Monday, February 14, 2011

Child-led Potty training... Mostly!

I usually try to start potty training at around 21 months. Since this baby is due when Raiden is 21 months, I've decided to do a trial run now, at 18 months. If we find he's completely not ready, we'll put everything away and wait until a while after the baby is born. We'll probably have to wait until after he turns two like we did Ronan. 

First I'll tell you my method, then my experiences so far. I don't use pull ups. For at least the first two weeks we completely focus on training. We don't leave the house. We don't wear any bottoms. We put nothing but potty training videos on TV. We put away all the toys and books except potty training ones. We keep all the bedroom doors shut. 

The week before the official start I take the potty out just for them to play on. When I go, I'll carry it in the bathroom and tell them that their potty and explain what I'm doing. 

The morning of the Big Day, we will take the diaper off and bid it farewell. We will do the same thing with our potty training doll. Then we will sit her(the doll) on the potty and give her a drink. After she pees we will celebrate. Then dump the little pot in the big pot, flush and wave goodbye. Then we get to wash our hands and the dolls. 

I'll put on a video, and watch for signs. Boys are easier for reasons obvious to anyone who has ever seen a little boy naked that needs to pee! I don't make them sit though. I wait for them to start to go. Then I say, "you are going pee pee, pee pee goes in the potty" it usually startles them a bit and they stop. I grab them up sit them on the pot and pray they finish on it. We read a book while they sit. If they do, we do the same thing we did with the doll. If they don't finish but sit for the book, they still get lots of praise. If they don't want to sit, I let them up and we repeat with the doll. We make a huge deal about it when she pees in the pot. I nonchalantly clean up any pee of the floor(thank goodness for laminate). I basically do the same thing with grunting. If they get poop on the floor, I'll pick it up with TP, put it 1st in the little pot. We'll take in to the big pot together, dump, flush, wash. 

If after a few days, if they haven't went at least once on their own. I put them back in diapers and put everything away. 

Joshua was my first. We started with him at 22 months at about 9 in the morning. He had multiple pee accidents throughout the day, but held his poo. At 9 that evening, I was just about to put a bedtime diaper on. He ran over to his little potty, pooped then pee'd!  By the end of the 1st week, he was going on his own with minimal pee accidents and no poop accidents. He also started staying dry through his naps so we stopped the naptime dipe. By the end of the 2nd week he was trained at night too. He was not in a crib at this point though. He did still have an occasional accident at home but never when we were out! 

For Jacobs second Christmas he got potty supplies. He was 21 months. We started the 1st of the year. It took about three days before going on his own but he was having fun learning. He also ended up begin a longterm bed wetter so he stayed in diaper through naps and bedtime. The biggest problem we had with him was he didn't want to poop on the pot, he would go on the floor and then play in it! He wouldn't go in his pants though if we were out.  Then right before he turned two, we left them with my mom for the weekend of our anniversary. She put him in pull ups and he completely reverted. After a week I decided we would have to start from scratch. We put him back in diapers, hid the potty and didn't mention it again for one month. He caught back on pretty quick but we still had poo problems until I decided to try training him to the big potty. He started doing the funniest thing on his own. He would squat with his feet on the toilet seat! Whatever... At least he wasn't playing in it. 

I started Summer the 1st of January the following year. She was 20 months. She did great, just like Joshua. She stayed in diapers at  night until she was out of her crib at 2 1/2, but woke up dry most of the time. 

Ronan completely threw me for a loop. I was pregnant and we were putting our house on the market. He was 21 months. From the very first day he refused to sit on his potty. He would hold it until he couldn't anymore then he would let just enough dribble out to relieve the pressure. When he had to poop he stood clenching his cheeks and cried. The next day he went back in diapers and I packed everything away. We decided to wait until after the baby and after the move.  The baby came 10 days before his 2nd birthday and we got into the new house at 25 months. We had a lot of work to do though, then it was almost Christmas and we were going out of town. 

So once again, we started shortly after the new year. He was 29 months. And he was still defiant, for the first time I resorted to bribery, smarties. It didn't help. I decided my my tried and true method wasn't fool proof. I had to try something new. 

