Browse Category by eco-friendly
Babycare, bumberry, bumgenius, cloth diapers, diaper Bag, eco-friendly, smartbottoms, Uncategorized

Cloth Diapering For Nights

Many moms start cloth diapering enthusiastically but prefer it only during the day. Night time Cloth Diapering looks like a big battle to most of them or is it a mental block if I may say! The thought of having a leaky diaper, crying baby, wet bed or having to change at 2 past midnight is not quite pleasant for an already exhausted mom, and disposable diapers look like the best things for nights, but if they aren’t good for the day, they aren’t either good for the night! Night time CDing is doable with a little experimentation and is pretty easy once you know what works for you.

If you are new to cloth diapering do check out this  related post that I wrote sometime back.

I started using cloth diapers when my son was 2.5 months old, soon after full days of CDing and having built enough stash, I started to cloth diaper him during the nights as well.

Warning- This post does not guarantee a leak-proof night time diapering solution; because honestly, I haven’t found any. It is to help you understand the various options that you could choose from and also to let you know that it’s okay to have a few leaky nights, you and your child are on a much bigger mission, that of saving the environment from disposable diapers!!

During the first few weeks the pocket diapers worked well for us, they used to be heavy and dripping by the dawn though, but they sufficed.

My son has been a heavy wetter (drinks a lot of water and nurses through the night, even now at 27months) and there are more than occasional leaks, but that hasn’t deterred me from using Cloth diapers at night.

Cloth diapering is about experimenting, learning through trials and errors; from your experiences and mistakes and those of other moms.

Just when you start the night-time diapering see how long your regular diaper lasts during the day; add an additional layer or 2 of insert ( I started by adding an additional insert in our regular pocket diaper). See if it works fine for you. It should work if the diaper fit is perfect and if your baby is light to medium wetter.

If this isn’t good enough for you, try adding a hemp or bamboo insert. Hemp and bamboo are known for high absorbency. Keep changing the combination of inserts to see what works best for your baby.

While using a pocket diaper adding too many inserts can make it bulky and also can hamper the fit. See that the diaper fit is intact from the legs and that the baby isn’t uncomfortable in the diaper.

Here are a few other things that you can try apart from adding extra inserts to your pocket diapers.

• Try an AIO (all in one) or AI2( all in 2), if these too are being outpeed, try adding an insert to these as well. I happened to try an AiO by Bumberry and I must tell you that it works perfectly well during the day for my son (a heavy wetter) and with an extra insert for the nights. They are soon going to launch the AIOs for sale on all their platforms.

• A fitted diaper with a cover: Not many brands offer fitted diapers, a fitted diaper is made up of hemp, cotton or bamboo fabric which is gentle on baby skin. These diapers are highly absorbent all over and hence are good for tummy/side sleepers. Since these diapers don’t have a PUL cover it is advisable to use a diaper cover with these for nights. Also being natural fabric, these fitted diapers don’t have a stay dry layer, for nights it is advised that you top it up with a fleece liner. I haven’t tried a fitted diaper, so I won’t be talking much about it.

• For tummy sleepers another option is to use a muslin or other soft fabric around the waist. My son sleeps on tummy and on sides, to avoid the leaks from the waist I started putting an insert horizontally across the tummy (right where we tuck the snaps). I waited for him to show signs of discomfort but was fine and slept well without any leaks! So, an extra insert sideways works for us.

Few more points to ease your night time CDing-

• See that the baby pees right before you set him/her for the night diaper change.

• Change the diaper only around the bed time.

• Keep a set of diaper handy by the bedside (if you co-sleep) or by the baby cot, to change if there is any leak.

At the end, do not worry about occasional leaks, keep experimenting with your fluff and you will have it right soon!

 

This blog post is a part of ‘Conscious Diapering and Sustainable Living’. A blog train sponsored by Bumberry hosted by Genevieve of Life.of.gen & Me. Here 18 Supermoms have joined hands to share their perspective on cloth diapering and living an eco-friendly sustainable lifestyle.

I thank Preeti, the founder of DelhiBlogger for introducing me. The next station of this blogtrain is thehappymummablog,  blog my Priyanka, who writes about her motherhood journey. Priyanka is a passionate babywearer and a clothdiapering mom.

Hop on to our blog-train for it needs no tickets; spread this love for clothdiapering by sharing this post and others in the series!

