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Green Mamas Tribe! - Page 2

post #21 of 101
I read but I don't read. I skim mostly and hit the parts that interest me most.So like right now I am "reading" i think 3 books- Table for 8, The Indigo Child and Birthing from within. I could do that with books here too.

I really like the monthly topic idea.As I feel I am "new" and don't know how much I can share but want to hear the How To's.

There's my vote!
post #22 of 101
Hi everyone! I am waiting for my Zoe to wake up so she can nurse, so I have a few minutes ...

I am 42, married with 3 kids, living begrudgingly in a big city. I am beginning to despise the word Green and leaning more toward the concept of living Simple. I'm trying to figure out how best to teach by example ... my personal goal for my family is a Zero Footprint lifestyle, in every way. We fall off the wagon occasionally, but for the most part, we rarely buy anything new, we rarely throw anything away, and we are all about not being wasteful. (we do a LOT more than that, but I don't think this is the place to outline all the 'green' things we do)

I hate that it's so expensive to do the right thing. So, as a result, some of our other habits (resale) help us to save money to upgrade our food, for instance. We drive biodiesel vehicles and try to buy produce from a co-op or farmers market instead of the grocery store (because 'local' is the new 'organic'). We also try to make our own food as much as possible to limit packaging and crappy ingredients. I wish we could walk or use mass transit, but we live in a place where that's virtually impossible. And with a newborn, we can't ride bikes.

Our dream is to sell the house and buy an RV trailer and live on the road - with solar panels on the roof ... we'll have to go with a big truck instead of our little VW station wagon, but the overall gain will be worth it.

My exciting news for today is that we're getting chickens!!! We're getting a coop tomorrow, and getting 4-5 chickens as soon as we can. This is part of 'closing the loop' that we love. We already compost and have a minimal garden, but this has even more purpose.

post #23 of 101
I just came across this thread. I am trying to do my part toward "simple living". I like that term jrabbit. Unfortunately, living in a small apartment in the city (right outside New York CIty) makes that difficult at times. I also have some physical limitations that make some things harder for me. Since we live in an apartment we are not allowed to use solar panels or have a clothes line or compost. Put over the last few months I have begun using homemade laundry soap, eco friendly dish soap, bring my own bags to the store, use mama cloth and family cloth, cloth "paper towels and kleenex". We haven't bought any paper products other than tp for the boys in a very long time. I sew most of my son's clothes and some of mine. I also sew reusable snack bags and sandwich wraps that I sell on etsy. I am vegetarian and try to buy organic as much as I can. Unfortuantely DH is not veg and does't really see the need for organic or even whole foods. He is the ultimate junk food junkie and would live on fast food and tv dinners. So we do a lot of double cooking at our house. Eventually I want to compost kitchen scraps but haven't gotten there yet. My car is 13 years old and gets 42 miles per gallon so I feel pretty good about driving it.

I am on my "do over" family. After raising five children, mostly as a single mom, I remarried. I have a beautiful 6 year old son that we adopted in Guatemala when he was 5 months old. We are homsechooling him. I have 8 grandchildren, three of them are also homeschooling.

Well, this gives you a general idea of who I am. Glad to meet all of you.

post #24 of 101
I have a story. Yesterday I went to the grocery and had forgotten my shopping bags at home so decided to buy new ones (I never seem to have enough anyways!) instead of breaking down and using paper. In line I grabbed my two bags and put them on the belt. The guy in front of me then grabbed one for his groceries! He hadn't been intending to buy one but just the act of sseing someone else do it inspired him to do so! I made me feel good to pay it forward kinda in this way! I hope it happens agian.

I konw not a big deal but made me feel good!:
post #25 of 101
How's everyone doing? Have we decided on what we are going to do yet?

Don't want this to get lost!Soooooo......

post #26 of 101
Thread Starter 

No coal! Stop global warming!

This is such a great group! Thanks for all the votes. I'll be compiling them shortly.

I had to come here and share that the biggest rally and civil disobedience ever to stop global warming and climate change is happening this Monday March 2. Check it out!: If you're on the east coast, go! This'll definitely be in the history books.

post #27 of 101
Originally Posted by harmonymama View Post
This is such a great group! Thanks for all the votes. I'll be compiling them shortly.

