|Some of my cloth diapers... including a cute lacy cloth diaper |
cover my neighbor just gave me as a hand me down
So I figured that I'd write a post about certain things and bad habits I've fallen into, often out of laziness, that aren't exactly frugal, and how I'm going to try to work to change that.
Ok, so number one, the thing that inspired this post is my baby's diapers.
I officially cloth diaper to save money, am all about the benefits of cloth diapering... And, uhm, err.... I think that in the last few months, at least, I've been cloth diapering maybe 10% of the time, if even.
First it was because my baby outgrew her newborn sized cloth diaper covers. I had been using the newborn sized Bummi's Super Whisper Wraps (BSWW) together with my Econobum one size cloth diaper covers, together with prefold diapers. When Rose got too big for the size small diapers, I couldn't find my size small and medium BSWW covers... In large part because of the mess in my house and that my storage space was very disorganized. (More on that later.)
So I was left with just my Econobum covers- 6 of them that I could find on a good day- 4 when I had misplaced one or two- and then I'd use those 4, they'd get dirty, and I'd run out of covers because of falling behind with my laundry (more on that later as well), so... So basically I was using maybe 6-10 cloth diapers every week, if even.
So I started buying disposable diapers regularly.
And then when I was reorganizing our storage, I did find the larger sized diaper covers. I have more than enough now in the size that fits Rose. However....
Once I had the disposable diapers in my house, its hard to not fall back and use them, because yes, it is easier. While cloth diapering is a big money saver, it is definitely more work. And yes, laziness is a weak point of mine.
And then Rose started getting rashes that weren't going away. I thought they were from some foods that I was eating, but I wasn't sure. Maybe it was from the cloth diapers? I don't know, I was unsure... Because I wasn't 100% able to connect the foods she was eating (or that I was eating when nursing her) with the rashes, so just to eliminate the diaper factor, I was keeping her in disposable diapers full time.
And of course, that got me used to disposables, and not just as a fall back option.
The rash has been gone now for some time- I'm not 100% sure yet what caused them- I think it might have been tomatoes and/or eggs and/or citrus, so I'm not giving her any of those now- but still, she was in disposables...
So two days ago, I saw that I was nearly out of disposable diapers. As in I had 2 left in my package. I really don't want to head to the grocery store now to buy diapers... I found a few more diapers in random places- in my bedroom, pocketbook, backpack, bathroom... so now I have something like a total of 7 disposable diapers.
I've made myself a challenge.
Because I realize that while for most things, I work best not doing all or nothing, for diapering, for me it is nearly always all or nothing, since having cloth diapers in the house makes me use them as a crutch 90% of the time, and facilitates my laziness...
At the same time, I realize that biting off more than I can chew, making something seem like an impossibly long task looming ahead of me, with no end in sight, scares me off from even trying, because it feels like it won't be doable, because I'm not perfect.
So I am making myself a challenge.
Can I make it through this week without buying disposable diapers?
And if I make it through this week, can I make it through next?
I think one week of exclusively cloth diapering is a totally doable challenge for me, not biting off more than I can chew. One week chunks it'll be. Each weekly round up of my latest frugal accomplishments, I will try to make a note of how many weeks total I've managed to exclusively cloth diaper.
So far I'm 2.5 days in and no disposable diapers yet.
But that brings me to the second thing that I have struggles with, another one of my frugal failings, that is also connected to my diapering...
I often am falling behind on laundry. Which is bad enough because of the huge piles that it causes in my bathroom... But it's worse than that. Because falling behind on laundry makes me feel like I don't have enough clothes and makes me feel like I need to buy more.
Additionally, when I fall behind on laundry, it often means that I leave a load of washed laundry, wet in the machine... until it starts to smell. Embarrassing. Which means I need to wash the load again (wasting water, electricity, and detergent).
And if I'm so behind on laundry, it means my cloth diapers don't get washed, which in addition to making them not be available for use (hence my using disposable diapers), also makes them get ruined. (If you leave dirty cloth diapers long enough without washing, they start decomposing, which makes them fall apart. Embarrassingly, I know that from experience.)
So, I'm working on staying on top of my laundry (having a mother's helper is helping with that, but it's also a lot of conscious effort on my part), and hopefully that will help me with my cloth diapering challenge.
I will be updating in my weekly frugal accomplishments as well if I've managed to go an entire week without rewashing a load of laundry...
Notice a theme here? Lack of organization leading to money wasting?
So, my refrigerator. I'm also not staying on top of that enough, and I've been finding rotten food spoiled in the back of my fridge, or drawers too often. I am really going to try hard to work on not allowing that too happen, so to motivate me, I will be keeping an account of all the food I throw out each week. (I think I'll make this be a separate post on Saturdays.) Maybe with a picture of all the foods I throw out. Starting to keep track of this next week.
And last but not least- I lose things in my stockpile, and that causes me to spend money on buying things I don't need.... so I'm working on that too. But more on that in a later post...
So... Here's my challenge.
Stopping with these wasteful habits, stopping with spending extra money because of laziness. And accountability to try to prevent these.
Think I can do it?
What would you say are your biggest frugal failings that you're trying to correct now? What are you doing to try to make those changes? Does accountability help you with preventing these?
If you're a cloth diaperer- what percentage of the time would you say your kids are cloth diapered? Do you find having even one package of disposable diapers in the house ends up being too much of a crutch and makes you fall back on disposables? Or is that just me...
How about laundry- fess up- who here falls horribly behind on laundry? Anyone fall back enough that they end up having to rewash certain loads? What are you doing to try to change that?
How about throwing out food? How much would you say you throw out each week? What are you doing to minimize that?
P.S. I feel like I've posted something exactly like this before. Not just once, but many times... I guess these struggles of mine won't be going away any time soon... but I'm a work in progress....