Easter Baskets!

I have become obsessed with Easter baskets. From Christmas onward I keep an eye out for little presents as well as egg fillers, especially organic and more all natural candies. Trader Joe’s is always a good source as have been various sales on Annie’s, especially the Costco packs. This year Santa found so many fun things that he passed them on to the Easter Bunny, so it’s extra fun. Of course it wasn’t always this way.


Two years ago we did Easter full out as parents for the first real time. I got a little fabric basket from Dollar Tree and filled it up! I avoided plastic grass and instead used a green tutu (technically a Shamrock St. Patty’s Day one I randomly snagged on clearance for a buck from a craft store). See it poking out there on the right side? More eco-friendly and fun! Then focus on mainly non-food items with an assortment of Annie’s Organic Fruit Gummies (purchased on sale). We also did an Easter egg hunt and attended 2 local “egg drops” as well as holiday dinner with our extended family. I would have done a basket before but babies really don’t need them and my husband generally works weekends so it’s a low key day for us. So this first basket was a pretty big deal. My oldest was two and a half years old, so she just barely got the concept. I think it also helps that it was our first spring living in the South. There are a TON of holiday activities for kids. Remember all the egg hunts in Steel Magnolias? Yeah that on crack and you have my town:) 

By the way, for those with an Aldi nearby, they have some great deals on toys and in particular board books this time of year and occasionally the rest of the time. I haven’t seen the numbers one this year but it’s a great very basic counting book. You’d be surprised how many counting books have tons of superfluous graphics making it confusing for young kids to see what they are counting. Same with the color book- very basic here’s a single image of a red apple and red car with word “R-E-D”. They were great for teaching our oldest these concepts as well as other words. Now that she’s starting to learn reading, basic books like this are great for sounding things out and matching sound with picture. I’m trying to buy the whole collection- just picked up three more they other day. These have been in every Easter basket we’ve had so far:) Except for this year, when I got “caught” bringing them home and had to read them on the spot! Hopefully will find the two or so we still don’t have.


Last year was our new baby’s first Easter, so I had to make her a basket too. I could have just made the big girl a basket but I wanted to make it clear that little sister will have gifts too so there’d be fairness AND that she could share those, making it twice the fun to have a sibling/BFF. Her basket had some of the above books and a Fisher Price xylophone in it, which of course was safe for her to play with once she was able to and something big sister could use too as we needed more baby safe toys. It also starts with X so a lot of her alphabet books talked about “x is for xylophone” and she wanted one. Giving a newborn a basket was kind of silly but helped the transition. My oldest got a regular basket with candy (emphasis on fact that babies CANNOT have candy- so reinforced safety rules AND made her feel like a special big girl) and a few toys.


The baby’s basket is off to the side and was big sister’s Dollar Tree basket from the year before. The woven basket is one her cousin gave her the previous year and both got stashed away for the next year. We also save plastic eggs and reuse those. So far I have only bought some larger eggs from Dollar Tree- otherwise we just restuff old eggs. Easter is very cheap and green here! Again we skipped the grass, using some green tissue paper from Christmas to cover the xylophone and a purple tutu from Target’s dollar bin as lining for the big girl’s basket (it’s the haze of purple underneath everything). I had some chalk in the back along with a planting kit and all natural candies from Trader Joes. They have organic lollipops for like $3 for a thirty pack or so! Great for birthday favors too! I can’t remember what else we had but as you can see, it’s pretty easy to throw together your own baskets instead of buying pre-made ones. We’ve also been known to have Valentine’s Day clearance candy for Easter;)