I had to come here and share that the biggest rally and civil disobedience ever to stop global warming and climate change is happening this Monday March 2. Check it out!: If you're on the east coast, go! This'll definitely be in the history books.

That sucks - I'm in the DC area but have to work and am nearly out of sick days for the school year! Why can't they do more of these things on weekends!
post #28 of 101
Hi I would like to join this group also. Somethings my family does to preserve this precious place we call earth.
-Turn off lights when not being used
-Use CFL light bulbs
-Recycle all that we can
-Buy second hand
-Cloth diaper
-Use reusable menstral items
-Make own laundry/dish washer soap
-No chemical use
-Work for a chemically free cleaning products company out of Canada
-Use reuable shopping bags
-Carpool as much as possible or don't drive
-eat organic/local
-Line dry laundry, when possible
-Started recycleing program at church

glad to have found this tribe, Peace, Love and Recycle to all my fellow Tree Huggers!:
post #29 of 101
I just found this group. I'm 30, married, mother of 3 girls. Every year, we try more and more to lessen our carbon footprint. We limit our buying, keep lights off, don't heat rooms we're not in, winterize, etc... There are also things that I'm not ready to do, like family cloth. Maybe someday I'll change my mind. Maybe someone on here will change my mind.

I noticed that a few people have mentioned it being expensive to be green. I've found it to be the opposite. Some green products are expensive, but do we really need all of those products? It would be great to be totally off the grid and still have our luxuries, but we can also start doing other things that save our planet and save us money. I'd like to see some discussions on being green without breaking the bank. Maybe links to DIY resources.
post #30 of 101
When I think of it being expensive being green, I think of the replacement of items, such as our HVAC. The one we replaced wasn't super old, but we found out it was way oversized and very inefficient. We were wasting so much $ and gas to power it. When We decided on the model we bought, it was quite a bit more than the less efficient models, but it saves us a lot of money and gas, because it is 3 stage - it can run basically on low medium and high, depending on out heating and cooling needs.

Being green is cheaper in instances when we buy from the thrift store or go no poo, or clean with vinegar and rags.

Right now, we're spending a lot to make our new-to-us house greener and more efficient, but the expenses now should save us a ton of energy and $ in years to come.

I'm hoping being green will get lots less expensive for us in the next two years, once we finish our major improvements.
post #31 of 101
I agree. The intial investment to be green can be/get quite costly, but in the long run it will save money and resources.

For example, the company that I work for sell it's cloths for $14.50 a piece, but with this cloth I do not have to use paper towel or cleaners to clean and disinfect. I can use this towel up to 6 years and wash it in my washing machine. So to buy these cloths is a little pricey but in the end it saves nt only money, but your quality of life and the environment also.

Same with diapers and feminine products. To use cloth saves on waste, pollution from production and money from not having to buy more each week/or month.

Food, I buy organic on the products that have the most pesticide obsorbtion. Like, grapes, berries, carrots, things that have thin skin. Tougher skinned produce isn't as nessecary to buy organic.

This is a huge step for newbie greens but with time these changes become habits and you develop new ones and find your own ways to pinch the pennies. Baby steps to saving our Earth! :
post #32 of 101
I think I may be one of those that thinks going green can be expensive but that's for us.We are "low" income and the start ups on things-like going to all cloth- funds aren't availble to do.We do what we can when we have the extra $- ex. used tax return $ to buy our CDs I got one sizes because we will not have the funds in the future to go up sizes but had the extra money now to spend more on OS.

As for cleaning I grew up cleaning w/vinegar and b.soda so its natural to me now, but things like dish soap are sometimes we can only afford the $1 soap and I know that's not always best for the enviroment.I did recently buy 7th Gen dish soap because it was on sale and have found I need less so I'll buy it agian because it'll last longer which = less $ spent.

Organic food for us is the most expensive.I have read that if you only do one organic food product it should be cow's milk but for us that is undoable.We go thru a gal. on milk a day (remember there are 7 of us-5 dc dh and I) and organic milk is over $5 per gal here where I can get store brand 2 packs for $6.25. I try to buy organic in other places and hope to have a garden this summer.

