23 November 2012

Kids & Parenting: Diapers

Have you included diapers in your preps? Whether you have kids, or plan to have kids in the future, it's a good idea to have a supply of diapers on hand. It's not like they go bad or anything, and you know they're just going to get more expensive (just like everything else, thanks to inflation). I won't come down on either side of the disposable vs. cloth diapers debate, because I believe they both have their applications.

Disposable diapers are easy. You don't have to wash them, which may prove to be a major pain in an emergency (see my post on doing laundry by hand). The drawbacks are that they're single use, and you have to dispose of the used ones. Not a problem if you can count on regular garbage pickup, but what if? I'm going to have to mention the "evil" WM, because they have the least expensive and most functional brand of disposable diapers I've found. Saving 5 or 10 cents a diaper may not seem like much, but it adds up when you use a lot of them, and these work as well as the name brands I've tried.

As for cloth diapers, they're reusable, so you won't have to worry about running out. You will have to do a LOT of laundry. I have heard of mythical organizations called "diaper services" that do the hard work for you, but they kind of rob you of the frugal aspect of cloth diapering. That and I don't think they'd make their regular pickups in an emergency. I've tried the all-in-ones (hard to wash, expensive), the pocket diapers (easier to wash, but still expensive), the flat cloth (pain to fold), the prefolds (not bad, and cheap), and microfiber towels (better and cheaper still, IMO). Use whatever suits your budget. The only thing I advise you to do is get a snappi or three. Seriously, for holding cloth diapers onto squirmy children so they don't fall off or leak, they're awesome. Even the diapers with fasteners built in benefited from one of these once the kids started moving around a lot, when snaps start coming unsnapped and velcro comes undone.