Author Archives: Maria

Maria is an aspiring "fit mom" of 3 children, writing about cloth diapers, going green, and her life as a single mom. Maria works with many companies within the cloth diaper industry and beyond, providing social media management, product development, and other services.
All In One Diapers Cloth Diapers Made in Canada Sized Diapers

Kushies Ultra Lite

I did not have high hopes for this Kushies Baby Ultra Lite Washable Diaper.

I want to preface this by saying most experienced cloth diaperers have said they hate these and are glad they didn’t give up on Cd’ing because of them.  I would really only suggest these to someone who wants to try cloth diapers that are easy & inexpensive.  I’d rather have One Blueberry than 3 of these, but I’d rather have these than disposables.

This was a new product at Kelly’s Closet.  I still have a balance on the gift certificate my Mom got me for Christmas.  I’m always looking to increase my fluff stash and try something new, plus I wanted to bump my order over $49 for free shipping.

I was really intrigued by the price.  This is the cheapest (mass produced) diaper I’ve purchased (aside from the econobum, which was free with a coupon code & I didn’t care for at all.)  They were even cheaper than the smartipants diaper.

In addition, it is an all in one diaper, which means the soaker material is sewn into the diaper.  I’m a little leery of them because of the drying time and inability to remove the soaker for extra cleaning.

You get to choose boy, girl or neutral print, you don’t choose the actual print.  I find that pretty disappointing since part of the fun of cloth diapering is choosing the cute fabrics!  The one I received is OK.  Not horrible but not what I would have chosen if I’d been able to.

kushies

I’m not sure where I come up with this stuff, but for some reason, if it had been on clearance for, say, $8 or less, I would have been less concerned with the print.

So, my initial opinion of the diaper wasn’t really great.  The tabs were small and the outer fabric reminded me of a windbreaker.

However, the diaper was really cushy and had a nice, thick absorbent core, which somehow also felt very, very trim.  I also realized that the small tabs mean that you don’t have to have “overlapping” tabs, you can just put one below the other, since the loop part of the hook & loop was as wide as both tabs.

According to their website, it has 6 layers of 100% cotton flannel plus a “special middle soaker for increased absorbency.”  That soaker is just the fold down flap you can see in the photo.  You can fold it over to get extra absorbency where you need it.  This is the first diaper I have that doesn’t have a fabric against baby’s skin to wick moisture away.  You can buy stay dry liners or buy and cut microfleece to line diapers with.

These are also sized diapers.  I chose infant (10-22 lbs) but they also offer toddler (22-45 lbs).  I would probably continue to use the diaper as long as it continued to cover the important bits and not leak.  The weight limits can really vary based on your child’s waist size, rise, skinny, chunky etc.

The diaper was just fine on.

The diaper doesn’t have any fancy gussets, but he pooped in it as well as soaking it, and we had no leaks or blowouts.  I do wish it had a stay dry inner though, the whole inside was of course wet to the touch.

The tabs held wonderfully and weren’t too grippy, yet they didn’t budge during laundering.

I didn’t think I’d like this diaper, but it functioned very well, and when purchased in 5 packs, they are less than $10 per diaper.  That is less than an econobum!

These are very Daddy friendly.  The fact that they are all in ones and have a velcro closure makes them as close to disposables as you can get.  They are so affordable, you could try a few, use them long enough for them to pay for themselves, then move on to another type of diaper, or sell them or give them away!

They are also readily available.  I’ve heard people say they have seen them at Wal-Mart (Ptooie!!) and a quick search of their site confirms it.  Free site to store shipping too.

Bottom (no pun intended) line, these are cheap diapers that are fine for the price.  Don’t buy them if you’re expecting Blueberry quality, but they’d be a great alternative to prefolds and covers or disposables.

Now I’m really curious about the “Ultra” type.  It says it has 5 layers of 100% cotton flannel (vs the Ultra-Lite’s 6, though perhaps that was a typo) plus the extra soaker.  I love the adorable duck print pictured!  These are also available in Preemie (2-4 lbs) and Newborn (4-10 lbs).  That is definitely enticing since even one size diapers usually don’t fit well until about 10 pounds and it’s tough to think about investing hundreds of dollars in teeny diapers the baby won’t wear long!

