Got a lot of blackberries? Then check out this recipe for Blackberry Mojito Fruit Leather.

I'm not a huge fan of fruit leathers, but this turned out super good! And, really, you can't go wrong with blackberries, mint and rum.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Don't forget to wipe!

Don't forget to wipe!Don't be surprised, people. You should have seen this one coming from miles away.

It's the 2007 Don't Forget To Wipe (with cloth) Challenge! Now, I know you're out there... you've answered my polls intimating that you're ready to try cloth wipes. Maybe you just need a kick in the, ummm, ass. So, now's your chance to justify it to all your friends and family: "I'm doing it because it's a challenge! For two weeks!"

And the rules are soooo simple.... it's as easy as wiping your, ummm, ass.

Since I'm always looking out for you, don't think I didn't already do months of research and recon for you. I did - and I've been using cloth wipes since the middle of June. Why didn't you hear about it sooner you ask? Well, because I already had too many things going on and I wanted this challenge to get the spotlight, ummm, never mind.

Here are the rules. You can choose to use cloth wipes:

1. Only for #1
2. For both #1 and #2
3. Only at home
4. On the road

You cloth diaper people probably already have a system in place for laundering and transporting, so you have no excuse for doing the whole gamut. But, for you squeamish people, start with #1 at home. That's what I do. I'll go over logistics in a future post.

Also, you don't need to spend an arm and a leg on specialized cloth wipes. I'll soon teach you how to get started for a few bucks.

This challenge will take place the last two weeks of September. Are you with me? As usual, I will have a list of participants on the right nav bar so feel free to grab the banner, sign up on this post, and I'll add you.

By the way, I didn't realize how much toilet paper I used before I started this. Who knew I was a TP whore? I think I used more than the other three people in my household combined (granted my preschoolers aren't that fastidious about wiping, but really)! So, in addition to saving (in my case at least) hundreds of trees, you'll also be saving money too.

35 comments:

Anonymous said...

Is it really so bad to use TP if it's made from 100% recycled paper?

Crunchy Chicken said...

My understanding is that there's still a ton of water and energy used in manufacturing recycled paper into TP, much more so than washing reusable cloth at home.

Sandy said...

oh boy, you got a lot of 'splainin to do!

Well, there's two weeks to let this one sink in.

Preach on!

Anonymous said...

This sounds very unsanitary to me. Particularly for #2. I don't understand how you can be certain the water in the washing machine is hot enough to kill these germs. We've come pretty far with sanitation and this seems like a backward step. I'd rather see you use a leaf, or a piece of magazine or newspaper.

Niffer said...

Yay! I started using cloth a few weeks back, but got sick last week and reverted back to paper. Here's the kick in the butt I need to get back to cloth. Thanks!

Theresa said...

Oh dear oh dear! I don't know if I can do this one. I'm open to convincing though.

Oldnovice said...

I saw it coming, and we decided back in June that we weren't going to do this, along with going back to hankies over tissue or carrying around a germ-filled cloth to use to dry our hands. Like Anonymous pointed out, that's a step backward in hygiene, in our opinion.

Reminds me of that old doctor I had when I wanted to have childbirth at home. He said, "We've just now gotten to the point where our infant mortality rate is something we can live with and YOU want to go back a century!" So, we compromised on the birthing room at the hospital where everything LOOKED like I was birthing at home, but behind that facade was emergency equipment in case we needed it.

We don't do laundry very often around here, and we live in the Southwest, so that's a good thing water-wise. I'm not willing to let E-Coli hang around the house nor am I willing to use the energy to heat the water to try and kill it. Have fun, and maybe I'll join y'all on the next challenge or NOT.

chile said...

Hm, do I get a prize for accurately predicting this would be the challenge? :)

oldnovice, I'm also in the SW and currently using cloth about half the time for #1. When soaking the wipes, it takes no energy to heat the water. I simply add water and washing soda to the bucket where I've been throwing the dry(ish) wipes. Then I put the lid on and stick it out in the sun for the whole day. It gets HOT. Then I drain and throw it in the washer with a load...at any temperature.

