Thursday, September 23, 2010

Pre-Baby Review #2 - Baby Bunz & Co.

A few months ago, back when I decided that Cloth Diapering was a good idea, I started to reach out for companies who sell Cloth Diapers. My email to them was pretty basic it was probably 4-5 sentences long. I received several great responses, but one stood out above the rest. Heather from Baby Bunz & Co. sent me a 9 paragraph reply (on a Sunday afternoon to boot)! 9 paragraphs! Really! Don't you know that my attention span of.....uh.....what was I talking about?

Can you believe the Chicago Football Bears are 2 - 0, can anyone say Super Bowl? The Super Bowl will never happen in Chicago because they don't play in a dome. I prefer when football isn't played in a dome, I like football in the elements when you can have rain, snow and wind. The only problem is that the football can be uncontrollable when there is too much air circulation. Speaking of air circulation, did you know that some babies have sensitive skin and could benefit from having more air circulation in their diapers? Oh yeah.......I was talking about the letter from Heather at Baby Bunz & Co. This blogging thing is going to be very difficult if the Bears keep this winning streak up!

What got my attention was the fact that there are Natural cloth diapers and that we should consider breathability. My wife, Lindsey, is always talking about the benefits of things like "All Natural" and "Organic" so when I came across this email I was actually paying attention....for Lindsey's sake of course. To sum up Heather's email, I'll quote part of her email to me below. Men: When your wife talks about "All Natural" and "Organic" - don't call her a Hippie. Trust me!

"It's a good idea to factor in the NATURAL and/or BREATHABLE qualities of your diapering system, and consider rotating in at least a few items that would help allow for a healthier, more breathable environment around baby's bottom. Since babies are usually diapered all day and night for almost the first two years of life, that's a lot of time for their bottoms to be sitting in diapers"

With that being said, I had to get my hands on some of these so I did! The first diaper I am going to review is the Easy Fit One-Piece Diaper. The site describes it as a hybrid One-Piece/Pocket Diaper. I really like this diaper! As you all know, I prefer Pocket Diapers and this makes pocket diapering even easier because the insert is sewn right into the diaper. It is twice as long as the diaper so it can be folded in half and tucked in.....make sense? Probably not, so I have attached the below picture to show you what I am trying to type. Men: No, this is not a dead chicken.

Some features of this diaper is that the attached liner can be folded to create up to 6 layers of absorption where the baby needs it the most. The liner contains a layer of ultra soft rayon made from bamboo which absorbs 70% faster than cotton. It has Velcro closures and fits babies from 8 to 35 lbs so this one can go the distance. Men: No need to find the right inserts for this diaper, they're attached. Just imagine if your jockstrap had this feature, no more using your younger brother or your child's cup by mistake!!!!! Please tell me I'm not alone on this.

The second diaper I have from Baby Bunz & Co. is the Bamboozle Bamboo Fitted Diaper. It comes in two sizes (size #1 - 5-18 pounds and size #2 10-35 pounds) and has snap closures Right off the bat, I think this diaper is sweet because it may be one of the softest things I have ever felt. Move over teddy bear, you've been replaced by a diaper! This is a fitted diaper that has a snap in insert that aids in extra absorbency.

The diaper and the insert are made with Bamboo fibers, what does that mean? I'll tell you. Because it's made of bamboo it is very Eco-friendly. Bamboo is a renewable resource that grows extremely fast and it is grown without fertilizers and pesticides. The diaper is also naturally antibacterial, breathable and cool. This all means that you know exactly what is touching your baby's bottom! Can you say that about disposables? I don't think so. All in all I'd say this could be the perfect diaper for around the house. When using this diaper don't forget to use a diaper cover (Baby Bunz carries several options here). Men: This is a very soft diaper and you'd probably want to have underwear made of the same material (I know I do). Remember when I said that we have short term memory? Don't forget this or you'll be wondering why there are wet spots everywhere your baby sits...including your lap. Make sure you remember a DIAPER COVER when using this diaper. It's like a reverse rain poncho: the goal is to keep the wetness in.

