We will be the first to admit that being a "Green Parent" is hard. The convenience of pre-packaged food, the cheaper price of regular household cleaners and the ease of just running out to the store to grab what you need when you need it are things that make our life easier...but they will not make life easy for OUR little ones and their little ones.
Let's be honest, it's not about us anymore. The day our kids let us know they were on their way was the day it stopped being about us and started to be about them. So what can we do for our kids? We can stop being wasteful.
Here are ten simple ways you can become a Green Parent!
1. Recycle! Recycle! Recycle!
Check with your town or city to find out what materials are accepted for pickup. This most likely includes newspapers, plastic, bottles and cardboard boxes. Purchase the proper receptacles for recycling and label them with pictures so your kids know where to put what. If your town/city does not have a recycling program, bring your bottles/cans to a return center. Use the funds that you receive for returns on a special activity with your kids! Reuse plastic take-out containers. Pack your kids lunch in them, use them to store crayons and other craft items or just use them for your family leftovers instead of buying plastic containers.
If you can not reuse them and your town doesn't recycle them Preserve Products will recycle them for you! Go to http://www.preserveproducts.com/recycling/index.html to find drop off locations for your items or the mailing address that you can send your plastics,
2. Reduce Your Electricity Usage!
Set an example for your children and turn off the lights whenever you leave a room. All electrical appliances, such as coffee makers, toasters and microwaves, use electricity when plugged in. Consider using a power strip that turns them off completely when not in use.
3. Reduce Water Consumption!
Make sure your kids turn off the water when brushing their teeth. Don't turn on the shower until you are ready to hop in! Take faster showers or baths in just a small amount of water. Don't keep the kitchen sink running while you answer the phone. Only run your dishwasher, washing machine and dryer when you have a full load. Be even greener by using a cooler water setting when you wash your clothes.
4. Use green products when cleaning your house!
Many major household goods manufacturers now offer "green" cleaning products. You can also use non-toxic all-natural products such as vinegar, baking soda, lemons and borax to make your own cleaners at home.
5. Buy & Sell Gently-Used or Donate!
Many used items are still as good as new and have a lot of life left in them. Just think how long that high chair or stroller will take to decompose in a landfill. Donate your items to a worthy cause or a neighbor who may need it. Or sell your items at a Be Green Kids Consignment event. You will not only make some extra money, but you will help reduce the amount of waste in the landfills.
6. Reuse Bags!
When you go grocery shopping, bring your own canvas bags or reuse plastic bags you received previously. Also return plastic bags (and wire hangers!) to the dry cleaners. It takes 1,000 years for these plastic bags to break down in the landfill.
7. Reuse water bottles!
Have your kids bring their own reusable water bottle to practice and games and refill them from water fountains or faucets. Encourage the coach to use water coolers on the sidelines instead of having each kid bring their own plastic bottles.
8. Buy Organic!
Organic foods are grown or only use ingredients that are pesticide free. Pesticides are extremely harmful to the environment. Don't forget vegetables and fruit come in their own natural packaging, so you won't have anything to waste!
9. Travel Smart!
Carpool or take the bus to work. If you drive a car, plan your itinerary out ahead of time so that you don't have to take extra trips. Walk or ride your bike to locations close to home. Go it alone or bring the kids. The exercise is great to relieve stress and a great outdoor activity for your kids!
10. Don't throw it out...fix it!
Fix something before buying a new one. If your child's backpack gets a rip or needs a new zipper, check to see if the manufacturer will fix it for free or take it to a local repair shop.
11. BYOC: Bring your own coffee cup! Many coffee shops will fill your reusable coffee cup rather than using one of there's so bring your reusable cup the next time you caffinate! Making little changes such as those listed above will show your children to respect our limited resources and to not take such modern conveniences for granted. Energy and water are valuable resources that should not be wasted.
We encourage everyone to...BE GREEN !
Thursday Friday- Thursday Friday makes the best reusable bag we've ever seen! Their Together Bag has a great "design that references luxury but ultimately works as an anti-status status symbol".
Recycle Bank- Recycle Bank rewards you for recycling. It does this by measuring the amount of material each home recycles or having members participate in different projects then issuing RecycleBank Points based on the amount of materials recycled or project completion.
Last updated on Jan 13 2017.