They do have a strike against them in my book, because in their drop down menu, they have spelled “Classic Diaper” as “Classic Diper.”  Spell check.  Use it.  (No, I’m not perfect, but I also don’t have a professional website and business!)

Edit August 2010: This is an OK diaper but very “cheap” and won’t really hold up to “messes.”  If you’re on a budget, I’d suggest a Hybrid or prefold/cover system before I recommended these.

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All In Two Diapers Cloth Diapers Made in the USA Sized Diapers WAHM made

Testing, testing 1 2 3…

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A lot of diaper makers get started because there is some need that is not being met by other diapers.  If she decides to sell to others, she needs to see how her diapers fit on babies of other sizes and shapes, how they hold up to wigglers and heavy wetters, and what other moms think of her design.

Other times, an experienced diaper seller is trying a new design, or even branching out to new products, and she needs feedback.

Enter…the tester.

What a seller usually does is offer her product for the cost of shipping and materials, in exchange for brutally honest feedback, and typically also photos of the product in use.

This can be a great chance to try a new design for a great price, though most sellers would prefer a mom who has been cloth diapering for a little while vs someone brand new to cloth.  Of course, that means that you may get a product with a few flaws or bugs that need to be worked out, or something that just doesn’t work for your child.

I had the opportunity to test an E.F.F.-n-Stuffs (Enjoy Fabulous Fluff -n- stuffs) diaper.  The diapers will be sold in the Home 2 Home congo on Hyenacart.

She is also working on a nighttime diaper and also plans to offer custom diaper bags and combo sets!

Her regular prices will vary between $10 and $25 depending on style.  She charged her testers for materials and shipping (I paid the same as all other testers and my review was not influenced in any way!)

I got a size Medium (10-22 lbs) all in two for my 15.5 lb boy.  She also offers Small (NB/6 lb-12 lb) and Large (20-34 lb).

She uses cottons, cotton knit, jersey knit, interlocks, wool interlocks and more. 

She ran out of the fabric I requested (you don’t get to be too picky when you’re a tester and that’s OK!) so she used some purple polyester on mine.

The inside is lined with fleece or cotton velour.

The soaker is thick, soft and squishy.  Her standard soaker has microfiber sandwiched between fleece x2 and suedecloth next to babies skin.  Her special soaker is the same, but has a hidden layer of PUL in the soaker. 

Prior to this round of testing she made the AI2s without PUL and used fleece only but wanted to test and see if PUL makes any difference.  She, herself, never used covers with her diapers, even to go out.  The fleece of the cover is considered pretty water proof.

She will also offer a custom soaker with 5 layers of OBF sandwiched between fleece x2 and suedecloth next to babies skin, or hidden PUL.

I’ve actually only ever seen diapers with PUL through the whole diaper.  Her method makes a lot of sense since the PUL would only be where needed, and the rest of the diaper area could breathe more.

I was a little concerned because it seemed a bit narrow as well as bulky, but it was just fine on.
I did not seem to add too much bulk between his legs and it was just the right width.

The wings are quite wide (“extended tabs”), but she plans to also offer “minimal tabs” as an option.  Her diapers are purposely cut with more of a “boy short” shape for more booty coverage, making pants optional!

I did have a little trouble selecting the right snap settings to get a good fit around his waist and rolly thighs, but I usually have a learning curve getting used to any new diaper!  There is tons of adjustability, and the tabs even have the ability to overlap.

So far, so good!  He wore the diaper for about 2 hours and we had no leaks.  The soaker didn’t even feel wet (though I know it was!)  The only thing was that his hiney & the area around his leg were very red, which is rare for him since switching to cloth.  I’m not sure what to make of that. 

I wondered how he’d do with the polyester, but it wasn’t touching his skin, and he doesn’t have trouble with diapers lined with PUL.  I’ll have to see if it does the same thing next time we use it.  It was probably just a coincidence!

Edit August 2010: I did not care for the cut of this diaper/how it fit on my son, so I ended up passing it along.