Once he dribbled I sat him on his little potty and hugged him around his neck while he cryed. It only lasted a minute then he calmed enough for me to read him a book. I didn't let him up until he pee'd. I felt sooo mean but I had to show him 1) it was okay 2) it wasn't scary and 3) this is how it was going to be. After a few days he caught on but was constipating himself.   He finally went... Standing over his little pot.  Another quirky pooper! 

He did fine for a while. Then Raiden got mobile and started get into the potty if I didn't get to it quick enough and Ronan started playing in it too. I know... Gross!  So it was time to train him to the big pot. He was almost three. We had a problem because he stood to poo. He was not happy and started peeing everywhere. I started setting a timer and made him go once an hour. At first I had to take him in, then after a few days, I could just tell him and he would go. He started sitting to poo thank goodness. After a week or so I could stop reminding him and he was completely trained except for sleep times. 

Shortly after his 3rd birthday he stopped taking naps. In November when we switched to cloth diapers with Raiden, I got cloth training pants for nighttime. He was 3yrs 3 months. Within a few days he was nighttime trained!

Hopefully Raiden responds to the child led training and Ronan will be my only exception. And hopefully he'll train now instead of having to fool with it with a baby in the house! Fingers crossed! 

All my videos were VHS, which I no longer have. With Ronan I found my favorites, It's Potty Time, Once Upon a Potty, and Bear in the Big Blue House Potty time, on YouTube. They've all been removed due to copywrite. I went on Amazon today and order those on DVD, some new ones, some books, and some gift sets.  He'll be 18 months on the 19th. He has a drs appointment that week so hopefully we can get started by March 1st. I'll be 29 weeks. If he doesn't end up being ready at least it'll be a distraction for me for a while!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

How and Why we do it!

Psalms 127 3-5

3 Lo, children are a heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward. 4 As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth. 5 Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate.

But Seriously, why so many?  This question has burned me for months now. It came from someone with zero kids! Why is it that others feel to judge someone elses life choices. I don't care how many or few kids someone else has. 

This is it, right? Again, why do you care... I don't ask for help from anyone, heck I turn down babysitting offers! Scott and I don't like waisting money on going out. We'd rather spend our weekends playing games and watching movies with our kids. We wouldn't keep having them if we didn't like spending time with them! A date once or twice a year is plenty and my mom can provide that.. She doesn't judge me. 

We never really discussed how many kids we wanted. Like I wrote about previously.. Drs told me I would probably be infertile. They said I have Polycystic Ovaries, high LH levels and low FSH levels. Although I'm not overweight, nor do I have diabetes, therefore I don't fit the bill for PCOS. I could probably count the number of periods I've had in my whole life. We decided then I would quit taking birth control... I was 18. Two years later, I got pregnant. I did not enjoy pregnancy or the birth, thought one was enough. 

Then I became a SAHM. Joshua was getting big, I got an itch. Just when we thought it wasn't going to... It happened again. Almost exactly two years after I gave birth to Joshua. Still no birth control. I discovered the joy of natural childbirth. 

We didn't have time to even think about it before Summer came along. At first I thought I wanted another right away. Then I changed my mind. Said I was done. Got an IUD. That lasted about 3-4 months. Then I changed my mind again!

This time it took 4 years. I knew I wanted just one more.  15 months later I got my wish. Again during the pregnancy I said, This is it, I'm done! Shortly after the birth I began to change my mind again. A year later, yes ,I'm pregnant AGAIN. 

So in answer to some of the questions (stole this off the Internet):

Yes, we know how it happens, and we enjoy it very much.

No, we are not Catholic or Amish.

If you think our hands are full, you should see our hearts!

So are we done? Today I say yes. The first half of this pregnancy was horrible. I don't think I can do it again. I've been trying to talk Scott into a vasectomy. He's chicken and doesn't want to. I'm NOT getting my tubes tied, nor will I use hormones to mess with my already messed up hormones. So as of right now, he's not touching me after this baby is born! I think he'll cave on the V. We have 8 chairs at our kitchen table and 8 seats in our van. When this baby starts kindergarden, Joshua will be starting college. I think we are complete!