Happy Cloth Diapering!

eco-friendly, education, engagement, Lifestyle and health, natural parenting, parenting

Eco friendly Return Gift ideas

What is a birthday party without party favours or return gifts? Kids look forward to bday parties for 2 reasons; 1. The Cake 2. Return Gifts
Last year we celebrated our son’s birthday the eco friendly way.  It was pretty doable, from décor to return gifts, all was either wood, paper or cloth.
You can check out the post here.  I am always on a look out for sustainable gifting options and hence this post on eco-friendly return gift ideas. Some of which I have personally tried and tested!

1. Piggy bank- A ceramic or wooden piggy bank. Piggy banks or Gullaks as we would call it have been one of my priced possessions all through my childhood and teenage years and that is what precisely I chose as party favours for my son’s first birthday party. The Gullak (piggybank) was a wooden house shaped box with lock and key. I sourced these from Sarahanpur in Uttar Pradesh known for artisans making brass and wooden artefacts and furniture. The gift was super-hit, everybody loved it.

2. A sapling or a plant with a pot- for Little A’s second birthday. I had a mix of return gifts. For kid’s above 3, I chose plants like ajwain, mint, tulsi etc and gave a pot separately, with a message ” plant me, water me and watch me grow”.  The plant was given separately so that kids can engage in potting exercise and take ownership, learn to nurture, watch it and relate to the lifecycle of plants and what is required for them to grow.

3. Wooden puzzles/toys- Unlike plastic toys, wooden toys last longer and look better.
There are few Indian brands selling wooden toys puzzles etc.  I have written a dedicated post on why we prefer wooden toys, you can check it here .

Also my personal favourites are Chanapatna toys. Chanapatna toys are wooden toys made in the town of Chanapatna near Bangalore. Channapatna is also known as GOMBEGALA OORU ( toy-town) of Karnataka. The toys are handcrafted and have a unique appeal to them, these can be used as art pieces or just as toys to play with.

Chanapatna kitchen set

For kids under 3 years I chose to give wooden puzzles/puzzle books and regular books. I bought puzzles from “little fingers at work” they have great variety of educational toys that are also reasonably priced. You can find more about them at their website. 

4. Small Terrariums or a Terrarium “make and take ” activity. – Terranium is a sealable glass container having soil and plants, the container can be opened for regular maintenance. These look wonderful, though slightly expensive these  can make a perfect return gift. Check this post to know about different varieties of terrarium and how they aren’t so difficult to make. Bigger Terrarium can make a good b’day/ house warming gifting option too.

image credits- whatagreenlife.com 

5. Craft kits- Craft kits are always a hit with moms and kids alike. You could gift a quilling set, DIY craft set for making paper bags/envelopes or just a kit with variety of craft supplies for open ended work. We absolutely adored the craft kit that we recently got in a party.

6. Terracotta clay with steel moulds or cutters- I love how clay can take any form, terracotta clay is natural as it is sourced from the riverbeds and prepared to produce various articles. It can be baked for strength or just used as it is. You can now buy terracotta clay at Amazon too.

The cutters can be bought at snapdeal or amazon. I found these at a throw away price for a set of 20 cutters. (click here )
You could alternatively buy cookie cutters and give 2 each to a kid along with some (250/500gms) clay and paint.

Here is a picture of me with my amateurish work at handbuilding pottery, I find working with clay therapeutic, you can tell that from the smile on my face in the this picture.

7. Books to choose from- You could keep 2-3 sets of different books and have the kids choose one from them.

8. Cloth hand puppets or dolls – hand puppets and cloth dolls look really cute and can be used as props for story narration and for pretend play. Not only the kids will love it, your mommy friends will love it too.

9. Plush toys – keep a counter/table with a placard saying “adopt a friend” and have 2-3 varieties of plush/soft toys, the kids can choose one and take it home as a return gift. The fibres used for a soft toy may not be natural, however it is better than giving plastic toys/tiffins/boxes that would soon break

10. Gardening kit- The real learning happens outdoors and there is nothing better than growing your own garden. Sowing the seeds of greener practices early on in life will have a positive impact on little ones. A gardening kit makes a great gift for young kids aged above 3. 

 A gardening kit for kids may include Rake, shovel etc, include a pack of seeds too to complete it.
These were 10 eco friendly gifts that I could think of, if you have anything in mind please do share here in comments.

