She Caught the Sun

We always knew our Lily Jumping Bean was special, but we didn’t know she could also catch the sun in a jar. :)

And, after seeing Corbin sitting in one, I wanted a hanging high chair for Lily too, so I decided to get one too. Just in time, as she had vomited all over her regular high chair the other day and we haven’t washed the straps yet.

The Decided Cloth Diaper

Okay, so I know that I said before, waay back in another post about diapering, that we chose the gdiapers with cloth inserts. That didn’t work so well, as it kept leaking and leaking. I ended up getting all sorts of help from all sorts of mothers from all over the world who used gdiapers, both with flushables and inserts. After months (approximately 3.5 months!) of trying and trying, and getting leak after leak after leak, I had to admit failure. And I do not like admitting failure!

So, seeing that we were experimenting with different overnight diapers (the gdiapers always leaked overnight, so we ditched that almost at the very beginning), we wanted to see how they would work during the day. I suggested using Thirsties covers with prefolds, since we had some prefolds already and the Thirsties covers were very inexpensive. Dave wasn’t falling for that one — he wouldn’t touch the prefold during changings, so that sort of defeated the purpose. He liked the All-In-Ones one, or the pocket diapres, because he didn’t have to touch any of the poop or pee at all.

So I got some Bum Genius 3.0 One-Size diapers. Granted, they’re very expensive, and very effective. I bought one first, to try out. No leak. Then I bought 3 more, to rotate through. Still no leak. So then I kept buying a little at a time, and now our stash is about 14. I do laundry every other day (that’s down to a science now too). No stains, completely clean every time, and no leak. The best thing for using a one-size diaper is that the first spending is the most costy, but then you don’t have to buy another diaper for, like, ever. That sat well with us.

And, it left little to no bum rashes. I don’t have to use any products for diaper rashes like I did with the disposables and sometimes even with the gdiapers.

Here is a video of the Lily Bean in her BG cloth diaper. She loves ‘em as much as we do! It was taken just yesterday.

The Bumbo

We finally decided to get her the bumbo chair because she is so adamant about sitting up and being in an upright position and stuff. She loves to “stand” so she can bounce and hop and dance and pretend-run while we’re holding her up. She’s such a mover and a shaker. We got the bumbo in the mail today, and decided to test it out right away!

As you can see, she completely approves! She even gave us a thumbs up for it! She had all giggles and smiles for us, while she was in it. She thought it was the coolest thing that she was sitting up like a big girl, and we were all hovered over her. She’s the cutest little itty bitty thing too… she doesn’t even go up to my knees when she’s in the bumbo and it’s like this itty bitty miniature little person. So cute, I want to eat her up!

She’s wearing Daddy’s hat and she thought this was pretty awesome.

“Whoa, Mama, what’s this awesome thing I’m sitting on?!”

Does it get much cuter than this, hmm?! I think not! Her cute little feetsies were moving a mile a minute, and she was having so much fun. We decided to try out the little tray that came with it as well, and this is what happened:

She was absolutely amused that all her toys were within reach of her. Usually, she’s on her tummy or her back when she’s playing with these toys, or one of us has to hold her up. She was feeling pretty darn grown-uppy, being able to grab onto all her toys all by herself like this. This kept her busy for at least a good 20 minutes, straight!

Decided Diapering System

It’s been (close to) three months since Lily was born. The first month and a half, we used all the disposable diapers that we were given for as shower gifts. Plus, she didn’t fit into her gdiapers that we got for her yet at that time, since she was on the smaller and leaner side. We had to wait until she was almost 10 pounds before the gdiapers fit her.

It took about two weeks to get the flushable gdiapers to fit correctly without leaking or staining. It took another two weeks to see how we were going to deal with cleaning and laundry and soaking and hand washing and staining. At first, I was hand washing every single white liner when there were poo stains. That means, after every changing (which could be anywhere between every 2 to 4 hours), I was hand washing the liner. While I didn’t mind too much, this took a lot of time, used a lot of water, and eventually I noticed the liner material tearing off on the sides, which makes leaks even more probable. So I stopped doing that.

We enjoyed the gdiapers with flushables on its own for about a week and a half or so. I taught Dave to do it and we were both pretty confident. We finally found something that worked right for us. However, after realizing how many flushables we were having to buy every week (a new bag a week — about $15), I wanted to find a more economical and less time-consuming method to go. Flushables are completely biodegradable, earth-friendly, bum-friendly, clean, etc. However, the time it took to flush every flushable was starting to get annoying, and the money spent wasn’t saving us more than what we would’ve spent on regular disposables anyway. Plus, I didn’t find it “cleaner” than we had first imagined if we were to go straight to cloth diapers.

So I tried cloth diapers for a couple of days, using Thirsties diapers with hemp prefolds. While they worked well, had very minimal stains and no leakage at all, I didn’t enjoy having to change her about every hour or two. That seemed like a whole lot of changing to me.

