A Typical Day for a Cloth Diaper Retailer (It ain’t easy!)

Today I have a special guest post from long time DDL advertiser, Salina of Diaper Lab.  Diaper Lab is an online and brick and mortar store in Somerville, MA that specializes in selling cloth diapers.  Like many stores, Diaper Lab is a Family run business with a small number of hired employees.  I know I’ve always wondered how women like Salina manage to run a family, a home, and a successful business.  She has written up a typical day encompassing all of her many duties.


6:45am Wake Up. Shower. Find favorite pair of jeans

7:00am Hubby sets out breakfast, packs lunches and backpacks. I find outfits, search for socks and tights, get teeth and hair brushed, while answering questions like “Mom, why is the earth round” from the 4 year old riddler. Stop to help Sofia find Fairy Stickers. Put a load of laundry in the washer.

8:35am Can’t find 1 pink boot. Remember boots got left at school yesterday. Grab stroller with kiddos and walk FAST!

8:50am Drop Sofia off at Kindergarten – oops forgot orange daily folder! Stop to chat with other Kindergartner moms and set up a playdate for Friday afternoon

9:05am Drop Evan off at Spanish Immersion Preschool (Buenos Dias!) Remember to fold up the double stroller and leave in the lobby for hubby to pickup at the end of the day

9:15am Walk to Starbucks for a Venti Soy White Chocolate Mocha and wait for bus while checking email on blackberry phone. Read and scan through a bunch of facebook posts and local listserves for anything interesting

10:00am Turn the sign to “open” at Diaper Lab. Ashley K arrives to work too (she’s always a ton of fun!). Pick up messages from store voice mail.

diaper lab store10:30am Ashley mans the floor upstairs, talking with customers, answering questions, returning phone calls, straightening up product, etc. Salina retreats to the basement to pack up online orders.

11:15am Orders packed and waiting for post man. Computer time. Post to Diaper Lab’s Facebook page. Stop to take a call from a persistent possible vendor wanting us to bring in their line of diapers. Gracefully get off phone. Back to email. Stop to take a call from a nervous new mom with specific diaper rash questions.

Noon- Back to email. Scan through email and see that 3 orders I placed for Bum Genius, Swaddlebees, and Thirsties are shipping today. Make note that Bum Genius will arrive in 5 business days (so next Tuesday) and Swaddlebees and Thirsties likely on Friday or next Monday. Stop to take phone call from a dad who placed an order last week and wants a status on when diapers will arrive. Check email for shipping notices and contact customer. Get an email from a popular vendor that they are debuting new product and pre orders will go up in two days. Make a note to place an order that day.

1:30pm UPS man arrives with packages. Country Save detergent, and Bottombumpers diapers.

2:25pm Leave to pick up Sofia from Kindergarten. Catch bus to Davis Square. Ashley K is manning the store.

3:05pm Play at park for 15 min while catching up with other kids and moms from Sofia’s classroom

3:25pm Walk back to Diaper Lab while doling out snacks to 5 year old

3:55pm Arrive back at Diaper Lab. Debrief the day with Ashley K and she leaves.

4:15pm 5 year old and I finish tagging the diapers and detergent that arrived earlier today.

4:45pm Help a customer set up an “Experiment to Own” program for her 4 month old baby. Ring up a few customers buying detergent and liners. Help 5 year old find the “right kind of pink” crayon.

5:30pm Call hubby. He and Evan are walking home. Make plan for dinner while refastening diapers customers unfastened and straighten up product on shelves.

6:00pm Turn sign to closed. Settle credit cards, close out cash register. Low on one dollar bills. Make note to stop at the bank in the morning. Take out trash.

6:30pm Sofia and I catch bus to Davis Square then walk home. Sofia runs laps around me while I walk. Sofia singing “This Old Man” at the top of her voice while other walkers laugh and smile at us.

7:00pm Home. Put laundry in dryer. Hubby has dinner ready and we all eat together. Kids play

7:30pm Bath is running and kiddos jump in. Ryan does dishes while I keep an eye and ear on kiddos while I pick up the living room and fold laundry.

8:00pm Kiddos in jammies and in bed while Ryan reads bedtime stories. Crying and fussing from kiddos because can’t find specific library book.

8:15pm More fussing because we can’t find a favorite lovey, “Bastian”. I look. Bastian found under a box that was being used as a fort in the living room. Returned to a grateful 5 year old who hugs him tight.

8:20pm Lights out for kiddos. Salina and Ryan watch tv. It’s a new NCIS! While Salina updates website and Ryan answers work email. Still hear kiddos chatting. Knock on door and remind them to GO TO SLEEP!

10:00pm Chat about tomorrow’s school plans, meetings Ryan has the next day. Fold clothes and pick up bedroom.

11:00pm Ryan falls asleep. Salina reads “People Magazine” in bed then does a crossword puzzle.

Midnight- Everyone is asleep (4:00am The 4 year old riddler sneaks into our bed, pats my cheek and whispers, “Mommy do you know why the chicken crossed the road?” “No”, I mumble. “To get away from the interrupting cow!” And falls back asleep.

Thank you Salina for letting us see how hard a cloth diaper store owner works!  I know all too well that a WAHM’s job is not 9-5!  

Please show Diaper Lab some love and “like” them on Facebookto stay up to date with their promotions and specials.  

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