Wet Bags for Cloth Diapers on the Go

If you use cloth diapers on the go, you need someplace to stash the wet ones until you’re back home again. On the minimal end of the spectrum, you could simply use a Ziploc bag or any old plastic zipper bag. That’s what I did for several months. When my daughter started going to daycare at eight months, we needed a heftier option and ended up getting something like the SealLine Dry Sack, which we found at a sporting goods store for under $10. At the time, I don’t think we realized there were cuter options out there, but this bag did the trick. They’re available in a variety of sizes. Ours could hold a whole weekend’s worth of diapers.

Now there are several cloth diaper wet bags on the market, all of which are much classier than a Ziploc bag:

We’ve always had a thing for Monkey Foot Designs, and we can attest to their attractiveness and durability.

Kushies On the Go 2 pack wet bag. ($10.99), with a draw-string closure.

Bummis Fabulous Organic Wet Diaper Bag ($14.37)

Itzy Ritzy Zippered Wet Bag ($17.95)

Planet Wise Diaper Wet Bag (from $16.50)

Kissa One Size Antibacterial Wet Diaper bag ($11.99)

Munchkin Damp Goods Bag ($8.99)

What do you use when you change a cloth diaper out on the town? Chime in with your recommendations (or anti-recommendations) in the comments!

What’s Your Favorite Green Diaper Cream?

Eco-friendly diaper creams abound these days, but which ones really work?

We were big fans of Boudreaux’s All Natural Butt Paste. It was widely available and seemed to clear up any issues we had quickly and without a sticky mess.

Method’s Squeaky Green Diaper Cream comes in wonderful scents, but I never had a chance to use it with my babies.

Friends of mine have raved about Weleda Calendula Diaper Care and their whole line of products.

Nature’s baby Organics Organic Diaper Ointment Cream is part of a series of organic personal care products for mothers and babies.

Angel Baby Bottom Balm has a luscious lavender scent that we loved. It’s made here in Oregon and their whole line of products are fabulous!

Bio-Bio Baby’s Zinc Oxide Paste also looks pretty promising. Has anyone tried it?

Perhaps you’ve tried swabbing a bit of olive oil on baby’s bottom or even using some Lanosinoh Lanolin. (Most breastfeeding moms discover that the stuff is wonderful for those early days of cracked and sensitive skin, and unless your child has a wool allergy, it’s great for use as a diaper cream as well!)

Let us know what your favorite solutions are for diaper rash and don’t forget to enter our Eco-nomical Baby Guide and What to Expect When You’re Expecting giveaway!

What to Expect When You’re Expecting Giveaway

What to Expect When You’re Expecting is a thorough guide to pregnancy that has been tremendously popular for over twenty years–and this week their website, What to Expect, is sponsoring a giveaway! We’re throwing in a few copies of our book, The Eco-nomical Baby Guide, to sweeten the winnings for two lucky readers. There are multiple ways to enter so get in on the action!

Prize #1
What to Expect Before You’re Expecting (+ a copy of our book, The Eco-nomical Baby Guide: Down to Earth Ways for Parents to Save Money and the Planet)

For women who are planning conception and pregnancy, What to Expect Before You’re Expecting is a great resource. It provides tips on everything from nutrition to medical care for women (and men) in the months before you get pregnant. And it will help you make the good choices that will lead to a healthier newborn. For couples hoping to conceive quickly, Murkoff educates readers about how to pinpoint ovulation cycles to raise your odds of getting pregnant.

As for our book, The Eco-nomical Baby Guide, we’ve spoken to many women who received it late in their pregnancies only to wish that they would have read it months earlier. Why not learn about cloth diapers and used baby gear before you’re dealing with morning sickness and exhaustion? We hope that having the book far in advance will allow you to gather up the new and used green gear you need while saving thousands of dollars.

Prize #2
What to Expect When You’re Expecting(+ a copy of our book, The Eco-nomical Baby Guide: Down to Earth Ways for Parents to Save Money and the Planet)

What to Expect When You’re Expecting is read by over 90% of pregnant women who read pregnancy books and has been on the New York Times bestseller list for decades. So what can you expect from the book? The book is organized into monthly chapters which provide information about how you may feel, common questions, a week-by-week guide to baby’s fetal development, and information about what your midwife or doctor is likely to say during that phase of pregnancy. The book also addresses childbirth plus the emotional and physical issues that couples face in the postpartum period. The question and answer format helped me pick out sections that were relevant to my pregnancy. I was too overwhelmed and exhausted by growing a fetus to actually read any book cover to cover so I appreciated being able to easily reference what I was looking for.

