I've been fiddling with the idea of turning Green for some time now. Not sick green, but the eco-friendly organic kind of green.
Before I became pregnant with my son, I started learning about chemicals in everyday products that we use. I had some fertility issues, so I made some changes to my lifestyle. I ended up becoming pregnant with my son about 6 months after I started making educated choices on the products I use. It's been over 2 years since I've used regular laundry detergent (I only buy dye and fragrance free) and 1 year since I've used fabric softener and dryer sheets. I sometimes make my own laundry detergent, and sometimes I buy the actual all natural products in the store. I also use vinegar a lot as an all-purpose cleaner, in addition to the all natural products that I find on clearance at the grocery store.
I have very slowly been weeding out white sugar by replacing my baked goods with Agave Nectar or honey. I have never used "junk" baby products on my babies; I have only used Burt's Bees shampoo and body wash, and Burt's Bees lotions, since these products are all natural and have no parabens. In case you haven't read, there is research out there stating that parabens (preservative in products), are linked to cancer.
I thought I was doing an okay job at doing my part in going green, as well as doing a pretty good job of keeping junk away from my babies...Then, I went to my cousin's bridal shower yesterday. Boy, I have a lot to learn! She is the most eco-friendly person I've met (in person, anyway). In honor of her day, all of the food was organic, including the chicken breasts for the sandwiches. None of the gifts were wrapped, and no greeting cards were given (besides the gift card holders). Her gifts were healthy usable products, like a bamboo food steamer, pjs made of cotton and bamboo, bamboo cooking utensils, and absorbent dishcloths. There were 30 people there, and everyone ate off of real plates, and drank out of real glasses, because my cousin doesn't use products that need to be thrown away.
At church this morning I asked my friend about the candles she makes, because my cousin asked for some candles for her shower, and didn't get any. She told me the candles were all natural organic candles with no dyes. Wow, I am so not on the "green" wagon! I burn Glade candles!
After doing lots of research, because that's what I have to do, I think I might buy some of those healthy candles. For my cousin, and for myself. That's the first new change I'm making.
The second change is...I think I might give up food coloring! While researching the dyes in candles, I remembered reading something a few months ago about food coloring. I found this article, which has a lot of very good information about food coloring. This might be a hard one for me, because I bake a lot, and make fun birthday cakes for my nieces and nephews. I will try my best to avoid buying products that have food coloring added. It's a step, right? I can't really afford much more than that right now :0) Green is so costly!
I am making Easter cookies for the Youth Talent Show at church this Saturday. I am going to try and make colored royal icing by using fruit puree instead of food coloring. I hope it works!
Are you on the fence about any "green" habits? I'd love to hear them!