This year I am super excited and went a bit over board. Like I said, Santa found quite a few deals and left them in the gift closet for the Easter Bunny to use. The baby was hard to find stuff for however as her birthday is a few weeks before Easter so most things I found for her were used for her bday presents. It’s also harder to find smaller cheap items that are baby safe. (There’s tons of little toys for bigger kids but for babies you will be hard pressed to find age appropriate items.) She however learned how to grab presents out of gifts bags and stockings at Christmas and LOVES it! Above is how their baskets will look, semi wrapped to keep them a surprise. Not pictured is a black tutu I just found on sale at Target last night. We also have 14 regular sized eggs filled (overfilled? LOL) with Annie’s organic fruit snacks per a Costco sale for the big girl to find Sunday morning. This year the baby also gets eggs- just a few larger ones filled with some small fabric books from Walmart and My Little Pony socks from Target’s dollar spot. The eggs are too easy to break for her to play with but should work for a quick hunt. Her basket is very simple- a few books, another pair of socks and some Annie’s Bunny Snacks (crackers and cookies- on sale 2/$4 at Target). It was a little easier this year as she can eat some treats though most candy is still a choking hazard.


The big girl’s basket however is overflowing! I skipped the chocolate bunny instead getting her a Pound Plus bar of Belgian chocolate from Trader Joe’s. She had mentioned the Easter Bunny bringing her chocolate eggs but since “he” already stuffed eggs with gummy snacks I’m hoping this will make her happy. She also gets some Annie’s snacks in RAINBOW, her favorite “color”. Santa found the Pony purse, princess PlayDoh (it was like $6- awesome!) and felt food taco (so we can play “Chipotle” at home lol). The t-shirt was on clearance and I saved this one for Easter but went ahead and gave her a long sleeve one I saw so she could wear it before the weather gets too hot. The Frozen matching game, paint set and Pony coloring book are all Target dollar spot finds I stock up on for rewarding her randomly. (You played quietly during the baby’s nap!?! Here’s some stickers! Thank you!) There’s also a Rainbow Dash hacky sack from Hot Topic because that’s where all the best Brony finds are. I’m very excited to see her reaction. Hope you all got some good ideas from this and Happy Easter/Passover/Spring Equinox! Oh and not pictured, I also made hubby a little basket because it’s so fun. He’s getting some Peeps bunnies I got cheap at CVS, a testosterone supplement I found on mark down (basically zinc and copper so good for male health but not worth it if it was full price), a waterproof watch from Target clearance for $5, a white chocolate bunny (almost impossible to track down), a bell pepper garden starter kit, and a Burt’s Bees mango lip balm. I told him the Easter Bunny needs to bring me a sewing machine so I can actually finish some projects that are too much of a hassle to do by hand. We’ll see- maybe I’ll have some crafting posts in a while…


Ben & Jerry’s- A Chocoholic’s Review

*Note- I am now dieting so cannot continue my quest to try ALL ice cream flavors:( Sadness I know but Halo brand ice cream and the THM recipe are reasonable alternatives. Halo was on sale for $3/pint at my local health food store my first month dieting thank goodness! The texture is weird but still yummy and out of all four flavors, vanilla is probably most ice cream-y. The THM is good but my stupid food processor broke:(

Every once and awhile (about once a month or two and usually around the new moon- aka “moon time” when everyone tends to be on the rag), the grocery gods bless us with a sale on Ben&Jerry’s like this- b&j

Lately I’ve seen it for BOGO (full price being $4 so that’s $2 a pint). However if you aren’t so lucky, Walmart generally has it for about $3 something. To make sure you get the most delicious ice cream pleasure for your buck, I’ve put together this review. I may have a little problem with high end ice cream on sale (and chocolate in general lol)! b&joverload

So without further adieu, here’s my take on Ben&Jerry’s flavors:)

Americone Dream- vanilla ehh…

Banana Split- not as good as real banana split (especially one from a scoop shop) BUT interesting

Boston Cream Pie- not sure

Cake Batter- OMG! Surprisingly amazing! I ignored it for like ever because it doesn’t have a chocolate base BUT then saw it has a chocolate frosting swirl! SO GOOD! It’s like a throw back to childhood swirl soft serve cones or even those little cheapie individual ice cream cups of vanilla with chocolate syrup packaged in it. People sometimes get them for kid’s bday parties. However it’s not like how those crap things actually taste but how as a kid you thought they tasted when you were all jacked up on bday party fun high and anything sugary tasted like ambrosia of the gods. So yeah like childhood ambrosia more so than cake but the yellow cake mix taste is definitely there (well once you get half way through the pint and actually are eating slow enough to identify all the nuances instead of power eating because you were already in a bad mood and the dumb bagger at the store gave you crap for buying so much ice cream. It was $2/pint and the last day of the sale! Stocking up as called for!)