You know what's really funny? I have talked about diaper covers in previous blogs, but because I was so distracted by shiny coins and squirrels when writing this blogs first draft I forgot about them and mis-spoke about how wet the Bamboozle diapers get (not to mention I forgot to spell check and check for grammar errors which were blatantly obvious). What can I say.....I'm a dude! Thanks to some friendly feedback, I have corrected my mistakes and made this blog more accurate. Men: What I just did there was to admit that I had actually, for once, made a mistake. This may be a foreign idea to you, but I challenge you to try it at some point. I am being serious, go ahead and try it. Let me know how it goes!

Thanks again to Heather at Baby Bunz & Co. for the email and sending the diapers.

I can't wait to actually try the two diapers out on my baby in about three months. Once I do, I'll post another blog about how they're working, so stay tuned. If you're interested in purchasing these or anything from Baby Bunz & Co., visit their website (

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Pre-Baby Review #1 - Thirsties

Alright ladies and gentlemen (well, I guess just ladies since I'm the only male follower of my blog so far). Here's what you've all been waiting for....drum roll please....seriously, start slapping your knees or the desk.....that's better......I give you my first diaper review!!!!!!!! (and the crowd goes wild!!!! But all I hear right now is crickets?) When I do get some male readers I know that they won't read everything I typed in this blog....heck, I almost fell asleep several times writing all of this I will use this red font to tell you what YOU need to know about the diapers.

Where to start? How about with the Thirsties Summer/Fall 2010 Catalog that came with my shipment! I am so glad that Sonya at Thirsties realized who she was dealing with and sent me the catalog along with my order. This is already giving me useful information that I had been asking my friends about. Page 3 is a great example of this because at the bottom it tells me "How Many Daily Diaper Changes Should I Expect" and "How Many Diapers Will I Need In Rotation." For a first time Dad, this information is crucial and for a first time cloth diapering dad, this information is life or death! The LAST thing I want is for one of my friends that I talked to months ago about the benefits of cloth diapers to see me frantically looking for disposables at the Walmart because I, the DIAPERING DAD!, didn't have enough cloth diapers. Men: Read the catalog that comes with your (your wife's) order.

What a great question, I'm glad you asked. I'll repeat it so that the rest of the readers can hear me. This reader just asked me what the answer was to the questions about how many diapers to expect to change and will we need in our rotation. That was a great question, thank you! And no, it's not a dumb question......! Since I don't want to fill my diaper in one post, I am going to stick to reviewing the diapers in this post and will use the wealth of knowledge I am building to formulate future blogs about that very topic. It's like I'm leaving a cliffhanger! (which by-the-way is a much better word than it is a movie). Men: Yes, it is a terrible movie...prove me wrong, I dare you!

Let's start with the Thirsties Duo Diaper. My first impression of the diaper was how cool the design is on it. That's it in the picture, they call this pattern Blackbird and I think it's pretty cool and can be a very gender neutral design. The Duo Diaper comes in 2 sizes, Size One (6-18lbs / 0-9 months) and Size Two (18-40lbs / 9-36 months). This diaper is described as a hybrid adjustable pocket diaper ( I could go back to my car references, but I'll hold off for now). Right off the bat, I see some things I like about this diaper. First, it has an adjustable rise to better fit whatever shape my baby is going to be. I also like that these diapers have openings at both ends of the pocket. This seems like it will be a lot easier getting the inserts in and out, and maybe even avoid getting poop all over myself....which is most likely going to happen anyway knowing my need to speed through every task. Another really cool feature is the leg gussets. These help keep the diapers snug up against the baby's leg. It looks like it is going to keep the mess inside the diaper no matter what position the baby is in....that's pretty cool! Like all pocket diapers, this one will need to be washed along with the inserts after each use. Men: this diaper is cool and has a secret compartment that can be accessed from two areas. Stick inserts in that compartment. You must wash this after each use!

