Great time to try the Laundry Tarts

Laundry Tarts is running a Buy 1 get 1 50% off promo throughout the whole month of April. Laundry Tarts is a Canadian company who is leading the way in laundering products.

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From their website:

“The Laundry Tarts are extremely passionate about the environment and are dedicated to providing products that do not harm the environment. We have made a commitment to the earth to use only safe ingredients and follow that commitment in everything we do and make. The Laundry Tarts adheres to a 100 mile rule, where all the ingredients, packaging, labels and manufacturing occur within a 100 mile radius, reducing carbon emissions and encouraging environmental awareness.Our products are completely biodegradable (including the packaging), hypoallergenic, 100% vegan and free of phosphates, EDTA, phthalates, parabens, SLS, SLES, nitrates, sulphites and chlorine (we are also one of the only companies to list ALL of their ingredients without misleading the consumer) ! What do we use? All natural, safe old fashion ingredients to remove stains, keep whites bright and remove odor and bacteria without masking them with harmful chemical fragrances. We use only phthalate free oils, meaning no ingredients will be left on your clothing; only a fresh, clean smell from dissolving odours-not masking “

We have received a great deal of positive feedback from customers, many commenting on how they love how it makes their whites brighter!

We have some in stock now with more on the way. We will also be receiving the Stain Stick and a few shaker BonBons and Strip Laundry Treatment,which we can’t wait to put to the test!

Sweeten up your laundry with this great April promo!

Making your own wipes solution

There are many ways to make your own wipes solution. If you are using cloth diapers then it is much easier to just use cloth wipes. After you are done your diaper change, just toss both in the diaper pail/bag.

So what is in my solution?

Boil 1 3/4 cups of water.

Add 1 tbsp of some kind of oil, baby oil or coconut oil
Add 2 tbsp of Baby Shampoo (use a natural product such as Earth Mama Angel Baby or )

Once that has cooled somewhat I add 1 tsp of aloe vera for extra soothing benefits and it makes the solution a little more slippery making cleanups easier.

Put that in a spray bottle if you want to spray on baby’s bum bum or in a peri bottle and you can pour it on the wipes. I don’t bother with a wipes box because you have to pay more attention to how long the wipes are in there and so on. I normally just wet cloth wipe and add the solution to the cloth or spray on baby bum.

If doing that is not convenient, you can buy wipes cubes that you just add warm water and shake. They make a ton and one container will last you forever.

Let’s start the new year with a sale!

Like many of you we want to start the year with a clean start.  In our case, that means cleaning out our warehouse space.  The less there is to sort the easier it will be, so we are having a inventory clearout sale.

You can save up to 30% off your order.  We have never offered such a steep discount so take advantage now. 

Spend up to $100 and receive an automatic 10% off your order.

Spend from $101 to $300 and receive an automatic 20% off your order.

Spend over $300 and receive an automatic 30% off your order.

There are no discount codes required.  Offer ends January 14, 2011 at 11:59pm.

Thank you for being with us in 2010 and we wish you health and happiness for 2011.

Back to school a little greener

As I join in the frenzy of getting my daughters ready to go back to school, I thought of ways of being more eco-friendly this time around.  I quickly prompted our Facebook page for ideas and received some great suggestions.  I’m  happy to share some of them with you.

Shopping

1. Shop consignment stores for back to school clothing

2. Consider all natural, environmentally friendly arts supplies such as crayons, paints and using recycled paper

Lunches

3. Litterless lunches – find out if your child’s school is participating in a litterless lunch program.  If they aren’t, go ahead and take the intiative in bringing your school on board.

4. Reusable everything! Snack bags, drinking bottles, cloth napkins, utensils, cloth sandwich bags.

5. Conserve on packaging and energy used in food prep, by making extra at dinner to be used for lunches.

Transportation:

6.  If your child is not on a bus, walk or ride your bike to school.

Crafts:

7. Reuse some of your child’s paintings and crafts to cover school text books or frame them and use as artwork for their bedrooms

A few more ideas

8. Suggest that your child’s school use email newsletters instead of making endless photocopies.

9. Use whiteboards for homework exercises instead of paper when possible.

If back to school means back to work

10. Look for a daycare that encourages cloth diapers

So many of these ideas are easy to implement and also happen to be pretty cost effective, so it’s a win win all around.

 

 

 

Thank you for a great first year!

