There are 2 words of warning for every new parent
1) You will not sleep for about 16 years.
2) You will change an ungodly amount of diapers.
Throughout a pregnancy you're apt to hear these phrases from every well-meaning friend/neighbor/clerk at a grocery store.
I've already talked a bit about the sleep part, so now let's talk about diapers.
I'll begin this by saying that if I were any kind of compassionate human being this would be the time when I would tote the merits of cloth diapers - cute, environmentally friendly, and economic (in the long run.) But I'm not a compassionate human being, I'm a lazy mom. And so we're a disposable family.
What Diapers Are Best?
Like so many things with babies, my standard response is always: Whatever works best for your baby is the best diaper. I'd heard a rumor that Pampers Swaddlers worked best for newborn boys, so that's what we started out with. And we've been hooked ever since. We have a short, lean guy, which could be why Pampers work well for us. We've only had one leak, which was when Thatboy didn't put the diaper on right. And we only get blowouts when it's time to move up a size. As for diaper rashes? We've only recently had issues, and I think it's due mostly to teething poop (when my kid's output shoots through the roof).
How Many Diapers Do You Really Need?
The first month we used over 200 diapers. The first week alone we were using about 10-11 diapers a day. And then that dropped down a little. Then a lot. Now we use closer to 100 diapers a month.
Where Do You Get Them?
I had Thatbaby at a very lucky time. "Amazon Mom" was a program run through Amazon.com that gave you free Amazon Prime Membership as long as you ordered a certain amount each month. You also got an additional discount on diapers. It was fabulous, I was getting 20% off diapers! Then they cancelled that aspect of the program. I do love the subscribe and save feature, which delivers the diapers to my doorstep each month (or two months). My Amazon Mom features just ended this month, and I've heard diapers.com has a better/cheaper diaper program, so now I'm looking into that.
What Else Do I Need?
Wipes! Because you don't want to clean the baby with your hand.
A Changing Pad/Cover (Actually, you'll want multiple covers. Because one will inevitably get dirty, you're changing diapers on it!)
A&D Ointment (It was good enough for your mom.....)
What Don't I Need?
A Wipe Warmer.
A million fancy ointments.
Special covers for little boys. I have been peed on exactly zero times. Not everyone is a squirter.
What's Coming Out of There (or how can my sweet little boy be so foul)?
The first couple of days the diapers are going to be filled mostly with meconium. Which is black and tar like. But that's good, because you want that out of the baby's system. The sooner the better, because it also flushes out bilirubin, moving jaundice out of baby's body.
Then comes the baby poop - which is liquidy. For a breastfed baby, it's varying shades of yellow and seedy. You may have heard that breastfed baby poop doesn't smell. But that's only half the sentence. The truth is, breastfed baby poop doesn't smell as bad as solid poop. It still smells. Like sour milk, or yogurt.
Once you start solids, it's a whole new ball game. Then you have full on smelly poop - just like an adult has. The good news is, the progression of poops lessens as baby gets older, so by the time they're on solid poops they're not pooping every couple of hours.
Wrestling an Octopus
The bad news is, right around when the poop starts getting smelly and full of food, that's when your kid decides it's not cool to lie around and get a diaper changed. So there's wiggling and squirming, screaming and crying, kicking and stretching - all while you're trying to not get poop everywhere. So here are some of my favorite tricks to keep them occupied.
* Have a bunch of stuff ready to hand the baby. Chances are each of these will get thrown to the floor, so you'll want a steady progression. Toys do not work for this. Vitamins, nail clippers, nasal aspirators, thermometers, A&D Ointment, all work well.
* Helium Balloons. Loads of entertainment.
* The kiss monster. I do a kiss countdown. 1-2-3-Kiss is too short, so try a 5 count. This keeps him squealing in anticipation, but it does require frequent breaks from what you're doing, which could make it take longer.
* Pick a song. One long enough that takes the whole diaper change. I like "I've been working on the railroad."
* Flip your routine. We used to change Thatbaby with his head toward the closet, but found he was less of a squirmer when we flipped him 180 degrees.