The next diaper I have from Thirsties is the Thirsties Duo Wrap. Again, these diapers come in several different colors and patterns, the one I have in the picture is called Cool Stripes. This one is not as gender neutral as the Blackbird design is, but fear not....they have a pattern called Warm Stripes which will definitely work for girls. Color and pattern aside, these to are very cool like their Duo Diaper cousins. They share many of the same or similar features including coming in the same 2 sizes as the Duo Diaper, having the adjustable rise and the Thirsties signature leg gussets. You can get these with the durable Aplix or indestructible snap closure option. Unlike the Duo Diaper, the Duo Wrap is an adjustable cover that does not have inserts. This can be used with prefolds or even the Thirsties Stay Dry Duo Inserts. I like this option as a way to save on washing so many diapers. This cover is good for approx 4 diaper changes, requiring only a wipe down after the first three messes. This will definitely help cut down on bulk in the diaper buckets. Men: First off, thank you for reading this far down! Secondly, this diaper does not have any secret compartments. It is a cover, like the thing we put over our grill. We can only use this cover 4 times before washing it. What does it cover? Read the above paragraph or ask your wife.

I am going to try both of these styles out when we have our baby and then may come to a conclusion at that time as to which option I like best. At this point, I am stuck right in the middle seeing the benefits of each and not knowing which will work better for us and our baby. Men: I'll hopefully have an answer on which one I like better sometime during the NFL Playoffs.

One last thing that I am curious about is something that our friend Ami told us about. At first I was shocked, but I am warming up to it. Yes, I am talking about using cloth wipes........! It just so happens that Thirsties has these as well (Thirsties Fab Wipes - see picture). These are obviously an alternative to disposable wipes. The main benefit I see of these right now is that they can save about $500 on the cost of wipes from birth to potty training according to Thirsties. That on top of the savings of using cloth instead of disposable makes it hard for the money conscious person to deny seeing the financial benefits. Now, you may ask, am I really going to use these???? Right now the answer is.....I don't know! In one of my earlier blogs I talked about how the old prefold cloth diapers ended up being used as car wash cloths and "barf" rags....... Alright, I am not going to do that quite yet because the very generous people at Thirsties sent them to me so I am going to try them out once we have our kid. Who knows, I may even like using them! I guess if I'm going to be putting soiled diapers in the washing machine, what difference would it make to be putting a soiled rag in there as well? Baby steps steps! Men: You may be wiping your baby's butt with cloth rags....yes, I'm serious.

I'd like to send a shout out to Sonya at Thirsties for supplying the Duo Diaper, Duo Wrap, Stay Dry Duo Inserts and the Fab Wipes for this review....YOU ROCK!!!

As I get more styles and brands to review, I will post my thoughts. As always, I am open to comments and suggestions!

Thanks for reading

Dan the (soon to be) Diapering Dad
(6 months in - 3 to go)

Friday, August 20, 2010

What to do while waiting for your diapers to come in?

I know....I know, it's been a while since my last post. But I've been waiting for some diapers to come in so that I can give you a review of them. And so far, nothing has arrived.

As you know, my boy isn't due until December so how am I going to review the diapers I get? That's a great question.

Maybe I'll try them o
ut on my cats, that shouldn't be too hard, right? It may prove to be real hard because they still have their claws. What I'm actually going to do is see if I can figure out how to use the diapers without instructions. Then, based off of that, I will give you my honest review. Why do it this way? That's a great question. If you're a woman, turn to the closest man and ask him this question and if you are a man go ahead and answer this question honestly. How often do you actually follow directions when using something for the first time???? (That's not my cat, I promise)

I think we (men) like doing things by trial and error, that and instructions can be boring. The pictures don't really help and who wants to read a bunch of words??? I know there are some men out there who do read directions and instructions, but I am not one of those men and I can bet that there are probably at least 2 or 3 more men like me out there. For those of you who do read directions, you can go ahead and stop that...what I'm going to do will revolutionize your concept of diapering.