But I couldn't imagine my life any other way. All seems right in our universe with God at it center. I don't feel overwhelmed. In fact, I was much more stressed when I only had three. We have a great routine, that runs smoothly. 

Eventhough we aren't at the peak of our income. We are probably better off financially that ever because we are living inside our means. We've paid off all of our credit cards. We got rid of our satellite bill. We cut our cell bill by $60 a month. We dont have a land line. We started cloth diapering. We haven't used paper plates in over a year. We pay our kids for good grades, make them save some longterm, then throughout the year, if they want something, they have to pay for it out of a shortterm savings... Even a school dance! Like I said earlier, we don't go out waisting money. We budget. They get a certain amount for their birthdays and a certain amount for Christmas. They have plenty, they don't want for anything. 

We don't do a lot of organized extra curricular activities. They like gymnastics and tumbling, so we have a trampoline, low bar, tumbling mats, and floor beam. Summer wanted to learn some ballet so she bought herself a tutu, some ballet shoes, and some instructional videos, she uses her gym bar. They have a guitar, keyboard, flutes, and harmonica. I went online and printed sheet music, with notes and guitar tabs. We learned a little together. They like to swim, so we've always had a pool. Except our 1st summer here. Once they can do school sponsored sports, if they want to join, that's fine. Joshua likes playing football on the playground but doesn't want to participate in organized games, that's fine too. 

So in answer to the last question everyone has: That's how we do it! As far as why: because we want to and we can; because God let's us!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Homebirth Birth Plan

I decided to write a birth plan for everyone that is going to be a part of the birth and in case of a transfer. I figured all my visualizations are useless unless everybody is on the same page. This will also minimize me having to make any decisions for that day and keep everyone from asking me questions. It will be especially beneficial for my kids and my mom. It will also be good in the event my midwife can't make it and a back up has to come.

Even though my plans sound VERY specific, I know through experience, everything won't go according to plan. But I also know how powerful faith and visualization is.  So here it is:

Homebirth Plan


Early labor (up to 5cm) 2-3 hrs

If you are at work when I go into labor, remind me to eat an orange, pick the kids up from school and come straight home. Make sure starting at 36 weeks, April 20, you get gas on the way to work.

Get plastic sheet(shower curtain) out of supply box(w/pink lid), put it on bed over gold fitted sheet. Put red fitted sheet out of supply box over plastic sheet. Remake bed. Fold down covers to foot of bed.

Clean tub with Scrubbing Bubbles(under sink). Make sure to rinse well and put rag in hamper hanging on laundry room door.

Plug in my iPhone on your side of bed. Turn on Labor Playlist. The iPod app is in the movies/tv folder. Be sure to press shuffle.

I'll probably be showering, getting pretty at this time. Video the clock briefly then a short clip of whatever I'm doing and everybody else. Feel free to talk to the camera but not direct to me. Take some still shots too.

We can then lay in bed and relax a bit before it gets intense. Eat a tictac and give me one. Rub my back/neck/belly... Like we have practiced. You can use the remote for the still camera to take some pics.

If/when I find the bed uncomfortable, I will move to the rocking chair. Make sure i have plenty of pillows. You can rub my feet then... With the lotion on the table next to the chair.  Video/pics update.

Active Labor (5-7/8cm) 1-2hrs

When that playlist is over we should call the midwife(melissa) and go for a walk. Video the clock and give an update before we go. Remind me to pee and take a water. Summer can come with us and take some pics with my phone along the way. We'll just walk the back road a time or two. If it is nighttime, I will make the birthday cup cakes during this time.

By the time we get back I'll probably be ready to get in the tub. If Melissa is there have Summer run the bath.  Make the water pretty hot, it'll cool down before the baby gets here. Video the clock and update. Video/take pics of Melissa taking my BP, listening to the baby, and setting up.  