So I went on a research rampage to see what other mothers are doing with the gdiapering system. We really like the concept and how it can go longer without changing, as well as keep her bum nice and rash-free (like the cloth system). I found out that mothers everywhere were using cloth inserts with their gdiapers!

So I looked it up, and lo and behold, Cottonwood Baby makes cotton inserts specifically for gdiapers! Now, we can have the best of both gdiapering and cloth diapering. This sounded fantastic. I decided to order a package and try it out. With the help of the owner, Anna, I perfected the cloth diapering system with a gdiaper in about a week. After several washes and drying, the cloth inserts worked perfectly, and leaks were very minimal. Plus, I could still change her every 4 hours, sometimes even longer, and she still wouldn’t get a rash or leak. Plus, it’s cleaner and less time consuming in the sense that I didn’t have to hand wash anything, and I didn’t have to take time away from Lily Bean by having to flush anything. It works like the cloth diapering system where I just throw the liner and the insert into a wet bag after every changing and then do a load of laundry every other day. It’s just an extra load of laundry, and really, that’s not so bad after all.

The left is a completed gdiaper system with insert: the gpants, with the white liner holding the cloth insert. The right is what the cloth insert actually looks like. Sometimes I use the organic hemp/cotton doubler underneath the insert for extra soaking power.

Now, for overnights, we’ve tried various things. Lily Bean sleeps anywhere between 8 to 9.5 hours every night, straight through, so you can imagine how wet and/or soiled her diaper is when she wakes up. We needed something that was comfortable for her as well as water-resistant and leak-proof. At first, doubling up the flushables in the gdiaper worked. It contained really wet pee and icky poop throughout the night. However, having a flushable in doubled with a “sushi-roll” flushable on top didn’t always work. It was about 50-50 for us, interestingly enough. Sometimes she woke up with her whole backside completely soiled and wet, through her clothes, her blankets, and finally down onto her bassinet. Poor baby.

So then I got a Thirsties all-in-one cloth diaper, as suggested by Erin. I believe she said that’s what she used for Corbin’s overnights. So I put a pre-fold in there, and tried it last night. PERFECT fit. She not only soaked the whole thing, but she also soiled it pretty badly, and there was absolutely no leakage. It contained the whole thing perfectly, and she was dry on the outside. No backside horror, no wet blankets, nothing. Plus, no rash. Here’s a picture of the all-in-one that we’re using. I got two, just enough for an every-other-day laundry doing, since they’re quite expensive. We don’t need them during the day since we change her pretty frequently with her regular gdiapers-with-inserts.

All in all, it’s a LOT cleaner than what we initially thought. We rarely have to touch pee or poop, and every leakage/stain has come out after every wash. (Dave is SO anti-bodily-fluids, it’s not even funny… and he likes this system we’re using, so if he can do it, anyone can.. haha!) We use Seventh Generation’s baby laundry detergent (also completely biodegradable, earth-friendly, hypo-allergenic), and that’s like, super-laundry-detergent. Method’s regular laundry detergent also works well. It gets out everything. Every changing is like using a new cloth insert altogether. There’s no evidence that the inserts were ever covered with poop or pee in the first place.

So now, we’ve perfected the whole system. I just got reusable wipes, and will be using them from now on instead of buying disposable wipes. In the long run, we’re saving a LOT of money, and we’ve completely eliminated trash altogether. Baby Lily Bean is an eco-friendly earth-loving baby, and I couldn’t be more proud!

G-Diapers and Such

As you may or may not recall from a previous post, we’ve decided to use g-diapers instead of disposables or cloth diapers. These days, while there is no perfect diapering option that is all convenient, simple, and efficient, there are at least many choices to choose from. Dave and I were seriously considering using cloth diapers so that we don’t contribute to filling up the landfills with thousands of diapers that don’t decompose for at least several hundred years. We both feel it is necessary to do what we can with our offspring(s) because it is our responsibility to do the best. I won’t direct others to not use disposable diapers such as Huggies or Pampers because it isn’t my place to tell others what to do, and demanding anything from anyone usually results in them doing exactly the opposite.

Since we became pregnant last October, Dave and I have been scheming and plotting about how to raise our little Beaner. Since she was literally the size of a bean, I was researching products and diapers and bottles that were both safe to use as well as ecologically friendly. We both swore that we would limit the usage of plastic as much as possible, and completely use glass bottles. While we again couldn’t demand that those who got us gifts only give us organic, ecologically sound gifts such as clothes and non-plastic toys and such, I began to shop on my own during the pregnancy for such things. I found numerous wooden toys that are saved for when Beaner can play with them. Most of the clothes I’ve gotten for her have been organic or used (in order to save on money since she would outgrow many of them in just weeks anyway). I researched on glass bottles to see which were the best and which had the highest recommendations and reviews.

