As I mentioned before, I cloth diaper my nine month old son and have since he was about 3 weeks old. It has been a wonderful experience! I actually thought about cloth diapering my four year old when he was a baby, but I used store bought prefolds that leaked horribly. So needless to say, I got very discouraged and didn't continue. Then a friend of mine got me interested again when she began to cloth diaper her little one with diapers that her sister had used on her little ones. She recommended diaperpin.com as a site to check out...and ever since I have been hooked. Before my little one was born I spent hours on that site trying to figure out how best to launder them, where to purchase them and so on. I ended up trading with a mama on their for the majority of my MotherEase diapers. Which is what most of my stash is made of. I also posted a wanted ad on Freecycle (more on Freecycle later) and had mamas give me diapers, wool covers and cloth wipes. People are truly generous and blessed me beyonf belief. I also traded with a mama on freecycle for some boys clothes that I had for her dipes. So I ended up with a stash of about 26 dipes in all, six MotherEase wraps, three wool covers and one crocheted cover. The total cost for everything was $110.00. The dipes that I have are one size and fit from 8-35 lbs. So the plan is that they will last me until E is potty trained.
As you can see cloth diapering has been so modified over the years. It no longer has to involve prefolds and pins. Altough that still is an option, I used snap style dipes. They have velcro closures also. I chose cloth diapering to save money and to try and help the environment. The only downside that I see to cloth is that my son has a very strong ammonia smell to his urine. So he does smell quite often (my sister says like a litter box at times!). But for me, his cuteness overrides the smell...and I'd rather change him every hour due to smell then have to buy disposables. It is such a relief not have to spend that money and have that diaper trash. We rarely ever have more than one large trash bag full of garbage a week. With disposable dipes I think it would be a lot more.
I enjoy doing laundry and household chores, so to me the extra laundry is no biggie. I wash dipes every three days or so. I use All Free & Clear right now, but am going to make my own laundry detergent (http://down---to---earth.blogspot.com/2007/05/make-your-own-laundry-detergent.html thanks to Rhonda Jean) when it is gone. In the meantime, they go in little plastic trash cans with lids that lock on the sides. I have one upstairs in E's room and one in the laundry room on the first floor. I do a hot wash cycle and usually two rinses and then hang them on the line outside to dry and get bleached by the sun. The ME covers get hung to dry as well (I never put them in the dryer). My wool covers get hand washed with a Sudz 'n Dudz http://sudzndudz.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=65&products_id=193 organic wool wash bar ( I only bought a sample piece and it has lasted me for nine months!) which works wonderfully! Then I hang them to dry, preferably on the line outside also to get some fresh air. I really enjoy my wool and was so blessed by a freecycler. She gave me numerous wool pieces including longies (covers with legs) and shorties (a cover that fits over the dipe with no legs). They work wonders for letting a baby's bum get some air, since it is a natural fiber. They are lovely because most of the time you just air them out to dry.
I wish more people would try cloth diapering and see how enjoyable it can be. The diaperpin.com site has been such a blessing to me. I have used it to learn, to swap items, to get recipes, to give and recieve thoughts on frugal living and healthy living. The mamas there seem so nice! The world would be saved of so much trash if people would make this one simple change. Also, it can save you so much money. Especially if you trade, or buy items that are used. I will look forward to the day my little one gets potty trained, but will be so sad to see my cloth dipes go.