Transition/Birth (7/8cm to Baby) 1hr

Put my phone on the edge of the tub, turn on the Birth Playlist with shuffle. Light the candles on the back of the tub. Make sure a towel is hung by the shower and it goes to the wall. If more light is needed, turn on light in laundry room  Video the clock and update. Set up cameras in the bathroom.  Make sure you take lots of pictures. Check how much video time we have left frequently. If it gets close to five minutes, flip the disk or change it. Extras are in the front zipper of the camera bag. Keep it plugged in for the most part.  While I'm in the tub keep me cool with cool rags, a hand held fan, and juice pops that Summer will provide. You can play on your phone some, no sound, no headphones.

Hopefully by the time the playlist is over we will have a baby. If not, suggest I stand for a bit and use the bathroom. Restart playlist. Video clock, update and take still shots.

When I say it's time to push make sure you are videoing. Ask if you have time to put in a new disk.

After the birth turn on the Baby Playlist. Video and take lots of pics! Then set everything back up in the bedroom.

During Labor you can kiss me as much as you want as long as you have a tictac, offer them to me too. No coffee until after the birth.  While I'm standing you can offer for me to lean on you through a wave, make sure if I have my arms on your shoulders you lean down a bit so I'm not on my tip toes. Massage me between waves only, do not pet my head at anytime. You can brush my hair with a hair brush. Say wave or opening instead of contraction. Uncomfortable instead of pain. And intense or strong instead of hard.


When mommy goes in labor put fruit, granola bars, nuts, crackers, and any other snack in a basket. Put waters in the little cooler by the shoe cube and put ice in. Bring both upstairs. One of your jobs will be to ask daddy,the midwife(Melissa), and her assistant(either Candace or Shanty) if they need anything and get it for them if they do.

After you've gotten snacks upstairs and Daddy and I are ready, we want to rest in private for about an hour. Then if it's light outside we will go for a walk. Take my phone and take pictures along the way. We don't need to be looking at you or the camera. Take some from behind us, some in front. Some while walking, some during waves when we stop.

If it's nighttime, we will make birthday cup cakes during this time.  

You can stay upstairs if you want after Melissa gets here. If it's light out this is when Granny will make the cup cakes. You can chose which you want to do or go back and forth.

Once I get in the tub it will be extra quiet time. Make sure to whisper, ask Daddy every now and then if I need a juice pop. You can come in the bathroom or hang out in my room quietly. Don't ask how long it's going to be, only God knows. Don't ask if it hurts, we have talked about this, it can get very uncomfortable, that's why I need to focus on relaxing and opening up so the baby can come out. If I moan or make noises it doesn't mean I'm not ok, that helps me open up too.  I might get sick when it gets close to time, thats normal. Sometimes, while pushing the baby out  poop gets in the water, Melissa will scoop it out with a net if that happens. Be aware of where the video camera is, don't get in front of it.

After the baby is born we will wait for a while before cutting the cord, hopefully until the placenta is delivered. I will have to push a little again to get it out but it's not like pushing the baby out. The water will get some blood in it but that's ok it doesn't mean it's dirty. We will get out after the placenta comes and the cord is cut.

After I have breastfed, Melissa has checked the baby, measured and weighed, and Daddy has held him/her, you can. No bugging or fighting. You and Granny can then go make me something to eat. After everyone has had a turn and Melissa leaves I might need to take a nap with the baby. I'll let you know when you can come back up. Don't bug.

The 1st morning after the baby is born, you and Granny can bring me breakfast in bed, scrambled eggs, peaches, grits, and bacon with coffee and OJ.

I love you! You are such a big helper!!!


When I go into labor you can help Summer with her prep list. If Scott is home he will prepare upstairs. If not here is the list...

Get plastic sheet(shower curtain) out of supply box(w/pink lid), put it on bed over gold fitted sheet. Put red fitted sheet out of supply box over plastic sheet. Remake bed. Fold down covers to foot of bed.

Clean tub with Scrubbing Bubbles(under sink). Make sure to rinse well and put rag in hamper hanging on laundry room door.

Scott and I want about an hour of private time in the beginning.

If it's light out, you will make the cup cakes when we get back from our walk in case Summer wants to help.

If it's dark I'll help make them with you guys.

