Eco parenting! Leading good life

Any issues with what nappies to buy, home schooling etc. In fact if you have kids or are planning to this is the section for you.
lilypotter
margo - newbie
margo - newbie
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 10:20 am

Eco parenting! Leading good life

Post: #163334 lilypotter
Wed Aug 05, 2009 9:34 am

Raising children is hard enough without worrying about the environmental consequences of your parenting choices. If you are a parent or would like to be one, going green should be a major priority for your family. When it comes to eco-parenting, You are the greatest role model your child will have. She will look up to you, learn from you, and embrace your habits. So when you buy her toys, clothes and bath products, take some time to find eco-friendly, safe options. Eco- parenting is simple parenting if you stick to the basics. Just add love. Green living specially for kids is more important. Share your “green” experiences.

User avatar
Penny Lane
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 519
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2008 8:35 pm
Location: Wales
Contact:

Re: Eco parenting! Leading good life

Post: #163337 Penny Lane
Wed Aug 05, 2009 10:22 am

Not everybody can afford eco-friendly baby toys and products though, for example the prices for organic fairtrade clothing that won't be worn for long are astronomical!

The greenest thing I can do in bringing up my baby is by using cloth nappies and buying second hand and try to grow our own fruit and veg as much as possible.

(p.s. I don't find raising my child hard at all!)
"It's breaking the circle.
Going to work, to get money, to translate into things, which you use up, which means you go to work again, etcetera, etcetera.
The Norm.
What we should be doing is working at the job of life itself."

- Tom Good, The Good Life.

User avatar
Annpan
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 5464
Joined: Thu Dec 14, 2006 2:43 pm
Location: Lanarkshire, Scotland

Re: Eco parenting! Leading good life

Post: #163340 Annpan
Wed Aug 05, 2009 10:55 am

Buying second hand, it could be argued, is even better for the environment that fairtrade/orgainc.

For example.... organic cotton takes a lot of water to grow, it is a VERY thirsty crop. Now, the water to grow the cotton is diverted from local drinking and washing water supplies, meaning the locals have more health and welfare issues (whether it is fairtrade and organic or not) Hemp is a much more eco-friendly crop to grow but.... neither grow in this country and the ships used to bring us the cotton and hemp are running on regular oil... y'know that stuff that is going to run out one day.

Just about every manufacturing process uses electricity in one way or another, most electricity is produced by burning gas or coal.

Buying second hand not only are you not creating a new product that needs grown, manufactured and distributed, but, you are stopping that item going to landfill. You are often, also, buying that item from a charity shop and giving money to those less fortunate.

It's a win, win, win situation.


Being an eco-friendly parent doesn't need to cost the earth.... hey, I should put that on a t-shirt. :mrgreen:
Ann Pan

"Some days you're the dog,
some days you're the lamp-post"

My blog
My Tea Cosy Shop
Some photos
My eBay

mrsmiggins
Tom Good
Tom Good
Posts: 96
Joined: Fri Jul 24, 2009 2:30 pm

Re: Eco parenting! Leading good life

Post: #163341 mrsmiggins
Wed Aug 05, 2009 11:06 am

I definitely agree that second hand is the best. You save something from going to the landfill (so many children's toys do), plus it hasn't had to be made all over again! If you look after them you can pass them on to lots more happy children. I hate having to buy anything new when I know there's plenty of things already made. :mrgreen:

User avatar
thesunflowergal
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 859
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 7:59 am
Location: Swindon

Re: Eco parenting! Leading good life

Post: #163343 thesunflowergal
Wed Aug 05, 2009 11:23 am

I read this with interest after boxing up all of girls baby clothes for a friend. This is also creating space for the boy clothes, that friends have promised us. I am in a lucky position :lol:
Stay at home Mummy to Orin 8, Trixie 6 and Temogen 4 . Also three Chickens Dottie, Poppy and Dr Mumbo. Three cats called Flossie and Pickle and Lexi.

Check out my blog:
http://ramblingsofasunflowergal.blogspot.co.uk/

Fifer182
Jerry - Bit higher than newbie
Jerry - Bit higher than newbie
Posts: 44
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2008 4:27 pm

Re: Eco parenting! Leading good life

Post: #163367 Fifer182
Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:32 pm

Yup.. as a parent of three, I agree that second hand is the way ahead. I'd rather buy something from a charity shop or better still, freecycle/swap with friends etc than buy brand new imported items or newly manufactured stuff.. that to me just isn't that 'eco friendly' and kinda defeats the purpose.

My kids enjoy finding new uses for old items - it works all our imaginations wonderfully at times! :flower: We all get a kick out of seeing something old and tired becoming shiny with a new purpose.
We are also shaping our garden to produce home grown veg etc and the kids are learning to nurture our wee patch and save seeds etc. We also forage for berries etc in our local countryside.

