What is Hardest About Green Parenting Right Now?

Is it deciphering cloth diaper vocabulary?  (Like hybrid, chinese prefold, pocket diaper, all-in-one?)  Is it being able to afford the organic produce you’d like to buy?  Is it the physical challenge of early breastfeeding?  Do you need some homemade babyfood recipes? Or are you still trying to prepare for baby’s arrival with the planet in mind?

My children are now leaving the realm of babyhood and hearing your questions and challenges keeps us connected with what our readers need in those early days of parenting.  If you have a problem, chances are there are dozens of other women face the same dilemma.  Thanks for sharing ideas that we can present to our readers for future Friday questions!


  1. The two things challenging me the most right now are 1) affording organic/local foods as much as possible (boy, do I wish we could grow our own!) , 2) avoiding chemicals in toys and baby/kid items. Many of the chemical-free items are so expensive and we keep finding more and more dangerous stuff (lead, pthalates, BPA, and now BPS which is found in a lot of items that are BPA-free). Ugh. It is so hard to keep on top of this stuff!

  2. I agree with Sarah completely!

    In addition, it’s finding the time to look into (and use) local greener options. I’m not sure your blog can help with that. For example, I could pick up a loaf of bread at my grocery store while I’m there or I could make a separate trip to a bread store that will let me re-use my plastic bread bags.

  3. I agree with Sarah!

    Once you figure out the whole organic healthy eating and finding the best deals, you then are staring at a big pile of chenicals I like to call toys!!!

    I want to be able to get rid of the plastics and all the things that are made from China but I want my 2 and 3 year old to enjoy the toys. You can only have so much wooden cars and they fall apart so easily–well in my house they do.

    It is also so difficult for grandparents to take no for an answer or even direct them to get something. They see something and buy it on a whim there is no thought to it. They are sometimes worse than the kids and they see something big colorful and plastic and go “I want to get that!!!!”

  4. In all honesty, the most challenging part is trying not to get depressed from all of the information I’m learning!

  5. Now that I have a 14 month old, the hardest part is just keeping up with her. Joking aside, the hardest part is finding time to do it all. I’m a full-time, stay-at-home mom and a part-time freelancer. Right now I have a load of diapers in the wash, tomato plants hardening off on the back porch and squash plants in my livingroom that need to be watered and planted out, a garden that needs to be weeded, a pile of work to get done before tomorrow’s meeting, errands to be run, ….. The never-ending list is pretty standard for most moms but trying to be a green parent means things take longer. I launder diapers instead of buying disposables. I grow veggies, go to CSA pickups, and cook from scratch instead of picking up fast food. My laundry pile is bigger because we use handkerchiefs instead of paper tissues. My dishes take longer because we reuse things like aluminum foil and Ziplock baggies and because we do so much from-scratch cooking. Some things we give up, some things we work around (we only use aluminum foil about twice a year – too much of a pain to clean), but most green changes take more time.

  6. Right now my biggest challenge is trying to find green-friendly nursery furniture and toddler furniture. I am pregnant with my second child and need to find a non-toxic twin bed and organic mattress for my two year old so we can use the crib she currently sleeps in. I also would love to buy a new mattress for the crib since the one we have currently is organic, but uses boric acid for the flame retardant. Besides the fact that buying those items will cost us an arm and a leg I have to keep up with everything else being a stay-at-home Mom entails. My list is pretty similar to Angie’s, except that I did not go the cloth diaper route. Trying to live off one income is much harder than I ever realized it would be and when you try to do it as green and healthy as possible it is that much more difficult.
    We always cook our meals at home from scratch, don’t go on many (more like none!) vacations or trips, don’t buy new clothing, etc. I had intended to start an organic garden this year to help us with our growing vegetable costs, but with a lack of energy due to pregnancy I just couldn’t get it done. Next year for sure.
    The information about toxins just keeps surfacing and I find myself rather overwhelmed and depressed with the notion that I can’t possibly avoid everything I would like to.

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