Instructions for using a cloth diaper? Really Dan? YES! Have you seen all of the components of some diapers? You have disposable inserts, cloth inserts, diaper covers, pins, Velcro, snaps, elastic bands, adjustable waists, etc, etc, etc.

So again, I apologize for not having more content but I am waiting - which means you have to wait. The only difference is you can read my blog while you wait and all I get to do is wait and try to figure out what pictures to put in my blog. I promise that you will get what you're all paying for real soon.....
Just wait, you may even see videos of me attempting to put the diapers on a stuffed animal. I can feel your excitement now!

Now for some interesting pics I came across:
Oh yes, I am going to find someone who makes these for men. No belt? No problem, we've got elastic holding the pants up and all you need is a belly......check! For those of you who have asked to see a picture of me (well, there is no one yet but I'm sure someone wants to know), here you go. Don't mind the outfit, I was just trying to figure out how to use my extra hand grenade vest.
Most people have these in their kitchen sink. Did you know that if you chose to use cloth diapers that you too could have a sprayer attached to your toilet? Just think of all of the benefits! No need to dunk those dirty diapers into the water anymore, you can just spray them off! Could this also be the answer to an inexpensive bidet..........just kidding.........seriously.......don't even think about it......I know you just did.......sorry!!!!
Finally, here is something that made me laugh. It would probably make a pretty funny baby shower gift! I actually found a few websites selling stuff like this. The one I really liked had images that I couldn't cut and paste so I found the picture below, but the link is here. (Baby C.R.A.P. - Changing Relief And Protection).

That's all for now! My plan is to have a review of some diapers by mid-week. So stay tuned.

Monday, August 16, 2010

I've opened Pandora's Box and it's full of Cloth Diapers

Holy Cow!!!!

I can't believe how much information is out there on Cloth Diapers! Over the past few days I've had several comments and emails stating that I should look into using more than just one style or brand of diaper. They brought up good points about what to use when you are at home vs. when you are out, what to use during the day vs. what to use at night and so on. I also had comments about breathability of a diaper and even using all natural fibers and the potential benefits of that. Did I say Holy Cow yet? If not.....HOLY COW!

So first of all, thank you for all of the comments and suggestions! Secondly, thanks a lot for all of your comments and suggestions (yes, that was sarcasm). Do you realize how much more work I have to do? Don't you know football season has started???? What am I going to do? OK, you don't have to answer that cause this is my blog so I'll do the talking thank you very much...

In all seriousness I am happy to have had the feedback, conversations with friends, emails from different people both in the industry and regular everyday users, and done the research I have done. I hope that by the end of this (whenever that may be) I'll have made the right decision, even if that means using a Geo Metro prefold on occasion. Furthermore (yup, I pulled out some 8th grade words for the start of this sentence), I hope that all of my ranting will actually help others out there. For most men, I know that this blog may be a lost cause until after February (that's when the Super Bowl happens ladies), but fear not because I've got archives!

My next few blogs are (hopefully) going to cover in more detail some of the things that you all have brought up regarding using more than one kind of diaper and the pro's and con's of each option. So stay tuned!

Thanks for reading!

Dan the (soon to be) Diapering Dad

Thursday, August 12, 2010

What type of diaper to use???????


Before meeting with our neighbor Ami a couple months ago and having a conversation with a friend Amanda a few months before that, I though that cloth diapers were those white rags that I would wash and wax my car with. As I've stated in the past, my mother used cloth diapers on us but I don't remember seeing my siblings in them. I only remember seeing my mom use the cloth diapers as burp rags. Just a side note: Why do they call them burp rags when baby's throw up on them. Shouldn't they be barf rags? But I digress!

