Archive of ‘Baby Items’ category

Happy Baby Company – Your Cloth Diaper Sidekick

So you’re thinking of taking the step towards welcoming cloth diapering into your life? Such a step may seem overwhelming, but with the right resources, you can totally do it. I myself am slowly but surely venturing back into it, and for my refresher information, I consulted my local cloth diaper guru, Happy Baby Company And lucky for you, they ship nation-wide. They’re a great source for decently-priced goods, and their website is chalk-full of information regarding the science of cloth diapering. They’ve also got some other great baby toys, baby wellness products and gifts.

The biggest key to getting comfortable with cloth diapering is choosing the right kind. There are so many different options, Happy Baby Company will be the first to tell you to try each one a bit until you find the perfect fit. If you commit to one type right away and are uncomfortable with it, you may be ruining cloth diapering for yourself for good. Well the Happy Baby Company website has a great program that allows you to rent and try out cloth diapers for a $1 a day.

Once you find the right fit, you can purchase your own cloth diapers through Happy Baby Company‘s very wide selection. And if you do end up purchasing diapers and are unhappy with a brand and have multiples that you haven’t used, Happy Baby Company keeps a history of your purchases, and as long as your item hasn’t been used or washed, you can exchange it with something you are happier with. And since their website offers free shipping for orders over $35, there’s no risk in buying a few of the same type of diaper and returning what doesn’t work out. As a mom, you should really know how to swaddle your baby, here’s reasons to swaddle and the benefits of doing it.

And if you live locally and find the initial cost of building your cloth diaper collection a bit more than you can handle, you can take advantage of their used cloth diaper program. Local patrons can also schedule for Happy Baby Company’s cloth diaper orientation classes.

The website also features more information on cloth diapers such as how to wash them, how much you’ll be saving throughout the lifetime of your cloth diaper usage, and how you are improving the health of your baby and the environment.

So if you were teetering back and forth between cloth and disposable and needed the extra kick, here it is. And if you are a cloth diaper guru yourself, then support a small business with your art of cloth diapering. Not to mention this fun fact: you’ll be buying from a husband-wife duo who run their business while taking their kids to work with them! And here’s another AWESOME incentive to give them a try: Like their Facebook page, AND my Facebook page, and write on BOTH walls about what Happy Baby Company product you’d LOVE to have! Each entry will be entered in a drawing to win a $25 Happy Baby Company gift card! Winner will be drawn on March 15th! So get to it!

Hold it! A Few Words on Potty training an unwilling toddler.

When we decided to get rid of his diapers, Toddler boy was the first to say, ” I don’t wanna go potty!” Making us think that he would not be ready for potty training for quite some time. So we kind of tip-toed around the idea, giving him stickers here, maybe an m&m there, but the potty training just didn’t seem to be successful because he was simply unwilling.

Then, as his third birthday rolled around, we decided it would be best for the stimulation of his mind to enroll him into preschool. And it started in two weeks! Problem was, he had to be potty trained! There was no more playing around. We didn’t even entertain the idea of pull-up diapers, training pants, or whatever. As a friend and preschool teacher advised, the best way to do it, was just to take off the diaper, and train him cold-turkey-style. There was no more buying diapers for us (Especially because Baby Girl had started on her cloth diaper adventure).

So that’s what we did. We took his diaper completely off, and put little boy underwear with his favorite characters on him. And I kid you not, within a couple of days, Toddler Boy was potty trained. Sure, there were accidents in his pants,  multiple car seat cover washings, etc. But it was the quickest, best way to do it if you ask me. And after they are potty trained you wont have to hold on to that diaper pail anymore.

We didn’t even have to use a sticker chart, candy rewards, cheerios, or whatever you want to call it. We just used good old-fashioned praise, hugs and kisses when he went in the potty – both number one AND two.

Even at night his accidents in the bed seemed to stop within a week. The trick is to cut out excessive juice and milk drinking, because that’s what he would drink over and over again because he would crave the taste and sugar (Even when he was in his diapers, he had leaks in the bed at night because he drank so much juice and milk). Therefore, I’ve completely cut out juice drinking, and limited milk drinking to only at Breakfast, and directly after dinner. The rest of the day if he’s thirsty, he gets water, and even that is limited after bath time. That way, he has time to process, digest, and dispose of any liquid before falling asleep.

So, you want to potty train your toddler? Here’s a review of what worked for us.

  1. Made sure that we had a potty that Toddler Boy felt comfortable with in size (He’s a little guy).
  2. Said good bye to the diaper, and did not use pull-up diaper products.
  3. Kept him home as much as possible so the accidents weren’t that big of a deal, and I could simply toss his clothes in the laundry, or even let him run around naked throughout the day to make it easier on him.
  4. If we did go out, I brought 2-3 changes of clothes, plenty of wipes, and paper towels.
  5. Praised him like crazy any time he pooped and peed in the potty by himself.
  6. Paid extra attention to any signs or language telling me that he had to go.
  7. Had him wear fleece diaper covers and diaper liners (As suggested by author of All About Cloth) at night just in case, and bought a mattress cover as a precaution.
  8. Cut out as much liquid intake as possible after dinner.
  9. Ta da! He was potty trained within a week!


