DIY Baby and Toddler Halloween Costume Ideas

Searching for the perfect baby Halloween costume this year? Green Baby Guide is here to help! We have heaps of ingenious costume ideas to share with you in these crucial weeks before Halloween. So where should you start? You could just slip baby into a carved pumpkin–which will double as a compostable diaper! It might not be so practical for trick-or-treating, but great for a few entertaining photos!

If you’re going green on a budget with baby, and you want to impress everyone with your creativity, just start looking around the house. Perhaps you can find a bit of lettuce and a blanket, and handily make your little one into a “baby burrito.” Or, with a yellow onsie and some brown shorts your bald bambino can easily transform into Charlie Brown. For more ridiculously easy ideas, check out Last-Minute DIY Baby and Toddler Halloween Costume Ideas.

Saving Sour Milk: When Does Going Green Turn Gross?

Personal confession: My greatest green motivation is resourcefulness…and the inability to throw things away. So when about a gallon and a half of milk started to get a little funky, I was sure that I could save it.

Time was limited! I warmed some of the milk enough to re-pasturize it, and then blended it with peanut butter, chocolate and banana to make frozen fudgecicles. Sadly, that only used about three cups of milk.

Onward to a lasagna with béchamel sauce, blended with a bit of pesto. Six cups of milk later, I still had a half a jug on my hands. How could I save every drop?

Why I Want A Chevy Volt (and Can’t Afford One…)

An acquaintance just raved to me that her new Chevy Volt is a delight to drive and makes the Toyota Prius appear to be a gas hog. From that moment on, I was hanging from her every word.

A full charge of the Chevy Volt costs my friend just a few dollars and keeps her running at full speed (up to 100 MPH) for a full 38 miles. If she travels farther than that, the gas engine kicks in and earns about 98 miles per gallon from there on out. The car can go a maximum of 300 miles without needing charging or gas. Plus, right now the Volt comes with a $7,500 tax incentive and a program to install a charging station (for free) in your garage.

How Do You Make Dinner When You’re an Exhausted or Stressed Parent?

Do you make everything from scratch? Are you part of a dinner cooperative so that you can skip cooking a few nights a week? Have you embraced take-out or frozen entrees in exchange for a bit more time or sleep? Do you spend a few nights a week making huge batches of food that last for awhile? Are you an expert crockpot cook?

Those first few weeks with new babies, I embraced the casseroles that friends and family delivered to buoy us along. Dinner was beyond me, but I was also consumed with hunger from being awake so long and breastfeeding so often.

An Autumn Trip to a Local Farm

At 1:37 yesterday afternoon, I was suddenly struck by brilliance. Why not scoop our children into the car and head out into the bright September sun to a nearby farm? Farms like Thistledown, our local favorite, cater to families by featuring a small zoo of roosters, rabbits, exotic hens, and the world’s friendliest donkey. (Although I have to admit he’s the only donkey I’ve ever known.) My son, Roscoe, is deadly serious about carefully patting and scratching him just between the ears. When we walk away, the donkey brays loudly in complaint. My kids are shocked, and also quite satisfied with the burro’s newfound dependence on their special care.

Is Bokashi Bin Composting Difficult?

No. In fact it’s ridiculously simple. In fact, I think Bokashi bucket composting it’s far easier than traditional composting. Why? You don’t have to tromp out to a bin every day to dump watermelon rinds and eggshells. Instead you store the compost in covered buckets in your home or garage. Every week or two I have to bury a bucket in the backyard, but that’s it.

Since Bokashi Bin composting allows you to dump all food waste (including grains, meat, bread, seafood and all fruits and veggies), we have processed all of our own food garbage for nearly a year now. Where is all of it? Surprisingly, all the food scraps from a family of four have very quickly turned into a small mound of dirt in a garden bed.

Should You Buy an Organic Crib Mattress or Save Up for a Bigger Organic Mattress?

The good news is that prices on organic crib mattresses have gone down in the last few years and there are now several inexpensive organic crib mattresses available for less than two hundred dollars. But what if you end up co-sleeping most of the time? Or what if your child shifts to a bigger bed early and spends just a short time on that organic crib mattress? Should you just bypass the organic crib mattress and invest in a twin or queen organic mattress from the beginning?

The cost of any organic mattress makes this a very valid question. The strong>Natura World Organic Foundation Twin Mattress is one of the most economical, and it costs about $575. strong>Naturepedic’s 2 in 1 Organic Twin Mattress comes in at about $700. Still, if you think about your child using the mattress for fifteen years, the cost per year is far less than buying an organic crib mattress that they would use for a fraction of that time.

Is Your Baby Carrier or Sling too Complicated?

Mine was. I once became trapped inside my Baby Bjorn Carrier with my snoozing infant snuggled on my chest. I was desperate for sleep and wanted to lay my baby down so that I wouldn’t roll on top of him, carrier and all, but I was utterly unable to figure out how to get it off. Instead I sat on the couch and cried until my husband got home. Was sleep deprivation a factor? Absolutely! But this was my least favorite baby carrier. Did other moms have this experience with complicated slings or baby carriers?

Natural and Organic Crib Mattresses for Less

When we first began writing our book, The Eco-nomical Baby Guide, organic crib mattresses were available only to families who were able to shell out several hundred bucks. How thrilling then to see that by the time the book was published, the market demand really had driven down the price of organic crib mattresses! Check out some of the organic options available to families now!

The Sealy Naturalis Crib Mattress with Organic Cotton is just $95! It’s not completely organic, but for families on a budget at least it’s a more organic option than a standard mattress.

The LA Baby Organic 2 in One Orthopedic Crib Mattress is currently about sixty dollars off, coming in at just $107 on amazon. That’s more than 30% off!

How Do You Get Rid of Baby Gear and Toys?

Do you pass it onto friends? Do you sell it on craigslist? Do you host a garage sale?

It seems I spend the majority of my life buying, cleaning, storing, and eliminating stuff. Toys and gizmos flow into our home from birthday party goodie bags, garage sales, and grandparents. But how much of my life do I spend picking up tiny lego figures (or their tinier baseball caps) and plastic tea cups off of the living room floor?

Last night I reached a breaking point and snuck into my children’s bedrooms while they slept. I mercilessly tossed stuffed tigers and worn t-shirts into giant black garbage bags and felt the utter thrill of having less stuff to manage. Today I drove through our local Goodwill drop off site and happily said goodbye to heaps of belongings.