Thursday, May 23, 2013

Thoughts on Handwashing- How am I doing? - Day 4 #FlatsChallenge

I'm participating in this years Flats and Handwashing Challenge hosted by Dirty Diaper Laundry and today's topic is Handwashing.

I don't think that handwashing is all that difficult. It's time consuming, but not hard. I think that one of the things that I worry about is whether or not I'm using enough soap and getting the diapers clean enough. There's always the "sniff test" though and once the diapers are clean, I haven't smelled any residual pee or poof smell. So, that's got to be a good sign!

I was worried about how things would go with little Michael wanting to "help" me every step of the way. He wants to help wash the diapers, but since I wash them using gloves and don't use something separate, like a plunger, I'm not super comfortable letting him help me with the dirty diapers. He does get to help me hang them to dry on the drying rack, and that's fun! He is a super great helper and I love that his heart truly desires to be helpful.

Here's a look at how I was and dry my diapers:

Rinse diapers. If they're just wet, they get a quick rinse in the tub. If they're poopy, they get sprayed with the diaper sprayer in the toilet.
Warm soak.I fill my little bucket with warm water and 1/2 tsp of Allen's Naturally detergent, then I agitate the diapers for a bit and then let the diapers and wipes soak for approx 30 min.

Rinse. I dump the dirty water out and rinse the diapers.
Wash. I fill my little bucket with hot water and 1/2 tsp of detergent. I try to wash about 2-4 diapers at a time. More than that, and I have to use the tub, rather than my little bucket. I agitate, swish and scrub my diapers for about 15 minutes or longer, depending on how dirty they are. I may even let them soak for a bit. It just depends on how dirty they are.
Rinse, Rinse, Rinse. I dump the dirty water, then rinse the diapers under warm, running water for a few minutes. Then, I fill my bucket with warm water and swish and dunk to see if there are still any bubbles. Then I dump the water and rinse with cold water.
Wring Out Diapers. I wring out the diapers, as best I can and then take them downstairs to hang on my portable dryer.
Hang to Dry. I take my wet diapers and hang them on my portable clothes line in the sunshine. I make sure to use clothes pins, because I learned (the hard way) that they will blow off the clothes line and land on the grass. 
Let Dry. I am blessed that the weather here is so nice. All week it has been sunny, 80+ degrees and it has been breezy. Perfect weather for drying clothes! As the flats soak up the sun, they get nice and crisp and white!
Take Diapers Inside: Once dry, I bring them inside, take them off the clothesline and shake them out to shake out the crisp, stiffness. 
Fold and set aside for the next diaper change!

So, how am I doing? Pretty good. While I don't mind washing them by hand, it is a but time consuming. I have really come to appreciate my washing machine! One thing I learned is that when you wash gloves by hand with gloves, you need longer gloves! I am using regular dish/cleaning gloves and the length is a bit too short. So, when I am washing the diapers, some of the water sloshes up into my gloves. :p All-in-all though, I really do enjoy hanging my diapers outside! They smell so fresh! I really like being outside in the fresh air and it is really nice to think about the energy that I am saving too! 

Are you taking part in the challenge? How are you doing with handwashing?

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