Once I'm in the tub you and the boys are welcome to come upstairs and hang out in the bedroom as long as they are being good. Just send the big boys downstairs by themselves if you want. If they are occupied downstairs Ronan can stay down with them or even by himself. A brief visit in the bathroom to to see what's going on is fine. For the big boys make sure I'm sitting up in tub, not reclined or standing. As long as Ronan and Raiden aren't throwing fits they can come in and out as they please. If they get too out of hand even downstairs, take them outside. I'll have Summer yell for you when it's time.  Be aware of where the video camera is.

Raiden naps at 1:00 and goes to bed at 8:00. If I'm in labor, put him down in the main floor nursery. Ronan doesn't nap and can crash wherever. Don't worry about making the kids go to bed. They can miss school the next day. They can eat when and what they want, just make sure they pick up after themselves. We won't worry about chores that day either.

Read Summers plan for more info on the actual birth, the big boys will need to stay in the bedroom. If the water is murky enough they can come in directly after, but they will need to go again while I initiate breastfeeding.

After everyone has held him/her, you and Summer can go make me something to eat. A turkey sandwich with cheese and mayo, a pickle, and an oriental salad would be good.

The first night after the birth I'd like you to sleep in our room so you can take a holding/rocking shift if need be.

Thank you sooo much for all your help!

Joshua and Jacob

There will be no school or chores on delivery day. You can eat when you want, what you want as long as you pick up after yourselves. You can help make cup cakes but you can't eat them until after the birth. You are not to ask Mommy or Daddy for anything or to settle any disputes, direct everything to Granny. You may go on our walk with us as long as you are good. If you are not you will be sent directly back to the house. Summer will be in charge of taking pictures with my phone. If you want to take pictures Jacob can bring your DS, or your camera. Joshua can bring your DS, or Daddys phone.

You can come upstairs once I'm in the tub but you have to be super quiet. Whisper in my room. If you want to come in the bathroom to see what's going on, ask granny to check to see if I'm covered. No talking in the bathroom. If you act up you will be sent downstairs. Help granny with Ronan. If he need a game or something to eat, Joshua needs to do it. If he needs a show or milk, Jacob needs to do it. Be aware of where the video camera is, don't get in front of it.

Don't ask how long it's going to be, only God knows. Don't ask if it hurts, we have talked about this, it can get very uncomfortable, that's why I need to focus on relaxing and opening up so the baby can come out. If I moan or make noises it doesn't mean I'm not ok, that helps me open up too. When it's time for the baby to actually be born, you need to wait in the bedroom.

After the baby is born we will wait for a while before cutting the cord, hopefully until the placenta is delivered. I will have to push a little again to get it out but it's not like pushing the baby out. The water will get some blood in it but that's ok it doesn't mean it's dirty. We will get out after the placenta comes and the cord is cut.  I will be trying to nurse during this time, you can wait in the bedroom.

After I have breastfed, Melissa has checked the baby, measured and weighed, and Daddy has held him/her, Summer gets to hold the baby first, then Jacob, then Joshua.  No bugging or fighting. After everyone has had a turn and Melissa leaves I might need to take a nap with the baby. I'll let you know when you can come back up. Don't bug.

We appreciate your help and good behavior on this special day.


I will call when I can't sit or lie through a wave. This will probably only be 2-3 hours into labor. With my history of relatively quick labors, I would appreciate it if you would come at this time.

I am going to try to wait until after you arrive to get in the tub. If I am not in the tub, you may check my cervix to see where I'm at. Either way, you may check my BP and the babys heart rate at this time.

All of my supplies will be in a rubbermaid tote with a hot pink lid in my bedroom which is upstairs through the kitchen.

I will be wearing a nursing sleep bra while in the tub. I want to be able to share my birth video with minimal editing and allow my boys in and out during my labor. I would like for Scott and I to be left alone for the most part with periodic visits from my mom and kids.

If my labor lasts longer than I anticipate and I want to get out of the tub for a while and move about my room/house or go for a walk, my bra and towels can be thrown in the dryer as long as I'm not in the bathroom.  You may also assess me again at this point if you feel it is necessary.

