My Little Pakora Giveaway–Win an Organic Onesie and Hat!

We’re always on the hunt for green companies providing quality baby products—and were excited to stumble on My Little Pakora.  The company’s eco-friendly values and South Asian roots were especially appealing to us.  Read our interview with the company’s founder, Sonia Gupta, to find out more!

GBG: What inspired you to start Little Pakora and what is your company’s mission?

Sonia: My daughter inspired me..after her birth in 2006 I realized that there was not a good forum for clothing inspired by South Asian culture. Also, I wanted a place where I could gain knowledge on how to integrate South Asian culture with Organic living which is the concept behind My Little Pakora. Our mission is to educate parents and create a fun clothing line that parents and kids alike will adore.

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Alternatives to Dishwashing Liquid: Bar Soap, Baking Soda, & Homemade Dish Soap Recipes

I just spent a year of trying various eco-friendly dish soaps to wondering if eco-friendly soaps were any better for the environment than conventional soaps.  After all this research and number crunching, I still haven’t figured out a way to please my pocketbook and the planet.  With even the SDA claiming that there is no environmental advantage to using “eco-friendly” soaps, perhaps the best solution is to stick with a concentrated conventional liquid that will keep some plastic bottles out of the recycling bin.

But what if you want to use something more natural, less toxic, unscented, or just . . . less mainstream?  Here are a few more alternatives to liquid dish soap:
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The Cheapest, Most Concentrated Eco-Friendly Dishwashing Liquid

Last year I bought a 32-ounce bottle of Biokleen dish soap for $4.79.  It lured me in with its seductive lemon-thyme scent but disappointed me with its lackluster performance in the kitchen.  Dishes came out greasy unless I used a LOT of the stuff, and I am not obsessive about dirt and grime.  I squeezed the last drop out of that bottle in less than six weeks. 

Six weeks for a bigger-than-average bottle?  This is what prompted me to pick up the $1.50 25-ounce bottle of generic, conventional dishwashing liquid.  It lasted from October to February–over 19 weeks!  In that time period, I would have had to buy at least two more bottles of Biokleen–and toss them in the recycling bin when they were empty.
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Natural Pod Review and Wooden Toy Giveaway

Rebecca and I were delighted to discover Natural Pod, a website full of quality, eco-friendly toys.  If we had endless baby budgets, we might find ourselves purchasing everything on their site—from the wooden oven to the fully waterproof suits for Oregon winters.  The toys and gifts are truly beautiful and heirloom quality.

Roscoe tried out the plates and cups from Natural Pod and has been enthralled with them for weeks.  He uses them to feed blocks to his stuffed squirrels and carefully carries then around the house with perfect balance.  Besides training him to be a waiter one day, I find that the simplicity of the cups and plates makes them wonderful for creative play.   He uses them as hats for his animals, builds block towers on the plates, and uses them to prepares several imaginary meals. 

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Organic Formulas–Worth the Price?

We’ve written a bit about breastfeeding and introducing cow’s milk, but what about infant formulas?  If you chose to feed your baby formula, how did you pick the brand?  Did you go with conventional formula or decide on an organic formula?

With so many organic products on store shelves, I was surprised to find very few organic formulas on the market:

Nature’s One Baby’s Only Organic Formula ($8.99 for 12.7 oz container–$.71/oz.) Note: This product claims to be a “toddler formula” and is not recommended for babies under twelve months old.

Earth’s Best Organic Formula ($14.95 for 13.2 oz container–$1.13/oz.)

Similac Organic Formula ($29.99 for 25.7 oz container–$1.17/oz.)

Bright Beginnings Organic Formula($149.95 for six 25.7 oz containers–$.97/oz.) Note: This brand appears to be available only online by the case.
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Green Baby Guide’s Sunday Round-Up of Great Green Posts

Mindful Momma lists some Good Green Reads for the Preschool Set.   If you are looking for some picture books with environmental themes that will please your young children, check it out.

Nature Moms reviewed Wysi Wipes, “an alternative to pre-moistened towelettes, facial tissue or paper towels.”  They come in tiny tablets, and you just add water to moisten them.  They’re compostable and biodegradable, so they’re better for the environment than your standard throw-away tissues.

Eco Child’s Play found some Eco-friendly, Solar-powered Night Lights that both young and old kids will appreciate.

Not Quite Crunchy Parent offers tips for getting your kids to talk about their day.  The comments section adds even more ideas that I’m tucking away for the future, once Audrey outgrows her “chattering toddler” phase.
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Organic Diaper Cakes Made from Nature BabyCare Eco-friendly Disposables (Giveaway!)

Grow In Style, an “organic diaper cake company,” would like to offer one of our readers this Organic 3 Tier Fall Fantasy Diaper Cake, made of forty size 1 Nature BabyCare diapers–a $39.00 value!  While we here at The Green Baby Guide love cloth, it’s nice to have a disposable diaper that’s greener than conventional brands.  Nature BabyCare diapers don’t use chlorine bleach and are free from oil based plastic.  Read a review of them on Baby Cheapskate.

Here’s some information Grow In Style gave us about Nature BabyCare diapers and their company:

About Nature BabyCare Disposable Diapers

Nature BabyCare Diapers are one of the two leading Eco Friendly Disposable Diaper Brands available to today’s market.  They are soft, breathable, chlorine free, and made with natural based material for natural protection.  There are absolutely no oil based plastics used in the making of the diapers, so no toxins come in touch with the delicate baby skin. Nature BabyCare went an extra step with the packaging which is based on 100% natural, renewable material providing an all around eco friendly product.
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Cloth Training Pants for a Pull-ups-free Life

When I started potty training Audrey, I wasn’t planning on buying disposable Pull-ups or even cloth training pants.  I just took her out of diapers and put her into underwear.  This actually worked, for the most part.  But then Audrey’s daycare provider said she was on board with potty training, but that Audrey would need to wear training pants.  I guess she wasn’t up for my “just wear underwear” technique, which admittedly results in a puddle here and there. 

So I looked around.  Our big grocery store carried Gerber training pants, but they didn’t carry them in Audrey’s size–ever.  I stopped by a drug store, which had disposable training pants, but no cloth ones.  Then I popped into two children’s consignment stores and came out empty handed.  Who knew cloth training pants were such a rare commodity?
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Make Better Packed Lunches with a Copy of Vegan Lunch Box (Giveaway!)

Are you stuck in a lunchbox rut but don’t think tempeh, bulgur, and sprouted mung beans are going to go over so well with the kids?  If you’re familiar with the Vegan Lunch Box blog, you already know that vegan lunches can be creative, tasty, and even beautiful.

Just look at one of the entries from a recent Vegan Lunch Box contest:

 

(This makes me feel pretty bad about the crumpled sack lunch Audrey lugs to daycare.)

Jennifer McCann’s popular blog is also a book: Vegan Lunch Box: 130 Amazing, Animal-Free Lunches Kids and Grown-Ups Will Love!

According to the publishers, Vegan Lunch Box includes . . .
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Pedoodles Eco-friendly Children’s Shoes–Plus Giveaway!

My daughter fell in love with her  Pedoodles Petal Jumpers the minute she pried them out of their eco-friendly box.   These shoes are well-made and comfortable for young walkers.  Flexible rubber soles protect delicate feet from the wet and pebbly ground.   On top of all this, Pedoodles leave a small footprint (pun intended!) because they’re made from “premium leather remnants from furniture.”  The soles are also made from recycled materials.

Joy’s son Roscoe, who sprints, jumps, and gallops through life, hasn’t managed to even scuff up these sturdy shoes yet.  He enjoys wearing them and looks rather dapper in the Blue Bumper Cars design.  We will always give you a truthful review here at The Green Baby Guide, and Joy and I both give these shoes our stamp of approval.
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