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Daycare and Cloth Diapering… (with a new twist.)

You hear all the time about the struggles parents face with getting their daycare to allow cloth diapers in their facilities. Here’s a new twist.  Jen Dunkle, owner of “What Do You See Childcare” in Fowlerville, Michigan is considering not allowing disposable diapers in her daycare.

Having always been the “go to person” to watch friends’ and co-workers’ children, a day care was a very logical business for her to open. Cloth was introduced into her daycare shortly after.  “My first interest with cloth diapers was when I was pregnant, I worked 50-60 hours a week, was a single mom and wanted something cost effective.” Jen Dunkle explains, “April of 2008 I went into a store that had a sign outside that mentioned natural fertility help.” She explained that while waiting to speak with someone, she overheard a discussion about Fuzzi Bunz. Within a month she had bought her first set. She fell in love!  “I took my money and went back to that store and eventually ended up with cloth diapers and cloth trainers and have never looked back.”  Dunkle now owns more than 200 cloth diapers.

Dunkle is not just obsessed with fluff though. She uses them in her daycare. The children she watches almost all wear them. Some of them even rent her diapers to use at home. She watches eight children on a regular basis. Jen explains, “Five of the kids are in cloth diapers or trainers when they are here and two of them use my cloth diapers at home also.”

Her diaper service is $20 a week. She explains to the parents that it will still be cheaper for them than disposables. “I’m all about doing whatever I can to get people in cloth. I mean a brightly colored fluffy butt is so much better than a chemical covered perfumed butt, so for me it’s always been to help the kids.” Jen washes all of the diapers herself. She has them separated into colors so she knows which child wears which diaper. That makes the parents feel really comfortable.  If a parent chooses to use disposables though… this is my favorite part…. She sends the used disposable diapers home in a bag for the parents to dispose of, because she wants no part of it!

Jen is a regular participant on Everything Birth’s free online forum. Go visit her there. She loves to chat and is a wealth of information!

-Dawn Papple


Buy 5 Get 1 Free: bumGenius 4.0 One-Size Pockets & Sized All-In-Ones

So, here’s another amazing sale going on right now at Everything Birth.

Right now, the bumGenius 4.0 one size pocket diapers and the sized all-in-one diapers are on sale. Buy five of these diapers, and Everything Birth will give you one free.

Remember, we’re not talking about disposable diapers here.  I hope everyone realizes what an amazing sale this is. Just in case you don’t though, let me break it down for you. 

In general, if you wash your cloth diapers once a day, you will want to have 12 diapers on hand. Most of us consider 12 diapers “a set.”  This allows you to have enough diapers for one entire day and a few more in case you forget to toss them in the wash before bed.

So, let’s say you decide to get 10 one size bumGenius 4.0s during this sale. You will get 2 diapers for free.  You may think, that’s great, that’s almost a forty dollar value. I want to take this moment though to remind you just how remarkable this saving is over the general population of diaperers. Let’s face it, for now, most people use disposable diapers. Presuming the average child is in diapers for about two and a half years minimally, we’re looking at about 900 days that a baby is in diapers.   So, then, with this bumGenius 4.0 sale, you’re getting the equivalent of 1800 disposable diapers for free!

I know, I know… you were going to use cloth diapers anyway. I just like to show people the real value of things like this amazing sale on bumGenius 4.0s.

Though I will admit, I also break things down like this so that you have some interesting trivia to show your husband. Most men like trivia. Most men like facts and figures. If your husband is like most of our husbands, if you explain how soft the bumGenius 4.0s are or how much “nicer this will be for Mother Earth,” he’s not going to be that moved. Now, if you explain to him that you just stumbled on a sale where you’d be getting the equivalent of 1800 disposable diapers for free, he may actually stop and listen to you.

-Dawn Papple

Helping Premature Babies Thrive

When babies are born premature, they have a lot of obstacles to overcome. Everything Birth can help with these obstacles. There are a few very crucial items that Everything Birth carries that are a must for premature babies.

Baby Wearing for Premature Babies

The first and most important thing you can do is wear your baby in a carrier.  I go into all the physiological reasons for wearing babies in a previous blog.  Slings can constrict the airways of a baby that is premature, so wearing them Kangaroo-style works best. You keep them in an upright snuggled position right up against your body. Skin-to-skin. Tummy-to tummy. The product carried by Everything Birth that I suggest for this is the Maya Tie-On.  You would use this in the front carrying position. You would wear your baby as frequently as possible, and you would start in the NICU.

