Saturday, September 15, 2012

Cloth and Childcare

This past Thursday Bobble finished up his third week of childcare at the Montessori School. This has been a big transition for us as he had never been in the care of someone else for any real period of time. My husband drops him off in the morning and I pick him up on the way home from work.

Each night that is a "school" night, I pack up a cute little backpack for Bobble. Inside I have a change of clothes, a couple cloth diapers, cloth wipes, a sample size of CJ's, spray solution, a wet bag, and some disposable wipes (in case they happen to run out of the cloth ones for that day -- I imagine that could happen if he has a couple of nasty diapers). It has worked out pretty well so far, though we have had a few unexpected issues.

Now, honestly, these "issues" might have been easily foreseen by someone, but I guess I just figured I covered all bases with the teachers already, and there would not be any issues. At the end of last school year I had gone in and showed the different diapers to the teachers, showed them a wet bag, and showed them the wipes. I explained that any diaper sent for him will be ready to put on (pre-stuffed, pre-snapped in, pre-whatevered to make it ready-to-go), and that he would always have a wet bag for dirty diapers. They were impressed by the changes in cloth since they last used them, and requested that I please try to send only aplix/hook&loop/velcro diapers since it's hard to get a wiggly toddler to hold still for the change, much less figuring out which snaps they needed. That was fair. I purchased a couple extra aplix diapers (oh darn!), and made sure I had enough to cover all 3 days of childcare since they are all in a row and I probably wouldn't have the diaper laundry ready to go in time. (I might have washed the load, but not dried it yet, or not stuffed something in time to run out the door so I'm not late in the morning, etc etc etc.)

So, the issues!

Issue #1: I picked up Bobble to find that he had one dirty diaper in an empty s'posies package to be sent home.

*blink* Really? I check to see if I forgot a wet bag. Nope. I stare in disbelief that he had ONE dirty diaper from 8:30am until 4:30 when I picked him up. I spoke with the husband about this and he agreed that if they are only doing one diaper change, then we have a problem. He spoke with them the next morning and we found out that they check at 9, noon, and 3pm (and if they smell something or see a diaper issue!). He had a clean diaper when he got there, changed at noon, and I guess it didn't seem dirty at 3pm or they got confused. It was their first day and a different teacher changes them each time. I figured I could overlook this since it was day one and they were trying to get things straightened up and in order. The teacher that did change him did a horrible job putting the diaper on! He didn't leak, but I feared a future visit with a diaper changing 101 theme to it. She also didn't realize what the wet bag was. I later learned she thought it was a cute shirt since she saw a cute dinosaur print (never took it out) and just figured she needed to find a bag.

Okay, so none of those issues were ever "issues" again. He is frequently sent home with 2 diapers dirty (which makes sense since he gets there 30 mins before a check), and the wet bags are almost always used.

Almost always.

Issue #2: I was so proud of my adorable wet bags with prints that by the time I finally sent a plain (solid white) wet bag, they didn't realize what it was without the adorable print, and put diapers in plastic bags to send home. D'oh!

The next time I sent that wet bag, it got used.

Issue #3: Wipes. It didn't dawn on me that I didn't have to replace the cloth wipes in his bag until after week 2. I asked my husband if he had put more wipes in, and he said he hadn't. I mentioned that I haven't noticed any wipes in the wet bags. Then I noticed a note. That same day they had sent home a note asking for more wipes. I then realized they had been using the disposables only. I purchased another pack of disposables and placed them in the bag, but wrote a little note requesting that they please use the cloth and spray solution since he tends to break out when using disposables, but that I will keep disposables in there in case there is something too difficult (for them) to use cloth on, or if they run out. Granted, he is much better with the disposables since we started buying Earth's Best wipes, but that doesn't mean I want to use disposables regularly. If they had put up a fight, I would have conceded since they were still using cloth diapers (which I'm thankful for!).

They have not used the last few disposable wipes, and the new package isn't open. I have had to replace the cloth wipes though. Awesomeness.

And finally, an issue that is 100% MY FAULT:

Issue #4: I have a horrible tendency to take the wet bags from childcare out of his backpack, throw them next to the pail in his room, and then grab the clean diapers and wet bag to refill his backpack with and place it near the door for the next morning. I do this so I won't forget to put the stuff in there.... but I forget about the wet bag. What's worse, I forget that they CANNOT empty any diaper into the toilet, even if it's a ploppable poo. I guess it's a hygiene issue (the poo could splash water up, they might miss the toilet, where they would have to set the diaper until they got the child re-diapered, dressed, cleaned up and out of the room... ), and I understand that, but I forget about that possibility.

A lot.

Bobble normally goes first thing in the morning, before school and everything. This fact makes me forget that there is the possibility he could have gone at school. A couple of times I've grabbed one of the bags and taken it to the washer along with my hanging pail and pail liner, only to find a nasty diaper in there. Yep. Those are fun to clean out the next day. Heck, those suck to clean out at the end of that same day, let alone any amount of time past that!

Looking at those issues, they all resolved themselves except for #4, and #4 is totally my issue, not the school's issue. We've had great luck with cloth and childcare so far, and I look forward to the rest of the school year going even more smoothly. They've noticed when he was a bit red and applied the CJ's cream I had in his bag. Their diapering abilities with these diapers have DRASTICALLY improved (you wouldn't know they were newbies anymore!). They use cloth wipes and spray without hesitation. I really couldn't ask for more. Well, aside from use of a diaper sprayer, but they turned down my offer to supply one (the whole hygiene reason, remember?).

In case you're curious, here are the types of (APLIX) diapers I send for him on any given day:
BumGenius 4.0 with just the large insert
BumGenius AIO
Kawai'i Baby (just 1 insert)
Grovia (with a liner already laying across the snapped-in insert to help keep wetness away from skin)
Thirsties DUO AIO

1 comment:

  1. That's nice that you found childcare that is willing to use cloth. I've heard quite a few people say that their daycare isn't willing to use cloth.