The purpose of your gift will fail if you choose to give it in a plastic bag, try to use eco-friendly packaging for your return gifts. We have been using home made newspaper bags and for heavier gifts repurposed clothbags ( made from my old kurtas and pyjamas). I am going to do a dedicated post on packaging gifts the eco-friendly way!!

 

 

Continue Reading

babies, eco-friendly, infant, Uncategorized

The Diaper Man- Man behind India’s leading Clothdiapering Brand Bumberry

*This is not a sponsored post


 

Gone are the days when diapering and baby care was restricted to women of the house. Krishnan and men like him are breaking all the stereotypes.  Motherhood brings a lot of changes, but for Krishnan fatherhood changed the course of his life; he introduced Bumberry to Indian market when there were barely any players, since then the industry has grown manifolds and so has Bumberry. Let us acquaint ourselves better with this young entrepreneur and the wonderfully loved brand that Bumberry has become.


NJM Please tell us more about yourself and your family.

KK I am Kutti Krishnan, Aged 37, educator by profession. I recently took to entrepreneurship. My family comprises of my wife Soumya who is an MBA by qualification  and my son Siddharth who is 6 years, with whom I turned an entrepreneur. I did my computer science degree and worked for about 1 year in IT industry before my 2 year MBA program and further 10 long years of management education service, working with various schools either as a teaching assistant or as a teacher in management.

NJM Bumberry is one of the first few CD brands of India; how did the idea of bumberry occur to you? Continue Reading

baking soda, clean house, cleaning, diwali, eco-friendly, housekeeping, Lifestyle and health, Vinegar

Eco-friendly cleaning hacks

Those of you who have been reading my posts or following me for a while now, would know that I am attempting to endure a natural living, use of eco-friendly stuff and  minimising wastage.

I have just begun, which means I am at almost “zero” currently. It is a change in lifestyle of not one person, but whole family and hence may take over months and years and along with time it requires lots of patience and perseverance.

Being Diwali around, I am dedicating this post to a few tried and tested eco-friendly cleaning hacks for two most important areas of your house.

What you will require-

Some spray bottles
Rags/flannel cloths/sponges
Lots of white Vinegar
Lots of baking soda
Lime
Salt

Kitchen Cleaning

For cleaning drains – Put one cup of baking soda in the drain and gradually pour one cup of white vinegar over it, it will clean the drain.

If the drain is clogged use your regular plunger first and then follow the above steps.

To clean the sink- sprinkle baking soda and with a cloth/sponge soaked in vinegar, wipe sink surface.

To clean the taps and other fixtures, use a cloth dampened with vinegar and wipe the fixtures. You could use a mix of baking soda and water, apply this paste to the fixtures and scrub them clean.

I also use tooth-paste (the white ones) to clean fixtures, they shine like new.

Drinking glasses and baby dishes could be sanitised and cleaned by dipping for few minutes in vinegar and water solution. Baking soda could also be used to have your crystalware shining like new, just sprinkle some baking soda over crystalware and use a toothbrush to rub gently.

For ovens and microwaves, to loosen the grime use a large oven/microwave safe bowl, fill it with 400ml water and 100ml vinegar. Run  the microwave on full power for 2-4 minutes. Let it remain closed for the steam to settle and work. Open the microwave, remove the bowl carefully and clean the oven with a damp cloth.

Easy hack for your silverware is to wrap your silver article in an aluminium foil and dip it in boiling water, add baking soda and voilaaa the article comes out shining.. no scrubbing can give you this result.

For cleaning fridge-  Sprinkle baking soda and salt and use a damp cloth or sponge to clean the surfaces. You could also use the following solution to clean interior and exterior walls of the fridge –  2 tableapoon of baking soda and 1 litre luke warm water, use a cloth dipped in this solution and wipe the walls and surfaces. For stubborn stains use baking soda directly.

 

Bathroom Cleaning

Spray a mix of water and vinegar on the walls/tiles , let it sit for 10-15 minutes and wipe with a cloth. This will clean and help you get rid of mildew.

For chrome fixtures you could use toothpaste or a mix of vinegar and baking soda.

For floor I used to use bleach, but now with a little baby I try to avoid it. You could use vinegar and hot water to clean the bathroom floor and for grouts bleach can be used with a toothbrush. Alternatively you could use lemon to clean the grouts.

Happy cleaning, wish you all a very happy Diwali.

Will try to cover other areas in my next post..  hopefully before the next Diwali!