I do not want my membranes ruptured unless they are visibly bulging and I ask for them to be ruptured.

I do not want to be checked to see if i am fully dilated. I want to push when my body tells me to. I don't want any coaching during this stage. I will guide the babys head out and check for a cord. I will lift the baby gently to the surface and then to my chest.  Only take my BP or listen to the baby if pushing becomes prolonged. Please be aware of where the video camera is, as not to obscure it.

Given the water hasnt gotten too cool we will remain in the tub after the baby is born. I will initiate breastfeeding to facilitate the delivery of the placenta. I would like to wait for the placenta to be delivered before cutting the cord. I want to cut the cord myself. We can then get out of the tub.

Unless labor becomes prolonged I will not be sitting or lying, unless in the tub. All fours has not been a comfortable position for me in past labors. If I've been in same position for over an hour, simply suggest that change. I will find something else comfortable. Unless you feel the situation/position of the baby warrants something specific. I also have not found counter pressure comfortable in the past. Although I have never experience back labor. If you need anything, my daughter, Summer, or my mom, Lillie, can get it for you.

Use words like  wave or opening instead of contraction. Uncomfortable instead of pain. And intense or strong instead of hard.

I only want to be transferred to the hospital if I am hemorrhaging, having blood pressure issues that can not be controlled, or the baby is in distress. Not for a stalled or slow labor. If we do transfer I want to bring with us my supplies I already purchased and be sure the hospital uses them.

Transfer Birth Plan

Please be aware that I am transferring from a homebirth and be respectful of that.

We have brought the majority of our supplies with us.  These include:

15 23"x36" economy underpads
1    12 pack maternity pads
1    8 oz peri-bottle
1    newborn cap
1    sterile 3 oz. bulb syringe
2    sterile plastic cord clamps
1    scrub brush with povidone iodine
6    4x4 gauze sponges
1    disposable brief

I do not consent to a C-section unless the baby is in distress, or I have uncontrollable bleeding or blood pressure issues.


I do not want to be offered pain medication or an epidural unless for a c-section. I understand the baby and I will need continuous monitoring or I wouldn't be here. I would still like to be free to stand next to my bed to labor if I wish. I consent to an IV, but only want to be given fluids unless medically necessary and explained. My cervix can be checked upon arrival and later if either of us remain in distress. I do not want my membranes ruptured unless they are visibly bulging. I do not want to receive pitocin to augment my labor.


I do not wish to be put in stirrups. I will begin pushing when my body offers no other alternative, in whatever position feels right to me at the time. I would like to push spontaneously with no coaching. I will support my own perineum, guide the babys head out, and check for a cord. I will then finish delivering and bring my baby to my chest.

3rd Stage

The bed can be taken apart at this time for delivery of the placenta. Unless resuscitation is needed, I would like to wait to cut the cord when it stops pulsing or even after the placenta is delivered if possible. I would like to cut the cord myself.  We brought our own cord clamps. I will initiate breastfeeding at this time.  I do not want to be administered pitocin unless bleeding cannot be controlled with nursing and fundal stimulation from my baby.

All assessing that can be done in my arms should be. Please no suctioning with the exception of meconium being present.  After we have successfully nursed and bonded, you may take my baby to be weighed, measured and further assessed.  We will be using cloth diapers. I would like to delay eye ointment until this time as well, we brought our own. Please check list for other supplies brought with us. I would then like my baby immediately returned to me for rooming in. I would like to decline the hearing test and hospital photos. If the baby is a boy we will not be circumcising.  

If a c-section was needed do not give the baby a bottle and return him/her to me ASAP


I would like to be discharged as soon as possible. I have already obtained a PKU test and it will be administered at home by my midwife.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Cloth Diapering Saga

There are definitely pros to CDing. I feel good about not adding to landfills as much. I LOVE saving money. I enjoy the convenience... I know most people think disposables are more convenient... But I hate going to the grocery. I like not having to worry about running out! Plus... They are just so darn cute!