Wow.. one year already!  I opened the online store a year ago, a month after having my third child.   I have had such a great year and learned so much.  Everyone has been so helpful and understanding.  I can’t sit here and celebrate by myself so I’m inviting all of you to share in the celebration!

Our celebration event starts Thursday and goes on until Sunday March 14, 2010 and you can enter the giveaway until March 19th so don’t miss out!

Here are some of the promos, in addition to some sales you’ll find on the website.

EVERY ORDER receives a $10.00 gift certificate for their next purchase.

Gifts with purchase:

Buy 3 Gro Baby Prints Shell Sets and receive a FREE NBC Wetbag

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Buy 5 Sweet Pea diapers get a 6th FREE

Spend over 150$ get FREE shipping (as usual) and FREE Leg Huggers and 2 FREE EverBamboo charcoal deodorizers

Enter to win the following giveaways:

March 12th $50 gift certificate via http://myweeview.com/

We are also giving away a cloth diaper prize pack:

1. Diaper Pack

1  Sweet Pea Diaper

1 Gro Baby Print Diaper

1 Bamboo Baby Diaper

1 BumGenius Pocket Diaper

Second Prize is an accessories Pack:

A Little Something for Mama Gift Set by Earth Mama Angel Baby

1 Angel Baby Wash and 1 Angel Baby Lotion

1 set of Northern Baby Sherpa Cloth Wipes

1 medium jar of Wee Essentials

1 Bag of Rockin’Green Laundry Detergent

To enter :

1 entry Go to our website and tell us about a product you’ve tried before and liked using

1 entry if you tweet about this giveaway

1 entry if you post it on your Facebook

1 entry if you blog about it and link to our website

1 entry if you sign up for our newsletter

Come back to this post and add new comment for each of your entries.

Open to CANADIAN Residents – closes Friday March 19th, 2010 Eastern Standard Time

A look at 3 yrs of cloth diapering by a homeschooling mom of 4

I sent a request to my twitter friends looking for families to talk to us about their cloth diapering experience and I was so happy when Chelsea volunteered to answer a few questions.

Chelsea is a homeschooling mom of 4 and started cloth diapering over 3 years ago so I am sure she has learned a lot along the way.

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Chelsea

Hi Chelsea.  First, I want to say thank you so much for volunteering to share your experience with us.  I know you must be pretty busy with three children and homeschooling so I will keep it short and sweet. (and thank you for sending all the cute pictures of your family,  4 adorable boys must really keep you busy)

 So you started cloth diapchelsea4ering about 3 years ago, what was your motivation at that time? 

I started cloth diapering when I was pregnant with my third child. My oldest two boys were born a year apart, and were both still in diapers full time. I needed to save money, and cloth diapering seamed an easy way to slash my budget.

Have your reasons for cloth diapering changed over time?

Not really. With my first two children, I would spent $50-$80 per month on diapering supplies. I am just amazed at how much money I can save by cloth diapering. I buy a bag of disposables for emergencies and it lasts me 6 months!

 I guess, you must have tried different styles of diapers, what are you using now and why?

 I use a variety of styles and brands for different things. For around the house, I use prefolds in Booroi covers. They are quick and easy, and cost effective. For naps I use anything with snaps. For overnights, I use prefolds, a snappi, and custom wool longies. They are breathable, and bulletproof. We always have dry sheets. I love my Bumgenius for going out because they hold so much, and are the trimmest option I have.

 What is your advice to anyone thinking about using cloth diapers but they are still unsure?

 It really is easy. Cloth diapering can be as simple as you want it to be. When you use cloth, you just put the diapers in a pail just like with disposables, and wash them instead of taking them to the curb. There are easy solutions to most people’s concerns, and if you use a flushable liner, dirty diapers are still easy to deal with. Plus if a baby is exclusively breast fed, you don’t need to do anything special with the dirty diapers. It is all water soluble. Just put it in the pail. It doesn’t stink, and washes easily.

 

Did you find that people were on board with you when you started or did you receive different reactions?

 I received different reactions. Some of my friends said things like “Gross! My husband could never make me use cloth.” My in-laws had used cloth back when it was plastic pants and pins, so they were supportive. I really think my husband expected me to quit. I think he just humoured me in the beginning, but now he is completely on board. I went away for two nights, and he used cloth the entire time! He even knows my wash routine!

Is there anything you know now but really wish you had known when you first started?

