Monthly Archives: August 2012

Taking the edge off of online expenses

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My last post was about cloth diapers, and this is actually related. While you can purchase cloth diapers in brick and mortar shops, they are difficult to find in some areas and many parents choose to buy online. Many times, purchasing online is cheaper, especially if you get involved in one of the many co-ops that can provide parents with diapers at a near-wholesale price. Of course, there’s the waiting game while orders are filled or packages are shipped, but getting surprise diapers in the mail is worth the wait, especially when you know you’re getting a great deal.

For the most part, I’ve purchased my diapers through online retailers, Nicki’s Diapers being one of my personal favorites for their rewards program and free shipping on most everything. One of the biggest benefits for shopping online for me is that I bum around on the internet and take surveys while I’m at home or nursing. Over the course of the last couple of weeks, I’ve made over $20 straight to my PayPal account that I can use to buy diapers or anything else online. I love it! I get to save money on the money I’m spending to save money. Now, there are lots of different survey sites online, but the ones that I’ve enjoyed using the most are QuickRewards and InboxDollars. QuickRewards earns cash a little bit slower than the other, but you can cash out with no minimum as many times as you want to. InboxDollars has a minimum of $30 but there are more offers and emails available. 

Between the two of these, only half of my diaper expenses for this month will come out of my pocket, which I think is pretty impressive. I enjoy spending wisely and reducing costs. I hope to save enough money on diapers over the next two months to buy a printer for all the online coupons I’ve been running across!

Fluffy butts everywhere!

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Tristan in his new BumGenius 4.0, Albert print.

After taking a break with cloth diapering my daughter, we are back at full force! With two under two and potty-training on the horizon, cloth seemed like the most affordable method, and I’ve always preferred using cloth to disposables. With working part time, the extra load of laundry doesn’t cause much stress and I usually throw them in with hard-worn work clothes or towels and do an extra rinse.

When I was pregnant with my daughter I did a lot of research on cloth diapers, both the more convenient kinds like All-In-Ones (AIO’s) and the old fashioned prefolds with covers. I settled on a one-day stash of both. I went with KangaCare’s One Size Rumparooz for my pocket diapers (they had seconds available at the time, which made their price lower than normally cheaper brands like BumGenius and FuzziBunz) and Thirsties Duo Wraps with cotton prefolds for my at-home prefold and cover diapers. One size cloth diapers have been my absolute favorite, most fit from 8-35 pounds and range from $7-25 depending on the brand and quality. This allows me to use the same diapers on my 2 month old son and my 22 month old daughter, completely eliminating the need to buy two different sizes of disposables. Now, the Thirsties Duo Wraps aren’t a true one size diaper. Instead of having one size or five (Newborn, small, medium, large, extra-large), they have two sizes available: one that fits 6-18 pounds and one that fits 18-40 pounds. This allows their diapers to fit tiny newborns better than most one size diapers, and also lets them fit larger toddlers (like my daughter, who is 37 pounds at 22 months) without being too tight.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with this generation’s cloth diapers, there are many different kinds to choose from and benefits to each. Prefolds and covers are much like the cloth diapers that our parents used and are cheaper than the more convenient kinds, though they require a little more time for changes. However, safety pins aren’t needed for these diapers anymore: there are some products like Snappis that can be used with one hand and without the fear of accidentally sticking your baby! Pocket diapers and AIO’s run a bit more expensive than prefolds, but are worth it for the easy no-hassle changes. These diapers are put on as one piece. Some of them, like AIOs, are always one piece and some, like pockets, have absorbent inserts that are stuffed in the diaper before you change the baby. I usually stuff my diapers as soon as they cool from the dryer, allowing me to have diapers on hand that can be used just as quickly as a disposable would.

I am in the process of trying more brands of cloth diapers (I just bought a BumGenius one size pocket diaper last week and I’m really liking it), but I haven’t really run into any trouble with a diaper not working the way it should. Different kinds have their advantages and disadvantages, leaks happen (often due to user error as I’ve never really had to think about which direction my baby is peeing before…), and different brands do seem to fit differently. Though I haven’t had much time with my new BumGenius diaper yet, I like the way it fits my 2 month old better than the way the Rumparooz do.

Over the course of the next few weeks, I’ll be getting three new brands of diapers in the mail: Sunbaby pockets, Pororo covers, and a Thirsties all-in-one, in addition to trying out home-made cloth baby wipes. I’ll make sure to keep you all updated on the way that each fit, their absorbency on each of the kiddos, and do an overall comparison as well.

I am not being compensated in any form for this review, all opinions written here are my own.

Moving!

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The last couple of weeks have been insanely busy with working out moving, finding a house, and getting jobs lined up for when we move. So far we’ve only had two things work out well for us on that front: we found a great (though definitely temporary) place and were able to sign it, and I got my job back at the coffee & sandwich shop that I worked at before. I’m thrilled to be back working for them, they are wonderful ladies and it’s a great, stable environment.

The house is nice as well, I’ll get pictures up when we actually get down there and settled in. Actually, about that… we were supposed to be moving first thing this morning but our rental truck was double booked and now we have to wait until Monday. The good news is that we’re packed in advance! The bad news is that we’re going to have to get creative to avoid unpacking much as all of our clothes and dishes are already bagged and boxed. 

Despite the trouble we’ve run into the last week (the moving truck confusion, and my car broke down day before yesterday on our way home from signing the lease!) I’m very excited that we’re finally going to have our own place and work toward getting all of our finances settled. Hopefully we’ll be able to save up some money and keep an eye out for a two bedroom house to move to sometime in the next year. I imagine that move will be much easier, as we’ll already have jobs in the area and may even actually have a functioning car! Maybe maybe maybe.

 

Can I start unpacking and organizing yet?