Stephen and I take a lot of short weekend trips to see family and friends. We also like to take at least one longer vacation each year to get away, relax and see new sites. We did this prior to having Bean and we both agreed that the addition of her to our family would not change that.
But even if you don’t travel much, you’ll still need to factor in the logistics of using cloth when you are out running errands, at playdates, etc. unless you want to use disposables for those times. That was our plan originally, but the rashes Bean got from disposable diapers changed things for us. Plus, I realized that it really wasn’t that hard to do cloth on the road.
So first we’ll start with out for the day type trips and then move on to more serious travel.
This is my current diaper bag:
I was hoping the new bag I ordered from Etsy would get here in time for this post, but it did not. Anyway, my diaper bag is pretty much always super stuffed to the brim like that because the cloth diapers are much more bulky than disposables. I think my overstuffing it is what has caused so much wear and tear and my less than perfect seams to split under pressure, which is why I ordered a new bag.
So if we delve into the bag a bit and take away all the items that are non-essential to diapering, this is what is needed for a typical day of errands:
From left to right: wet bag, changing mat, two cloth diapers and eight washcloths. Something I realized that is missing from this picture and my diaper bag at this moment, is my spray bottle filled with wipes solution.
My mother-in-law got me a bottle of this BumGenius bottom cleaner at my baby shower. I have since used it all up, but I just refill it with my homemade solution when I run out. So when I am out and about, instead of dunking my washcloths in the wipes solution I spray Bean’s bum and and wipe with a dry washcloth. If she has a particularly messy diaper I will wet the washcloths in a sink if I can because I don’t find the dry wipes method to be as effective as wet ones.
The wetbag I made can hold up to two dirty diapers. So if Bean requires a diaper change while I am out running errands I just put the dirty diaper in there. The changing pad protects her from the various surfaces I’ve had to change her diaper on (everything from the floor, public restroom counter, an actual changing station and the trunk of my car) as well as protects those various surfaces from anything gross that comes from her (my sister-in-law’s playroom floor has benefitted from this on more than on occasion!). Both are lined with some vinyl I picked up from Beverly’s with coordinating fabric on the outside.
I usually “budget” four wash cloths per diaper change when I am out and about. I don’t always need this many, but if she poops I definitley do. Bean is kind of an interesting kid in that she only poops every few days and her “poop days” are an all day affair. It is kind of nice in that I don’t have to deal with poop every single day, but sometimes those poop days can be quite brutal.
So that about covers what I need for a day of errands. If I am truly going to be out the ENTIRE day I might pack a couple more diapers, some more wipes and a plastic zipper bag too, but those days are rare.
Now, lets move on to out-of-town travel. This duffel bag has become Bean’s travel “diaper” bag:
We used to use it for just the two of us when we went on a quick overnight or weekend trip, but not so anymore. It holds about half my stash in the center section and then I stuff one of the end pockets with wash cloths and the other with wet bags and plastic zipper bags.
Something that did get here in time for this post is my new large wet bag that I ordered from monkeyfootdesigns on Etsy. One thing that I do not like about using clear plastic zipper bags as wetbags is that they get all steamy and you can see it because they are clear. This grosses me out. It just does. So, I want to get or make about 1-2 more of these for use out of town and put an end to my consumption of plastic zipper bags for diapering purposes.
If we are going out of town just for the weekend, we don’t plan for washing. I just make sure I am all caught up on diaper laundry before we go. We take half the stash with us and I wash it all when we get back.
I tend to overplan on the number of diapers I’ll need for a trip because unlike most moms, I can’t just run up to the convenience/grocery store and buy a pack of disposables if we run out of clean diapers. Well, I could, but I don’t and I don’t want to.
If we are going for a longer period of time we try to figure out a way that we will be able to wash diapers while we are on vacation. Most recently for my sister’s wedding this was done by renting a condo that had a washer and dryer in the unit instead of staying in a hotel. We priced it out and it actually wound up being the same as far as cost. If we are staying with family we make sure they don’t mind us doing some laundry while we are there. This hasn’t come up yet, but if we were to have some other vacation situation we’d probably research laundromats in the area prior to our trip and plan for a day of laundry if we had to. And if it really came down to it I’d probably bite the bullet and get a pack of disposables and plan for the ensuing diaper rash. I would definitely try to exhaust all other options first though because that’s just me.
So, I think that about covers everything you need to know about going cloth. I hope you have enjoyed this little series, learned a lot and maybe even considered the switch. If you think I’ve missed anything or if you still have questions, feel free to leave a comment and I’ll try to answer it as best I can or point you to a site with the information you are looking for.