We are so excited to present our first ever Fan of the Month, the lovely Kylee Durant! A long-time twinkie tush supporter and a bright and encouraging member of the twinkie tush community, we are thrilled to have gotten to know her so much better through this feature! Read her interview below!
What is your full name?
Kylee Ann Durant
Where are you from? (City/State/Country) Where do you live now?
I am originally from Cedar Springs, Michigan, USA. Our family currently lives in Bamberg, Germany at USAG Bamberg, as my husband is an Active Duty US Army soldier.
How many children do you have and what are their ages?
I have three wonderful children. Reagan is 6.5-years-old, Colton is 4-years-old, and Theodore (Teddy) is 19 months.
How/when did you find twinkie tush?
After not knowing much about cloth diapering when we started with Colton, I decided to really do my research when I found out I was pregnant with Teddy. I discovered the amazing world of fitted cloth diapers when I stumbled across the Twinkie Tush page and blog on Hyena Cart. A lot of my fellow cloth diapering mommy friends on the social media page I frequented could not rave about them enough. This was June 2011. Coincidently, I was put on strict bed rest for the remainder of my pregnancy at about this time. That was a very tough period of time for me emotionally, as well as physically. I clung to little things that helped me get through the daunting amount of days and weeks ahead of me. The excitement of previews every Tuesday and stockings every Wednesday were something I looked forward to. Cheesy? Maybe. But I think any mama who has ever been on bed rest for an extended period of time can relate!
What is your favorite twinkie tush print of all time?
Davenport is my all time favorite. The perfect floral for a boy!
Do you have an ultimate ISO print?
My ultimate ISO print is Sanctuary. I love it!
What is your favorite personal non-parenting related, non-work related hobby?
I am a book worm :) Reading is my passion. I love historical non-fiction/fiction. I try to read at least 3 books a month.
What makes you feel most inspired or grounded? How do you take care of yourself and your spirit?
My faith grounds me the most. I seek out uplifting and encouraging books, blogs, and devotions on a daily basis. I love that social media gives me the opportunity to experience so many great resources. Being a mother and a wife is hard work! Life is hard work too. I also thrive off of face-to-face interaction with women who are going through the same life experiences as me, including being a military wife. I am an active member of my local PWOC (Protestant Women of the Chapel) chapter on my military post. 3 hours child-free with other ladies who just want to do life together. It is refreshing and encouraging.
What is your favorite activity to do with your children?
Living in Europe has afforded us an amazing opportunity to travel…a lot! We love to travel as a family and share the amazing world that we live in with our children. We always experience amazing adventures and they love experiencing new cultures and languages (and food)! So far we have been to 10 different countries in just over a year!
What is/was your favorite place to visit?
My favorite place that I have visited would have to be Scotland. The people, the scenery, and the food! Although, driving on the other side of the road (and car) is pretty interesting :) We hope to go back before our time in Germany is over.
What twinkie tush attribute and/or philosophy do you most appreciate?
Honestly, all of the ethos that Twinkie Tush embodies are what keep me as a loyal customer and huge fan. Specifically, the sense of community is what I really appreciate. Gretchen and Mike have created a community and a fan base that seems more like a family than a following. We are interested in more than each other's stashes and scores. We are interested in helping one another and caring for one another. Our TT community has experienced several losses and personal hardships. Gretchen and Mike are the first to step in to offer their help, and without hesitation. Gretchen has an amazing gift. She creates diapers that are not only high quality, but small pieces of art because she uses the best fabrics and the highest quality materials. Instead of choosing to merely profit off this gift, TT chooses to bless others by using their gift for the greater good. This is a lesson I teach my own children. Use your gift for the greater good. Twinkie Tush has nailed this.
What would you tell someone who has yet to try a twinkie tush diaper?
I have tried many types, styles, and brands of cloth diapers over the past 3+ years! Some work out, and some don't. Some grow with your baby to a certain point and you have to move on to another option. The only brand that I have continuously used since Teddy was only 2 months old till now is Twinkie Tush. The absorbency and quality are unmatched. And in exchange for a premium fitted diaper, you are supporting a wonderful family that reaches beyond their home into the lives of others; supporting the cloth diaper community any way they can and spreading positivity into 5,000+ other homes with families just like theirs.
Tell us your funniest cloth-diapering or parenting story!
Shipping our diapers to Germany was hilarious! The military gave us two shipments when we sent our personal belongings over here: an advance shipment and a large, household goods shipment. I chose to send my diapers in our advance shipment so I would have them as soon as we landed in Germany. The military hires professional packers to pack up your things. I wish I would have snapped a picture of their faces when they got to Teddy's diaper stash :) Confusion, side-eye…it was so funny! But after the initial shock wore off, I was able to explain cloth diapers and how to use and care for them. A hilarious moment turned into a teachable moment. It was great. We are moving again this summer to a new base in Germany, so it will be interesting to see if we get the same reaction from German packers :)
Tell us about one of the most meaningful parenting experiences you have had.
I think the birth of all three of my children would have to be the most meaningful parenting experiences I have ever had. Reagan was our first and we were team green. When she was born, the doctor turned her towards me first so I was able to announce to the room (and my husband) "it's a girl!". My son Colton was born at Fort Campbell, KY only a week and a half after moving there. My husband was at the firing range and had to be driven at top speed in a humvee to make it to the hospital. That pretty much describes Colton's personality: top speed :) Theodore is a miracle baby. We were told that we could loose him at any moment at 22 weeks. After 3.5 long months of bed rest, we welcomed him into this world with tears of praise and thanksgiving. He defeated the odds stacked against him. I consider all of my children precious gifts and I could not imagine life without them. Parenting is hard work, but the ultimate reward is the "I love you" 's and kisses at the end of the day. It makes all the hard times worth it.
Kylee, we can't thank you enough for sharing so much with us, about yourself and your family, and for being a part of the twinkie tush community. It is such a privilege and a pleasure to get to know you better!
For more details about our Fan of the Month feature, including information about how to become a twinkie tush FotM, please see this blog post.