That it is better to use a dry pail. When I first started, I thought you had to use a wet pail. I wish I had known that an open dry pail is the best option for your diapers and the easiest.

And that it is good to have variety. What works for one baby, might not work for another. What works at one age might not at another. Every child is built differently, and changes over time. I have loved a diaper one week, and avoided it a month later. I try not to stick to one thing closing myself off to change. I know people who invested money in one type of diaper without really trying it first, and give up on cloth because it wasn’t working well for them. There are wonderful resources out there and getting multiple opinions is the safest road to take.

 Any last comments or tips or predictions about trends in cloth diapering in the new year? 

I really think people are taking a second look at cloth diapering. When I first stated, all I knew about was All In Ones and Fitted diapers. Now I see people using a different kinds, and people spending more on cloth diapering then they would have in disposables. There are some amazing hybrids coming out, like Flip, and Grobaby. It is getting easier to find things locally. I am really excited to see cloth diapers get popular. One day I will tell my kids that I thought a pocket diaper was an amazing idea, and they will look at me like I had it so rough!

 chelsea3

Sweet Pea Diapers: A Chat with Nancy

A few weeks ago we got to chat with Nancy of Sweet Pea Diapers and she gave us an idea of what we can expect from them in the next while.  Sweet Pea has been busy in the last year, tweeking their designs and they even received an iParenting Media Award for their pocket diaper.  We recently received a shipment and the new colors look great, they also launched an AI3 diaper and I can’t wait to see the new one size diaper covers.    

1.  How did you get started with Sweet Pea Diapers?

I purchased the company that was in the early stages of planning.
The previous owner had manufactured sized diapers that were almost identical to a large major cloth diaper company.
We changed the design to a one-size in October 2008 and the rest is history!

2.  What sets Sweet Pea apart from other cloth diapers?


Price! While the quality of the first batch produced wasn’t up to our standards, we have since been working with a wonderful manufacturer who prides himself in good quality, great work ethic and wonderful customer service.

3. What are your newest products and how did those come about?

It seems everywhere you turn, there is the old standard one-size with 2 microfibre inserts.
We also wanted to introduce the one-size with 1 microfibre insert with 1 HEMP one!
We are excited about our new Sweet Pea-in-a-Pod AI3. It’s similar to an AI2 but has 2 seperate snap in soaker/pads and 2 flushable liners.
Our diaper covers have been extremely well received. The colours are awesome, the fit is great and they retail for only $8.95 or less.

4. Do you have any tips for parents just getting started with cloth diapers or still on the fence about whether or not to use them?


Don’t be afraid! The misconception most people are faced with is that they couldn’t be bothered because it’s too much work and looks gross.
Honestly, once you get started and have a routine, it’s a breeze…..It’s not like the old days with the pins and rubber pants!

5. Do you think Canada as a whole warming up to cloth diapers or are certain areas more open to it than others?

I read somewhere recently that Canada and Australia were leading countries in the use of cloth diapers.
We have recently partnered with an Australian distributor and the reception has been wonderful

6. What are sweet pea’s plans for 2010?

We started the year off well with new product introduction. There are always new ideas and new opportunities!

Is your baby room safe?

Preparing the nursery is an exciting part of getting ready for your new baby.  In the anticipation of bringing our baby home, we pass the time, sniffing all the sweet smelling baby laundry, arranging the adorable stuffed toys and choosing pleasing decor. However, we may unwittingly expose our babies to multiple toxic chemicals in their most vulnerable stage of life if we are not careful. Here are some ways to ready your home for a new baby without endangering health.  Budgets are now a little tigher, so one asks themselves if they can really afford to go “greener”.  You may be surprised at the cost of setting up a safer and greener nursery.

Choose No VOC paints

Volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, are solvents that helps give paint the right consistency. Some VOCs are known carcinogens and have cause liver or kidney damage, headaches, breathing difficulties, dizziness, and other symptoms. Thankfully you can find nontoxic and no VOC paints nowadays. Try a Google search for manufacturers. MilkPaint.com is one such company. 

COST: paint is minimal

Minimize New Furnishings

New furniture typically offgasses formaldehyde, a neurotoxin. Look for furniture at local consignment stores. You can also save a lot of money this way. Be sure to research whatever furniture items you do decide to purchase to make sure items haven’t been recalled for safety reasons.  If you are buying new, try to purchase it well ahead of your baby’s birth and let the items air out for for a few weeks/months to the minimize offgassing effect on your baby. Car seats should always be purchased new. Be sure to wash the car seat cover following the manufacturer’s instructions, to remove chemical residues from the fabric.

