GROW O'ahu

Island Style Gardening and Plant-Based Living

End of an Era


I’m going to reveal even more about being crunchy granola. Brace yourself. It’s about diapers.

Recently I wrote about recycling, being both “green” and better for me, cheap.  Cloth diapers were the same for us- green, and cheaper in the long run.  Of course if you invest $25 per fancy diaper up front it takes a lot longer to get your money back, but if you ask for plain old prefolds as shower gifts and then get covers at garage sales, Etsy and Craisglist, it can be pretty cheap. I guesstimate about $200 total spent on cloth diapers.

Compared to $14-20 per package for two years eight months.  I’ll let you do the math on that one.

S0 our little urban garden vegetarian house has reached a new stage of development.

Just like that.  One day I said, “No more diapers.” And he said, “Ok Mommy.”

I wish everything could be that easy!  Imagine- I just say to my tomatoes, “No more end rot.”  And they reply, “Ok! You are the boss!”

And so we pack up the diapers in a box and save them for perhaps another addition to the gardening family someday.  Meanwhile, hundreds of packages of disposable diapers didn’t get imported here with fossil fuel and left to pile up in the overflowing landfill.  And I truly believe that the cloth helped motivate him to go in the potty- discomfort, heaviness and wetness would motivate most people.

To mitigate our water usage, we set up the water catchment and dried in the disinfecting sunshine whenever we could- which was a lot!

That is what we want to be more about every day- do more but use less.


Author: Carmen

Things I love: justice in all forms; flowers; locally grown food; cloth-diapering; breastfeeding; feminist theory; outdoor play; beaches; wine; Divine interventions; 4-H and coffee. Things I loathe: racism; homophobia; toxic crap; misogyny; litterbugs; the zombie apocalypse and pitbull-haters. My formal education is in sociology, gender studies, and public policy. I'm also a Lactation Educator; 4-H Youth Development coordinator a Certified Master Gardener and a graduate of a Permaculture Design Course. I've been blogging for several years on dozens of topics- everything from women's health to breed-specific legislation. But the thing I like to write about most is my gardening, food adventures and my kids. So there you have it. Please be kind. Thanks.

10 thoughts on “End of an Era

  1. I used cloth diapers with both my kids in the 80’s in Switzerland. Everyone did. It was cheap and much less wasteful. I hung them to dry in the cellar or outside, and folded them while watching something on TV. I couldn’t believe how expensive disposables were when I came back to the States.

    • They are quite expensive, when you really stop to add it up. Maybe for some people $15 a pop is not so much to think about, but over the course of 3 years that could be going to the college savings! 🙂

  2. Interesting. I don’t have children, so I don’t know what I would use. I wouldn’t mind trying cloth diapers.

    • It may not be for everyone, and in fact when we traveled on airplanes we did use disposables, but I felt like I just couldn’t put another several truckloads into our already overfilling landfill! 🙂

  3. I used cloth diapers with Shahna but, when we moved to germany the commisary started carrying disosable diapers. I could get 200 diapers for 2.00. Sad to say being green was not something we thought about in those days.

    • Whoa! That’s cheap! But I think that was part of the plan by Big Company was to get people hooked for cheap, then in a few years no one could imagine using cloth diapers anymore! How barbaric! So then they could jack up the prices, make a killin’ and fill landfills! There’s also quite a bit of science about what is actually in those diapers, as it pertains to skin irritations and toxicity, etc., not to mention how much fossil fuel is required to make them. But some people don’t have much of a choice because their daycare providers won’t use cloth. Thanks for stopping by!

  4. My daughter is planning on using cloth, too… we’re going to list them on the registry… what brand did you like the best? Or did it matter?

    • We did not have any “brand” loyalty to speak of- it was whatever we could get second-hand, as gifts or cheap. That said, I did get one BumGenius diaper as a gift and it was one of the favorites. We used cloth prefolds, which you can buy anywhere, but finding the waterproof covers with velcro or snaps was more challenging, Thirsties and Bummies were names on some we found at garage sales. I also got some handmade all-in-ones from a seller on Etsy. Though we did have to line dry those in the HOT sun as using the dryer took forever. Good luck!

  5. It’s still being used in many parts of the world! I’d agree cloth diapers do expedite potty training.

    • I believe as more Americans become aware of what our choices are doing for our economy and planet, there will continue to be a resurgence of things we “used to do.” Like growing our own food and cloth diapering our kids butts! 🙂 Thanks for stopping by.


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