MegaEarthy: The Great Greening, Part 2


As explained in Part 1, I’m trying to use all-natural products and ingredients to clean my home, my body, and my family. I began in the nursery with the introduction of cloth diapers and wipes, with my own homemade wipe solution. So far, so good on that front!

My go-to diaper detergent

The laundry detergent and chemical-free dryer balls that I use for the diapers, also are working well on my regular laundry. My only issue is with the softness (or lack thereof) of my bath towels. Without any chemical softeners, they come out stiff and scratchy. . . Moving on.

BATHROOM
After researching homemade shampoo and conditioner, I elected to purchase a ready-made version. Many brands use the word “natural,” but that just means it contains something natural, not that the entire product is natural, making shopping difficult. However, after a trip to the local health-food store, I came away with products that I, so far, really enjoy. I already use a face wash that I purchased at the same store, and I love that also.

An area I am having difficulty with is cosmetics.  I would love to try Bare Minerals or something like it, but they are just too expensive.  The owner of the health food store gave me a sample of Kiss My Face’s tinted moisturizer as a foundation alternative, and I had my doubts, but I actually really like it! She also gave me a natural lip gloss, and not only does it look great, it tastes great too (honey mint)!  I have temporarily settled for some mineral make-up from Physicians Formula, though they are not exactly all-natural.  It’s the closest I could get at Rite Aid.

So many uses!

I also have had trouble finding an all-natural body wash.  The ones I was able to find at the drug store that claimed to be natural, still contained sulfates.  I decided to stick some Dr. Bronner’s in an old foaming soap dispenser that I had, since it’s quite watery.  The foaming really helps and the peppermint version I use is quite refreshing! I actually really loved a wash I had been given from ecoTools, but apparently they no longer produce it.

Also, the natural deodorants I have found aren’t that great.  They remain sticky and cause chaffing.  I’m experimenting with using a thinner layer; we shall see.

SO FAR:

A few set-backs; make-up, fabric softening, and deodorant are presenting challenges.  Dr. Bronner’s is amazing and has many uses;  I will see about getting the mild, baby version for replacing baby wash.  I’m already underway with household cleaning, but will include that in my next post.  Mostly, Dr. Bronner’s, vinegar, baking soda, and essential oils.  I will just say, my house smells amazing 🙂

To be continued. . .

MegaEarthy: The Great Greening, Part 1


I’m always interested in living more green.  These days, however, it takes a conscious decision and a bit of a commitment to really make it work.  It is easy to walk into the grocery store and pick up a bottle of laundry detergent, but even though my clothes may look cleaner, is it really the healthiest choice? They make “free and clear” alternatives, but those are usually still full of irritants and chemicals that are harmful to us.  The best option is to make our own alternative cleansers.  I’ve made attempts at this and do use some green cleaners, like Dr. Bronner’s, and also have made use of things like vinegar, baking soda, and tea tree oil to get things clean.  But, I do not feel my meager attempts are enough.

Green Cleaning Ingredients

Inspired by, yet another informative documentary, I have renewed my green resolve.  The film, Chemerical, follows a family which vowed to remove all the toxic chemicals – from cleaning supplies to make-up and shampoo – from their home.  I want to do this for my family!!  I have already made some steps in this direction, but I want to go all the way!  But, where to start?

The Nursery

May the Great Greening begin!

I’ll begin with the most vulnerable member of the family, the baby.  I began going green for baby a few months ago with replacing her disposable diapers with cloth diapers.  This was a move that surprised even me!  Another documentary, No Impact Man, inspired this decision (along with my crunchy friend, Anna!); one that I wish I had made sooner!  It requires a bit of a financial investment – one that you make up for quickly – and also a time commitment for laundry, but it’s worth it!  Such a simple way to go green!  I recently began making my own baby wipes and booty-cleaning solution, to replace the chemical-laden commercial wipes.  I’m a novice at the sewing machine, so it’s slow-going, but they are under way!

Next, for baby, I plan to look at replacing her shampoo, baby wash, and lotion.

The Laundry Room

Baby is also exposed to the same chemicals in laundry detergent as the rest of the family.  Now, this one seems trickier to me.  I do have a recipe for laundry wash, but am feeling pessimistic as to how the clothes will feel without softeners and anti-static preparations.  I will, however, keep an open mind and give it a try.  I am also wondering how well an alternative cleaner will work in my new high-efficiency machines; we shall see.  I am excited to find out!

To Be Continued . . .

Check back with MegaMomma Musings to see what other changes will be made, and how successful I’ve been in what I’ve done.  Please feel free to respond with tips or recipes to help me out!

MegaMommyWar


I know, I know. EVERYONE has an opinion about this and is saying it. It just so happens that I also have an opinion. To start, the only things I find distasteful about this cover are the detached manner in which breastfeeding is shown (the gal, while on the Today Show, did mention that this is NOT how they feed in real-life – they are much more cuddly), and the article’s title. I have yet to read the article, but I am quite familiar with Dr. Sears, and the premise of attachment parenting has nothing to do with, “we’re better than you.” This is just Time’s way of getting people’s attention. It worked.

So, am I mom enough? In the context of this article (which, like I said, I have not read), I’m pretty close! I believe cloth diapering is mentioned, and I’m proud to say that I’m on board! Never would I have believed that I would have jumped on this bandwagon, but here I am. It is a little time-consuming and, at times, a bit gross, but about diapering ISN’T? I love the fact that, while sparing landfills my child’s bodily waste, wrapped up in an eternal plastic-y wad, I am also saving money! I’m alway looking for ways to “go green,” and who doesn’t love saving cash? Not to mention the fact that I’m keeping chemicals off my child’s behind that go into the absorbent material in disposable diapers.  What IS that crap?? I digress. . .

Cloth Diaper

Sophie, showing off her bumGenius Freetime in their “Sassy” color

Moving on to the subject of attachment parenting. To be very clear, this “movement” is not just for crunchy hippies, it is not new age, and it is not even new. The very fact that this is controversial shows how unaware we are, as a culture, of the other cultures of the world. I’m talking about developed countries, not just primitive tribes. Extended breastfeeding is the norm. Co-sleeping is the norm. Baby-wearing is the norm. Our country is the one that is sick and simply messed up. It disturbs me how quick people are to judge.  I find it telling though, that when I read comments about this cover online, the disapproving ones are generally short and consist of something like, “Thats gross. The kids gunna b messt up,” while the people supporting it give lengthy, articulate, fact-full responses. Hmmm. It is shocking and disturbing to me how hurtful, biased, and positively MEAN some of the comments are. It does comfort me, somewhat, that it seems to be mostly the uneducated who are reacting this way. Those who are more intellectual and worldly, even if they don’t AGREE with the premise, don’t characterize AP parents as freaks; they simply don’t agree. I find nothing wrong with that.

I think, most importantly I want to make clear that there are no “rules” of attachment parenting. Dr. Sears (at least in his books, which I love) is adamant that you don’t have incorporate ALL aspects of AP in order to raise attached kids. There’s no, “do x, y, z, or you’re doing it wrong.” He advises using what works for YOUR family, as long as it’s working.

I’ll elaborate more on my own levels of “attachment” in the very near future. For now, to answer the question, “am I mom enough,” I’ll just say, I’m sure working on it! I hope, if nothing else, this cover and article will open people’s eyes to a different way of parenting. It’s not extreme, it’s not “gross,” and it’s not new. To each their own! Now, I need to go change my baby’s cloth diaper, put her in her sling, and breastfeed the heck out of her! Later!

I can TOTALLY do that, by the way!