Where does the poop go? Baby Girl’s Adventure With Cloth Diapers

Ever since I was pregnant with Toddler Boy, I’ve wanted to start cloth diapers, but the investment of time and money always intimidated me. Finally, once my daughter was about a year old, my sister stepped in and decided she cared too much about the environment to keep watching me lug out bags and bags of dirty diapers to be hoisted off into a landfill, never to disintegrate. Therefore, she stepped up and bought me a Cloth Diaper starter kit, and introduced me to one of my new passions in life.

Therefore, she logged onto Green Mountain Diapers, bought about three packs of Gerber pre-folds, and some super cute Litewrap vinyl-cloth diaper covers and Bummis Whisper Pant nylon pull-on covers.

But it was not all butterflies and candy canes. It was a learning experience. Especially since I did very little research before embarking on the adventure. Thus, me providing this post to other cloth diaper venture-lovers.

peekabooThe first mistake that I made, was to do the initial wash of the liners with bleach. And as my good friend and author of All about Cloth informed me (Luckily before I used them), you do not want to wash your cloth diapers with bleach. Especially since the baby’s going to pee and poop on them and cause a chemical reaction.

Second mistake that I made – Gerber pre-folds aren’t the most absorbent, so I had to layer 2 or 3 at a time and even add an absorbent diaper baby cover at night.

Also, I was using a very harsh stain-fighting detergent. You want to use gentle, free and clear-type detergents, and lay the liners out in the sun to sun-bleach the spots naturally out rather thanwith harsh chemicals.

Also, I did not know that when a baby is teething, their poop is more acidy, and since cloth diaper liners do not have the enzymes to break it down, babies on cloth diapers are more prone to get rashes. Therefore, it might be necessary to switch to regular diapers until the teething subsides.

And when they get these rashes, you’re not actually supposed to use regular diaper cream with cloth diapers because they create a barrier and don’t let the baby’s bottom breathe. You want to use diaper cream that is safe to use with cloth diapers such as California Baby Diaper Rash Cream. All About Cloth author suggests: “During crazy diaper rash time you can use fleece liners (like fleece from Joann’s cut into strips) and it helps keep the baby feeling dry. So when they have the crazy acidic poop, it can help suck that away from their skin. You can also use fleece liners if you want to use “serious” rash creams (not desitin, but almost anything else), and she can also use other creams for others purposes as for the arms or the neck from She actually made me some fleece diaper covers, and I even used one as a nighttime training undie for my toddler while he was potty training!

What I did learn, was to take advantage of the sales out there! I happened to be visiting family in Chicago and stumbled onto a store called Belly Bum. I fell in love. But I also fell in love with the cloth diaper sale they happened to have going on!  And they informed me that Cloth Diaper companies constantly come up with new designs, which means the perfectly good older designs go on clearance after a while. Buy ’em up!

And I learned about Snappis cloth diaper liner fasteners! Good-bye diaper pins! The idea of those things made me wince! These handy dandy Snappis have completely safe plastic teeth that hold the cloth diaper together. My favorite fold was taught to me by a friend. You take two liners, unfolded, and lay them down. Then lay your baby so that the top of the liners reaches the baby’s lower back. You fold the bottom of one liner, unfolded over the baby’s front. Then you take the bottom of the second liner, twist it to create extra absorbency, and fold it over the baby’s front then you take the Snappi, and snap it all together. I’ll be posting a video shot by Tom Hoebbel Photography in the near future because it’s a lot easier to see than to read how to fold a baby’s cloth diaper liner.

Belly Bum also provided me with cloth diaper waterproof laundry bags. You just flush the poop down the toilet, and stick the dirty diaper in there. Or, as All About Cloth author did, you could have a handy hubby install a sprayer to your toilet so you can get your cloth diapers good and clean before you throw them in the wash.

And I actually found washing cloth diapers a lot more convenient than having to go to the store for diapers all the time. If ya run out of diapers, you just wash them! Same with baby wipes – start using wash cloths instead, and you’ll save even more money! I did the math and compared my water bill expenses to my former disposable diaper and wipes expenses, and I am definitely saving some money. I am only spending about ten dollars more a month in water expenses.

Oh! And just be prepared that the first question people will ask you when you tell them about washing your cloth diapers, is “Where’s the poop go?” Down the toilet!

Nipples for Bottles – here’s whatcha need to know


babyeatingA soon-to-be-mommy that I’ve known for years  noticed that I didn’t have an entry about nipples for bottles 0n here, so I figured if she’s curious about it, so are others.

