Craftiness

IMAG0019Gosh… I have so many things I want to post about (that never quite make it to the blog) that it makes it nearly impossible for me to come up with a single post topic when I sit down. All my ideas scatter in my brain like cockroaches when the light turns on.

 

I’ve been indulging in a bit of craftiness lately. I actually pulled out my sewing machine again (after it’s brief reappearance for the carseat headrest) and have put together a few more fun projects. A case for my new camera, a few fleece diaper covers and a few other little things here and there. It’s just inspired me to do more. Of course, it’s such an effort to pull out my card table, sewing machine and supplies every time I want to work on something. We don’t have a dedicated space for my craft stuff, so it’s stored in the garage when not in use. And that means that pulling it out and using it is an incredible amount of effort. Then, keeping C away from it the following day is another effort in of itself. Actually, she’s pretty darn good at keeping away from my sewing stuff, but that doesn’t mean I don’t have to keep a watchful eye on her when she’s near it. It’s when I’m not looking that she does the worst damage!

 

Clearly, C is interested in sewing… here she is climbing up on me while I stich a quick project. She’s fascinated when the machine starts going!

 

After a run of chemical burns from our “natural” disposable diapers (the bleach, latex, fragrance, etc free varieties), we’ve recently switched back to cloth diapers. We tried cloth before – briefly when C was just a few weeks old (she was too tiny for the covers and everything leaked! I didn’t realize there was anything smaller than “small” at the time), then again when she was 6 months old (the breastmilk / solid food transition poo was more than we could handle). This time, we have a much better system for clean/dirties & covers that makes cloth diapering a bit easier. Traveling and diapering while out and about is still a bit challenging, but we’re getting things figured out. There were two recent turning points that are making my life tremendously easier:

 

1. Stripping diapers / covers – we have a few “All in One” and “Two in One” covers that are supposed to make life SO much easier. They are pocket style dipes that you can shove absorbent inserts in to and they work just like disposables. The All in Ones I’ve always had trouble with. I just added a few more “previously loved” ones to our collection and after soaking in oxyclean and putting them through a full wash/dry routine, I gave them a shot while we were out one day. BAD idea. NEVER test out new diapers while away from home. They leaked like no other diaper I’d dealt with before. They were completely useless… leaking after C’s first pee. I couldn’t figure it out. I’d thought the oxyclean would do enough to strip out previous detergents, but obviously not. So, when I got home, I hopped on to Baby Center’s cloth diaper bulletin board and sought out answers. The recommendation online was to soak them in hot with a few drops of original blue Dawn. After soaking the all in one covers with a “few drops” of dawn overnight, drying and testing them (a small drizzle of water on the absorbent side to see if the material repelled the water or absorbed it) and discovered it just wasn’t enough. They still repelled water. So, again with the soak, this time with a liberal squirt of dawn in a small bucket of hot water. Success! The covers finally seemed to do their job, absorbing liquid rather than repelling and were bum ready.

 

2. Indian/Chinese Prefolds – I’ve been using birdseye cotton flat and prefold diapers inside my covers this entire time with marginal success. I’ve had fantastic results layering the birdseye inside fuzzibunz covers, but horrible luck with all over covers. The reality was, fuzzibunz has an extra layer of fleece inside their diapers that helped absorb the extra pee that the insert couldn’t handle – the other covers were lacking this, so the extra pee just went out the side of the legs. While visiting one of Ben’s cousins (who cloth diapered all three of her kids), I inquired about her overnight solution and we started chatting about the cloth diapers I’d been using. She recommended trying her indian cotton prefolds instead of the birdseye and see how they worked for us. The difference was amazing!! Suddenly, no more leaks, no more hourly changes and all for less bulk! I was doubling up the birdseye for naps/sleeping. It added so much bulk and we were still dealing with leaks. I managed to find some used ones at a baby store in Portland and found some more from Craigslist for cheap cheap!

It makes cloth diapering so much more exciting when you don’t have to constantly worry about leaks. I wish I’d figured this stuff out sooner, but I guess it’s just one of those things that requires trial and error. The thing is, we HAD indian prefolds when C was an infant (a friend let us borrow them), but after having little luck getting the covers to fit, and dealing with her colicky temperament, we wanted to eliminate as many potential aggravators as possible. I wish we’d given cloth diapering more of a shot when she was an infant, but I’m glad we’ve figured out some solutions now. Now I’m determined to use the cloth diapers / covers long enough to recoop the money I’ve spent so far. Considering disposables cost us about $25 a month (Amazon’s Mom program is FANTASTIC!), it’ll take about 6 months of cloth diapering before we break even for cloth. If we’re able to use the same supplies for baby #2, even better!

 

So, this comes full circle with my sewing projects. I’m determined to use some of the materials I’ve salvaged over the years to make some more covers and diapering essentials. I’ve also found some diaper cover patterns online that I’m intrigued by. I hope to get a few more projects under my belt soon. Hopefully pictures will follow soon!

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Mom to "C", wife to Ben. I'm a part-time blogger, cook, organizer, seamstress, house cleaner, taxi, nurse (the mom kind), accountant... I could go on, but really... it's all in the blog. Read away!

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