COST: used furnishings or hand me downs will be a cost savings!

 A Safer Sleeping Space

If your baby is sleeping with you, be sure to follow recommendations for safe co-sleeping practices. If you choose to use a bassinet or a crib, be aware that most mattresses use polyurethane foams and polyester, and are possibly even made with toulene and formaldehyde, and offgas fumes that can be toxic to your young infant. Flame retardants are also placed into foam used in conventional mattresses, and these have been linked to brain and nervous system damage.

You can find non-toxic mattresses and bedding for your baby’s bassinet and crib. Search online retailers for “natural bedding”. You might find that some of these are made of natural rubber, organic cotton and other untreated natural materials. New babies spend a lot of time sleeping and in contact with the mattress so this is especially important.

COST: this can be your splurge item

Baby Toys

New research has found that so-called “educational toys” for babies, including videos, aren’t worth all the hype and are certainly not a substitute for the ordinary contact that baby has with his loved ones. Talk to your baby a lot, sing to him, hold him for much of the day, consider using a sling or other carrier and breastfeed him, and he’ll live up to his genetic capacity for intelligence.   I was recently looking at my little guy and thought he really doesn’t need anything toys.. he’s happy playing with me the most and for props; a few cups and kitchen utensils.

When your baby is old enough for toys, choose wooden toys that are solid wood, not particleboard that is held together with toxic glues. Cloth toys, especially those made from organic cotton and silk, are also recommended. Plastic toys not only lack aesthetic appeal, but they may contain PVC (polyvinyl chloride) which has been linked in some research to cancer and other health issues.  Of course we will always end up with plastic toys as they are everywhere and very affordable.  That’s ok but buying quality toys that last will be money well spent.  In doing Montessori training, one thing I took away is that buying many cheap toys that are designed to handle being tossed and thrown around does not help your child learn to value and respect their belongings.  The Montessori approach uses items that are natural and need to be treated with care, eg. wooden blocks, which if thrown around may get knicks and dents hence the children learn to treat them with care. 

COST: don’t bother buying too many toys before your baby turns 1, then use the money you saved to buy quality toys instead

So in the end being greener can actually save you some money.  Of course, if you use cloth diaper the savings will more than cover any splurges you want to make for your baby. Many online retailers are now offering safer alternatives for your baby’s nursery, so you can have fun putting baby’s room together and breathe easier too.  
 

AMP One Size Duo Diaper Review

I didn’t have the time to do a review of the diaper so I sent a diaper and inserts to Kim of www.DirtyDiaperLaundry.com . Her review is below though I did want to add a few things since I used it on my son and he is not a chubby baby.   I find it is one of the few one size diapers that will fit thinner babies well because of all the elastic gathering around the legs.  I also wanted to make a comment about the inserts.  The inserts are not square but rather a rectangle shape which means that if you fold them one way they will be longer and if you fold them the other way, they will be shorter.  So if you are finding them long you can try folding them the other way it may help.  We have been very pleased with these, the quality is great, the concept is simple and it stays looking nice even after many washes.

Enjoy the review and let us know about your experience with the AMP.

What’s in your diaper bag?

Sometimes people think you can’t go out with a baby in cloth diapers and need to put on a disposable when you head to the mall or visit grandma.  Others believe your diaper bag has airplane carry-on size.  By all means, you can do that if you want but you don’t have to.

Here is what is in my diaper bag.

-  A change of clothes – usually a sleeper since that will always work

-  2 – 3 cloth diapers.  Choose some that are easy to use.  If using pockets make sure they are already stuffed and ready to use.

-  3-5 cloth wipes.   I just fold them in half and stuff them in the bag

- I use a Peri-bottle filled with wipes solution.  You can use wipes cubes to make your solution, which is very inexpensive and easy to use or you can make your own.

- a small wet bag, I actually like the Gro Baby wet bag for short outings

- a small, flat fold up change pad or just a receiving blanket if I can’t find one that day

- A small container of diaper cream just in case and a little toy for the baby (I’ll admit that Bum Bum Balm is a favorite of mine, natural ingredients, zinc-free and safe for cloth diapers)

and that’s it… I just use a normal size diaper bag or large handbag and I usually throw in a magazine for myself just in case I may one day have time to read it.