But here’s the beauty of it – there really isn’t much to write because the bottle manufacturers do the nipple thinking for you. You pretty much can only buy nipples that match the brand of bottles that you buy, otherwise the nipples won’t fit. But what you should know, the nipples come in different levels of milk flow that are appropriate for your child’s stage. A light trickle for newborns to three months, and then the flow intensity increases per stage. So be sure to pay attention to the stages that are marked on the nipples. Most bottle kits come with the first stage nipples. Which is actually kind of a pain when your baby is older and you’re looking into getting new bottles, but convenient for a baby shower registry.

You do want to make sure that the nipples are BPA free, and to boil them in hot water before using them for the first time. Also never put them in the dishwasher, otherwise they might rip. As soon as a nipple rips, you must toss it, because small particles of rubber can get into your child’s milk.

Also, you may want to hold off on going crazy on buying bottles and nipples if you are contemplating breast feeding. That’s because if you breastfeed and are with your babies most of the time, you really only need one or two bottles for when you absolutely have to leave them for more than a few hours. And even then, the breastfed baby might still refuse bottles. And if you are a breast feeding mom that works, you still want to hold off on buying too many bottles until you figure out which kind of bottle has a shape and nipple that is pleasing to your breast fed baby’s picky palate.

So at that point, you may want to look into nipples that have shorter tips to avoid bothering the sensitive gag reflexes that a breastfed baby is usually equipped with. I had good luck with this one. You will also see at the bottom of that entry that a friend of mine suggested a more inexpensive alternative for a bottle for breastfed babies.

Hope this helps, because to be honest if you Google “nipples for bottles,” the results aren’t that appropriate to your search…if ya know what I mean! Because I was trying to search for what kind of questions someone may have regarding them, and my eyes are a bit tainted now. Just kidding. But in all seriousness, if any of you have any other questions about nipples for bottles, feel free to ask on here, and I will be happy to answer them!

Info on Free Sewing Patterns For a Baby Car Seat Cover


I started to look into free sewing patterns for baby car seat covers because I always get asked “What’s his name,” in regards to my baby girl. It doesn’t really bother me much, because I know she’s a cutie patootie, but for people who do get bugged by that, you can make yourself gender-appropriate car seat covers to ease the mistakes in regards to your baby boy or girl. If you are in need of a sewing machine check out these sewing machine reviews to help you make your decision.

I didn’t really think much into into it when I bought all the gear for Toddler Boy before he was born. I though, “I hate when people can’t tell whether a baby is a boy or a girl, and there’s that awkward exchange, so I’m gonna make sure and get everything blue.” Plus, I decided I would have everything in an animal theme, and everything in an animal theme happened to be blue or green.

file00047256199Fast forward to about two years later: everyone mistakes my baby girl for a baby boy. That’s because both her car seat and her car seat cover are blue! And I try to dress her in all pink, but some clothes that are for girls are really cute and come in different colors! Plus, when I use her car seat cover, her clothes are hidden anyway. SO I always make sure to also put a girly hat or head band on her so it’s really clear. But still! People overlook that stuff!

So, I took a friend’s advice and looked into some Best Sewing Machines for baby girl’s car seat cover. That way, I’m not spending another 30-40 dollars on a pink one that I might not use for that much longer at this point, since it’s already February, and she is already nine months old. BUT I only found tons of sites promising to provide free car seat sewing patterns, but don’t actually deliver. Or, they used to deliver, and now the links are gone. Although, I did find a site that provides info on which easy patterns to purchase (They’re so cheap. Like a few bucks) to make your own car seat cover, and that is here. That link also has alternative directions on how to make your own pattern for free.

But another thing you could do, is either sew or iron on some patterns on your existing car seat cover. You can just Google an image of anything that your child may be a fan of, either butterflies, or flowers, or Blue’s Clues, Sesame Street, whatever. Then, print out that image on either fabric paper, or iron-on paper. It’s your choice.

With fabric paper, you can cut it out and even hand-sew it onto your baby’s car seats with less stitches per inch. That way, when you decide you don’t want that character on there any more, you can just take the stitches out and get rid of it. So for example, if I want to put a pink flower on the existing car seat cover right now, but then end up having a baby boy later, I can take it off.

But an easier solution for you non-sewers out there, is to print the image on iron-on paper (Which you can find pretty much anywhere – Target, Wal Mart, office supply stores, craft stores), then cut it out and just iron it on. But then, you can’t really take it off if you decide you don’t want anything on your car seat cover any more.

Another solution, is to find already-made patches at a craft store and either sew them on, or iron them on with Witch-stitchery. Although if you iron them on with the witch-stitchery, you run into the same problem as the iron-on paper in the long run.

So if you get bugged with the same gender-wrong questions like I do, there’s some solutions for ya. Also, car seat covers are so expensive, it’s nice to have a more cost-efficient solutions with these free sewing patterns for baby car seat covers.

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