Cheesecake Brownie- this one is a let down for chocoholics. The base is cheesecake so you only get real dose of chocolate from brownie chunks. Still good but not a personal fav. Cheesecake ice cream is good but for chocolate, much rather do Chocolate Fudge Brownie, maybe on actual cheesecake? Naw- who bothers with baking desert when you can just grab a spoon?

Cherry Garcia- uh so want to love this but never quite as good as I hope. Maybe too much vanilla base and not enough cherry? I know it’s like EVERYONE’s fav but not mine. Ironically I love the organic soy cherry chocolate chip ice cream Trader Joe’s sells and even though I’m not vegan anymore (and it was one of the main reasons I managed to be vegan for so many years without going insane!), I still get it a few times a year just because it’s that good. Yet even then I find myself pushing past the ice cream itself to dig cherries out, so kind of better off buying their jarred morellos.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough- another I so want to love but not so. The dough is good but frozen takes awhile of holding in your mouth to get full flavor unlike real cookie dough. The vanilla base again is good (and by good I mean America’s Test Kitchen and nearly everyone else declares it the best vanilla ice cream EVER) it just doesn’t have my heart like chocolate does.

Chocolate Fudge Brownie- this is probably their most popular chocolate flavor and with good reason. The ice cream is rich with chocolate flavor (as are any B&J chocolate varieties- no plain jane tasteless ice cream dyed a slight shade of brown here!). The brownies are delicious! I often find myself just wanting to dig them out but the ice cream “coating” lol makes them extra good. Sometimes there’s a corner piece or something that’s more dry than I like (I want my brownies to be basically like warmed batter so crispy is out) but still good. However it is possible to OD on this and realize the heart breaking fact that no matter how much you eat, the anti-depressant effects only work to a point and you might have to put the spoon away and actually deal with your feelings:/ Sad I know but the world is still a better place with this readily available in almost any store that carries even a small selection of B&J. Oh plus the brownies are made by a very good organization that helps those in needs through their sales or something so even less guilt over eating it (add in B&J’s fair trade and hormone free dairy promise along with recent pledge to eliminate HFCS and I seriously am in love! Oh and all the charity they do too!).

Chocolate Nougat Crunch- OH this is new to me! Now this hunt is on to find it… Target often tends to be good for finding rare flavors, sometimes Walmart. Grocery store and health food stores are hit or miss on their selection. Again not chocolate based BUT nougat could be very interesting…

Chocolate Peppermint Crunch- this is one of the few chocolate flavors my husband can count on getting a share of. It’s good but I really dislike mint. It reminds me too much of tooth paste and distracts from the chocolate:/ The crunch balls however are uncannily like Thin Mints. For the sake of my marriage, I hope this is here to stay!

Chocolate Therapy- OMG my all time favorite therapist ever! (And that’s saying a lot given how many I’ve seen!) Great listener, can be soft and reassuring but some tough love, um, running out of therapy analogies… Anyways the pudding mixed in makes it like the best chocolate ice cream ever and the cookie crumbs balance the texture perfectly! It so good! Totally foresee having an affair with it no matter how unethical that may be to the profession….

Chubby Hubby- another classic flavor but yet one I rarely get. I think it’s been so long since I last had it I’ll have to try it again and update later. One of the unusual combos that makes B&J so famous. I also don’t see it that much. Maybe I go to the wrong stores:/ *insert obvious sex joke here about preferring hubby’s chubby….