I have to admit, though, that using all these organic, safe products for Lily is a little hard on our purse strings, especially since neither Dave and I are working right now. And they’re generally more hard to find because they don’t get sold readily at our convenient superstores, or they’re harder to use because you have to learn a different method altogether from what’s already known. However, there are a few things that make me feel better.

First, it is Dave’s saying: “We should do things not because they are easy but because they are the right things to do.” If we leave it to convenience, we would never leave the house and we would fill our bodies and our homes with numerous toxins. We made the switch to vegetarianism (I’m back to being a vegetarian now) not because it was simple (we both loved meat) but because it was right for us. It was harder finding local foods that are organic and safe, but we’re eating healthier. I cut back the unnecessary outings for lunch in order to buy more organic, sweatshop-free clothes. It’s harder on us to change our regular lifestyles in order to be a little more aware, but it is worth it because it is the right thing to do.

Second, I remember that “Jon & Kate Plus Eight” do it every. single. day. Those guys have 8 friggin’ kids (two sets of multiples) and Kate somehow manages to give them organic meals all the time. If they can do it with eight kids, we can definitely do it with just one.

Third, it is a thrill when I find something that is more “safe” to use or eat. When we find locally run farmer’s markets or stores or shops that are “green,” we get so excited. It’s almost orgasmic.

Fourth, I realize that the best way to preach is by leading with example. Gone are the days when my blogs are filled with lectures of peace and changes, demanding people to do what I think is best for the planet. Here now are the days that I am only showing people what I’m doing myself and that is the best I can do. We’re not perfect — some toys are still plastic and some of her furniture are plastic as well — but we certainly try our best. Everything that goes on our bodies and on Lily’s body is organic. Every cleaning detergent we use, every shampoo and conditioner and body soap, every dish washing liquid — they’re all organically made and they were all a little more expensive. But it’s worth it when I know we’re not filling our homes with toxins and things that harm our bodies and our environment.

One of the things we didn’t look forward to is learning how to use cloth diapers. While we know there are a lot of options involved and many have used them in the past and been successful, Dave wasn’t sure if it was the right thing for us. He asked me to look up flushable, biodegradable diapers instead. So I did and came upon G-Diapers. So far, it is the ONLY source of diapers that are biodegradable and flushable. I can’t believe that at this time and age, we as a society haven’t yet figured out how to make more flushable brands of diapers that don’t harm the environment.

When Lily Bean was about 6 weeks old, she weighed a little over 8 pounds, which was the weight that G-Diapers could start to be used. I tried it for about a week, and she leaked out of most of them. After watching numerous “How To” videos and even talking to a customer service lady on the phone, I realized that she may still be too small to fit into them, since she’s long and lean in her weight, instead of plump and wide. So I decided to try it again after she’s gained some weight.

Since last Friday, she weighed 9 lbs 10 oz, so this week I decided to give gdiapers another go. I was determined to do away with Huggies and Pampers entirely, if we could help it. They were so hard on her bum, and she often got bum rashes no matter how much organic baby powder and cream I used on her.

So far, it’s touch and go. Most of the time she doesn’t leak, but when she does, she leaks towards the sides and up her back. It must be that either I’m putting it on wrong, or she may still be too small for the diaper. So I went on You Tube and found this video on a mother’s demonstration on how she puts a gdiaper on her baby. I tried it all day yesterday, and it seemed to have worked! No leakage since I used her tips.

I’m hoping that all day today will be just as successful, and then I can move on to trying it for an overnight. If that is successful, I can finally teach Dave how to use it (no sense both of us trying to figure out different ways to do it the first time) and we can finally make the official switch over to flushable gdiapers. I gotta tell ya — this whole experiment makes me both excited and anxious at the same time. Every time I have a gdiaper on her, I end up groping her poor bum over and over again to see if she’s leaked. And I don’t look forward to having to wash the g-pants and do more laundry every time she does leak.

Flushing the inside padding of every diaper is like a science. Two nights ago, I ended up clogging our toilet because apparently I didn’t completely flush the last padding before I flushed a recent one. It clogged the poor thing and it took till morning before Dave can unclog our toilet. Everything had broken down in the water but it was still pretty gross.

Learning how to put a gdiaper on is pretty interesting work. It is also like a science. I feel like her poor bum is a science project right now — I poke and prod her every which way to ensure that I’ve put on the gdiaper the right away. Most of the time I get it, sometimes I don’t. If the leaks become infrequent and far in between, it wouldn’t be so bad. It is when they are regular that it gets frustrating. Right now, we’re using regular diapers for an overnight and first-diaper-in-the-morning. So only two regular Huggies everyday. The rest of the time I’m experimenting with gdiapers. So far so good. I hope to eliminate the morning disposable tomorrow morning, and then try an overnight the following day. Wish us luck!

If you actually got through this entire post, you deserve a reward: another picture of lovely Lily!