We wish every newly pregnant woman could get a free copy of The Eco-nomical Baby Guide, just to have access to humble, humorous, hands-on advice for gearing up green on a budget. Since we can’t just stand on the corner and hand these out to pregnant passers-by, we’ve decided to send one to accompany What to Expect When You’re Expecting in this giveaway. We hope you can win!

Whether you’re lucky enough to win one of the prizes or not, you should know that What to Expect online now offers heaps of free information for expectant women and new parents. You can pick up a copy of many What to Expect books on Amazon for less than nine bucks and The Eco-nomical Baby Guide is currently on sale for less than eight dollars. (And it will save you much, much more than what you pay for it!)

Enter the What to Expect When You’re Expecting (and the Eco-nomical Baby Guide) Giveaway!

Each comment counts as an entry. You can enter up to four times. Here’s how:

1. Simply post a comment

2. Like the Green Baby Guide on Facebook (then tell us you did it in a separate comment)

3. Visit the What to Expect website and comment on what you learned.

4. Spread the news about the giveaway! Email someone, post it on Facebook, tweet it, blog it, or send someone a message about it via carrier pigeon. (And again, don’t forget to tell us all about it in the comments!)

This contest ends on Thursday, August 11th, and is only open to U.S. Residents.

Great luck!

Great luck!

Cloth Diapering in the Summer

Is it too hot to cloth diaper? One complaint we’ve heard about cloth diapers is that they’re just too bulky and warm for babies, especially in the warmer months. Here in Portland, Oregon, our heat waves don’t last too long, and I never switched over to disposables because I was worried about overheating my baby.

A quick search for “summer diapers” yielded only one result: the Blueberry Deluxe diaper in “blue summer.” While the pattern is nice and summery, it doesn’t appear to have any magical properties that make it more appropriate for the hotter months.

I’ve also heard of parents using Chinese prefold diapers with old-fashioned diaper pins in hot weather–without a diaper cover. This approach would make the diaper more breathable but would require vigilant parental attention. And it probably isn’t the most practical solution when you’re out and about!

Have you given up cloth diapering in the warmer months? Or do you have any tips for keeping with cloth no matter what mother nature brings? Let us know!

FuzziBunz and Rockin’ Green Giveaway Winners!

Of the more than a thousand entries for FuzziBunz One Size Cloth Diapers, the FuzziBunz In and Out Mess Free Hanging Diaper Pail, and the Rockin’ Green Laundry Soap, we had to pick just two winners.  (Insert dramatic pause…..and possibly drumroll here….)

Amanda H. will get to choose whichever vivid colors she wants for her  three FuzziBunz One Size Cloth Diapers and Aleia is soon to be the lucky owner of a bag of Rockin’ Green Laundry Soap and the FuzziBunz No Mess Hanging Diaper Pail.

If for some reason I don’t hear back from either of them in the next few days, I may just pick another number so you may still have a very, very small chance of winning.

And check back next Wednesday for another great giveaway that I think you’ll enjoy!

(My apologies for my tardiness in reporting our winners but we just moved this weekend. I’m just feeling lucky to have the computer unpacked at this point!)

In Which Joy and Rebecca See GroVia Hybrid Diapers in Real Life

Yesterday was quite a day for Joy and me. As we pounded the pavement in Portland, Oregon, knocking on the doors of prenatal massage clinics and baby shops to spread the word about our book, The Eco-nomical Baby Guide, we stumbled into Eco-baby Gear. Imagine our surprise and delight when we spotted our book on display right in the middle of the store!

But it gets even better. There, before our eyes, was an entire rack of soft, adorable GroVia hybrid diapers. Unfortunately for us–dedicated cloth diaper enthusiasts since 2006–we never had a chance to try GroVia on our own babies. Joy did write a post about them last year: GroVia vs. gDiapers.