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Baby Food Natural and Organic Food

Yum! (or Poison! depending on who you are)

>I’m a terrible photographer, even with a little knowledge and an expensive (borrowed) camera.  Still, I thought these apples and plums baking were worthy of a quick shot with my point-and-shoot.

I know I started this blog to write about cloth diapers, but I think I’ve veered off that path enough already to write about homemade baby food sometime.

So stay tuned kiddies!

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Retailers Stink Stripping Washing

Yes, I’m still here.

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I’m still here, and I’m still rinsing diapers!

I got my RLR laundry treatment.  I can’t keep my kiddo in disposables, even a few hours leaves his hiney with raised, red welts.  So I bought two packets and washed the diapers in two batches.  Then I rinsed, rinsed and rinsed some more.

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Eco-Friendly/Green Made in the USA Reusable Products

It’s spreading

>I’ve been wanting to switch to cloth napkins for a while, but I haven’t been able to find quite what I’m looking for, nor have I been ready to commit to the initial cost.  I’ve also learned about unpapertowels, and I’ve found some really clever containers for them.  That is definitely something I want to do when I have the funds.

Back to the point of this post!  My daughter started a new preschool.  It’s 2 days a week, and she eats lunch there.  Her new school is very environmentally conscious.  In fact, the building constructed last year is registered with the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) for certification under the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) program.

Needless to say, I’d be ashamed to send a paper napkin and ziploc bag in her lunch box every day!  We already have a reusable sandwich container, but I wanted cloth napkins and reusable snack bags too.  Enter etsy.  I asked each seller if I could use her photos here on my blog and each agreed.  I am trying to learn about photography, but I’m still terrible at it!

I purchased a set of cloth napkins from MagicalMemories

A Tinkerbell snack bag from smartsnackbags

and a pink snack pouch from cottontopquilts (I have to note that shipping charges were extremely reasonable, but this seller still refunded me 60 cents when shipping costs were less.  I didn’t expect this for many reasons, but it was a nice surprise.  The only time I’m annoyed about shipping is when I’m charged MORE than enough to ship something in a box via priority mail, but I get it after 3 weeks, in an envelope, smushed, with 2 stamps on it!)

I thought they were reasonably priced and a worthy investment, considering how much disposable products cost and how quickly they add up. 
The bags are lined with water resistant, FDA approved materials, so you can even use them for things like sliced fruit.  The Tinkerbell bag is about 6.5″ by 6.5″ and the pink bag is about 6.5″ x 3.75″.  I thought the larger bag would be great for fruit and the smaller bag would be perfect for smaller snacks like crackers and pretzels.  They both have a velcro closure and no exposed seams for crumbs to get tangled in.  They can be wiped out or washed & laid flat to dry.
If you search, you can find tons of bags in all sizes, prints and closures, to fit any need.
Yesterday, I received the pink snack bag.
It’s really well made, very easy to open and of course, adorable.  My daughter was so excited to take pretzels in it today.  She said her teacher held it up for everyone to see because it was “so cute!”
Today I received the napkins.

They’re the perfect size for a lunch box!

I also got the Tinkerbell bag.  She looks a little, uh, confused in the first pic because the bag is creased right through her face.

The closure on this one was a little harder to open. My daughter is already planning to take orange slices in it to preschool tomorrow.
What made this extra special was the way it was packaged.
Even though I knew what it was (and I paid for it!) it was like getting a little present in the mail.
The custom sticker was really neat!

I’ve already started adding items to my etsy “favorites.”  I’d love to have some larger bags with a bottom gusset to pack sandwiches in.  I’ve found quite a few adorable prints, but I’m not sure if I should go for a velcro closure, or the traditional fold-over “sandwich bag” closure.

Edit August 2010: The napkins held up great, as did the pink bag from cottontopquilts.  However, the Tinkerbell bag from smartsnacbags didn’t fare as well.  We used the pink one 2x/week for 6 months with no problem.  The tinkerbell bag was used less often, maybe twice per month, if that.  It didn’t even last 6 months before the lining fell apart, and I received to response from the seller when I contacted her about it.

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