Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Blogging Contest!

Blogging contest!  Are you interested in submitting a blog post for Ottawa Cloth Diapers?  I often struggle to find time to write blog posts so following my 3 part series on Elimination Communication, I am opening some spots for you!  From now until the end of November I will accept submissions of potential posts from you.  I will choose a total of 10 which I will run over the next year on my Blog.  You can write anything you like as long as it is related to cloth diapering, parenting, or babies and children.  You can do product reviews, personal stories, etc.  Video reviews will also be accepted.  All 10 posts chosen, will receive a $20 gift certificate to Ottawa Cloth Diapers.  For now, I will only accept 1 post per customer.  Let me know if you have any questions.  Please e-mail your posts to me at: vicky@ottawaclothdiapers.com

Elimination Communication Series: Part 1 - What is it?

Some of you may be hearing more and more about this "new" concept which we call Elimination Communication.  In this 3 part blog series, I will share with you What it means, How to do it and A success story from a family.  Happy reading.

picture source:
What is EC’ing?

Elimination Communication is commonly referred to as Infant Pottying or EC’ing for short. It is an approach to communicating with your child about using the potty. It has been practiced around the world for centuries and is still the norm for many cultures today. It is based on the value that children are born knowing when they need to use the potty. By offering potty times from any age the child will in fact provide some type of signal before they void. In order for a parent to become aware of this signal, they need to spend time with their child to see what that signal could be. For example, watching your child play on a wet change pad and watching to see if there is a pattern of behaviour they exhibit right before they pee or poop. These are often approaches used by parents with young children to watch for signs. When the child does void, the parent makes a soft “pssss” sounds for pee or may even grunt if the child has a bowel movement. These are sounds that are used to communicate with the child along with a statement such as “you’re peeing!”

There are many variations of how EC’ing is practiced in North America. Each family is different and may practice EC’ing part time or full time. There is no wrong way to do it, and every family will find what works best for them. Additionally, there are many benefits to practicing EC’ing with your child. These include but are not limited to the following:

• Reduces frustration between child and parent;

• Supports a positive relationship between child and parent and reduces the likelihood of potty training struggles later on;

• Leads adults to change their perspectives on babies and culture since EC’ing focuses on “letting go” rather than “holding it”, which not only applies to bodily functions but to life in general;

• It can save parents money since they are not spending as much money on diapers;

• Babies and parents may feel happier as children are respected and parents feel good about meeting their child’s needs in a respectful manner.

This is the basics of what is EC'ing.  If you are interested, stay tuned for part 2 where I will go through how to do it?


Monday, October 4, 2010

Cloth Diapering the Newborn Baby

For the first three months your newborn will eat, sleep and poop. As new parents we often focus on the eating and sleeping and just want to forget about the pooping. Whether to use cloth diapers is now an added decision for many new parents that want to make the right decision not only for their baby, but for the environment too.

My 1 week old son wearing a size small
Happy Heinys pocket diaper

Cloth diapering the newborn can have its own set of challenges when compared to diapering an older child. Once you have decided on cloth diapering your newborn, the only thing left to do is figure out how to do it and what products to choose (and of course choosing the products is often the most difficult as there are so many to choose from!).

First, select the style of diaper for your newborn. If your priority is to save money you will want to go with prefolds and covers for your newborn or a system such as the Flip system from Cotton Babies which is very economical. The functionality of this option lies in the quality of covers, therefore, make sure you get a good quality cover and prefolds with at least a 6 layer middle thickness.

If selecting a fitted diaper, you will also want one with a good fit around the thighs to keep any messes in the diaper. With any two part system like this, you can expect your baby’s bottom to be quite larger so you may need larger sleepers or pants with an elastic waist.  You can also get the Onesies Garment Extenders which are quite handy.

If you want a trim fit, you will want to go with a pocket style diaper or and AIO or AI2 system. You can choose either a sized option or a one size pocket diaper, but keep in mind that a one size will be bulkier and you may not get as good of a fit around the thighs than with a sized diaper. Newborn leaks tend to happen either out the thighs or up the back of the diaper, so make sure to choose a diaper with elastic around the back waist and a good fit around the thighs.

If purchasing diapers before your baby is born, you should consider going to an information session to get all of the information and seeing the various diaper options before you purchase.  You may also consider a cloth diaper “trial” package where you get a variety of diapers to try on your baby. These variety packages whether you purchase or rent, allow you to learn which diaper you like better, and which style of diaper will work best for your child’s body type. When you are shopping, factor in the benefits you get with a more expensive diaper and if it will be worth it to you to spend the extra money. If you sacrifice fit for a lower price you may end up getting frustrated from a poor fitting one size diaper that you may give up on cloth diapers completely.

Here are some of my favorite diapers for the newborn baby ...

Prefold diapers
Bummis prefolds, infant or preemie size (a little bulky)

Fitted diaper
Bamboozle size 1 (especially at night) (bulky)

Thirsties Duo Wrap
Stacinator So Simple for night once you stop changing your baby at night (look like little shorts :)

Pocket diaperHappy Heinys mini one-size pocket
FuzziBunz one-size pocket (I prefer the one-size over the perfect size)
bumGenius one-size pocket 4.0 (this one will be bulkier)

All-In-One diaper
Definitely the AMP Stay Dry AIO
TotsBots Tini Fit AIO

All-In-2 diaper
By far the SoftBums AI2 with a mini pod (one-size but shrinks down really tiny)
Flip system with stay dry inserts if you are going for economical (a little bulky)

You should aim to have a minimum of 24 diapers with a newborn baby up to approx. 4 months of age to be able to wash every 2 days.  Other useful accessories to consider to make your cloth diaper experience successful:  A pail liner or waterproof laundry bag to store your soiled diapers, wetbag to store your dirty diapers on the go and a good cloth diaper safe detergent.  You may also consider using cloth wipes instead to disposable wipes.  You can wash these with your diapers.
Good luck!