Zero Waste, Babyย 

Staying with the theme of reduced/zero waste, I thought I’d write a wee checklist for new mama’s who are wanting to minimise their waste.

Disclaimer: these suggestions are based on my trials and experiences. Feel free to add any suggestions in the comments! Also, new babies can be a shock to the system so don’t undertake anything that will stress you out โค

Cloth Nappies and Wipes

We have used cloth mostly full time since our 3 year old was 4 days old. I suggest reading up on some different types and working out what may fit your little one. There are some fantastic Facebook pages that are chock full of information including brand discussions, benefits of different materials, wash routines, tips for extra absorbency etc. You can also get some fantastic deals in the buy/sell nappy groups.

I found a good wash routine intrinsic to my success with cloth. I would rinse, dry pail, do a pre rinse and then a wash. This still works for me, two kids later ๐Ÿ‘Œ

As for wipes, there are many options, but I found a roll of Chux cloths cut to size work a treat.

Buy Secondhand, Buy Quality 

It’s so easy to get carried away with purchasing baby items but the reality is, they really don’t need that much. A safe place to sleep, a few swaddles if that’s your jam, some burp cloth/muzzies/all around useful squares of cotton that become your best friend and some good clothing basics is a great start. I love Nature Baby, but I don’t love the price tag, so I trawl Trade Me and Facebook for all the bargains. Because babies grow so much in the first few months, I’ve managed to find a bunch of gorgeous, organic cotton basics in fabulous condition at a fraction of the price. I’ve also just purchased a bunch of flat white nappies at a steal, which will be used for everything but can be turned into rags when we are done.

If you do buy better quality items second hand, it’s fairly easy to on-sell, therefore reducing the amount of goods being bought new! Win!

Play Time 

For when bubs is a wee bit older, google Heuristic treasure box to check out some awesome ideas for play. Some suggestions that we used are; wee wooden utensils (spoons, honey dippers), preserving rings, ribbon, egg cartons, shower puffs, pot scourers, measuring spoons and so on and so forth.

Obviously use your common sense around age and supervision requirements. Perhaps save the scissors till they’re a year at least.

๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜˜

Bath Time 

Generally, babies don’t need any bath products, but if you do like a wee bit of something then the likes of Ethique and many other NZ companies do gentle shampoo/body wash bars for littles. With a light scent, natural ingredients and zero plastic it’s a zero waste thumbs up ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘

Dinner Time

Another for older littles ๐Ÿ˜€ It’s incredibly easy to make baby food and you can have fun with it too! Combos of puree fruit and veg are super duper simple and can be frozen and popped into a wee pot or the microwave when needed. I enjoyed adding a bit of light herb to my pepe’s kai and I used silicon trays from KMart, which froze a portion roughly twice the size of a standard ice cube tray. 

If finger food is your thing, steamed veges were a hit in my house. River Cottage does a fab Babies and Toddlers recipe book which I have used a ton. The content appeals to my homemade heart as it’s simple, nutritious and delicious

I think that’s all for now! I’m super keen to hear what other’s have done/are doing as my zero waste focus is definitely a journey. Also, links to fave suppliers or products would be fabulous.

Happy hippie-ing, y’all ๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜‰

Love,

Carole x

A big thank you to the lovely mama’s of Due November 2017 for allowing me to pick their brains on this topic. Arohanui โค

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Third times a Charm

Things I am looking forward to about having a third child;

1. I am way less worried.

About pregnancy, about childbirth and about bringing another little into our household. While I know each of these things will be different to my previous two, because I am expecting it I am much more able to go with the flow. I’m expecting to go post date, I’m expecting the transition from 2 to 3 to have it’s ups and downs and I know how hormonal pregnancy and early post partum can be. I’m much less stressed going into this with some knowledge.

2. Sleep deprivation is killer, but it ends.

I have tied myself in knots over my children’s sleep. Fretted and cried and stressed and raged and none of it helped. My newborn is unlikely to sleep through the night. My 6 month old is unlikely to sleep through the night. For a time, I will need toothpicks for my eyelids. And that’s ok.

3. I know what I need.

Good coffee, a daily shower, the odd meal cooked for me that I can stash away in the freezer, a reasonably tidy house, company, space. And this time, I’m not afraid to ask.

