Thursday, May 23, 2013

Flats and Handwashing Callenge Day 4: How's it going eh?

Well it's Day 4 of the Flats challenge...I forgot to blog yesterday...I'm a bit terrible at this still.

Today is all about how hand washing is going for you. Let me start by telling you this...hand washing in a very busy household with 3 children under 5 is crazy and busy. I thought hooray less diapers to wash then when we do a load every 2 days, I can do this every night. I will win at all the cloth diaper washing....hahaha...yea...not so much.

We are taking the simple approach, no rigged up washing machines etc for us. Just the kitchen sink, some dish soap, my hands and a clothes line. Hand washing is pretty simple. My diapers look lovely soaking away in the sink. I let them soak for about 10 minutes and then go to town scrubbing and plunging and squishing them to cleanliness! It's relaxing and pretty easy, even with the poop stained ones. Those I take a scrub brush and more soap to, but I'm not the laundry queen and still end up with stains. (Someone tell me how to get stains outta ALL my diapers!)

Flats in the sink
Then we move on to the rinsing. This is where it gets tricky. I wring out all the soapy water, drain the sink, rinse it out and then fill it up again with clean water. Then in go the flats and I plunge the heck outta them. After that process I rinse them under running water (into my sink of now slightly soapy rinse water), wring them out and toss them in the basket.

Off we go outside to hang them to dry (unless of course it is today...) I love line drying, it makes everything smell so clean and fresh! Plus generally we have a wind breeze (Did you know Lethbridge gets hurricane force winds on a regular basis, the only difference is we don't get the destructive effect of the water along with the wind), breezes make things dry faster!

Just a bit of a breezy day and sunshine! 
So all in all hand washing is going pretty decently, other then that I just don't have much time for it...seriously this week we have been home very little, my house is suffering. In fact we are taking advantage of the rainy day today to catch up on some laundry and general clean up. Maybe I should go wash this round of flats too while I'm at it.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Flats and Handwashing Challenge Day 1 and Day 2 combined!

Wow it's been awhile since I've blogged anything...craaazzyy! life kind of got in the way. But I'm kicking off a new goal to actually keep up with blogging! To start off we have joined into the 3rd Annual Flats and Hand washing Challenge this year.

I missed posting yesterday (sorry it was the long weekend up here in Canada and we were off hanging out with family with little internet access :D) So today is a catch up of yesterday and today.

We started off smoothly yesterday, Little Bug (surprise to those of you who followed me before, we have baby #3 but I digress!) cooperated and didn't poop. He went easy on mommy to start with...not so much today haha! Anyways yesterday's topic was why did I take the challenge?

Little Bug in his first ever flat, and the first I've used in almost 6 years!
Well... because I'm least that's what Lemur Daddy says ;) To put this in perspective I have been cloth diapering for almost 6 years straight now. When I started cloth diapering we didn't have a lot of money and my mom started me out with flats and plastic pants. Oh I hated flats and plastic pants with a passion and eventually found my way to easier options. But thinking back on it, flats were the easiest available and cheapest option for our situation. I am very passionate about all things birth and baby so I wanted to show people that you don't need to spend tons of money or necessarily have laundry facilities etc to do cloth. I have my diaper stash that I love, and will always love but a week of flats and hand washing I think will do me a world of good. I get to go back to basics, and all the while maybe make a difference and change someone's perspective of how "hard" cloth is. Also I'm hoping that I learn a thing or two along the way!

So Day 2 is all about Preparation and Supplies:

Like I said I have an amazing stash ;) seriously some day I will post pics of our stash but today is about my flats stash. I had absolutely NO flats at all when I decided to do this challenge. So instead of going online and ordering a bunch (shipping to Canada can sometimes be crazy!) I decided to try to show how you can do it in a pinch or if you don't have access to actual flats.

My stash consists of:

2 flannel receiving blankets
6 ikea burp cloths
6 tea towels
2 snappis (already in my stash)
2 wool wrap covers (already in my stash)
A few wool longies/soakers (already in my stash)
1 night time fitted from our stash as we can't part with our night time system that works so well for us!

I started by putting out a call on my local free cycle group for towels and old receiving blankets. I got a couple receiving blankets and a stack of kitchen towels- cost to me: price of gas to pick them up! essentially free in some cases as friends dropped them off.

Then I discovered the Ikea burp cloths and they were cute...I'm a sucker for cute diapers even if they aren't going to be seen much. So I HAD to have some. Now we don't have an Ikea here which is a bit Lame but that's ok. I got a wonderful friend in a city a couple hours from me to pick some up on her way down. Ikea "flats" come in packs of 2 for $4.99. I have 3 packs so cost was- approx $15.

The snappis were already in my stash but they are relatively inexpensive to order online. I think they probably cost me $2-$3 for the 2 of them from a really sweet Mama. Now I did also find pins at the dollar store (I don't get along with pins so no pins for me!)

Covers were a doozy for me...they are probably the most expensive but that's because I love wool and we only use wool. I didn't buy any specifically for this challenge I have tons already in my stash. You don't need to use wool, PUL or fleece covers work well too. If you do choose to use wool, and can knit you can pick up just a cheap ball of 100% wool at any craft store, grab some knittng needles and a free pattern off of ravelry and make your own. Technically for this challenge the cost to me was $0 on my covers but for the tally of things I'll say we use 2 covers that cost $30 each as you really only need 2-3 covers to make it work. So total cost: $60

In total for the challenge I spent $15.00 since my stash already had lots of what I needed. If I had to buy everything my total cost would still be less then $100 ($78) not including soap and a clothes line that you could pick up at the dollar store.

Our Ikea "flats" and one of our Snappi's cute huh?