Archives for January 2009

The Saturday Question: What was baby’s first food?

Many pediatricians recommend rice cereal as a standby, but conflicting information is emerging about making homemade porridge or feeding baby pureed avocados.  What did you first feed your little one and how was it received?  Did you get lots of advice from friends and family?  What seemed to work best?  Thanks for sharing your wisdom!

Family Planning and the Planet: To Breed or Not to Breed

Maybe I was a weird kid, but I remember worrying about overpopulation at a young age.  Last summer Jennifer Lance of Eco Child’s Play wrote Should We Stop Having Children to Save the Planet?  As someone who grew up with a consciousness of zero-population growth, I thought she made some excellent points.  She even includes some statistics from Mother Jones:

  • Zahara Jolie-Pitt will produce 45,000 lbs of CO2 yearly, compared with 221 lbs if she still lived in Ethiopia.
  • A typical baby goes through 3,800 disposable diapers in her first 2.5 years. (We have heard that it’s closer to 6,000!)
  • 96% of American babies wear disposable diapers. In China, only 6% do. In India, 2%.
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Cutting Costs in 2009: Part 1

With a recession underway and holiday bills coming due, many families are feeling the pinch this month.  But even if you’re feeling comfortable financially, January is a great time to evaluate spending and consumption in 2008 and set new goals for the year to come. 

In my family we look through our bank statements and think about how they line up with our priorities. 

1. Did we spend too much on a few things we didn’t need? 

We’re making far too many quick trips to the market that result in rash purchases.  Our goal for 2009 is to plan our meals each week and try to limit our shopping to one major trip.  Also, we tent to go a bit crazy in Grocery Outlet at times, buying some organic processed foods to stock our pantry that we sometimes don’t like in the end.


Ode to the Humble Prefold (Or, Why Prefolds Could Beat Pocket Diapers in a Diaper Duel)

Don’t get me wrong–I think pocket diapers (like these pictured from BumGenius) are adorable.  They come in a variety of prints and colors, look cute flapping in the breeze on the clothesline, and go on just like disposables.  That last reason is why I see many parents recommending pocket diapers to new parents or cloth diaper novices.  Joy went on and on about pocket diapers here and herePocket diapers are advertised as “daddy and daycare approved;” meaning, I suppose, that once they are stuffed with an absorbent liner, they go on just as easily as a disposable.

Before my daughter was born, I stocked up on three dozen prefold diapers (like these pictured) and about six Velcro covers (like these basic Prorap covers Audrey is wearing).  I chose this system because they were the more economical choice.  Prefolds run about $1.25 each, whereas a Fuzzibunz costs about $17 new and $7 used. 

Read Our New Article for 25 Ways to Green Your Pregnancy!

Our latest Green Baby Guide article is brought to you by Joy Harkins of the Just Plain Joy blog.  You’ll find twenty-five tips that will make you, your baby, and the planet happy.  Some you may have heard before (eat organic food) and others you may have never considered (purchase a scanner).  Enjoy!

25 Tips for a Green Pregnancy 

Three More Reasons I Love Pocket Diapers

#1  They have a high resale value.   Many people find it odd to consider the resale value of their diapers, but pocket diapers often sell for more than half of their retail value AFTER baby has used them.  They cost more up front, but it’s important to factor in how much they’ll earn you at a consignment shop. 

#2  They’re easier for traveling.  We always use our prefolds for weekend trips or even all-day excursions. They’re easier to put on and take off when we’re doing those creative diaper changes in a public restroom, your car trunk, or on your great aunt’s living room floor.


The Saturday Question: How did you gear up for your adopted child?

Adoption is catching on in America, which is a great thing for families, children and the environment.  We thought we’d ask the experts (adoptive parents) how they prepared for their new addition.  If a family knows they’re going to be welcoming a newborn there’s a lot more information about what you’ll need, but many adoptive families aren’t sure how old baby will be when the adoption proceedings are complete.  How did you deal with baby shower and gift registries?  What tips would you pass on to families who are beginning to prepare for their baby’s arrival?

The Thrill of Cloth

Here’s something disposable diaper-using parents may not understand: I truly enjoyed cloth diapering my daughter.  I didn’t just put up with it because I wanted to save money.  Nor was I slaving over those diapers as a sacrifice for Mother Earth.  Before my daughter was born, I pored over websites on the Internet, reading all about prefolds and diaper covers and laundering techniques.  Once I got my diapers, I admired their softness and cuteness; I couldn’t wait to try them out.  I even took pleasure in laundry days–ah, the anticipation of waiting for a nice, fresh batch of diapers to emerge from the dryer!

Welcome Back to the Thrifty Green Thursday Blog Carnival!

For most of us, going green isn’t about quantum leaps, it’s about tiny fledging steps that are made in the midst of our hectic lives as parents.  If you have a budget-friendly, earth-friendly tip (even one that seems a bit obvious to you) you’d be a perfect addition to Thrifty Green Thursday.  

What are the benefits of adding my post to the Thrifty Green Thursday carnival?

It’ll help you generate traffic for your site, put you in touch with like-minded bloggers, and give you a chance to pick up some easy tips for going green on a budget.

How do I join the carnival and link my post?


Lose that Post-Pregnancy Weight–for Free!

 “Get in shape” tops many of our New Year’s Resolutions lists, especially for those of us who just gave birth . . . three years ago.  So which weight loss program will work best for you?  Will you pay to join Jenny Craig or Weight Watchers, buy cans of Slim Fast, hire a personal trainer, or renew your gym membership?  While many have had success with those methods, it should be possible to shape up without spending any extra money. 

Here are some no-cost and low-cost alternatives to personal trainers and gyms:

  1. Walk.   I consider myself extremely un-athletic, so walking is my exercise of choice.  (Here’s my car-free with baby post.)  With a baby in tow, all you need is a carrier of some kind or a stroller.  I prefer to walk to specific destinations rather than ramble aimlessly, and I do almost all my errands by foot, whether I head to the grocery store, library, doctor’s office, or emergency room.  (Yes, I walked myself to the emergency room one time.  That’s how seriously I take my perambulations.)
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