It might be a little late in the game to try something new, and I'm so not an expert in this domain, but I finally decided to get over my hangups and give cloth diapers a try. I chose the gDiapers because I'm a sucker for their colors, and I had tried them before. I have two other friends here in town who use different brands, but love their cloth diapers so much, they inspired me to give it a shot. So far, it hasn't been too bad. I don't really have a "system" yet, but it's not as hard as I thought it would be. My friend Sheree makes it look really easy.
I still have issues with handling poo. Penny consistently has one über gross diaper a day (I should probably be glad there's only one). The lazier, less responsible version of me secretly prefers to just roll up the yucky diapers and throw them away, out of sight, out of mind. And what about wipes? I still use those, and they can't be good for the landfill either.
So, to tackle the poo, we ordered and installed a sprayer that attaches to the toilet, to make rinsing the yucky diapers easier, and it helps. Another friend who uses cloth told me that before their diapers go in the pail, they spray them with a solution of Bac-Out and water, and that keeps them from getting grossified before they go in the washer. Bac-Out is seriously awesome. We use it for pet-related stains all the time.
We spent a good part of today at Penny's cousins' house, and it wasn't hard to pack extra inserts and an extra pant in the diaper bag. We save the plastic bags our newspapers are delivered in, so when the über gross diaper occurred, I emptied it out in the toilet and put the yucky insert in the newspaper bag I had brought along.
I still feel like I need two diaper pails - one for wipes and disposables (which Penny still uses at night), and one for the cloth diapers that need to be washed. And I may find that I need more pants, liners, and inserts to get through the week, unless I am willing to do laundry every day. After all, we're only on day 2 of this grand experiment.
Ultimately, I am wondering if using cloth will speed up toilet training around here. The cloth diapers, while soft and comfy, are not as (eerily) absorbent as the disposables. And my hope is that the difference will motivate Penny to give up diapers entirely. Meanwhile, on the potty training front, Penny goes in the bathroom and closes the door, saying, "I going potty!" when she needs privacy, but will not sit on her little potty chair and would rather just go in her diaper, and doesn't want to discuss it, thank you very much. Frankly, she closes the door in my face.
But then Penny decided she wanted a soft seat that goes over the toilet, like her cousin has (thank Jeebus for older, wiser cousins!). So I let her pick one out in the store. I held up an Elmo seat and a Tinkerbell seat, and she chose Tinkerbell without a second glance at Elmo. To be fair, the Tinkerbell one is purple, so Elmo didn't really stand a chance.
Now she will sit on her fancy seat, for long periods of time, and nothing happens. And that's ok. I'm just happy she's trying it out. She gets a lot of reading done in there, at least. And she is really proud of her "fancy pants," especially the purple ones.