Cloth Diapering for Premature Babies

Secondly, premature babies need to experience as much loving comfort and as little chemicals as possible. For this, you need to use cloth diapers. Thankfully, Happy Heinys has developed the Micro Mini All-In-One Diaper. These are sized to fit any premature baby. In addition, they are designed to be exactly the same weight at all times. Often, NICU nurses will not permit cloth diapers because they need to be able to measure input-verses-output. That means they carefully weigh what the baby eats as well as what the baby expels. A matter of a half an ounce can make a difference. Committed to the well being of babies, Happy Heinys has ensures that these diapers will perform perfectly in these procedures. The nurse simply weighs the diaper, just as she would a disposable and calculates output from there.  The diapers are made to be an all-in-one so that nurses can also not object to the difficulty of applying the diaper. There is nothing new for them to learn, the diapers apply EXACTLY as a disposable diaper would.

Organic Items for Premature Babies

Organic clothing is imperative for premature babies as well. It may not be a huge consideration for you if your baby is born healthy, but we are talking about a critical time in a baby’s life. This time is supposed to be spent in the womb, but since it cannot be, it’s crucial that every attempt to keep pesticides, flame retardants and other chemicals away from premature babies is made.  Everything Birth offers organic clothing and blankets.

Also, while new toys and stuffed animals are common gifts from relatives. This is an important time to keep these things away from the premature baby’s bed. Often at a NICU, you will see a teddy bear sitting in the corner of the bed. I hate to see this because the teddy bear bought at the gift store or toy store, is most certainly from a plant in china and is full of chemicals. Your baby does not benefit from the “new adorable teddy bear” airing out its toxins into its bed.   It would be best for relatives to save their money or spend it on bringing you a healthy meal to keep your strength, but if they must, Everything Birth also offers adorable organic toys that can keep watch over your new premature baby.

-Dawn Papple

Host a “Baby Shower” with Diaper Parties by Everything Birth

One of Diaper Parties’ senior representatives, Andrea, recently held a “Baby Shower” Diaper Party. This is a unique type of diaper party where guests are invited to a baby shower and instead of registering for this particular baby shower, guest attend a diaper party. Here, they learn all about the new products that the mom-in-waiting wants that are offered by Diaper Parties by Everything Birth.  It works great because often women are unfamiliar with the benefits of the products offered by Diaper Parties by Everything Birth. Because of this unfamiliarity, they don’t get as excited about giving these products as gifts.

A “Baby Shower” Diaper Parties party allows these women to feel the softness with their own hands.  I remember when I used to own a brick and mortar store and women were registered there, relatives would feel bad purchasing “one diaper” as a gift for a baby shower. Once they understood that that one diaper was equivalent to the mom-in-waiting to several PACKS of disposables, they felt a lot more comfortable with it. Once they felt the softness and learn of the functionality of the diaper(s) they were purchasing, they got excited. A “Baby Shower” style diaper party is the perfect way to do this!

Andrea said:

Mom and grandma were the ones who asked the most questions.

  • “Why would you use a diaper and cover instead of a pocket diaper?”
  • “How does this cover not get dirty?”
  • “How many prefolds is Patty going to need to start out with?”
  • “How do you use a Snappi and what is it used for?”

They were full of questions, but it was a great thing because they more than likely were asking the same questions the mutual friend had too. There were good conversations about the “proper” way to wash the diapers, the difference between the diapers now and what they were like when grandma diapered her kids, and about the products on the registry.

To hold a “Baby Shower” diaper party contact a representative of Diaper Parties by Everything Birth for your region.

-Dawn Papple

The Cloth Diaper Mini-Shower

The Cloth Diaper Mini-Shower

If you haven’t seen the cloth diaper Mini-Shower yet, I urge you to check it out. This little contraption is well worth the investment. With this poopage weapon even the traditional style of cloth diaper washing becomes easy.

“I don’t think I will be able to install the cloth diaper Mini-Shower”

That’s non-sense. The simple instructions that come with the cloth diaper Mini-Shower allow even the most exhausted, brain-fried, new mother to be a virtual handyman. You usually don’t even need tools to hook up the cloth diaper Mini-Shower, though if you want to get the tool box out and lay the tools strewn about the bathroom to make your friends and family think you were hard at work, that’s your prerogative.

“That’s quite an investment just for spraying poopage

Here’s how I look at the $44.95 that will make washing diapers insanely less gross. For the price of about four packs of disposable diapers, you can purchase the cloth diaper Mini-Shower. You’re already saving your family thousands of dollars by using cloth diapers. The cloth diaper Mini-Shower is a highly useful tool for this very responsible diapering choice.  We would never ask our husbands to build shelves with a hand held screw driver and saw. They get power tools. The cloth diaper Mini Shower is our power tool. The cloth diaper Mini-Shower allows you to skip the rinse cycle, which saves water, energy and money.  The cloth diaper Mini-Shower will also save you time, which frees you to cut coupons (save money) or make home-made snack packs rather than buy them from the grocery store (save money.) Or you could just take a nap.

