I never realized exactly how wasteful people can be until I became a mom. I never really paid any attention to how much garbage I threw out, because honestly it wasn't very much. That all changed the day I had my son. We changed his diaper every 3 hours around the clock, because that is what we were taught to do at the hospital. Then, as he got older we went through container after container of baby food. It seemed like I was emptying the garbage bin every hour because it was full again.
One day I took a look at myself and realized how wasteful I was being. Not only was I the complete opposite of "eco-friendly," but I was wasting money too. I realized that I needed to take a page out of my grandma's book and be a little thriftier. Being thrifty is easy on the wallet and on the environment. There are many ways that us moms can do our part and reduce our carbon footprint by making a few small changes to our lifestyles.
I know what you're thinking -- the thought of hand washing your child's dirty diaper makes you want to vomit. Not only that, but why in the world would you put that in your washing machine where you are washing your clothes? The truth is, cloth diapering is not what it used to be. The gear and tricks have come a long way, and it's not as nauseating as it may have been back in the day. Most of the reasons us moms have for avoiding cloth diapers are more than likely age-old myths. By switching from disposable diapers you are reducing waste, and saving yourself a ton of money; it can get expensive buying diapers every week!
Make Your Own Baby Food
This is another thing that gets scoffed at. In fact, most people would make fun of a mom that blends up her own baby food. The truth is, this is the best way to do it. When you already have carrots, green beans, and sweet potatoes in your fridge, why would you go and buy cases of them blended up and sold for around $1.25 a piece? It just doesn't make sense. Sure, it might be easy to grab a container of baby food and feed your little one right then and there, but the alternative is not much harder. You get way more bang for your buck, you know exactly what is in the food you are feeding your child, and you are helping the environment by reducing on waste. It sounds like a win-win situation to me.
Let's be honest here -- not many people are going to puree their own baby food. That's ok, too. The main issue here is that you will be throwing out tons of plastic containers once your baby finishes it off. If you are throwing out a lot of waste, but you still want to be eco-friendly, you need to think about recycling. Honestly, everyone should be recycling. This is the easiest thing that everyone can do, and it can make a huge impact. It is very simple to set up a home recycling center, and your kids might even find it fun to sort the trash and put it in the proper bins.
Are you the mom that throws out the wipe container every time it's empty, then buy a new one when you go to the store? I've been there, and I am guilty of it too. When it cost very little to buy a new one, why save the old one? Reusing simple things like these that don't go bad is one of the most important things we can do to help the environment. Little by little, we can cut down waste and again, save ourselves a little money. So many things get thrown away every day that are still perfectly fine, instead of reused. I challenge you to take a second thought each time you are about to throw something out, and ask yourself if it can be reused.
All it takes is a few tweaks to your everyday routine, and you can help out the environment in many different ways. By using cloth diapers, making your own baby food, recycling and reusing things, you are teaching your kids to care about the environment and value things a little more. Instead of raising our children in a world where we throw something away as soon as we are done with it, let's teach them the value of a dollar, and the value of mother nature.