The most common question I hear is “Isn’t it HARD to cloth diaper?” followed quickly by “I don’t have time for that”.
So let me delve into that question deeper on a personal level.
This morning started like most mornings, getting 5 kids up, dressed, fed, quick tidy up around the house and then settle in for school activities. My 9 year old parked her cute little bum on the couch while I folded a load of laundry and read Little House on the Prairie to me…
I quickly finished that and headed outside to start diapers. I wanted to get them into the sun on the line before the heat of the day set in since we have plans today.
So I bundled up my little guy and went out to wash diapers, all the while listening to my little bug read to me…. it was rather sweet.
Being outside didn’t take me from my kids, our school activities, or doing anything else. I touched base with the yard work that needs to be done, making a list in my head of what to tackle in the garden this afternoon while the baby sleeps.
And then I forgot… yep. Forgot. There is nothing souring in the washing machine, going rancid. There is nothing that I need to hover over to deal with… such peace.
All in, it took me 45 minutes to rinse, wash, rinse, rinse, and hang :20 diapers, 8 covers, a few doublers, and a pail liner. NOT too bad at all. It would’ve easily taken the same amount of time to wash them in my washing machine too… and I would have to babysit them. There is nothing I despise more than down time that is pretending…
Like those minutes you wait for the teakettle to whistle… it’s not really a few minutes to yourself, it’s just pretending… because if you get sidetracked, you know it’s going to whistle and call you away from what you were doing. I love tasks that once complete, are COMPLETE… there is no going back on a timer to finish.
I have another task this afternoon to bring the diapers back in… I have to mow the lawn today too, so that’s going to happen at the same time… Total time spent on diapers this afternoon will be about 5 minutes to bring them in and pile them neatly on the couch so I can sit on them and soften them before I need to fold them tonight.
I like being busy. If I’m not busy, I sleep. I do crafts, or knit, or crochet, or cook, or browse facebook when I watch TV… having a fresh smelling stack of diapers to fold when I sit down with my family to watch a show after dinner is rather cathartic!
So no, for us it doesn’t take much time. I am outside getting a decent upper body work out and doing my squats while I wash. I’m stretching while hanging on the line. I get to sit down and have a cup of tea when I finish and get lost in playing with my kids, instead of worrying about resetting the washer or stuff getting moldy. I get to wear my little buddy and talk and sing to him while I wash diapers.
Having been forced to wash ALL of our clothes last year in this manner, I don’t find it bothersome, and the finished product is so wonderful!
It’s not hard. It simply requires a bit of planning and dedication. I enjoy having purpose to my life, and for things to have routine and clear expectations. I just do.
If we are to move off the grid, I will probably still consider this a viable option, but I do like how the washer spins all of the water out though!