“I’ll only use the cloth diaper Mini-Shower for a couple of years”

More non-sense.  Even if you only have one more child to diaper, the cloth diaper Mini-Shower will be a valuable accessory for years to come. It’s designed for cloth diaper laundering, but it also has many alternative functions. For starters, it helps to rinse the sides of the toilet bowl from the nasty things our men-folk do to that thing. It also gently cleans the tush regions of your family in situations like:

  • Hemorrhoids
  • Menstruation
  • After birth healing
  • While learning to potty train
  • Tender skin caused by yeast or other infections
  • Diarrhea
  • Elderly incontinence

Just buy the cloth diaper Mini-Shower already

I make sense, and you know I do.  I frankly don’t understand why our toilets don’t come pre-equipped with Mini-Showers all the time.  There are too many reasons why the cloth diaper Mini-Shower is a wise purchase.  Let’s face it: the arguments against getting the cloth diaper Mini-Shower just don’t hold water.

Dawn Papple

Sense of SELF.

When my twin daughters were two I went through a period of depression.  I had done nothing but attachment parent for two full years. Cloth diapering, nursing, and the pressures of the unknown for two full years. It never dawned on me to take time for myself.  It is common for first time parents to think they need to do it all.  Do not get me wrong here, it was not the attachment parenting that sent me to the blues.  My father’s sudden cancer had sent me over the edge, but I really felt like I didn’t know who I was anymore.

I whole heartedly believe that attachment parenting is the way to go and the benefits are now apparent.  My now seven-year olds are confident, independent, and secure individuals.  That being said, attachment parenting for me required the willing commitment of my SELF.

Let me explain.  Before I had babies I was a pottery teacher, I made glass beads, and I made a line of  funky silk handbags.  I worked for Georgies, a large clay and glaze manufacturer in Portland, Oregon.  I was doing shows and selling my work all year-long.  I always knew that children were in my future, but I always thought that I would still be able to do everything I did before.  My mother won’t ever let me forget the time I told her that “My kids will just do everything with me.  I won’t have to stop doing anything I love to do.”  Which also included white water kayaking.  Ha.  It still makes me chuckle.

After the girls came along, I hit a standstill in my artistic life.  More than anything, I think all of my creative energy was going into my children.  When I would sit down to make art, there was none left for me.  My SELF was missing.  It was being diverted and absorbed by my children.

Fast forward five years:

I just spent the last two weeks working on a line of pottery for my friends shop in Wisconsin.  I am thrilled to have the urge to work with my hands again.  I am starting to feel like my SELF is back and I am able to fill my life with all of the things I loved to do before I had children.  Plus, I now get the added bonus of having three wonderful children to share the activities that make me who I am.  It is so nice to hear my daughters ask to do pottery with me.  I am now sharing my SELF on a whole new level.

5 Baby Steps to Going Green.

Choosing to drastically change a part of your routine just after you had a baby is unrealistic. Greening your lifestyle doesn’t have to be as overwhelming as it seems.  There are a few little things that you can do to make your carbon footprint just a little bit lighter one baby step at a time.

Stop using plastic water bottles. Drinking water instead of soda is way better for you, but when it take 5 times the amount of water to produce the bottle you are drinking out of, you need to stop and consider the resource you are depleting.  In most cases tap water is just as good if not better than the water in those bottles.  Stainless steel, glass, and aluminum water bottles are safer and more earth-friendly. There are also many companies manufacturing BPA-free and phthalate-free plastic water bottles.

Use cloth diapers. You knew that one was coming.  Just one cloth diaper a day keeps 200 pounds of disposable diaper waste out of our landfills.

Switch to phosphate free soaps and detergents.  This requires you to read labels.  You vote every time you make a purchase at the store.  Whether you avoid toxic chemical ingredients in your soap such as phosphates, or chemicals in your food such as partially hydrogenated oil or high fructose corn syrup.  Avoiding these harmful items helps save our planet.

Avoid High Fructose Corn Syrup and Partially Hydrogenated Oil.  Any highly processed foods for that matter.  Shopping around the outside of the grocery store will help with this choice.  Just read your labels.  HFCS and PHO are toxic for you and for the environment.

“Phosphorous is like a fertilizer. It increases algae and aquatic weed growth in water bodies,” Bernie Duffy, natural resource specialist with the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, told the AP. He said too much algae depletes oxygen needed for healthy fish and aquatic life.

Sewage treatment plants and private septic systems can remove much but not all of the phosphorous from wastewater, so some of it ends up in lakes, streams and rivers.16 states ban phosphate-laden dishwasher soap

Bring your own bags when you go shopping.  Not just at the grocery.  Everywhere.

  • Approximately 60 – 100 million barrels of oil are required to make the world’s plastic bags each year
  • Most plastic bags take over 400 years to biodegrade. Some figures indicate that plastic bags could take over 1000 years to break down. (I guess nobody will live long enough to find out!). This means not one plastic bag has ever naturally biodegraded. –Environmental Impact of Plastic Bags