Is this good parenting? I dunno.. never really given that much thought to our lifestyle.. I think the kids do look up to us and learn from us.. but then again, we learn from them as well... isn't that the way families work?

Fiferx

User avatar
Rosendula
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 1743
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2008 4:55 pm
Location: East Yorkshire

Re: Eco parenting! Leading good life

Post: #163371 Rosendula
Wed Aug 05, 2009 6:11 pm

Sorry but I'm about to be all miserable and doomy and gloomy. :roll: I don't think kids always follow in their parents footsteps. If you look back a couple of generations to when people lived the 'make do and mend' lifestyle out of necessity, they lived a much greener life than most people do today (Ishers being the exception of course :wink: ). My grandmothers were always patching, mending, growing their own, traveling by public transport, shopping in charity shops etc., but my parents had to have everything new (second-hand was common and for poor people), had to have the biggest car on the street, bought big-label brands, you get the drift. I'm nothing like my parents, and more like my grandmothers, although I don't feel this is anything to do with following their example. I've kind of found my own way, partly through necessity, partly through choice to a more Ishy lifestyle.

It's not just my family, either. One of my allotment neighbours who has clearly been very environmentally friendly all her adult life has a daughter who appears not to care very much about anything. I know a lot of people at the allotment who have grown-up children who aren't interested in growing food.

A bit more positively, regarding Fair Trade clothes for children. Some of you may be aware that I used to sell Fair Trade clothes. When I closed down my shop, I kept the clothes that would fit my youngest or that she could grow into. It depends on the brand, but some of it is such fantastic quality that with some TLC the clothes could be passed down a couple of times, so if you're planning on having a football team of kids, it may be worth the initial outlay. If you're only buying for one, though, I think it is too expensive. I suppose ideally we would be able to buy second-hand Fair Trade clothes from a charity shop :wink:
Rosey xx

User avatar
citizentwiglet
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 848
Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2008 3:02 pm
Location: Just outside Glasgow

Re: Eco parenting! Leading good life

Post: #163489 citizentwiglet
Thu Aug 06, 2009 12:30 pm

What an interesting topic!

Rosendula, I agree that children often don't follow in their parents' footsteps. In fact, I'd go as far as to say that many DELIBERATELY go against their parents' core values / lifestyle choices etc as a means to rebellion when they reach a certain age. When my boys get to that age, I'm going to start wearing football tops, drinking cheap cider straight out of can and playing consoles all day (when not fighting), in the hope that they will rebel into hill-walking, nature loving, healthy and considerate young men!

I do agree that second-hand is the way to go. I've been very lucky in that respect - having two boys, I've had very little extra outlay for YS apart from a new cot mattress and a few odds and sods here and there. I have also had the most amazing donations from friends on a parenting forum (8 bags of newborn to 6 months clothes from one girl alone, and we're off to pick up more from her soon!), and these in turn have been Freecycled or donated to charity shops once YS has outgrown them.

I was late to convert totally to cloth nappies - we are on an incredibly tight budget, and the initial outlay was just too much. I had some pre-folds, but I really couldn't get on with them as baby got more wriggly and I hated those nasty plastic pants. Now he is 20lbs, I have been able to save up for a pack of 20 reusables with all the liners and wraps and I'm completely converted. They will do him until he's potty trained (apparently!). Yes I HAVE been guilty of putting disposables into landfill, but I tried to make up for this as well as I could by composting and recycling EVERYTHING possible, and I've not had a carrier bag in my possession (unless 'kindly' given to me by someone else) for the last 6 or 7 years. Considering we are a family of four on a fortnightly bin collection, we rarely have more than 2 bin bags in the bin come emptying day, which ain't bad.

As for toys - I get quite annoyed with this current trend for 'eco friendly' toys which, to be honest, seem to be an excuse to charge 3 times more for them. There are a lot of famous companies out there whose toys are equally eco-friendly (Galt, Orchard Toys etc) who still manage to charge a good price for them. I tend to keep away from anything that beeps and flashes and plays annoying tunes (other words, needs about 30 AA batteries to run properly that you spend 3 hours putting in after unscrewing 46 teeny tiny safety screws).

Babies only need a couple of toys - cuddly toy, shape sorter, stacking cups, some first jigsaws and Duplo / MegaBloks! Everything else is just a flashy version of the same thing. The wee man hasn't had anything new, bless him - everything has come from his brother.

Oh, and books. That's one thing they DO need. But we go to the library for a lot of those.
I took my dog to play frisbee. She was useless. I think I need a flatter dog.

http://reflectionsinraindrops.wordpress.com - My blog
http://www.bothwellscarecrowfestival.co.uk - Scarecrow Festival
http://bothwellcommunitygarden.wordpress.com - Community Garden

User avatar
Urban Ayisha
Living the good life
Living the good life
Posts: 255
Joined: Thu Jul 26, 2007 12:50 pm
Location: London, UK

Re: Eco parenting! Leading good life

Post: #163549 Urban Ayisha
Thu Aug 06, 2009 9:23 pm

Annpan wrote:
Being an eco-friendly parent doesn't need to cost the earth.... hey, I should put that on a t-shirt. :mrgreen:
... printed on organic fair trade cotton and sold for about £30!