I'm still not clear on the logistics of wiping #2 and sanitation. Looking forward to a thorough and clear description about this, Crunchikins! I work best with entire process described in detail. :-D

Capturing Today said...

Hi Crunchy - we're definitely in with you on this one. We started using cloth wipes in July and I wouldn't trade them for anything! Great challenge and a wonderful opportunity for education regarding the things we really do and don't have to worry about in the area of hygiene.

Kim said...

Hi Crunchy,

I'm in for moral support. I am already 100% cloth TP. Guests do have a traditional roll in the bathroom.

Sanitation isn't really a big issue. People use cloth diapers without problems. It just takes some getting used to, some basic understanding of germs, and some sunshine or tea tree oil!

Kim

Isle Dance said...

I ((so)) want to be doing this already. I use spendy recycled, un-bleached eco TP already and have only refrained from this life change because I don't have my front loader with me right now. Hmmm...I'll think about whether or not I should just start with #1 anyway. I'd have to use eco bleach to soak them, though...

Isle Dance said...

Okay...I'm in! :) I'll have the banner on my web page soon, along with the links to the Swedish organic cotton wipes I just bought online. Thanks for prompting another great change. :)

P.S. Tea Tree Oil should do the trick until I get my (sanitizing) front loader back. I think...?

Turtle said...

Okay, so the Diva Cup Challenge was pretty simple for me since I was already using reusable pads before the challenge. Now this one is going to be even easier since we've been using cloth for several (3 or 4) months. We use the cloth for #1 and #2, but only at home. As for sanitation...how is it less sanitary than using cloth diapers?

emily said...

Oh, my. I don't think my husband will go for this. Can I wait and start on Sept 26th, when he leaves town???

I'm interested in hearing MANY people's reports. Can you have a Round 2 of the challenge for us wimps? Please post your directions and tips soon!

Anonymous said...

hey all. for those people who are worried about sanitizing the cloth toilet paper, there is a method with just water. I assure you that I was a little freaked out at the beginning with the prospect of using my hand, but once you run some water there isn't all that much "stuff" to wipe anyways. I have been doing this for over a year and now I don't feel clean if I don't use water. It can sound a little backwards or unclean but if you if you wash your hands properly after, I have never had a problem. (To be honest I'm more freaked out with making sure my hands are clean after touching a crazy chemical cleaning product than any organic matter that is coming out of my body.) For those of you not familiar with the technique, I hold a glass/plastic bottle (a recycled juice bottle or whatever) full of water with my right hand and slowly pour water down the backside while wiping with a few fingers with the left hand. I usually use a full bottle, maybe two to thoroughly clean. For ladies, you can do the same after peeing. I usually immediately wash my hands after with soap- a good 30 second or 1min scrub is enough, and then dry off the behind with a designated towel. this may not be for everyone but i appreciate other's testimonies and I just wanted to let you all know that this has been tested and I give it a two thumbs up!
-a

Atash said...

I thought my wife might be open to this, because she is tight with money and because she has this fear of clogging the sewage pipes, but she said something like "oh yuck".

She says even where she grew up (look for the point on the globe that is furthest from the ocean), they had some sort of recycled, coarse paper.

As a side note, there are probably old farmers still living who remember using corn cobs. Corn is a fertilizer hog, but you can do so many clever things with the parts you don't eat.

Anonymous said...

well im new to this site and im not sure i will be joining the chaleng but then again i use very little TP because like "Anonymous" i use water - but not my hands! i have a hose on the bate tub with i use to wash # 2 and when im not at home and need to use TP i dont feel as clean (by the way to all of you with hemroid problems - usin water is a graet solution!)you can also get a "bidah" to atach to the toilet - which i allread told my huby that i am getting.

Oldnovice said...

I'm good with the water (bidet-like) method. My mom cleaned herself after toileting by keeping a small container of water in the toilet room for that purpose. Of course, she lived alone at the time.

When approached with the thought in June, my husband said, "Uh...NO!" I've cut down to two sheets of double-ply per "sitting", and that's a good enough compromise for me.

