You are not mad at all.
We have used them from birth and love love love them. For all the reasons you listed. I have a small amount of MCNs that I use when out as it's less to carry. I MUCH prefer the flats. I find them much more absorbent but I do use cheap MCNs as I am not going to spend $30 on a nappy!
We have 3 dozen flats. We started with 2 and quickly ran out and got another packet 1 week in lol.
I use baby Beehind PUL covers and they are fab! When she was little I had 6 covers as some will get poo etc on them. Now that she's 14 months I have 4 and rotate between 2 per day. So when I change her I put a different cover on and the other one airs out before the next change.
We got a 6 pack of snappis that are still going strong.
Folding is super easy - once you are used to the fold it takes 5 seconds, just as long as it takes to stuff an insert in an MCN!
Oh yes they are pretty bulky on a newborn. I think I will get or make some flannelette or muslin ones for this baby. But the bulkiness isn't a huge deal.
For a newbie I'd say still get at least 4 and see how you go. If you have one of those totally crap days where there's a blow and then you manage to smear poo on another 2 covers you might be stuck. But then maybe you're not as incompetent as me haha. That said the PUL ones dry REALLY quickly so you could always do an emergency quick wash and chuck them in front of a heater and they'd be done in 15 minutes.
I have heaps of pilchers you can have if you are willing to pay postage.
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