Last Sunday, my colleague Spencer Soper wrote in his 'On the Cheap' column about using cloth diapers as a way to save money. Now, allow me to help you carry out this thrifty tip by showcasing a new business that specializes in the domain.
Ju-Ju Monkey, a natural parenting store selling environmentally friendly and sustainable products for children and parents, is set to open this week (by Friday) at 4755 Tilghman St. (in the Kmart shopping center) in South Whitehall Township.
Owner Sara Moore of Schnecksville had been operating the business online and out of a showroom in her home since 2010. The idea for the company arose from a desire to learn more about cloth diapering for her now 5-year-old son, Collin. (Ju-Ju Monkey was his nickname as a baby.)
"Online forums were speaking a different language to me, but I eventually learned how to do it correctly," she said. "I wanted to give parents a local resource to troubleshoot. It's really not as intimidating as the diapers your grandparents used. There are no safety pins and no rubber pants."
The diapers are made from a wide array of materials, including cotton and merino wool (most expensive), as well as blends such as hemp/cotton and cotton/bamboo. Available in different patterns and styles (Velcro and snaps), they are meant to last children from birth through age 3.
Moore estimates that traditional disposable diapers for one child cost between $2,000 and $4,000 over a three-year period compared to cloth diapers that cost between $300 and $600 in that same time frame.
"You're probably going to save over $2,000," she said. "And for your next child, you're going to save around $4,000."
In addition to saving money, cloth diapering also benefits the planet, Moore says.
"They can last generations whereas disposables go straight into the garbage," she said. "If you're not having any more kids, they also make great rags."
The store, which consists of 90 percent all-natural items, will sell everything from one-size cloth diapers, reusable wipes, woven wraps (baby carriers) and knitted toys to herbal supplements, skin care products, hands-free breast pumps and portable infant bathtubs (to be used in sinks).
Decorated in a jungle theme, it also will feature a play space where various classes, including babywearing, baby sign language, car seat education, cloth diapering, infant massage and Lamaze, will be offered. When classes aren't in session, children can entertain themselves while parents shop.
For parents who are leery about making the switch to cloth diapers, Ju-Ju Monkey offers a risk-free trial where parents can try any six new diapers for 30 days for $30. Info: 484-809-9662 or ju-jumonkey.com.
From having babies to getting married, Your One & Only Wedding Boutique is planning to open in early November at 139 S. Main St. in Nazareth (former All Gussied Up location).
According to owner Paula Galante of Whitehall Township, the store will assist couples with everything wedding-related minus the cake, flowers and gown.
"It will be a one-stop shop for events and weddings," says Galante, who's operated her own photography company for the past 20 years. "You'll be able to book your nuptials, photographer, videographer, DJ and limo, as well as enjoy tanning, hair, makeup and fitness boot camp services. We'll also offer tuxedo rentals, and sell jewelry and accessories."
The business will hold a private grand opening Nov. 5 with a ribbon-cutting, open to the public, set for Nov. 14. Info: 484-264-6379.
East of Ju-Ju Monkey in South Whitehall, Elevation Burger will hold a soft opening "sometime this week" in the Village West Shopping Center at 3100 Tilghman St.
According to franchisee James Lee of Breinigsville, a grand opening celebration is planned for the weekend.
Elevation Burgers are made with an "elevated" product —100 percent certified organic, grass-fed, free-range and ground-on-premises beef. Freshly cut fries are cooked in heart-healthy olive oil. Info: http://www.elevationburger.com.
Staying on the topic of food, husband and wife Tom and Carol Frable of Upper Mount Bethel Township reopened Country Roads Pizza on Aug. 23 after a five-year hiatus. The eatery at 1495 Lake Minsi Drive in Upper Mount Bethel Township serves a la carte items like pizza, cheesesteaks and burgers, as well as dinner entrees such as meatloaf and fish.