Because I like to leave people hanging a bit, I'm going to start with the diapers that I am probably not going to use (notice that I said "probably"...I am a man, and I do change my mind quite often). Then I'll end with the ones that I am probably going to use (again, note that the word "probably" was used). I will give you my interpretation of the different styles of cloth diapers I have found and what I think about them. Remembering, of course, that I have no field experience with any of them (since our first child is still "in the oven") so this post will definitely be updated as time goes on. Are you ready? As Mario would say....Here we go!

First is PREFOLD DIAPERS, these are the kind that my mom used. All I have to say is they make really great barf rags and car wash rags! I am definitely staying away from this style cloth diaper, too much folding and snapping, pinning, strapping, etc for me. I need to have something a little easier than this....alright, I mean I need to have something A LOT easier than this. This is the equivalent of a base model GEO Metro.

Next, I found a style called CONTOUR DIAPERS. These appear to be the same material and as their prefold brother, but they seem to have had some plastic surgery. They are shaped like disposables, but made of cloth and have no elastic, Velcro, snaps or anything fancy. Basically they took a prefold and cut half circles out of the middle of the diaper for legs. If you chose to use this style, you'll need to get a diaper cover (plastic or vinyl) cause the mess will leak right through them. my ultimate opinion on these is they are a more expensive barf rag. This GEO Metro comes with power steering.

Now we get into some fancy upgrades, like elastic around the legs and Velcro or snap fasteners. No more pin holes in my baby! Now I'm starting to get closer to my ideal diaper. I'm talking about FITTED DIAPERS, these are the equivalent of a Chevy Cavalier, we're getting nicer and have more features but there is still one big drawback for still need a diaper cover to keep the moisture from leaking through. I need just a bit more convenience than that.

The next diaper no longer requires a diaper cover, this pushes it up to a Lexus status for me. No longer are we dealing with compact cars, we've moved right up to pure luxury. ALL-IN-ONE DIAPERS is the name of this Lexus and it comes factory direct with a very thirsty inner layer and a waterproof outer layer as well as having Velcro or snaps to fasten it together and elastic around the legs for good fit. This is one of only two diaper styles that I am going to even consider. One side note, is that this Lexus has an Acura cousin we call ALL-IN-TWO and that one comes with an additional thirsty layer of fabric (like a spare tire)!

Finally, the diaper that I am leaning toward is the Rolls Royce of diapers in my opinion. This diaper has it all, and I mean everything. It has Velcro or snap fasteners, comes in specific sizes or one size fits all (Oh yeah, our options even have options now!), some one size fits all models have adjustable elastic around the legs and waist to fit all sizes, and they are designed to allow you to chose how much absorption you want by adding as many or as little inserts as you need. What, pray tell, am I talking about? Drum roll please.........Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you the POCKET DIAPER!

I know it may be too soon for me to be deciding on the diaper style, in fact several comments I have received have told me that I should try a bunch of style and brands. But since I am a man, I am going to make a decision without having much to back it up except my MAN'S INTUITION (yeah, we have it too....we just don't talk about it because it's not real manly to do that). For now this is what I've decided. Please let me know your thoughts, I will consider them all!

So my final answer (for now) is I will be using POCKET DIAPERS. Yup, I'll be wrapping my future All American Athlete in all the luxury that only Rolls Royce has to offer a baby's behind.

One last thing: Thank you SO MUCH to everyone who has commented, given suggestions, or just expressed interest in what I am doing. It's pretty cool that people want to hear what I have to say so I'll keep this going as long as I can. THANK YOU!

Oh yeah, I'd also like to thank for their great images!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

20 Week Ultrasound Was Today - The Gender Debate is Over!

Today Lindsey and I had our 20 week ultrasound visit. As most women and not so many men (I may have been one of those men) know, this is the visit where you can find out the gender of your baby.

The decision to find out the gender has been a struggle for me as there are two schools of thought on this and both sides have very valid points. Having the personality I do, I am easily swayed one way or another depending on who I am talking to. For instance, my mother had 11 children and never found out the gender of any of us. I also know a family that was trying to get pregnant for years and they too decided not to know because they were finally able to get pregnant and didn't care what they were having.

