Melanie Beckmann is your average super mom. She’s got her hands full with two children and her work outside of the home as a dental hygienist. On top of that, she turned a passion for cloth diapering into a business when she started Chickaboo Baby. We tapped her to share her infinite knowledge on the art of cloth diapers and what life is like as a mom.
Clear Conscience Blog: How did you get started cloth diapering?
Melanie Beckmann: I had always been interested in cloth diapering, but was too intimidated by it to try with my first child. When my son was almost 2, I was pregnant with my second and my sister was cloth diapering a newborn. I was sick of buying diapers for my son because I was sure he was going to be potty-trained any day now (go ahead, you can laugh). I thought, if she can do it with a newborn, I can surely do it with my toddler. So I started with a $10 cover and a few “prefolds” (these are the old-fashioned white diapers people used to use with pins and plastic pants, though I never did any pinning). Once I got comfortable with that, I bought a few Bum Genius pocket diapers and I was a convert!
CCB: What is your advice for moms interested in cloth diapering but aren’t sure where to start?
MB: There are many websites out there devoted to cloth diapering. For example, Diaper Swappers is a forum for advice and ideas, but they also have a “marketplace” where people can buy and sell things they don’t want anymore. Another great site is Jillian’s Drawers. They sell cloth diapers and accessories, have info on washing, and also trial packages. Also, Itsy Bitsy Bums has a great rental package for newborns as well as many trial packages and rentals for the non-newborn sizes.
CCB: Tell us about your inspiration for Chickaboo Baby?
MB: I started sewing my own cloth diapers for several reasons. 1) I was unhappy with the bulkiness of all my “one sized” diapers on my new baby and wanted something trimmer. 2) I wanted to save even more money by making my own. 3) I am always looking for excuses to sew! I started out with a purchased pattern and eventually created my own. I was sewing a lot for gifts for people and had several people tell me I should start selling them, so I did!
CCB: Where did the name Chicakboo come from?
MB: It was sort of a cross between the oh-so-cute- “chickadee” and the word “peek-a-boo.”
CCB: What products do your little ones like at bath time?
MB: At bath time, we like to use a mild and safe shampoo/body wash. If their skin is dry from the winter or swimming lessons, we also put a little oil in the water or on their skin afterwards. One of the things I like about J.R. Watkins is that their products are safe for my kids and they smell yummy, but very subtle.
CCB: What’s your favorite thing about being a mom?
MB: My favorite thing about being a mom is just watching my kids grow and learn. Each day they show me something new: a word, a “trick” or just seeing them playing peacefully together and maturing. There are days it seems as though they’ll never grow out of tantrums, and others where my four year old helps his sister get her dolly and uses phrases like “I don’t care for that,” instead of “I HATE this!” It’s pretty fun to see that all of the hard work you put in eventually does pay off. So far.
Have you checked out our Baby Care Promotion on Facebook? Prizes include two gift baskets brimming with J.R. Watkins Baby Care products and modern cloth diapers from Chickaboo Baby.