We learned a bit more about these diapers. At Eco-baby Gear, they say customers prefer GroVia to gDiapers for a few reasons: 1. Unlike gDiapers, GroVia diapers have snaps so they adjust to fit babies as they grow. 2. GroVia uses all snaps–no Velcro. 3. The cloth inserts snap in place, and the disposable inserts stick on with adhesive. This works better than the gDiaper system.

If you’ve had a chance to try GroVia diapers, let us know what you think. How to they compare to gDiapers–or regular old cloth diapers? Those of you who weighed in on this subject last November, if you are still reading, we’d like to hear an update!

Summering with the Green Baby Guide

What were we blogging about three years ago, in the dark ages of July, 2008? I had a two-year-old, Joy had just one baby, and we were one month away from signing a publishing contract for the Eco-nomical Baby Guide. Dipping into Green Baby Guide’s archives, I found a delightful assortment of posts (if I do say so myself), including our most popular post of all time: Flushable Diapers (gDiapers)–What Do You Think?

Some posts helped our readers settle into summer: Finding Free Organic Produce, Simple Steps to Fight Summer Heat and Limit Air Conditioning, A Thrifty Green Favorite: Cloth Swim Diapers, Disguise Vegetables in Fruity Popsicles (another one of our all-time favorites!), and Green Olympic Trials. But then, for some reason, I wrote about making Easy Oats for Two: A Cheap and Nutritious Breakfast for Mother and Child. I’m not sure I’d totally latched on to the idea of making my posts seasonally relevant!

We had our regular smattering of product reviews: Borax: A Budget Friendly, Eco-Friendly Wonder Product (alternate title: a million and one things to do with Borax);

Book Review: The Tightwad Gazette; Save Water with BPA and Phthalate-free Baby Bathtubs; and the Isabooties Product Review.

The rest of our July 2008 posts fit under a category I will describe as “eco-friendly lifestyle” posts: Easy Organic Cloth Diaper Stain Removal Techniques, Should Pregnant and Breastfeeding Women Avoid Eating Nuts?, Life with a Baby . . . and No Paper Towels, Sleep vs. The Planet, Save Some Trees–Never Buy Children’s Books, and What’s Your Walk Score?

I hope you enjoyed this little stroll down memory lane. Here’s to our fourth summer of blogging!

Fuzzibunz One Size Diapers and Rockin’ Green Giveaway

Two lucky readers are going to have a very, very good week! One of them will receive three One Size Fuzzibunz cloth diapers and the other will score a Fuzzibunz In and out Mess Free Hanging Diaper Pail and a bag of Rockin’ Green Laundry Soap. What great supplies for all your cloth diapering adventures!

Prize #1
Three One Size FuzziBunz Pocket Diapers

If you aren’t yet a FuzziBunz fanatic, you may soon be converted. They are soft, absorbent, easy care pocket diapers that work wonderfully. The FuzziBunz One Size cloth diapers are built to take babies from birth to potty training, with sturdy adjustable snaps that older tots can’t open. So even though there is an initial investment, once you get a set of these diapers you will never have to buy a different size again!

The soft layer of polyester in Fuzzibunz wicks moisture from baby’s skin while the inner pad absorbs the bulk of the wetness. Because the pad is removable, it dries far more quickly than an All-in-One Diaper or a Prefold Diaper. (In my opinion, FuzziBunz are the best cloth diapers for line drying.) You can also double up the inner pads for naptime or heavy wetters. Check out this FuzziBunz One Size Diaper Tutorial Video to see how to adjust the FuzziBunz One Size Diaper and get a better idea of how a pocket diaper works.

I’ve had a set of FuzziBunz diapers for the last three years and can attest to their durability and effectiveness. Our Velcro diapers have all aged horribly after hundreds of washings with two children, but the vivid colors and quality fabrics of our FuzziBunz are holding up beautifully.

Prize #2
FuzziBunz In and out Mess Free Hanging Diaper Pail and 1 Bag Rockin’ Green Laundry Soap

FuzziBunz In and out Mess Free Hanging Diaper Pail is an ingenious fabric contraption that you can perch on a doorknob or hook for a portable diaper pail. Dirty cloth diapers are deposited in the top opening and when the pail is full, you simply unzip the bottom to drop the diapers into the washing machine. (Which means less hands-on dirty diaper contact!) Toss the diaper pail in along with the load and you’re all set. When your babies are potty trained, use it as a handy little laundry bag.

