Hey all!  Important date in the “Keeping Up With The Hagopians” calendar: Our FREEDOM FROM DIAPERS day!  No, 2-year old Robbie isn’t potty trained yet, BUT, we’ve tried something new that is clearly going to pay off huge – the “new” technology known as CLOTH diapers.  My daughter Katie (now 5) was a disposable diaper baby all the way.    Three years of disposables put us back about $1500 (yikes!).   Robbie is two now, and will probably be in diapers for another two years.  Hmmmm, another $1000 if we go the disposable route.   Ick.

Okay, okay.  I decided to give cloth diapers an experimental run for their money, BUT ONLY if I didn’t have to use the ones that required pins.  All I could envision was me constantly sticking the baby!  No no no, I could only do this if I used the cutsey, practically-like-disposable-diapers out there, and at a reasonable price.  Could NOT believe the retail outlets were charging $20 apiece for these things!  No way Jose!  

Went onto Craigslist, and within a week found a Mommy goddess who was getting rid of hers for about $3 each, so I bought all of hers, along with the eco-friendly flannel wipies and rubber pants she included.   Truthfully, I’m not as into the “eco-friendly” as I am into the “bank-o friendly” aspect of all this, but HEY, if it’s good for the planet as well, what the hoo.  

A meeting setup at a mutually convenient place – and $80 later – we were the proud owners of a box full of diapers & acroutement that I had pretty much no flippin CLUE how to put together.    Too mortified to ask for help, I put the college degree to work and finally figured out what’s what.  Actually, these Bum Geniuses are kinda cute!

Okay, so if Robbie blitzes thru these at the same speed as disposables, I’ve got enough for three days.   Robbie doesn’t mind them…much.  Much poofier on his backside, and now he’s walking like an extra in a B-rated cowboy film.  “Howdy, pardner!”.   But he’s a trooper.  However, when I attempt to put the plastic pants on him, he becomes all kicking legs and grabbing hands – THIS we don’t like.   Truthfully, it DOES sound like he’s dinner leftovers that I’m wrapping up in plastic wrap.    Unnerving at best.

Okay, first day, so far so good – and then we do our first cloth diaper poo.  All right, I was expecting one of these.  But Good LORD.   Wait, are my eyes supposed to water like that?…  Okee dokee – instructions say to “flush everything we can down the toilet…” YA THINK?!  Okay, got a lot into the toilet.  And there’s a LOT LEFT on the diaper.  Gloriosky.   This is Robbie’s revenge for me putting plastic pants on him.  Well done, my son.   Bleah.

Okay, got as much off as I could, then into the washer they go – my new rule (brand new upon this first pooey diaper) is that as SOON as we have a pooey diaper in the inventory, we WASH DIAPERS.   One warm-water “Heavy Duty” cycle later, and I wince as I pull them out with pinched fingertips…HEY!  All clean!  Whaddaya know?! 

Now, critics of cloth diapers mention that any cost savings are eaten up by drying them in the dryer.  Understandable, but not such an issue for us since we started hanging our wash out to dry (see earlier blog!).    My bigger gripe is the cost of cloth diapers retail – purchase 20 of them to get yourself started, and you’re out $400! That’s almost one year’s disposables right there!  If you’re in the market for cloth diapers, hit your local Craigslist instead – chances are good you should be able to find them for MUCH less. 

Okay, so bought $80 worth of cloth diapers two months ago today.   Two months of disposables would have cost about $80 as well.  So today, here we are, break even day!  After today, the diapers have paid for themselves, and are now saving us money.  If Robbie uses these for another two years, we save approximately $1,000.  Good stuff. 

If you’re tempted to give cloth diapers a try, I think you’ll like it!  The savings are tremendous, and the hassles are much less than you’d think. 

Happy Diapering!  Kris