We do buy most of our clothes at resale stores and do hand me downs and swaps w/other families.Also we get most things that we need for furniture this way too.
post #33 of 101
Thread Starter 
I agree about the initial cost that eventually becomes much more economical. I've really seen that in how I shop. It used to seem so costly to shop at health food stores and eat organic (and gluten-free) for a family of four, but that was when I was still buying a lot of packaged food (I didn't think of it as a lot at the time) and produce at Wild Oats. Now I get the bulk of our food at Farmer's Markets, and can do my Whole Foods run every couple of months in 10 minutes for the handful of luxury things we can't get at Farmer's Markets (25-lb. bags of brown rice, canned coconut milk, rice pasta). Now our staples are locally-grown squash, potatoes, and beans with occasional pasture-fed or heritage organic chicken or wild-caught salmon, add to that locally-grown basil-pecan pesto, and tons of seasonal produce and we eat pretty delicious, cheap, healthy food. It took a long-time of changing our eating habits to get to this point, but now I wouldn't dream of taking the family out to eat or making meals based on packaged foods.

On another note, today was the Capitol Climate Action- the largest rally and civil disobedience to push for climate legislation ever! I wish I could have been there in person, but watched the March on streaming video as I cleaned my kitchen. There were some really inspiring speakers and singers-- the music was amazing. I posted several links on my blog where you can see photos, articles, and video of the day!

post #34 of 101
Thread Starter 
Oops, that link was the CNN article. For other links, here's my blog:

post #35 of 101
My sister and I were having an interesting conversation last night about the impact of what we do on the Earth and she brought up having children since she doesn't/will not ever have any. I was curious as to how you all feel about that. I have two bio children and one adopted so I was thinking ok, how does this work. We have the biological kids that replace us, but what about my adopted babe, does she count in the equation since we didn't physically give birth to her? Or do you not even consider children in your carbon footprint? I know, a weird pondering, but it was fresh on my mind this morning.
post #36 of 101
I have been thinking of posting here over the past few days. Ever since reading people's posts I have thought about what else I can be doing. One major thing I have been doing over the past couple of weeks is turning lights off...or not turning them on in the first place. I got into the habbit of thinking I needed to turn on lights every time I went into a room, even during the day and especially when i am working in the kitchen. I am so much more aware now and think about it any time I turn a light on.

As for our children and our carbon footprint...I have never thought about that before...I am interested to hear what people have to say about that.
post #37 of 101
Thread Starter 
I have definitely thought about how many children I have in relationship to a sustainable population for the Earth. In terms of carbon footprint I am not sure, but in our culture I'm pretty sure its the more, the bigger at this point... We have two biological children now and that seems appropriate as it is slightly below replacement number... I often yearn for another, but sustainability is one of the reasons I have not chosen that...

However, I will say that how many children a family has is certainly completely different from how many cars, or houses, or hair dryers, etc. I think children are valuable and precious beyond how we calculate a carbon footprint, particularly if we teach them to live VERY lightly on the earth. So I would respect that some families may feel called to have more children (but I hope not too many at this point in human history).

Living in Africa definitely gave me a different perspective on this as well, because children are traditionally thought of as wealth, and big families are prized, in part because so many children die young. But that is definitely changing... women always asked me about contraception when I was there.

I too have been even more careful about lights, have started turning off my computer at night and unplugging most everything. Thanks for the support and inspiration!
post #38 of 101
Thread Starter 
I forgot- I have thought about adopting a child rather than having another bio child. I think that could only be considered a positive, sustainable choice. Children need homes, so adoptive parents are my heroes!
post #39 of 101
Wouldn't having a couple of eco-friendly kids be better than one non-eco friendly kid? I'll think about it that way. Plus, if you have one kid who solves a major eco crisis, it should negate almost any other "bad" things that might occur from having more kids... I need to talk to Ari about going into a science field when she gets older...
post #40 of 101
we have also thought a lot about # of children. i was always convinced that zero population growth was essential to the survival of the planet - i still am - but we know many ppl with zero children, so we joked about having "Helen's" child ... how since she didn't have kids, we weren't really hurting things by having more than 2. it's a bit of a stretch, but it's one way to look at it.

we also looked at it from the pov that we don't want to take away from the other 2 by having our 3rd, but that since we strive for a life that is close to zero footprint, we're way less harmful than some ppl with 0 or 1 child. all we can do is be an example and teach our children well. i do have mixed feelings sometimes, tho.

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