I’m trying to live my life as green as my situation and priorities allow, however in this modern world its easy to fall into the convenience trap. However I’ve chosen not to get down on myself when it happens. I’ve seen a lot of negativity on some of the chat boards and Facebook groups I’m in when someone uses modern conveniences vs a greener product/method/food. Honestly I’m sick of it, I’m sick of all the negativity, I’m tired of hearing people say they are leaving a group after being attacked. Its just silly, we live in a modern world and short of moving out to the bush and living off the land, there is no getting away from that.
I don’t understand the point of exposing our kids to the chemicals in disposable diapers, but do I use them? Yes sometimes I do, and its ok, I make the best product choices I can (no bleach, less chemicals) and only use them when I have to (mainly with teething diaper rashes.) I prefer to take care of colds and other illnesses with oils and healthy eating habits, however sometimes it just doesn’t cut it and I go get an antibiotic or take some acetaminophen. We eat the best we can with as little processed foods as is reasonable for our life however we did eat out today at a fast food place and you know what its ok. I’ve even committed the cardinal sin a time or two of forgetting my cloth bags….and you know what? I wasn’t struck by lighting.
Why can’t we be supportive of each other? Why is a paper bag a reason to have 20 people attack you in a group? Why can’t we just all understand that living the perfect green life isn’t possible and that is ok? I
‘ve found that while the internet can be an amazing tool, it is also a great way for people to hide behind a made up identity or anonymous name and attack others. If we were kids this would be called bullying and there are a lot of anti-bullying campaigns going around. How come its ok for adults to bully but not kids? So what about my non green friends? I must have great ones because I’ve never gotten any flack for my choices from any of them.
How can we stop this? I can’t, not really, I’m talking about other adults here, I can’t tell them what to do or say. I can make sure that I’m not part of the problem though. I will choose not to comment negatively to others, I will not add fuel to the fire by calling out those rude people on their rudeness (man does that take a bad post down a deep hole quickly.) I’ll start with encouraging others and hopefully more will follow.
In our house we have a thin green line we tightrope on. We are constantly finding our comfort level of being ‘crunchy.’ It’s one of those things we have NO problems with our friends either way, its all about personal comfort. I would say for the most pert we are the most zealous of our friends in how far we are willing to go. However we are quickly finding more and more things that we know are bad or unhealthy but need to choose weather or not we are going to take the step to eliminate it from our lives.
For example eating out, we know that 90% of restaurants don’t care about the quality, sustainability, additives or chemicals used in/around their food, BUT we still go out to eat and not only at the 10% of the restaurants we know care about these things. HOWEVER have you ever noticed that the more you do something the easier it is to do next time? Its a slippery slope…. last week we went out 3 times! Since we aren’t traveling, that is 2 times to many.
We have already decided that recycling, eating healthy at home, cloth diapers, essential oils and green cleaning products are the way to go for us. However we are being presented with new questions everyday, organic vs non, exposure to chemicals (in a pool for example) vs staying home, heck something as simple as using the Clorox wipes at work to clean my work station when I leave (we share stations) vs not cleaning or going out of my way for a vinegar/water solution.
The current dilemma was the pool, Apple LOVES the water and I wanted to get her into swim lessons as soon as possible, however public pools mean chlorine, something we have 100% eliminated from our home. We decided to go ahead with lessons but to take a few extra steps:
- Rinse before hand to help keep chlorine from leaching into the hair
- Showering immediately afterward
- Uusing some essential oils to help draw the chemicals out of the body as fast and safely as possible. (Remember babies can’t handle the strong levels of detoxing adults and older children can so don’t over do it.)
I’m still doing some research but for now I think we will just be doing a few drops of Purification in a pure lotion and rub it on after the lesson.
There are going to be many more decisions like this in the future, the decisions between health and fun will be the hardest but I think both Mac and I are on the same page, a little fun never hurt anyone. I’m actually a little jealous of my friends who say their kids haven’t had fast food or VERY RARELY eat added sugar but I just don’t think that is going to work for us. It’s a thin green line.
I will admit I’m quite proud of the green choices we make around our house. We recycle more than we trash, we cloth diaper, use re-usable water bottles when we are out and about, carry around our own bamboo silverware and use glass straws.
However there are other areas where we could be more green but for sanity’s sake we have decided against it. Mac uses plastic water bottles around the house…why I don’t quite understand to be honest, however his water consumption increased drastically since this change so its a good thing. As long as he recycles the bottles I have no problem with it. I still use disposable female products (except the diva cup love that thing) why? Because for some reason I can handle washing diapers but not that…. I also still use a paper planner for my daily to do lists….I just like it better this way, I’m very tactile.
Sometimes for the sanity of the house the non-green option is the right option. Sometimes we need to take the ‘easy’ way (because isn’t that what these new fangled disposable ways are right?) Back in the day “A woman’s place was in the home” because it had to be, there was no time for a 40 hour work week plus cooking from scratch (umm butchering the hen?) washing laundry by hand (let alone sewing the clothes) cleaning the house and taking care of the kids, just to name a few things. Then there was the invention of the sewing machine, factories, dish washers, clothes dryers, pre-packaged food and cars. Wonderful amazing things that help our house survive.
As I’ve said before its all choices and we each have to decide what level of hippy-dom is right for us. I think our house is a pretty good middle of the road mix, and I’m happy that way.
Since 2011 I’ve been setting up Aspirations instead of resolutions. In my brain there is a pretty big difference between the two. I think having aspirations for a year gives me something to strive for while at the same time allowing for the fact that I’m human and sometimes things just don’t go according to plan. THese aspirations have included everything from reducing the amount of garbage we throw away to reducing debt. 2012 brought out my first word or phrase of the year with “Less is More” in 2013 my word was “Better” This year my theme is going to be:
This year I want to keep life simple, we added a baby into our world and that will complicate things enough without me adding to it. So here it goes in 2014 I want to:
- Use cleaners with simple/basic ingrediants.
- Use natural remadies as much as possiable (essential oils for example.)
- Not add to our already cluttered house by adding a lot of unessacary things. This includes too many toys/clothes for the baby as well. I don’t want her to grow up thinking she needs lots of stuff to be happy.
All of these things are green and simple! Here is to a Simple new year!
My aspirations this year were pretty straight forward
- When shopping if its in budget make the better (greener) choice.
- I want to do better and buying less.
I think I’ve done pretty good with each of these actually. We have almost always made the greener purchase regardless of budget. In fact I would say we have re-done our budget to accomodate for it. I’m pretty proud of that, we have switched over all of our cleaning supplies and most other household items (shampoo, soap, vitamins) to a better brand and a company we feel good about supporting.
Also over all I think we did good with our purchases, there wasn’t much we bought that wasn’t needed some for sure but not much compared to last year. Also we were great about furnishing our new room with items from craigslist. I know that this can create a controversey especally about cribs but no fear we checked recalls, its not a drop side crib and its in perfect condition. We also got a rocking chair, pack and play, swing, arms reach side sleeper, her jumper and play saucer! All in great condition and 1/2 the price or less!
Some of the consignment clothes I bought.
I also started using essential oils instead of OTC meds this year and I’m LOVING them. You can see my starting post here
and my oils to the rescue post here.
So over all I’m pretty proud of this year!