Chunky Monkey- OH YEAH! The chocolate fudge chunks more than make up for the non-chocolate base. Can I get them just on their own? Seriously so good! I wonder what they’d be like to bake with… Anyways the banana ice cream is out of this world! It’s so authentically banana! No yucky cheap candy faux banana taste- yet somehow it’s even MORE banana-y than that vegan 1 ingredient banana ice cream recipe where you blend frozen banana until cream and then try to fool yourself into thinking it’s “just like real ice cream” because you’re dieting or poor and got like a million bananas in the grocery store clearance bin for basically nothing and now have no idea what the hell to do with 1000 bananas… Yeah I don’t know how it’s possible but it taste even more like banana than actual banana! Oh and the walnuts are such a nice touch! They’re healthy and give a little protein boost, right? And healthy fats too (which of course ice cream would have IF it was made from grass fed cows HINT HINT B&J!)


Cinnamon Buns- somehow I haven’t really had this… WTF how is that possible? I know I’ve seen it but the allure of chocolate totally gets me off track…

Coffee Caramel Buzz- oh coffee you’re such a tease! You almost taste like that bittersweet chocolate deliciousness but you’re not. Given that I also could live the rest of my life without another drop of coffee and not mind at all, you also just aren’t my true love. It’s not you, it’s me.

Coffee Heath Bar Crunch- um see above and yeah Heath Bars aren’t doing much for me. Good but not my cup of tea. A classic flavor though and very popular!

Coffee Coffee Buzz Buzz- ok so IDK if they also make Starbucks ice cream or not but it’s always on sale at same time. I haven’t tried this but espresso beans are not my thing even more so than coffee. I also would much prefer an actual Starbucks super sugary candy bar in a cup than the ice cream ironically. But hey if you’re a coffeeholic then this is a great one for you as are any of the other coffee flavors.

Everything But The…- A Collision of Chocolate (GOOD) & Vanilla (ehhh) Ice Creams mixed with Peanut Butter Cups (YUM), HEATH® Bar Chunks (blah), White Chocolaty Chunks (IMPOSTORS!!!), & Fudge-Covered Almonds (YUM but not solid chocolate so boo!). This is a nice mix but if you’re particular you’re better off getting more specific flavor or even having a scoop of two different types.

Half Baked- bend of Chocolate Fudge Brownie (yay!) and Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough (eh)

Imagine Whirled Peace- MUST TRY, another I’ve had trouble locating (and I’ve been regularly buying ice cream in 2 different states on opposite sides of the country)

Karamel Sutra- MUST TRY, however I think this is now a “core” flavor meaning it’s the same ice cream but it has a solid caramel center. I may have tried it- we got some of the cores a while back but not all of them. It seems to have a decent helping of chocolate:)

Late Night Snack- this one is named for Jimmy Fallon’s show doing an ice cream tribute-  It’s ok- vanilla base so already not crazy about it. However the chocolate covered potato chips are extremely delicious! Trader Joe’s sells some but I’ve resisted their siren song thus far…

Milk&Cookies- um might be good but don’t think I’ve ever seen this:(

Mint Chocolate Cookie- Pretty decent but not as big a fan of mint so again another one for keeping hubby happy. This is pretty good if you dig that sort of thing. The Oreo style cookies are good enough to scoop out:) This makes it a minty cookies and cream hybrid, so basically hubby’s dream. (Mint ice cream is my secret for buying him and toddler ice cream but not eating any myself. Our 3yo is becoming partial to “green ice cream”.)

New York Super Fudge Chunk- Good but not a fan of white chocolate chunks (it’s not real chocolate!!!) and almonds are ok but somehow don’t work as well for me in ice cream. The other nuts are nice but don’t stand out as much as say the walnuts in Chunky Monkey do. Not fav but good for mixing it up yet having lots of chocolate:)

Peach Cobbler- must try

Peanut Brittle- must try

Peanut Butter Cup- good! I love rich PB taste and absolutely adore PB cups so this is a not so chocolately fav! Maybe I just dreamed it but I think they had a limited batch of chocolate PB cup- IDK maybe I’m crazy but was/sounds good…

Phish Food- also a classic and pretty darn good too! Chocolate ice cream, marshmallow, caramel AND those yummy fish shaped chocolates! They seriously need to see just boxes of fish chocolates (hey it’s not that weird- in Madrid I got “cat tongue” chocolates).

Pina Colada- OMG so good you won’t even miss the rum! Coconut and pineapple are always a hit in my book so this was AWESOME! In sadder news I can’t remember the last time I had a rum based drink… wine and beer fairly regularly (though moderate as nursing mom) a cosmo or two if happy hour is a steal and a few margaritas but seriously no rum since honeymoon and the first few years of our marriage…

Pistachio Pistachio- YUM! Another non-chocolate fav! I love a good pistachio, especially spumante style. Maybe this year for Xmas I’ll try making some (which would be layering pistachio with chocolate and cherry ice cream- the Italian joint I used to work in added in some chopped candied fruit and nuts as topping but that was about it- ice cream layered in a pretty mold then cut into slices). Very rich flavor- not for the faint of heart!

Red Velvet Cake- so confession, for all the magnitude of my sweet tooth, cake never was huge hit for me. I mean I liked a good chocolate cake with rich icing for my bday, even a carrot cake or such to mix it up BUT I mainly liked it for the chocolate or the flavor not in and of itself. That was until my doula introduced me to Sprinkles! That was amazing and I actually was pretty in love with all their flavors, even their signature red velvet. Red velvet is such a weird cake to begin with- it’s a chocolate cake that’s not chocolate and has enough food coloring in it to preserve the dead:/ (or whatever horrible thing FD&C red does to you…) However it really grew on me. I’ve since had other red velvet and they’re usually not too bad either. (Kona Grill had a red velvet cupcake they gave out for birthdays that was delicious! You also got a free $15 meal if you signed up for their rewards club.) I even tried the local fro-yo place’s red velvet frozen yogurt. It was good and red color was just fun. IDK- yet the B&J version threw me. It’s not red throughout which is key sensory experience of anything red velvet. It also has cake pieces in it but frozen they don’t taste nearly as good as a fresh Sprinkles cupcake (especially a FREE whisper word one!). Given it’s B&J’s ice cream, it still is good but not a favor I relish nor have continued to buy after my first experience.

Smores- OMG where has this been all my life!?! So good! I actually had my first non-smore smore experience with Sprinkles cupcakes which was AMAZING but this ice cream is blowing my mind too! Isn’t it great to live in a modern world where dessert makers have realized recreating classics into new media is the BEST FREAKING THING EVER!?!

Scotchy Scotch Scotch- so sad! I still haven’t tried this! I don’t think I’ve seen it yet:( Looks awesome!

Strawberry Cheesecake- much like Chocolate Cheesecake, this is good but not my fav. At least there’s no false promise of chocolate but the berries just don’t come through enough.

Triple Caramel Chunk- must try, looks good since it’s a caramel ice cream base:)

Vanilla- oops! Actually never got this one but based on vanilla based flavors I’ve tried, it’s amazing! To really blow away the competition when serving something that needs a nice scoop of this old stand by, you can’t go wrong. However I am anything but vanilla so I want my ice cream to be a little more saucy;)

Vanilla Caramel Fudge- good but again not enough chocolate!

Vanilla Toffee Bar Crunch- for Heath Bar Crunch fans who don’t like coffee. So ok but not for me. (BTW I believe this used to be called Vanilla Heath Bar Crunch?)

What a Custer- must try looks interesting

Fro Yo (Cherry Garcia, Chocolate Fudge Brownie, Half Baked and Phish Food)- there are some frozen yogurt flavors but more or less than same as the original but do have that more sour yogurt taste. They ingredients list seems longer so not crazy about that but they do taste ok. I usually go for the original but these are ok. They are also now offering a limited edition Greek yogurt version of Cherries Garcia. If it’s your favorite, maybe geek out sometime and try all its incarnations (there should be a bar of it too). Here’s the rest of those Greek flavors.

Greek yogurt flavors:
Banana PB -not sure

Blueberry Vanilla Graham- not sure

Liz Lemon- very unique! The lavender isn’t too over powering (unlike some lavender items such as kombucha I’ve had that taste like soap:/) just a slight hint to the lemon. Not something I go for often but very cool!

Pineapple Passionfruit- idk

Raspberry Fudge Chunk- pretty good but not enough berry! My daughter loves her “pink ice cream” though and worth a try.

Strawberry Shortcake- eh

Vanilla Honey Caramel- yeah in case you can’t tell, not into Greek frozen yogurt lol, just not enough chocolate flavors!

Hazed&Confused- I haven’t seen this one so haven’t tried it. Hazelnut though makes it seem very unique. Thinking Nutella vibes…

PB Fudge- OMG so good! It’s like a peanut butter chocolate explosion!

Salted Caramel- I haven’t tried this one but looks good.

That’s My Jam- yummy and different. I’m not head over heels but nice change of pace. The jam is a bit odd and I’d prefer plain fruit mixed in but jam/jelly is a traditional topping so I guess.

Karamel Sutra- I definitely had this one (as discussed above when it was a non-core flavor) and it’s delicious!


So it’s late (or is it early- f*** I think I just heard birds chirping outside…) anyways was going through my unpublished posts to see if there’s anything I can press out right away. My dashboard wasn’t showing content for awhile so I trudged through the last day or two of the Flats Challenge then said screw it. Luckily things are back- yay! However nothing I immediately see that I wouldn’t want to amend and possibly stay up even later. However I will end on this note- I strongly feel feta cheese is the deliciously salty congealed cum of the gods. It also goes well with sugar free banana oatmeal cookies (recipe- 2 mashed overripe, read totally brown,  bananas mixed with a few handfuls of oats to cookie dough consistently, baked until set at like 350/400/whatever on greased cookie sheet or in my case muffin tin as my dirty dish pile is over flowing). Despite my on going saga with dishes, Flylady is doing ok. Baby steps:) which is also a part of MAPing. Love life postpartum is pretty decent. New baby is great. I’ve been hitting the gym fairly regularly with a few missed weeks here or there. I gave in and am doing the Trim Healthy Mama diet. The book was pretty annoying to read at first and I completely skipped chapter on why it’s a “biblical” plan (GAG!) but seems to help and Stevia apparently can cure my sweet tooth. More on all this later. Oh but solely because it’s good to always include a picture for pinning, here’s some random clip art or something:


My Week Handwashing Flats


So overall taking the Flats Challenge been very do-able. I don’t find using flats any more trouble than any other diapers especially if you just pad fold though I am pretty quick at origami fold. I like that I can get flats to be more like a fitted diaper (cloth diaper with elasticized waist and legs that closes and can be used on own but not waterproofed so needs cover) than a prefold (classic diaper that is sewn folded over so middle is double thickness). I’ve never really used a contour (diaper with curved edges but is like a prefold or flat and need cover plus fastener if want to close it fully) but have something kind of like it and much prefer a flat.

Handwashing did kind of suck but I still hate washing dishes way worse; hell even loading the dish washer as that’s my Mt Washmore– laundry is easy and quick in my opinion. I definitely want to start air drying more to be less dependent on my electric dryer. I’m very glad because I think we can make it to midnight tonight without washing again so I can machine launder these flats within the next few days:) I made it until last night without washing procrastinating until we were on our last clean flat to wash. The baby of course needed to be changed again before any were fully dry but one diaper was just barely damp and dried out quickly when ironed. I’ve been lucky that we’ve had very few poo diapers as my exclusively breastfed baby seems to be absorbing everything she eats though I’m expecting a poo-sposion any minute now.

We now have 10 flats in use and we use almost all of them within 24 hours. If I had made it to Walmart this week, I would have picked up a few more flour sack towels as I think 12+ would be the optimal amount to have a little more freedom from having to wash every single day:/ It also would make keeping a diaper bag always packed easily done. We didn’t go anywhere much this week (no real meetings or anything and we were short on cash so even more reason to stay home) but I’d have to make do with whatever diapers we had left clean to pack our bag last minute which I hate. We also had to take diapers out of the diaper bag just to have enough for a change to get us through until the rest were dried. The rules allow doublers so we had some of those in the bag as make shift inserts just in case. We only used a doubler once last night which hubby put on baby while he ironed a flat. (Yes the man ironed! I got out the ironing board and iron and turned around to do something while it heated- baby was of course safely on other side of the room btw- and when I turned back around found him ironing the flat lol! I almost never have clothes that need to be ironed so he does most of his own and is much better at it than I am). It was the first time all week we were really short on diapers- I had tried to iron a freshly washed flat earlier in the week to dry it but it was still too wet and luckily the flats on the patio dried by the next change.

Overall I would do this again and next year plan to buy a 5 gallon bucket with plunger to make a “camper washer”. Exclusively breastfed poo’s made it easy this year- next we’ll be dealing with solids:/ I wouldn’t want to give up my washer/dryer anytime soon but I know I could make it work. This challenge makes me want to do others like this one which focus on disaster readiness and “pantry eating” (which around here is called “crap I really shouldn’t grocery shop until pay day”). 


Day Six- Daddy Does Diapers


So I want to say something insightful about gender roles and the importance of both parents participating in child rearing but I’m coming down with a cold and it’s getting late so here’s my husband handwashing. I started the diapers off by rinsing then left to soak in soapy water while I checked on baby and asked him finish the rest. I offered to just have him do main wash and a rinse just to get the idea and I’d do the extra rinses and hang but he was fine finishing it all up:) I tried not to do the naggy thing where I get mad over him not doing it exactly like I would. (However a few weeks ago I did boostfully point out to him where even the dish detergent bottle says “put dishes facing center” lol! Seriously doesn’t everyone do that???) I figured at worst we’d be washing the flats again within a day or so and if turned out a little off, could use liners. He liked the idea that handwashing flats is cheaper and good for “roughing it” and so agreed to do yesterday’s wash so I’d have a blog topic:) Of course it doesn’t hurt that I also am ok with ingesting certain bodily fluids;)

Having a partner who is willing to learn about cloth diapers has been key for us. He’s learned origami fold even! I’ll hopefully write more about this in the future but basically I think in general men aren’t given enough of a chance at parenting, especially when it comes to babies. I am very very scared for the world if the vast majority of men “can’t figure out cloth diapers”:/ Um yeah if he isn’t capable enough to figure out diapers, maybe he’s not a good pick to reproduce with…


Folds and Why I Love Flats- Day 5


I went into the Flats Challenge only really knowing pad and origami folds so that’s what I use. I’m trying to learn more but they work for us and so it’s not top priority, especially when trying to handwash and blog daily. Above is my “sloopy” origami fold. I find Snappi’s and Boingo’s superfluous so don’t really use them though I have both. Covers hold flats and prefolds in place well enough for me. I’ve found even with the best fold and tight closure with a fastener, a little poo will still get on the cover and I’ll have to change whole thing anyways. The cover contains everything but the prefold or flat doesn’t always. It’s one less step and so quicker for me. However I love that they exist as an alternative to pins and like what I’ve seen of both companies (and I’ve even met the owner of Boingo). I about jumped for joy watching “Royal Pains” on Netflix today and saw them putting a baby in a prefold with Boingos:) It’s in season 4 episode 11 near the 36 minute mark (you can also catch it on Amazon- which I learned when I tried to find the clip). Baby wasn’t gaining weight well and the mom mentioned seeing a lactation consultant and having her milk tested (though bottle fed on screen, probably due to problem gaining but love that breastfeeding was her goal and first choice). The baby was tongue tied so I loved they brought awareness to that issue as it seems common but though easily fixes, also seems to ruin a lot of nursing relationships:( However doubt an IBCLC wouldn’t have caught it. Oh and also there was babywearing in what looked like an Ergo in a previous episode. Anyways love to play “spot the crunchy-ness”…