There is also the other side of the debate where it is more convenient to know ahead of time for reasons like decorating, shopping, etc. Several of our friends have found out ahead of time and they said that they were able to be at ease about this as well, it's not something that kept them up at night wondering about. Obviously, if you are deciding on pink or blue for the wall, knowing the gender ahead of time would make that decision much easier.

I ultimately decided that I wanted to know the gender. I think it was in part because I wanted to be prepared but also because I realized that if I found out today or in 4 months, it was going to be a surprise either way. I'll tell you that finding out today has really put me in high gear to start getting things ready. I don't think this would have been the case if I didn't have that surprise.

If the picture above didn't give it away....we're having a boy! He'll be a linebacker for the Bears in 25 or so years! SURPRISE!!!!!!

Now that we know what we're having, is that going to make a difference in the type of diaper we chose? Since I'm not sure of the answer it is going to be something else that I will need to research. One problem is that most of my friends with baby's have cute little girls which, as we all know, don't share the same plumbing as boys do. And, if I am going to be testing out cloth diapers on their children is that going to make a huge difference? Someone with some expertise - PLEASE HELP?!
My guess is that there won't be a difference, but I have been wrong in the past.

Just as a side note, some of the topics I am currently wanting to cover in this blog are:

- Cloth Diaper Brands
- Cloth Diaper Styles
- Environmental Benefits
- Financial Benefits
- Usage / How To's / Reviews / Etc
- Men and Changing Diapers
- Men's Fashion When it Comes to Baby Stuff (diaper bags, strollers, etc)
- More to come....I promise.

That's it for now, I gotta get back to work.


Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The decision has been made.......right?

For those of you that don't know, Lindsey and I are expecting a baby who is due around December 29th 2010. This is a very exciting time for us with so many questions still unanswered about the baby and what we are going to do, register for, buy, etc, etc, etc. I could have an entire blog about how insane it is when you are shopping for anything "baby", but I'm not going to do that to you. Instead, I want to blog about the adventures in cloth diapering from a man's point of if you're interested, please read on!

There is one thing that Lindsey and I have agreed upon for our future bundle of joy...we're going to use cloth diapers! What makes this even crazier is that I am the one who initially suggested it, she was not on board at first but has come around to seeing the benefits of doing this.

Cloth diapers are nothing like what you remember as a child....they don't use pins, some have elastic, velcro and/or snaps and are shaped like disposables. OK, I was wrong about the pins - thanks Ami.

My initial interest in using cloth diapers was strictly for financial reasons. We have several friends that have told us how much they spend on disposables and I just don' think we can afford that...and it is like we are literally throwing our money away. I also know that there are environmental benefits to cloth diapering which is a bonus. But ultimately, we feel that by going with cloth diapers we are going to be saving a substantial amount of money, especially if we have more than one child, which is our plan!

Like anything for a baby, cloth diapers have many options......way too many options! But at this momend, unless anyone can convince me otherwise, we thinking about using POCKET cloth diapers that we are going to be laundering at home (a delivery service is not in our budget right now). We have a neighbor, Ami, who sat down with us to explain cloth diapers to us and she told me about Fuzzi Bunz, Bum Genius and several other brands.

I started doing some research and found that I like what Fuzzi Bunz has to offer in terms of product features and selection. They have perfect size diapers in several sizes and One Size diapers that claim they can be used from infancy to toddler just by adjusting them. I also had a phone conversation with a representative from Fuzzi Bunz about their diapers, which was very informative. So far I have not done that much research on other brands, but will be using this blog as a way to let you know what I find.

The hard part at this point is that I don't have a child, so I have talked to some friends who said they will let Lindsey and I "try out" the diapers on their children. I'll let you know how that goes as well.

So I'm going to start researching other cloth diaper manufactueres to see what else is out there and report back to you everything that I find in this blog - FROM A MALE POINT OF VIEW.

Please contact me with any questions, comments or concers.

Have a great day!