Thursday, November 28, 2013

School of Cloth: Cloth Diapering Two Children

This week (the final week) bloggers that are participating in the School of Cloth are writing about using cloth diapers in special circumstances.  I love this topic because there are so many different things that people can write about and I can't wait to read what others have to say (see links at the bottom of this post where you can check out the other entries as well).  I have two daughters that are just over 17 months apart and both still in diapers (oldest is 2 years, 2 months and baby is 8 months) so today I will be writing about cloth diapering two children. 

In the Beginning...
I started cloth diapering my oldest daughter when she was 17 month, just 2 weeks before my second daughter was born.  At the time I only had enough diapers to get me through a few days and would have to wash and dry immediately for use the next day (check out my week #2 post about how to build your stash).  So when my second was born I did not have enough diapers to cover both kids and because I was so new to cloth diapering I also didn't know anything about newborn diapers so the baby used disposables for about the first month. Over time I was able to build up enough diapers through sales, buying used and making some of my own to be able to cloth diaper both girls now and only have to wash every 3-4 days (although I wash every 2 days because there are so many diapers). 

But my Children are Different Sizes!
Thankfully I am at the point where my girls use diapers on the same size setting (my 2 year old is tiny for her age and my baby is average, so they almost weight the same amount!), so I can use their diapers interchangeably.  In the beginning though, the baby was on the smallest rise and my old daughter was on the middle rise for most diapers (or just wore sized diapers in Medium).  To keep from having to adjust all of my diapers each time one child wears them or each time I do laundry, I assigned each child specific brands.  My older daughter wears: Peachy Green, Swaddlebees, Bottombumpers, Alvas, Kawaii, and Sunbaby diapers.  The new baby was assigned: Charlie Banana, FuzziBunz and Softbums.  I split up the pocket diapers between the girls and designated those the nanny/other sitter diapers (because you know I can't let someone else use my favorites!) and then also divided the AIO/AI2s between them for me to use when I am home.  Another way to divide your diapers would be by color or I have also seen people write their child's initials in certain diapers so that they can tell which ones are set for the younger and older child (although this might hurt the resale value).

Everyday Challenges
One of the biggest challenges for me was remembering when each child got a new diaper.  Because it is recommended that you change cloth diapers every 2 hours, it can get really confusing when you have two kids to keep track of.  To combat this problem, I generally just change them both at the same time so I only have one time to remember.  We all start the day around the same time so they both get a new diaper when they get up, and then I just continue to change them every 2 hours one after the other.  The only kink in my plan is when one needs a new diaper before the 2 hours mark (soiled or leaking) when that happens then I still just go ahead and change both girls and start the clock again.

The second biggest challenge is the extra laundry.  When I was new to cloth diapering and I had enough diapers that I would only wash every 3 days.  After a few months I noticed that they didn't seem to be getting as clean and would require an extra wash cycle.  After some research I decided to wash every 2 days (or about 20 diapers) although I will let one load of diapers sit in the basked or on the drying rack until the next load is done and then fold them all at once.

After almost 7 months now of cloth diapering two children I think I finally have the hang of it :).  Having 2 in diapers isn't as bad as I thought it would be and for me its really just an excuse to buy more diapers!!
What are some of the special circumstances you have faced while cloth diapering?

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