My favorite part of Rockin’ Green Laundry Soap is that it  makes doing the wash seem rebellious and exciting. It’s also the first detergent I’ve discovered that is customized for different water types. Hard Rock Rockin’ Green is the toughest detergent formula for hard water; Soft Rock Rockin’ Green is for soft water and sensitive skin; and Classic Rock Rockin’ Green is for those in the middle. It’s eco-friendly, but works hard to get out stains, spills and stink and has recently been “remixed” to work even better. Its ingredients are safe and free from phosphate, fillers, enzymes or optical brighteners. Rockin’ Green comes in seven natural scents, all made with 1000% essential oils, including, Mighty, Mighty Marshmallow, Smashing Watermelons, Rage Against the Raspberry, Motley Clean, and Lavender Mint Revival.

Enter the Fuzzibunz Cloth Diapers, Fuzzibunz Cloth Diaper Pail, and Rockin’ Green Laundry Soap Giveaway!

Each comment counts as an entry. You can enter up to four times. Here’s how:

1. Simply post a comment

2. Like Greenbabyguide.com on Facebook (then tell us you did it in a separate comment)

3. Visit the Fuzzibunz website or the Rockin’ Green Laundry Soap website and comment on what you learned.

4. Spread the news about the giveaway! Email someone, post it on Facebook, tweet it, blog it, or send someone a message about it via carrier pigeon. (And again, don’t forget to tell us all about it in the comments!)

This contest ends on Thursday July 21th and is only open to U.S. Residents.

Great luck!

The Five Bestselling Chlorine-Free Disposable Diapers

(Drum roll, please . . . ) In fifth place, we have Bambo Nature Eco-friendly Diapers.

Tushies Diapers come in strong in fourth place.

Nature Babycare Eco-friendly Chlorine-free Diapers take the bronze medal in the chlorine-free diaper Olympics.

In second place, we have Earth’s Best Tender Care Chlorine Free Diapers.

And, in first place–not much of a surprise here–Seventh Generation Free and Clear Baby Diapers.

What an exciting countdown that was! Now, if you want to learn more about chlorine free disposables (what’s the big deal about chlorine-free diapers? Are chlorine-free diapers better for the environment than cloth? Which eco-disposables do we recommend? Which are the best deal?), you’re going to want to get your hands on The Eco-nomical Baby Guide.

Until then, happy diapering!

What Do Moving and Childbirth Have in Common?

Any woman who has been through labor knows that this is a weak comparison at best.  Childbirth is humbling, agonizing, magical and miraculous.  Moving is… just horrible.

Maybe.  But beyond the actual contractions and the loading of the moving trucks, both of these events are entries into huge life transitions.  In both cases, there is usually time to prepare for the event and life beyond it.

We wrote The Eco-nomical Baby Guide because our pregnancies were riddled with pressures to stock up on supplies that claimed to make parenthood easier.  We faced huge baby registries and “must have” lists and decided that we’d rather buy less and buy used in order to keep the planet and our pocketbooks in mind. Each of our families ended up saving about six thousand dollars in our tots’ first year alone by going secondhand, cloth diapering, and making homemade baby food. Far from being a hardship, we found budget-friendly, eco-friendly living to be a grand adventure and actually started this blog to share our successes (and frequent failures) on our green journey.

Now, as my family is on the brink of moving, it all feels so familiar.  It’s tempting to go out and buy new furnishings to fill the empty space, using money to make the shift easier.  Instead, we shall be living in our new house with lawn chairs and beanbags as furniture for awhile.  We’ll patiently hit garage sales and shop craigslist until we slowly stock our house with secondhand pieces we love.

Whether we’re preparing for baby or moving into a new home, making huge changes with an eco-friendly, budget-friendly mindset requires patience, a bit of self-control, and the humility to realize that we’re not defined by our stuff.  I hope that as we continue to face transition with our reduce, reuse, recycle mantra, our kids will learn those same skills for themselves. It’s a glorious way to live a rich life without consuming (or spending) nearly as much.

Green and Clean Mom Has a great post on How to Buy Organic Food Cheap. It’s great practical advice that you can put into action on your next trip to the grocery store.

Stop by later this week to check out our upcoming giveaway. It involves cloth diapers and some fabulous supplies so come back to get the details!