The difference(s) between this and diapers, in MY case, were: in the diaper days I (actually my housekeeper) did laundry twice/week, we kept the dirty diapers in the basement, and used HOT water for the washing. Now we do laundry maybe once/month only in cold water and have no basement.

Anyway, I don't think we need to behave in unison in our efforts to conserve. What's good for you may not be good for me and what's good for me may not be what's good for you. My husband and I have already drawn some lines in the sand on how far we want to go in our environmentalism.

In other news, I have two girls who are having some problems with the Diva Cup and I'd like to be able to offer them the knowledge of a "mentor". Has anyone had experience with discomfort followed by a resolution? If so, would you be willing to do a little back/forth emailing with my daughters? They're grown women, so you'll be able to type frankly. TIA.

Jill said...

I have been using cloth wipes for 2 months now. For sanitation, I pre-rinse in hot water, put 1/2 cup hydrogen peroxide to kill germs. For those who watch Oprah - Dr. Oz doesn't recommend TP as it is abrasive to sensitive areas. I havent been able to convert my husband - we recently we got into an arguement at the store because he wanted to buy Charmin. Needless to say , he will not be shopping with me anymore!

Bryan said...

What an interesting mix of comments. Count me in, and to (further) upset those who seem to be afraid of poo-germs, let it be said that I will wash the cloth with the kids' nappies (diapers) using my bare hands in cold water.

jenny mae. said...

darn it!! i had a very weird feeling that this would be the challenge and im sad because we already do this, but not on the road so this will be my challenge i guess. im so happy you're encouraging people all the time!

Jess said...

Hmmm... I have been thinking about this for awhile, actually since Sara over at http://www.walkslowlylivewildly.com brought up the issue. I don't know about for #2... my husband and kids are really freaked about that, however I would be willing to try for pee.

The bummer thing is we are moving out of our house on the 28th, so this is the worse possible time for me to take on something like this. But I will be watching and hopefully once we're settled give it a whirl.

Jen said...

I'm in for this one (but #1 at home only.)
This will give me the perfect opportunity to get a system in place for cloth diapering!

anna banana said...

i think i could be in for #1 at home. i'm excited to hear more info about the challenge specifics!

Ginny said...

Thank you once again for that 'push' on something that we have been thinking greatly on! Count atleast myself in!

Danica said...

Count me in for #1 at home... then maybe I'll branch out from there just to scare myself a little!

QT said...

I might - and I stress the might - be willing to use them for #1. I know the BF will not go for it, but really, he would have to be in for #2 as well - what else does he have to wipe?

iloveupstate.com said...

I can't do this. My Fiance will just flip out. But I'm definitely going to blog about it and will link over.

just me said...

Alright, count me in! Shouldn't be too hard since we already cloth diaper the youngest. I will have to be surreptitious about my cloth tp usage where my family is concerned; they already thought I'd lost it when I stopped using shampoo. So I suppose this will have to remain an individual effort, for now. I'm not going to even broach the subject with dh and kids.

Oldnovice, perhaps you should tell your ob that mortality rates for homebirth are actually better than hospital births. This holds true even when a woman's risk status is controlled for, since only low-risk pregnancies are candidates for homebirth, and that would therefore otherwise skew the results. Some things just can't be improved upon.

Vanessa said...

I definitely want to sign up for this -- but to echo some of the other comments, perhaps there should be some clear directions on exactly how to sanitize the used cloths after #2, and for those who want to go cloth-less altogether and use their hand, maybe further directions as to how to do that...

Jenni said...

We already do this, but I'd love to add a banner to my blog and challenger others!

BreD said...

Count us in!! I have been wanting to try this for awhile, so this is just the kind of motivation I needed to make it happen. We already use cloth wipes for the babies, so why not us?? Luckily, DH is adventurous, because he only barely shuttered when I approached him with this, and he pretty quickly agreed to try.
Thanks for challenging us! :)

BreD said...

and, how do i "add a banner" to my blog to challenge others? I'd LOVE to do that!!

Susanne said...

I'm in for #1 at home. Will add the banner and blog about it maybe next week...

Cheap Like Me said...

I forgot to sign up, but am already doing it ... like others, sans husband, who is too freaked out.

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