How to Raise a Green Baby: Child Rearing, Eco-Style
Bust out the Dutch Boy, it’s time to paint your child green. The Blue Man Group has made millions covering themselves with grease paint, so maybe there’s something profitable to a group of green infants. No, I don’t know where this nonsense comes from, perhaps it’s the Def Leppard rocking in the background or perhaps it’s a darn enjoyment to take things as literally as possible a few times a day.
Either way, what better way to teach a child to respect and enjoy a life dedicated to sustainability than by raising them in such a manner? And because we love lists, here’s a 10 spot for raising a green baby.
We’ll start with an easy one. Let’s face it folks, this is the way we’re made. If you can breast feed, it’s highly recommended. And talk about organic! If the mother of the child is eating well, then the baby is eating well, there’s no more difficulty to that “formula.”
Say No to Disposable Diapers
When you’re a new parent or a veteran looking to change a few things on the next go ’round, consider cloth diapers. If you really want to build that green relationship with your little one, how about bamboo cloth diapers? Baby will love the softness and you’ll love the durability.
Imagine the waste created by dirty, disposable diapers alone. Your kiddo can make a difference before he or she can even walk or talk. If you’re in the market for ideas, check out a few things you can find at Our Greenhouse.
Say Yes To Hand Me Downs
Everyone you know will want to buy your baby everything under the sun. As a matter of fact, someone will undoubtedly try and buy them THE sun — it’s only natural. However, if you put the suggestions out into the air that you’ll only be accepting “previously enjoyed” clothing, again, you can serve as the pebble in the pond.
When you explain why, you and baby will create more ripples than you might even realize. we all know that everyone loves to talk about babies who they don’t even know! “… and they’re raising him/her to be GREEN! How crazy/weird is that!?” Hey, as long as word gets out, mission accomplished!
Use Organic Products in the Home
To this day, when I think of getting a bathtub clean, I think of Comet. Why? That’s what my mom used. Your baby will literally be like a sponge during his or her first several years. Anything you hope to teach will come easiest by simply acting. Use organic cleaning products and give reasons why. The next thing you know, your baby will be telling strangers at the grocery store why “simple green” is good for the environment and has been for over 20 years.
Organic Baby Food
As your baby grows and you begin to wean, go ahead and introduce organic baby goods. You can find these foods at nearly every health food store or organic grocer. Using organic foods will create additional awareness for your baby. You’ll also know that there’s no pesticide residue in your child’s strained peas.
Buy Organic Toys
From stuffed animals to wooden toys that help a child’s imagination flourish, there is a broad selection of organic toys available. No, you may not find a monster line of wooden trains made from FSC-Certified Wood, but wooden toys, building blocks and the like are sure to please an infant, just as any plastic toy would. If you’re unfamiliar with the organic stuffed animals, check out this little guy …they just don’t get cuter than that. Fair trade, homespun wool and natural dyes, courtesy of the friends at OurGreenhouse.com.
Organic Sippy Cup
Move over blanky — SIGG is taking over. If you’re unfamiliar with SIGG’s products, have a look at this “bottle,” perfect for when your child is ready to graduate to the “sippy cup.” Because of the bottle’s construction, there’s an excellent chance that your child will have this bottle to hand down to his or her own children.
Make Your Child a Part of the Recycling Process
As they begin to walk and become more mobile, you can begin to train your children to place “trash” in its appropriate place. When one of their first words happens to be “recycle,” you’ll be the proudest green parent in town. If you take regular trips to a recycling center, let them tag along. Put them in the baby carrier or make it a family affair. Again, children will learn from your example, especially if it seems to be an activity the whole family enjoys together.
Organic Baby Bedding
It’ll be something they’ll say when they’re 20 years old. “I had an organic crib when I was a kid…it’s the only lifestyle I’ve known.” When it makes so much sense, such a lifestyle is undeniable. Not only that, if your child is teething and decides to gnaw on the crib, it’s no big deal. Add to the crib an organic mattress, pads and blankets and your baby will awaken in a green environment daily.
Set the Green Example
It’s been touched on throughout several of the other nine tips, but you can do nothing better for your child than to set the best green example. Your actions will offer 90 percent of the example, and a little conversation about why you do what you do will go a long, long way! No worries, you won’t have to remember to explain why — you’ll be asked, grossly, and when you think there are no more questions to ask, they’ll want to know who would win in a fight between a mountain lion and an alligator, if the mountain lion had an all-organic diet. Digressing.
Let your kiddos see you buy organic, cook organic, recycle, reduce, re-use and enjoy the fruits of being Eco-friendly by enjoying the great outdoors. So, yeah, it may be time to sell that HUMMER and go for one of the new Lexus hybrids.
(Image Via: Spiffy Baby)