User avatar
citizentwiglet
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 848
Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2008 3:02 pm
Location: Just outside Glasgow

Re: Eco parenting! Leading good life

Post: #163553 citizentwiglet
Thu Aug 06, 2009 10:39 pm

Yeah, on the back you could put

'Just the monthly Child Tax Credits'..........
I took my dog to play frisbee. She was useless. I think I need a flatter dog.

http://reflectionsinraindrops.wordpress.com - My blog
http://www.bothwellscarecrowfestival.co.uk - Scarecrow Festival
http://bothwellcommunitygarden.wordpress.com - Community Garden

clare
Living the good life
Living the good life
Posts: 261
Joined: Wed Jun 11, 2008 5:15 pm
Location: Norfolk

Re: Eco parenting! Leading good life

Post: #163829 clare
Mon Aug 10, 2009 8:07 pm

I know what you mean about teenage rebellion but I am hoping my 2 girls will carry on loving the life we lead.My 7 year old is always commenting on how lucky she is to have homegrown food and loves it when I make her a new top or we sit and make some things to sell,she and her sister play in the garden all weathers and love it when passers by stop to buy jam and eggs,they love blackberry picking, sitting in front of the woodburner playing and our forest walks so I hope when they are bigger they don't start hating it all.......
Grow it,make it ,eat it, drink it and sleep well!

User avatar
Rosendula
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 1743
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2008 4:55 pm
Location: East Yorkshire

Re: Eco parenting! Leading good life

Post: #163833 Rosendula
Mon Aug 10, 2009 8:41 pm

I've just looked back at my last post on here and I think I may have been a bit of a grumpy old woman on that day :lol: It's true that my parents didn't follow their parents' examples, but I guess they just got caught up in consumerism, like a lot of people of their generation. They were also snobs! I guess for me, I don't like snobbery, and that's what I rebel against, but the growing my own isn't a rebellion, it's a passion. Making my own food - well I don't enjoy that quite so much, but OH and my two teenagers really do appreciate it. I've never had so many compliments on the food that I make - and some of those compliments come from my kids' friends. :thumbleft: So fingers crossed, my kids won't rebel on this. I just hope they are able to find the time to follow suit when the time comes.
Rosey xx

EmpressG
margo - newbie
margo - newbie
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Aug 08, 2009 6:24 pm

Re: Eco parenting! Leading good life

Post: #163850 EmpressG
Mon Aug 10, 2009 10:01 pm

Babies need so little. I was recently invited to two baby showers and frankly it just seemed like yet another way to push consumerism. I can even see having one for a first time Mom, but one of these was for a woman on her third girl child. She was "registered" at a local store, and you could tell she didn't even want some of the stuff, certainly didn't need it, yet put it down because that was what was available. The people buying bought for the same reason...such a contrived waste. I bring handmade baby slings, they take about five minutes to make from a yard and half of cloth. No one knows how to stitch a seam these days, so you don't often see a duplicate. Don't even get me started on the absurdity of "babyfood" which didn't even exist until a company invented the need for it!
(Stepping off of soapbox.)

On the subject of kids not staying with the way they were raised...
I think there are a number of factors, but one is resentment. My kids are either thrifty or minimalist compared to their friends. But the oldest still talks about how "deprived" she was at times because she didn't recall getting "new in the box" toys. (Actually she did of course, she did have grandparents, LOL) But those new toys were often not as fun as anticipated and so forgotten. I know many many kids of vegetarians that eat and love meat now that they are able to choose to eat it. But these children at some point felt deprived or forced into the lifestyle and resented it. Same thing with some homeschoolers, they are sending their kids off to public school and embracing a yuppie lifestyle they never knew as children. There are many that follow in their parents footsteps eventually, but they seemed to be happy and actually chose it as they went along.

I rather doubt my middle child will ever be exited to have a worm bin in her kitchen, but the oldest at least tosses the food scraps to the chickens. :)

Caroline

mrsmiggins
Tom Good
Tom Good
Posts: 96
Joined: Fri Jul 24, 2009 2:30 pm

Re: Eco parenting! Leading good life

Post: #163860 mrsmiggins
Tue Aug 11, 2009 12:25 am

I think it all depends on the individual child. In response to one point Empress G raised, a number of my friends were raised vegetarian and have happily remained so in adulthood. Perhaps as they never felt deprived, they had great variety in their diet and always had a choice whether to remain vegetarian. Everyone's different, some will follow you and some won't, all you can do is lay down a good foundation for them and give them lots of love :flower:


Return to “Eco Parenting”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests