I am taking part in the Second Annual Flats and Handwashing Challenge hosted by Dirty Diaper Laundry. For 7 days I will be using only flat cloth diapers and handwashing them in an effort to prove that cloth diapering can be affordable and accessible to all. You can learn more about the rules and why this challenge was started by visiting the announcement post. This year there are over 450 participants from all over the world!
People keep asking if I'm going to keep this up - flats and handwashing. To be honest, I think flats are amazing, but I cannot imagine washing laundry by hand every night for the next year.
Washing by hand has been a great experience, though. The flats get just as clean in less time with less water... Just a whole lot more sweat and elbow grease. It's a great feeling to know that I could do it if I wanted to. Even my husband suggested I try it for a whole month (to compare utility costs).
The flats, I will definitely continue to use. In fact, I plan on replacing all my microfiber inserts with flats. It's been nice living without the hassle of microfiber this week. My wish list of diapers to purchase is looking incredibly different from a month ago. Everything is flats related.
All in all, I'm really glad I did this challenge. It's given me a better perspective on what I am capable of as a person and a mother. I know that if we have another baby, I can use flats from the beginning and not waste a dime on disposables. And if we really need to cut back, I'd honestly be ok selling off all my pockets for flats and handwashing (at least occasionally). I know camping this summer will be less stressful because of flats.
I live in an area with a lot of poverty and a high unemployment rate. I hope I can put this experience to good use at some point.