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First, I want to note that this article is not about judgment. Yes, I've chosen cloth for my family, but I can definitely see reasons why someone else wouldn't.  There are also parents who forego diapers all together and, instead, choose to potty train their babies from Day One.  That sounded too overwhelming for this first-time mom.  So, this article is solely for the purpose of providing an explanation of how I came about choosing cloth diapers over disposables...with the intent of helping anyone else out there who might also be interested or is curious.

NOTE:  we decided to use the newborn-size disposables until the umbilical cord fell off.  We received enough packages for free from the hospital that we never even had to buy any!  The reasons we did this were: 1) the meconium from the first few days is very dark and very sticky and I just didn't want to mess with cleaning it off the cloth diapers, 2) the disposables were small and thin and had a cutout specifically for umbilical cords, so I didn't have to worry about them interfering (peace of mind with a newborn = priceless).  Also, if we ever go on a vacation longer than 3 days (other than to the in-laws whose washer/dryer we can use), then we will likely buy a pack of disposables for convenience.

Now, down to business....

As I see it, the comparison comes down to the 3 Cs:  Cost, Convenience, and Comfort.


{This is not an exact science and will include a lot of estimates because everyone's situation is a little different.}

There are countless options when it comes to cloth diapering.  After hours and hours of research, I decided on the all-in-one cloth diapers by BumGenius. I also opted for the organic line since cotton is the top crop most heavily doused with pesticides, and I didn't want any of those chemicals on my baby.  Based on an average of 6 diaper changes a day, I decided that we would need 18 cloth diapers.  Many people buy 24 which would allow you to go a little longer between washes (every 2-3 days instead of every 1-2 days).

18 Organic BumGenius Cloth Diapers = $435 (free shipping on Amazon)

The diapers use a snap system which allows you to adjust the diaper's size to fit your baby - they should work from birth all the way to potty training!

We also bought 24 cloths to use as wipes.  You could easily make your own, but I'm not crafty like that.

24 Under The Nile Organic Sherpa Wash Cloths = $28

If you're using your own wipes, you also need your own cleaning solution.  Some people just use water, but I wanted something with a little more oomph.  I found a concentrated solution - I use 1tsp per cup of water which I'm estimating will last me 6 months per bottle.  The average potty training age is 2yrs, so that would mean I'll need 4 bottles.

4 Lusa Organics Baby Wipe Juice = $54

You will also need wet bags to store the dirty diapers in.  I found that we needed two for at home (for use when the other is in the wash), and one travel bag for day trips.  The diapers don't smell bad (although I hear that formula-fed babies have smellier diapers), so don't worry about carrying them around with you.  Once your baby starts eating solid food and making solid poops, you can always use a disposable liner while away from home (which allows you to just flush the poop).  Again, there are countless options out there but based on reading tons of reviews, here are the ones I picked...

2 Kanga Care Wet Bags = $38
1 Planet Wise Wet Bag (medium) = $17

Then, there is the cost of laundering.  I use the same detergent for all of my laundry, and it is recommended for cloth diapers since it has no perfumes or dyes and is not overly "soapy":  Charlie's Soap.  So far, we haven't had to deal with any stains.  If you do, just dry them in the sun and it will bleach them clean.  I have a front-loading HE washer and use 1T scoop per load of diapers/wipes.  You don't use dryer sheets with cloth diapers, so there's no cost there.  Assuming 500 extra loads of laundry over two years, that will require 5 jars of detergent.

5 Charlie's Soap (2.64lb) = $71

There's also the cost of the extra electricity and water.  I couldn't figure this out exactly, but based on other articles I've read about cloth diapering, you can assume about $100 per year (if you have a top-loader, this may double).  We do one cold rinse with an extra rinse cycle (no detergent), and then one hot wash (with detergent) with an extra rinse cycle.  Dry on low for 45-60 mins. I wash them every 1.5 days and, honestly, coming from someone who HATES doing laundry - I haven't found it to be a big deal.  The worst part of laundry is sorting/folding/hanging everything - but you don't have to deal with any of that - just clip them up to finish drying (takes literally 1 minute).

Laundering cost (water + electricity) = $200

Once the baby starts eating solid food and making "solid" poops, you might want a diaper sprayer to spray the poop into the toilet before putting the diaper in your wet bag.  Some people just turn it inside out and swish the diaper in clean toilet water - but I know that grosses a lot of people out.

BumGenius Diaper Sprayer = $69.99

Finally, you'll want a drying rack (to extend the life of the diapers, get them mostly dry in the dryer on low and finish them on a rack).  I already had a drying rack for clothes but decided to get a smaller hanging one dedicated to the diapers.

PRESSA Hanging Dryer with 16 Clips (from IKEA) = $5


Just like with cloth diapers, there are hundreds of disposable diaper choices. For us, we liked the Honest brand.  We thought they had the most effective diapers and wipes of all the kinds we tested.  Sure, there are cheaper diapers - but they also come with more leaks & blowouts, which means using tons of extra diapers and doing lots more laundry (clothes, sheets, etc).


