Tuesday, June 11, 2013

A Happier, Healthier Family

About 3 years ago, I got pregnant. It was an amazing experience that really made me reevaluate my life. I started thinking more and more about my family's health and the health of our planet. I became very interested in how my actions affect other people, animals and our environment. After a bit of cogitating, I realized that I had to change. I'm am not trying to sound like I was down on myself and thinking I was a bad person; I was just careless and uneducated about the ways in which my actions were affecting others. I really wanted to do everything I could to make the world just a little bit better for my little one on the way.

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One of the first things I did was change the way Brian and I ate. I began purchasing whole organic foods. I stopped buying processed foods. We started using all organic options in our vegetable and fruit garden. I began making my own pancake/muffin mixes etc. because the homemade versions have no added chemical preservatives, artificial colors/ flavors etc. It has been a gradual change and I am happy with our progress but I still want to do more.

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I also wanted to change the way I was contributing to the rampant consumerism that is taking over our society. I have decided to reuse as much as possible. To that end, I pledged that I would not buy new clothes. This was huge for me because I loved to go to the mall and shop. Now, I reuse others old items by buying all my clothes at thrift and charity shops. I love this option because I am not only saving something from going into the landfill, my money is going directly back into my community. In the last year I have only bought 4-5 new pieces of clothing so I am very happy with my progress.

I decided I wanted to create instead of just consume. I also started sewing clothes for Billy and I. I find that I have a much greater appreciation for my handmade items than I do for store bought. Because of this, I take much better care of them. Since I am absolutely obsessive about doing everything properly, finishing every seam, lining my garments etc., my homemade garments are much more well constructed than store bought clothing. This also helps them last longer.

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I became vegetarian. Brian is not, but he eats vegetarian when he is at home. Luckily, it does not bother him at all. I started buying my milk and eggs locally from small backyard farms where the animals are raised safely and humanely. They are treated with the respect that they deserve.

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I recently became interested in green cleaning and more healthful options for our personal hygiene. I would like to start making our soaps and cleaning products for our home. I would like to also make our lotions, shaving creams etc. This is another option that is not only better for our health, it is better for our planet. I am happy that I will also be able to reduce our waste because we will not be throwing out all those shampoo bottles, soap boxes, shaving cream cans, etc.

I am sure there is more that I forgot to write about. But I can always post another day. At least I could get some of my thoughts down. It is nice to see that most of the things that I do for the health of my family are also good for the environment and others around me.

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