 

back to basics, cloth diapers, eco-friendly, natural parenting, new mothers, prepping, stripping, sustainability, washing the cloth diapers

Prepping, Washing, Storing and Stripping the Cloth Diapers

You have landed on this page, probably because you are keen on starting to cloth diaper your baby or you are already doing it and want to know, how others deal with cloth diapers’ nitty-gritties.
We begin with prepping the diapers.
Your fluff mail has arrived and you can’t wait to see the little bums dressed bright and beautiful; but  heyy, hold on; you’ve got to wait! It is important to prepare the diapers for use, mainly for two reasons:
a.       Hygiene: Just like you wash any other piece of cloth before putting it on to your baby’s sensitive skin, these diapers too need to be pre-washed.

b.       Absorbency: The natural fibres (cotton and hemp) have residual oil that restricts the absorbency, hence you need multiple washes before you can use them
Now, the question is how do you prep the diapers? Mostly you will find the prepping and washing instructions mentioned on the packaging that the diapers come in.
However, the simplest way to prep is giving a wash in detergent and then run a few (2-3) more wash cycles in regular (without detergent) water. This will get rid of the residual oils and any detergent from your first wash. The synthetic fibres like polyester and microfibres can be just washed with detergent and given a second run in regular detergent-free cycle.
Washing the diapers
The solids are to be knocked off before putting the diapers for wash. For pocket diapers, what I follow is just knock off the solids, good if it falls off easily, if it doesn’t then I gently take the insert out and use hand-faucet to get rid of the remaining sticky poop. This helps in avoiding the inserts from staining. Once the solids are taken off, I just wash the diaper with regular water and put it in the diaper pail.
Initially, I hand washed all the baby clothes, but I have found machine wash better than hand washing. I use regular detergent (Tide/surf excel/Ariel) and they seem to do pretty good job for me. You could also give a try to the eco-friendly detergents that are available in the market. Conditioners and fabric softeners are a big No-No for CDs, as they tend to leave a non-absorbent coat on the fabric, which may affect the absorbency of the diaper.
After machine/hand wash it is always better to sun-dry the diapers, the ultra-violets rays from the sun helps killing the bacteria. Sun drying also helps in lightening the stains; you know how a piece of colourful cloth or plastic lightens in colour once left in the sun for too long? Similarly, the CD stains too get light or vanish post sun-drying.
 Folding and keeping the diapers
For some time initially, I would just keep the inserts and diapers separately; but I realised that stuffing the cover/pocket diapers and then storing saves much time and is extremely convenient during diaper changing sessions.
How I fold the diapers:-
Step one: Stuff the diaper with the insert

Step Two: Lay the diaper flat, wrong side up

Step Three: Fold the front part towards inside, and keep rolling until it becomes compact like the picture below (in step 4).

Step Four: Button it up tight.

I stack my stash in a drawer Konmari style.

Stripping the Cloth Diapers

If you have just started Cloth diapering, then you need not have to worry about stripping for many months to come, until your diapers start stinking awfully bad like ammonia. The diapers start stinking mostly because of the detergent build-up or if they aren’t being cleaned properly. Initially I was handwashing our diapers and in few months, they started smelling bad; I had to strip them and now I have switched to washing machine completely.
Stripping is mainly getting rid of the detergent build up. Please read the warranty (if any) of your diapers, because sometimes the warranty may get void if you strip the diaper.
How I stripped our diapers; well, I soaked them (clean diapers) in hot water for more than 30 minutes (we don’t have any hot water connection to our washing machine) and then ran 2 wash cycles (without detergent). I found bubbles in the water, which is an indication of detergent build up. I then line-dried them, n they haven’t smelled that bad again.
Sometimes you may have to add bleach if simple hot water stripping doesn’t work. Adding ½ cup of bleach to the first wash cycle and then run 2-3 wash cycles and an extra rinse cycle will help you get rid of any bleach residue.
To avoid diapers from smelling bad it is advisable to rinse right after use and store them in an airy container or pail. Wash them thoroughly and use warm water cycles and an extra rinse cycle. Washing them everyday or alternate day helps tremendously.

Other things that have been great aids in my CDing journey so far are:-
1. A Diaper Pail









2. Eco-friendly CD liners









3. Wet Bag









That’s it from me.

This was my experience of cleaning/storing/washing and stripping the diapers. If you have more to add, please share it here with me.

Happy Diapering!