NB – 120 changes = $41.85

Sz 1 – 132 changes =$41.85

Sz 2 – 400 changes = $139.50

Sz 3 – 2006 changes = $823.05

6500 Disposable Wipes = $446.98

Diaper Genie 2 = $29.96

15 Diaper Genie refills = $89.10


Sz 3 – 952 changes = $390.60

Sz 4 – 957 changes = $460.35

4680 Disposable Wipes = $321.75

11 Diaper Genie refills = $65.34

CLOTH TOTAL = $848-$918


Obviously, one of the best parts of cloth diapering is saving our landfills from thousands upon thousands of disposable diapers every year.  Someone much smarter than me would need to figure out the exact environmental cost difference between the extra laundry you do with cloth diapers vs adding 5,000 diapers + 10,000 wipes + hundreds of trash bags per child to a landfill near you.  There's also the cost of producing the disposable diapers and wipes in the first place (factory emissions, mining, chemical waste), shipping and distribution costs, etc.

Diapers never decompose.


The only thing I will say about this is, whenever we have used the disposable diapers - I am always thinking about the "per diaper" cost.  In other words, if I change my baby and then 5 minutes later she has a huge bowel movement and I have to change her again, I'm like - that just cost me $.50, darn it!

On the other hand, if she does that in a cloth diaper, I'm like - whatever, no biggie, I'll just toss it in the wet bag and wash it with the others.


There are two ways that disposables are slightly more convenient:

1) they are smaller than cloth diapers, which means that you can carry more of them in your diaper bag.  However, I haven't yet found this to be a problem since we are easily able to fit enough cloth diapers in our bag for a full day/overnight.  If we will be somewhere longer than that and need to take all 18, we just pack them in with our luggage.

2) obviously, disposables can be thrown away instead of washed, which means that you don't need a washer/dryer.  Again, this hasn't yet been a problem.  We stayed at my in-laws for a week and just used their washer/dryer.  If we go somewhere for longer than 3 days that won't have a washer/dryer, then we will probably just buy 1 pack of disposables for the convenience of it.

• On a day-to-day basis, once you have your supplies and understand the flow, I find using cloth vs disposables about the same as far as convenience goes.


This is actually a big deal.  In my experience so far (and in reading articles online), it seems like babies have almost no instances of diaper rash when wearing cloth diapers.  On the other hand, diaper rash is very common for babies wearing disposable diapers.  The cloth lets their skin breathe, whereas most disposable diapers use plastic which is not breathable.

The cloth diapers are also looser in the right places which makes them at least "appear" more comfortable (she has less red marks on her skin during changes than when using disposables).

Finally, I like knowing that there are no chemicals, plastics, or toxins being placed right against her most sensitive areas.


Most daycares will accomodate cloth diapers/wipes if you just give them a diaper bag (including a wet bag) with your name on it.

Why (and how) I Stopped Using Conditioner

If you've read any of my previous posts, then you already know about my love affair with Bragg's Raw Organic Apple Cider Vinegar.

Well, that miraculous product just keeps getting more and more wonderful as the days go by. I keep finding new uses for it! I would buy stock in the company, except that I don't believe they're publicly traded.

For years, I have seen people talk about the "No Poo" method of cleansing hair. If you haven't heard of it, basically you cleanse your hair using a baking soda and water paste. Then you rinse using ACV and water.

Some people seem to have great success with it, but it never made much sense to me....

Macadamia Nut Cherry Truffles

(recipe at the end of this post)
I used to have the worst sweet-tooth of anyone imaginable. No, really. No, you don't understand. I'm TELLING YOU, you don't get it!!!

Well, actually, you probably do.

Why? Because almost everyone has a sweet-tooth!

Yes, I know that a lot of men tend to lean towards salty or savory more than sweet. And even some women (really?) don't have a taste for the sugary stuff.

But still, it's pretty darn common.

However, it's really not good for our health. At some point, hopefully sooner than later, we have to accept that eating processed sugar is one of the worst things we can do to our bodies ... other than smoking.

I finally realized this (much later than I would have wished) and subsequently put myself through what I like to call:
"Sugar Rehab".

How To Make Tipping Less Awkward

In the USA, the practice of tipping is everywhere.
In most other countries, not so much.

PS: why do we always have to be so different (ummm, can anyone say metric vs imperial measurements)?!?

A lot of the time, tipping can feel really awkward! How much is enough? How much is too much? When should I give it to them? Should I be discreet or open about it?

Well, I devised a system so you (and I) don't have to stress out about it anymore!  You're welcome =)

Eliminate Annoying Junk Mail

"Each year, more than 100 million trees’ worth of bulk mail arrive in American mailboxes—that’s the equivalent of deforesting the entire Rocky Mountain National Park every four months. The production and disposal of direct mail consumes more energy than 3 million cars."

Not only is junk mail utterly wasteful...
It's also utterly annoying!

But there IS a way to drastically reduce it.

Why (and how) I Never Wash My Face

Whenever I tell people that I don't wash my face, I usually get either an "ewwwww!" or "gross!" or some other exclamation of shock, disgust, or amazement.

But shortly after that, they'll say something like, "But your skin looks so healthy?!?"


Get Rid of Fruit Flies Forever


Fruit Flies are such a nuisance!
And they seem to multiply right before your eyes.

Fruit flies make their strongest appearance during the summer months...when fruit and veggies are abundant.

And that's what makes them even more annoying. Here we are trying to eat fresh, organic, locally-grown produce...and fruit flies are swarming all over the house.


But getting rid of them is so simple, you won't believe it. And not only simple, but cheap and non-toxic too!