry 2-3 one step diapers (pre-stuffed pocket diapers or all-in-one diapers), a travel case of cloth wipes, a bottle of water (to drink or use on the wipes) and a wet bag to carry home the diapers we take off our little one.

Vacations:  If you have access to a washing machine, whether it be in-suite, in building or at a laundry mat, cloth diapering can be done.  Consider how often you can access the washer and then bring enough diapers to get you through.  So you may only need one day’s worth of diapers or you may need three.  Store your dirties in a drawstring diaper pail liner for easy transport and containment.  Use flushable liners for poop management.

Camping:  You can handwash your diapers and hang them to dry – we’d recommend a prefold diaper or pocket diaper system with this scneario, though.  All in ones are best left to a washing machine’s skilled agitation to get really clean.  Another alternative is to use a compostable gDiaper insert in one of your pocket diapers.  This would allow you to use your pocket shell as the cover and either lay a gDiaper insert inside the diaper or stuff it inside.  We have had good results with laying the gDiaper insert inside of the AMP Duo or stuffing it in the Duo or bumGenius Pocket.  With this method you toss or bury the insert (use common sense, please, not by a water source and don’t throw in an outhouse) and all you have to rinse/wash is the pocket shell.  There is minimal hand-poop contact if you use the insert on top of the diaper shell instead of stuffing it inside.

What’s in your diaper bag?

Potty-tunities

Well, this is a little over due.  Been meaning to share about our EC journey, but between toilet training my toddler and racing to catch pees and poos with my 4.5m old (time is passing so fast!), this poor topic was neglected.

So how is it going with ECing our littlest one?  Great! We had a fantastic day today with all poops in the potty and a couple of dry diapers before a pee on the potty.

Some questions we’ve been getting:

How do I start?  I feel overwhelmed with “other” stuff! As a new parent, it’s easy to get hooked into the perfect parenting trap.  This is not black and white, it is very much a journey.  Pick your goals.  Instead of trying to catch all your baby’s pees and poops, try to set your sights on learning patterns.  This can be accomplished by setting aside 30-45 mintues a day to observe and learn from your baby.  Try mornings as this seems to be a higher pee frequency time.  Lay your baby out, diaper-less on an absorbent surface and watch what happens.  We love our wool puddle pad and a prefold diaper on top (waterproof + absorbent).  Baby legs help to keep little legs warm.  Your job is simply to baby watch and let yourself be present with your baby.  Watch their behaviour, and if they do a pee or a poo, make a sound to go with the behaviour.  You are helping them to associate the sound with the action.  We use “ssssss” for peeing and a grunt for pooping.  It feels a little funny at first to do it but hey, no one is watching!

Don’t worry if you feel like you can’t predict pees and poops.  This starting point is just to get you beginning to listen to your baby’s cues and behaviours and to have a place to practice with the sounds you’ll associate with the actions.

Now that we’ve been practicing for a while, here are some patterns that we’ve observed and some practical tidbits that have helped us:

  1. Clare usually has to go if she nurses and pulls on and off and seems uncomfortable (or its a burp…)
  2. She usually will go after nursing if she hasn’t fallen asleep
  3. She usually will go after waking if I get to her immediately
  4. She does do a little grunting noise before she goes, but I don’t always hear it
  5. Some times it takes a little while for the pee/poop to come and other times it’s really quick – be patient and go with your intuition to know if she is done
  6. I only do up the two outer snaps on her onesie so that I can pull it open quickly with the middle third one undone
  7. I heart our diaper sprayer (back in stock shortly) for cleaning out the potty
  8. a vinegar/water + lavendar essential oil spray is great for wiping the potty clean
  9. a bio-soft liner in the bottom of the potty helps to lift out poops easily
  10. have a cloth handy – we usually get spitups just prior to a pee or poop – guess it’s either the pushing or the whole digestive thing going on…!

Happy Pottying!

Let us know how you’re doing with EC and share your tips for other families getting started!

Daycare & Diapers

Heading back to work after maternity leave is not always on the forefront of your mind when you are still pregnant or making your diaper plan, but it definitely is something to consider. Most children will still be in diapers at least part time past their second birthday. With mat leaves lasting about a year, that leaves one year of diapering to a care provider – be it family, a nanny or daycare.

We’ve surveyed all the care providers in one city in the lower mainland that and found that 93% of them were agreeable to cloth diapering. The ones that said no gave the reason that they perceived it was too messy or that they had a bad experience in the past. Many of them said and emphatic YES! But then followed with…as long as YOU wash them. But of course!!

To make life easier for your care providers, we suggest that you consider providing them with a one step diaper such as a pocket diaper or an All-in-One Diaper. Velcro closures are more intuitive than snaps (though with some coaching, can be very easy, too). We also recommend that you pre-load your diapers with Bio-soft flushable liners so the poop is easily taken care of by your care provider or by you later on. We love the Monkey Doodlez Tote for daycare as it has a zipper and a loop for hanging up. It’ll easily hold a days worth of diapers. You can have a clean and a dirty one.

Most care providers would appreciate an orientation to putting on, taking off and storing the used diapers. You may also want to tell them how to position the Bio-soft liners, the reason for them and how to dispose of them.

So, to summarize, it is important to think of who’ll be using your diapers (besides your child!). Consider your care provided when purchasing your second set of diapers. Most care providers are more than willing to give cloth a go but may need some coaching.

Here are some diaper & accessory choices that may be the best match for a care provider: