Back to Cloth: Returning to Cloth Diapers While Traveling

We were really getting into the simple life at Los Frailes. 6 weeks living on the beach… seriously. We loved it and felt like crap taking the kids diapers down to the trash every day. Even though we rarely used cloth diapers in the Bay Area, we had some on us and decided we were whack enough to try for cloth on the beach.

So!

Mikey would walk through the deep sand and draw water from the well, we’d soak the dipes and employ the “Baja Maytag”: we bought a $200 plunger* and plunged the diapers in the bucket of water. Rinse. Repeat.

the baja maytag... with the $200 plunger earning it's keep
the baja maytag… with the $200 plunger earning it’s keep

Worked like a charm!

We dug it for several weeks until suddenly we didn’t anymore and we went back to disposables. But we still have the diapers and the recipe for laundry soap (below) and we just might give it another shot someday. Maybe even someday soon, since it seems as if we are turning into hippie farmers?

Anyway – 

 Recipe for laundry soap:

  • borax
  • bar soap (Ivory, Dr. Bronner’s or along those lines)
  • washing soda (sodium carbonate or soda ash; try the Arm & Hammer brand)

 Powdered laundry soap:

  1. Grate the bar soap until finely ground
  2. Mix 2 parts washing soda, 2 parts Borax and 1 part grated soap (top off with a few teaspoons of baking soda to freshen the clothes if it tickles you)
  3. Store in a big ole’ jar and use 1/8 to ¼ cup per load of laundry

a little moxie

____________________________________

*The $200 Plunger Story

We were in town loading up on groceries, then swung by the local hardware store to buy the plunger to wash clothes.

Mikey ran into the store but did not set the emergency brake on Myrtle. Myrtle started rolling down the incline, headed smack-dab for a car. I dove down and tried to grab the emergency pedal with my hand but I was too late – we hit the ca

We went with the driver to a local mechanic who assessed the damage, we paid for it right there – $200

That is why we call it our “$200 Plunger”

– the end-

storing the diapers
storing the diapers
Meriah
Meriah Nichols is teacher and artist who lives in a yurt off the grid. She is deaf, has 3 kids (one with Down syndrome) and a lot of chickens. She writes about travel, disability, and getting dishes done. She likes her tea Earl Grey and hot.
Meriah

@meriahnichols

#deaf mom, teacher & #disability activist, living in a yurt #offthegrid. 3 kids (1 with #downsyndrome), a camera and a lot of chickens. Never a dull moment
This is a really fantastic idea and tutorial - book mark it! https://t.co/DRNLLzzQpi - 1 day ago
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2 Comments

  • Oh, I just love the sight of happy, colorful cloth diapers on a clothes line. I’m a little sad that my daughter is almost potty-trained, and I won’t be able to look out at my back yard to see those bright spots of color lined up on the clothes line on nice days this summer. Good for you for trying them out while on the road! I loved using them while we were at home, but I was never brave enough to try them when we traveled and didn’t have access to a washing machine.

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