Saturday, June 4, 2011

Day 4

So there was supposed to be a Day 2 and a Day 3 post, but a storm knocked out the power at our apartment.  The top picture shows the baseball field behind our apartment during the storm.  The bottom picture is the same field, same camera settings while lightning wasn't flashing.  The power came on for a short bit, but then a transformer blew, adding some gorgeous orange and green to the night sky.  On the upside our apartment was blissfully quiet.  No A/C cutting on and off, no buzzing electronics.  I could see the fireflies in the parking lot (I didn't know we had any) and hear the water rushing in the creek nearby.

As I explained earlier the community washers in our apartment building suck in a bad way.  I sensed we had a problem when our dirty diapers were coming out with poo still attached.  I knew we had a problem when the build-up issues started.  I started cleaning the poo diapers before washing them and added a bath rub rinse to our wash cycle and things were still coming out dirty.  After visiting my mom and realizing we were paying $1.25 for the washers to move around a bit and ding, I decided I might as well take on the other two laundry cycles too and stop pouring money into a black hole.
I fielded this idea with John on Wednesday and his response: "I can work on my biceps for you".  Maybe I won't have to do diaper laundry anymore.
So Thursday the kids and I went on an adventure to Lowes to pick up all the ingredients per this instructional blog post at Dirty Diaper Laundry for a camp washer.  We opted for the deluxe version but got the plastic door sweeps instead of the hair-like ones (pictures to follow).  We also picked up a two-pack of plungers because it was the cheapest plunger option (yes, the two were cheaper than the cheapest one!).  Therefore we will experiment: does a plunger with holes in it clean diapers as well as a plunger without holes?
However, Thursday night when I was proudly showing off my haul I happened to read off the label under the recycling symbol on the bottom of the plunger.  "PVC... huh."  Then John's eyes got big "What?  PVC?  As in Polyvinylchloride?  You know that leaches dangerous chemicals?!  We are not cleaning diapers with that!"  So I did what all good researchers do: I Wiki'd it.  I couldn't find any definitive information about off-gassing, however burning PVC releases the chemicals often used to soften it.  I could tell the plunger had softeners in it and since we were planning on drilling holes in it I decided we'd better opt for something else.

So we're going to try to return the plungers and get some cheaper ones at Target.

Side note: the other thing that has been consuming my time this weekend has been my best friend's wedding.  I'm one of his groomspersons so many festivities have been involved.  Highlight by far has been the groomspersons gifts: engraved matching swords with which to defend the bride against anyone who should try to claim her for themselves.  Um.  Totally awesome.

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