I am totally new to cloth, but I have been researching. No one I have ever met IRL has used cloth, so I've been diving headfirst into learning everything I can online. I honestly have never even seen a cloth diaper in person. I was hoping to kind of regurgitate some of what I've learned and get some feedback from some true CD mommas, in hopes of figuring this all out before my new baby gets here (I'm nearly 20 weeks). So, bear with me as I stumble through some new territory, and thanks in advance.
Styles of Diapers in General
So, after talking with my Mom and DH, they really don't want anything involving folding, pinning, snappies, or involving any "major" dexterity at all. Basically, the more it's like a disposable, the better. I don't entirely disagree with them, and am willing to go along with that. This nixes flats and prefolds, leaving me with fitted, pockets, and all in ones. Fitted diapers are cheaper, but require covers. Pockets and all in ones seem to not require covers. (Right?) Pockets seem to be a little cheaper than the all in ones, and appear to have more "pluses" to them in that they have more versatility (more/better inserts for wetter diapers) and are more easily dried. With thinking about ease in mind, it seems that pockets might be the best way to go. Fitted with covers also appeal, but I'm iffy about the extra step of the cover, plus it seems like pockets probably have better absorbancy than the fitteds. Am I right on this? What all have you guys experienced?
Snaps vs. Velcro
Snaps appear that they hold up longer, and I don't have to remember to velcro them back before I wash them. I'm pretty sold on those two points alone.
Newborns need different diapers that fit them specifically. One Size will probably not fit them unless they're super chunkers. (My first was just over 6 pounds) Most people seem to like the kissaluvs brand for newborns, but I'm not sure if they mean the fitted, or the All in Ones. It seems like regardless of brands that people seem to like the All in Ones for newborns in general. Any ideas here? What are your favorites specifically for newborns?
Brands people like overwhelmingly seem to be Fuzzibunz, Swaddlebees, GroVia, Kawaii, and Best Bottoms. After looking at all of these, I really like the Fuzzibunz, and was thinking about going with the all in one GroVias for newborns, and the one size fuzzibunz for everything after newborns. Is this realistic? Everyone seems to have like 30 brands in their stashes. I'd like to keep it as simple as possible on not only myself, but DH as well. I also really like the Kawaii's (the price seems ridiculously low!!) but everywhere I seem to look, they are out. :( Anybody have anything else that I should look at? And, I could really use some good sites to buy from.
Number to Buy
It seems like 30 for newborns, and 20 for older babies/toddlers. Is this reasonable?
It appears that I have the least desirable possible cleaning environment. I have extremely hard water, have a front loading HE washing machine that will not allow me to add extra water, and have been exclusively using Tide HE free and gentle for the last two years. So, I need to look into switching laundry detergents. I've heard good things about rockin green, but don't know if it is available in my area. This place is a hole in the middle of no where, however we DO have a Wal-Mart. Any suggestions as to what I might find there? Additionally, I should look into possibly adding Calgon, vinegar, or baking soda, to each of my loads of diapers. For those with hard water, what do you suggest? And, it appears that if I do the prewash, regular wash, extra rinse, then that should be fine, yes? Also, I know I need to get a pail/trash can with a lid and a couple of wet bags that I can wash with my diapers. Any suggestions on the bags?
My family is HUGE on camping. When the new baby is about 1 month old we will be going on an annual camp out with our extended family of friends. We'll be out in the woodsy mountains for about a week and a half. I know they make those washers you can operate by hand, but have never used them. Line drying in the woods wouldn't be a problem, but the washing aspect is daunting. It appears that some people switch to sposies when on trips like this, but if at all possible I'd like to avoid that. For weekend trips to the mountains, it seems like I could just take a travel wet bag and be fine as long as I have plenty of dipes, and wash when I get home. It's just the few longer trips we make that have me a little nervous.
Thanks if you made it all the way through this, and double thanks if you have any advice for me!