So far flats have been great. I’ve never really had an issue with them since I started using them with my first when she was like a year old. I just wish we had got some sooner. If I had known, probably would have been cool to talk to my grandmother about when she was still alive. She thought my GroBaby All-in-Two was a pair of panties when she first saw them on my oldest as a newborn lol:/ Flats may be old but they’re great. They are easily customizable and absorbent yet wash out easily and dry quickly. Even if you didn’t handwash, you’d probably save more on water use (maybe not a lot as still have to rinse extra like all diapers) as well as saving on electricity for the dryer since unlike thick prefolds or AIO’s, they dry right away. Even air drying it takes an hour or two if spread out well in warm outside or just few more hours in a cramped bathroom. They don’t even get that stiff air dry and seem easier to “crunch out” the stiffness compared to air dried AIOs or prefolds. I never really thought of myself as a flat affectionado but I guess I am:)



Day 4- How I Hand Wash My Flats


So I have been hand washing a lot for the 4th Annual Flats and Handwashing Challenge to see if I’m able to cloth diaper for minimum costs and without a washer/dryer. I was going to just sink wash but we feed our cat on the bathroom counter top so the dog won’t get at his food and the other bathroom is basically my toddler’s, so don’t want to deal with her needing to go potty in there while I’m washing. Hence my baby bath tub bucket:)



It works pretty well. I stick it in our bathroom, soak diapers in it as needed (though realized that could be potential drowning hazard for kiddos and kitty so quickly grabbed a baby gate to use as a make shift cover), then rinse all diapers, then add Green Shield Organics free&clear detergent (new to me but it’s been on sale at Costco), then rinse about 2-3 times more, all the while agitating, wringing and squeezing water out diapers. I rest them on the side of the bath tub as I empty and refill the bucket tub. It’s a little time consuming and bare hands in super hot water bites but really not bad. I’ve been hanging them to dry on the towel rod, the shower curtain and our little folding drying rack ($10 from Walmart purchased many years ago). Sometimes I add a drop or two of tea tree oil, a bottle of which I got for like $6 at Walmart (Trader Joe’s sells it for about that too and Whole Foods’ 365 brand is same unit price but bigger bottle- Aura Cacia is sold there and most other health food store even The Vitamin Shoppe but is slightly more MSRP). I mention this because it’s a reasonably affordable extra for washing.


On Sunday we started at midnight changing into flats (not super planned but was ready for next change). By that afternoon we went through 6 diapers so handwashed and had one to spare which luckily lasted me until some started to dry (patio and shower rod first then towel rack). I washed with a fresh poo one and it got allover so rinsed a ton but have some staining I’ll sun bleach after the challenge (my patio doesn’t get much direct sunlight so sun bleaching is tricky). Those lasted us until Monday afternoon when washed without a spare:/ They were all pee though so very easy to wash. I had let them soak since night before. However baby went #2 about hour after that so didn’t have dry flat. I tried to iron one dry quickly which didn’t work. I considered using receiving blanket but had trouble finding one fresh from wash. However there was a kitchen specific flour sack in the dryer with regular laundry so I cut off the tag to mark it for diaper use and put it on baby with a liner just in case. (I wash with only CD safe detergent but hadn’t specifically prep’d this for diapering so wasn’t sure.) By Monday night we were running low and I ended up doing a wash in the wee hours of the morning because I was feeling productive and knew we only had one clean diaper. However baby didn’t wake for a change until mid day, being easily put back to sleep nursing:/ Ok but she made up for it lol! We survived until noon today when I washed diapers with one to spare but then daddy changed her right as I was finishing up so went ahead and washed that one too. So far only need to wash once a day with my now 9 flat stash. Covers haven’t been an issue- I use two a day. I don’t change it out unless messy or it’s been almost a whole day, whatever comes first. I think a lot of people make covers with prefolds/flats/fitted more complicated than they need to be by changing the cover needlessly. The whole point is to only change insert. I love using covers with flats or prefolds for the diaper bag because they fold up so well and can pack more changes for less bulk. Even if you don’t do flats handwashing challenge, I highly recommend you try a few prefolds and/or flats with a cover. Such a good way to expend your stash!