The Flats and Handwashing Challenge ends tonight and the big question is – what did I learn?
Basically, these three things:
- How to hand wash diapers – Or anything else, for that matter. It’s a good skill to have and it just goes to show that cleaning doesn’t require a degree in rocket science. It takes time, common sense and a little bit of trial and error. Our wash routine took about 45 minutes total plus 5+ hours for drying on the line. I have to admit it would be difficult to do this 45 minute chore every other day, with everything else I have going right now in my life (seven children, housework, homeschooling, the blog, etc.), but I know that it CAN be done. It’s just a matter of setting aside time.
- What it’s like to use flats exclusively – It took some getting used to, not reaching for my bamboo prefolds or fitteds at night, or grabbing a pre-stuffed pocket diaper for a quick change. All-in-One diapers with velcro closure are my oldest daughter’s top choice when she’s helping me out, so it was an adjustment for her, too. It’s not that we don’t use flats; we have – for years. But only as part of a bigger rotation. It’s easy to get spoiled with all the different styles of diapers out there. I had to learn to think differently in various situations because we had to make the flats work ALL the time, whether that was naps, car trips or night time. Not all all flats are created equal when it comes to absorbency, so we had to make adjustments there, too.
- How cloth diapering is different when you’re on a tight budget – Your style choices are much more limited, and you have to cut corners and make sacrifices. When we first started diapering 7 years ago I would have loved to have some AIO diapers for convenience but simply could not afford them. Being on a limited budget means you might have to scrounge around and make your own doublers, accept whatever prints/colors are available in the covers you can afford, and maybe even forego conveniences like pail liners and wet bags, diaper sprayers, and flushable liners.
If you did the challenge, let me know what you learned. Or maybe you’re thinking ahead to next year and your first try?