That all being said, it's not been completely easy either. Changing them is a breeze. The extra laundry doesn't bother me at all. The biggest problem for me has been that Free and Clear Detergents are not free and clear! I didn't know that. Raiden has very sensitive skin to begin with. He has pretty bad eczema. When he was first born he rashed more than any of my others did eventhough he was completely breastfed. But once he got down to 1-2 BMs a day... The rashes stopped for the most part. Then we started CDing. I started out using Tide Free and Clear (he). I started reading and found out it contains enzymes and brighteners that some babies can be sensitive to. Also, about two weeks ago, 2 months into CDing, our diaper pail started having a horrible ammonia smell and when he pees there is am immediate odor. I found out this can be due to detergent build up in the dipes. Living in a small town my choices are very limited. Our Walmart doesn't carry any truly natural detergents. I found one called Sun and Earth at Martins, got it, got home, looked it up. It doesn't have any additives but some say it's prone to build up... GREAT!!! I've decided to use it anyway, starting out with a tiny bit of detergent and increasing until I figure out the right amount to get them clean and then rinsing ALOT! I spent all day yesterday stripping them of the old detergent. This just in tales washing multiple times with no detergent. Some say to use vinegar... I chose to hold off on that so I know what's really effective. I took out my pocket diapers and just put the inserts through one sanitizing cycle. Having a frontloading washer may make it sound a little more complicated because I can't just set my soak, wash, and rinse cycles at the temps I want in one fail swoop, so I have to do multiple cycles. It doesn't bother me. My old routine was...

Step 1
Cold Clean Cycle with Auto Soak with no detergent... That soaks, washes, and rinses, all in cold. It's probably over kill, I could stop it after the soak, sometimes I do. 

Step 2
Whitest Whites Cycle with 2nd Rinse with detergent. That does a hot wash with 2 cold rinses. 

Until I run out of the Sun and Earth detergent I'm going to add one more cycle. I read a warm rinse is actually better at getting out detergent residue my only option for this I a warm wash, warm rinse so....

Step 3
Express Wash Cycle on Warm/Warm with a 2nd Rinse. This also has and extra fast spin at the end to get a lot of the water out before drying

I then throw the inserts and wipes in the dryer and hang the pockets. This will increase their life since I want to use these through the next one. 

The only other problem we are having is night time. I will give it another go once we have the detergent/rash/smell worked out during the day. At first I was having trouble just getting him to be comfortable in them all night. Raiden sleeps A LOT. He goes to bed at 8 every night and sleeps until around 10 the next day! I bought some hemp stay dry nighttime  doublers for absorbency and a wool cover for breathability. We don't have leaks and he sleeps fine but he's red and stinky in the AM. So like I said we will get rid of disposables altogether... eventually. Just like everything else in my life... It's an evolving process!

Now on to wipes... Scott for some reason refuses to use cloth... I don't know why... My system is simple. We get flushable wipes for Ronan anyway so he just uses those. I'm sure he get much more poop on his hands than I do! Lol. I keep dry wipes in an old disposable  container. Then I have two bottles filled with wipe solution. I bought Diaper Lotion Potion concentrate but I don't like how it smells so I'll be making my own when it runs out. I'm actually just going to use a few drops of baby oil in plain water. One of my bottles is a fine mist sprayer. If the poo was solid or if he just needs a little freshening, I spray it directly on him then wipe with a dry wipe. My other is actually an old peri-bottle. The one I got when Raiden was born. (I was soo glad I got a new one for me in my HB kit!) it works really well for soaking a wipe for messier jobs. I try to use the front of the flushable liner to get some of it off him. At first I rinsed them in the toilet before putting them in the pail, but now I don't worry about it unless there is a hunk.

 I have a pair of tongs and a soft scrub brush I use if needed to rinse a wipe or if the liner didn't catch it all. I've toyed with the idea of getting a diaper sprayer and doing away with the liners. It's like a super forceful sink sprayer that attaches to the toilet. I didn't want to dive in too deep too quick. I'm probably spending $5 a month on liners though.

I'm still glad I made the switch. Just like breastfeeding, it does take dedication at first but then becomes second nature. 

Have a Fluffy Day!