Fluffy Mama of the Week- Pamela

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Meet our Fluffy Mama of the Week, Pamela.  Here is a little bit about her:

“I am a wife to one, affectionately called The Mister, and a mama to four. Miss O is six and a half, Wee Man is four, HB will be 3 in November, and Sweets is 5 months old. I blog about many things at the dayton time (http://daytontime.blogspot.com), and it’s my understanding that much coffee is spat upon monitors by my readers. I just opened up an Etsy shop called Revel Baby (http://revelbaby.etsy.com), where I sell woven cotton wraps, podegis, and other baby items that I make. I decided to call the shop Revel Baby because I believe that my babies are precious, and that children are our rewards. I really try to revel in my children, and to soak up their wonderfulness… especially when they are crazy and crabby and having unpleasant moments.”

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How long have you been cloth diapering?  “I have been cloth diapering since February of 2007, so about two and a half years.”

What made you decide to start? “HB has extremely sensitive skin. From the time he was born, he had a terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad rash that he would scratch and scratch until his skin was raw and bloody. His yummy little neck looked like someone had actually taken a bite, and it was disgusting. I changed my diet, in case he was having a problem from my breastmilk, I eliminated every scented item in our house, including detergents, soaps…everything. I switched to organic and non-processed food, and none of my changes made a difference. The only thing I hadn’t changed was the disposable diapers. So I did some research into cloth, and invested in prefolds and covers from a seller on eBay who manufactured diapers and covers for diaper services around the country. I found the cheapest possible way to set myself up with a stash, even did the math to figure out how long I needed to cloth diaper to break even. Which, by the way, for the stuff I bought? Two and a half months. My husband and I decided to commit to cloth for two and a half months. We did not complain, we owned the decision to quit sposies cold turkey. We were flabbergasted that we did not hate cloth diapers. In fact, we invested in a set of toddler sized cloth and covers for Wee Man, and switched him to cloth at 21 months. The best part? Two days after switching to cloth, HB’s rash was gone. Not faded, not going away, not healing, but GONE. It vanished. It did take a little while for the raw, scratched-up skin to heal, but the rash disappeared.”

What was your first purchase and why? “My first purchase was 36 Chinese prefolds, regular size, for $30. I bought 7 medium sized covers, similar to Proraps, for $5 each, and a handful of Snappis for about $2 a piece. I also bought a wet bag and a pail liner from Happy Tushies, and those lasted more than two years despite being washed 3-5 times a week. I love Happy Tushies products!”

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How much do you think you have spent on your diapers total? “I have spent less than $500 to cloth diaper 3 children, plus a little more if you count the fabric I purchased to make cloth wipes. That total includes two pail liners, a wet bag, a wonderbag, and Snappis. Oh….except recently I’ve been captured by the wool bug, and have been buying wool yarn to knit into soakers. This is turning out to be an expensive and time-consuming hobby…but the results are too stinking cute to stop!!!

Have your family/ friends been supportive? My friends have been really supportive, because pretty much all of them use cloth, too. My family thinks I’m a little nutty, but they respect our decision because it is really fiscally and environmentally responsible. I do keep some sposies on hand for my MIL, because she spends a lot of time with my babies, and I am all about cultivating that relationship!”

What has been the most rewarding aspect of cding? “Without even hesitating I have to say the health of my children is the most rewarding aspect of using cloth. The chemicals in the disposables (and we tried EVERY brand) had penetrated my baby boy’s delicate skin, and he was in constant pain because of it. I know that when I wrap a prefold around my baby’s bum that it is made of cotton. I don’t have to wonder what sort of danger lurks in the gel, or what is that substance pressed against his skin… It’s cotton. It’s natural. It’s not dangerous to his body.”

What is your favorite diaper to use? “I have tried a few brand name diapers, but I really like the prefolds. I have some wonderful Green Mountain Diapers toddler-sized that are fabulous. If we’re going to be out for the day, I use Smartipants. They go on in a flash, and you don’t have to pull out the wet insert.”

What has been the biggest challenge to your success at cding? “I think it’s great that the suggestions of challenges you listed are washing, money, leakage, fit…none of those were really a problem to us. I was really afraid of using cloth. I do not deal well with The Fluids (pee, poop, and barf), and I was certain I would spend our two month trial period throwing up. My own expectations that cloth diapering would be horrible was the biggest challenge I had to overcome. (That’s why I went with a pail liner that could just be thrown in the washer…no sticking my head or hands in a stinky, nasty diaper bucket for me!!!) I really had to work on my attitude in order to not fail at using cloth. Lucky for me, it was WAY easier and much less gross than I had imagined.”

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And anything else you want to discuss!!! “I really encourage mamas and daddies who are thinking about cloth, and even the ones who are wrinkling up their noses at the very idea of cloth diapering, to give it a try. There are many inexpensive options available, and honest to God, it’s not that gross. If I can handle it, you can handle it.”

Thanks Pamela, my twitter pal, for being a Fluffy Mama and sharing your story.
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