Sunday, May 11, 2014

Flats and Handwashing Challenge 2014 - Day 1: Why am I doing this (AGAIN)??

flour sac towel flat, boingos
Today is the first day of the 4th annual Flats and Handwashing Challenge hosted by Dirty Diaper Laundry.  During the challenge, moms all over the country sign up to use flat cloth diapers AND hand wash them.  The purpose of the challenge is to raise awareness and spread the word that cloth diapers are a viable option for families struggling to afford clean diapers for their babies, even for those who may not have access to a washer and dryer.  

This is my FOURTH year participating in the challenge - I have a 15 month old toddler and it is May, so I'm doing the challenge.  The first flats challenge changed the way I diaper my babies - I use flats almost exclusively.  I use them as pocket inserts and also with covers.  I have donated all of my microfiber inserts and my (homemade) hemp fleece prefolds have been folded in a drawer for a couple years now.  

B. 15 months, blueberry diaper cover
I'm not sure WHY I am doing the challenge - I've done it before, 3 times before - I've done it with an older baby (8 mo) a toddler (20 mo), a young baby (3mo).  I've participated with perfect weather, with rain, I've hand washed diapers while traveling, in hotels and while staying with family.  While I normally use my washing machine - I line dry all my diapers year round, indoors or outdoors.  None of this is really a challenge for me anymore - Even my now 8 year old knows how to hand wash the diapers! She has helped me handwash diapers once a year since she was 5 and I am glad she has that skill. I talk to parents about flats (and handwashing) every month at my local Real Diaper Association Circle group meetings.  The challenge has served its purpose with me.   Practicing the skill of handwashing, making this option normal for my kids, planting a seed in the minds of those who may see me washing, drying or using flats and showing that even when you are busy and you have so much on your plate that you can't find room for one more thing, you can still hand wash your baby's diapers if it *needs* to be done.  Just like you can find the time to prepare meals, or to feed your baby, you can find the time to wash his diapers. 


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