4. Adding to the love.

My kids love each other, sometimes this presents as screaming at each other (#blessed) but generally, they’re awesome pals. I can’t wait for that love to increase even more.

5. Completing our family.

There is something about this pregnancy that feels really final. I never felt that with Tilly or George and I am super comfortable with it. Tilly keeps saying “at Christmas, our family will be finished”. I feel it too, kid โค

6. I get to have a baby.

And through the nausea, tiredness, hormones and random anxiety – I still never underestimate how lucky we are.

To all those levelling up their parenting by adding to their family, or thinking about it, I want to send you so much love. You’re going to smash it ๐Ÿ‘Š

Love,

Carole x

Waste Not, Want Notย 

Hello chickens! It’s been a wee while, hasn’t it? I do intend to be a bit more regular with the blog but lifeing gets in the way ๐Ÿ˜ด๐Ÿ˜ด

In a nod to the start of Plastic Free July, I wanted to post a few of the changes our family is making and why.

There are components of waste free that I grew up with, without realising it. My grandparents, who raised me for a good portion of my childhood, always had vege gardens, fruit trees and compost bins. Nana also (and still does) bottle fruit, jams, jellies and chutneys – using whatever is seasonal. As a result, I am passionate about this – a view the Hubs shares – and together, we model this to our children.

Further to this, we have a desire to raise awareness about how we are disposing of our rubbish. We in the West are privileged to have bins and bags that we can fill up and pop out to be collected, never to be thought of again. This lack of conscious connection on our part has (I think) contributed towards a rather lazy attitude around rubbish disposal. Similarly, recycle bins have done the same. And while aspects of recycling are certainly better than landfill disposal, it’s not quite the green impact we think it is.. 

So, we are trying to reduce what leaves our household. Some of these things have been common practise for years; the likes of composting, gardens, cloth nappies and wipes (since we had our first child 3 years ago), homemade cleaning products and preserving/freezing fruit and vegetables. However we have pushed ourselves a bit more recently, as we gather more information and become more educated. 

Currently, I am setting two or three small goals to implement over the course of a few weeks. Because I want these to be lasting, achievable changes I am taking a slower approach to ensure it works for our family. Some basic changes like reusable shopping and produce bags, refilling our own containers at bulk food stores and cutting out the use of all plastic bags. I’m also moving from room to room, seeing how I can make changes, and we have recently started using gorgeous shampoo, conditioner and facial cleanse bars from Ethique which I highly recommend!

On a similar vein, Hubs has found some old timber that has been stashed in the ceiling of our garage since we purchased our house and he has used this to build some wonderful raised vege beds. Using what we have already goes hand in hand with reducing our waste.

I will post a bit more as the month goes on, I have a few ideas that I’m excited to put in place so stay tuned! 

And before I go, I really encourage you to try one or two changes in your home. You would be amazed at the impact a few, small changes can make.

Image credit: http://www.ecouterre.com/sarah-lazarovics-buyerarchy-of-needs-tells-it-like-it-is/

Happy Saturday, lovelies! Go the AB’s!

Love,

C x

Keeping it Kind Onlineย 

This morning I let myself be affected by some responses I got to a thread I posted in a Facebook group. Without going into detail, the thread topic in the group I chose to post was always going to spark discussion. Therefore, I was asking for it – wasn’t I?

Short answer, no.

I’ve seen this happen with so many online groups lately. Groups largely populated by mums, because those are the ones I frequent. A group made up of people who are often tired, constantly questioning their choices and worrying about what they might do better, these are the people we are pendantically tearing down. Essentially making them feel shittier than they already do.

In this instance, I chose to leave. I figured if I was in a place where I felt anxious to post for fear of response, then it wasn’t for me anymore. It wasn’t the first group I’ve left this week, a lovely friend of mine recently posted a spot on status update with a list of things she didn’t feel like she constantly needed questioning on and left those corresponding groups. This inspired me and I ended up doing a similar thing. 

Now, a lot of people in these groups offer fantastic discussion points and the reason I enjoy them is because they encourage me to think more deeply about certain issues. They educate me and open my mind and  that, I’m grateful. Another point I’d like to make is I always try to listen to well supported information as I don’t know everything (I know, shocker ๐Ÿ˜‰) and often have benefited from excellent advice, particularly around baby wearing and baby led weaning – two things I was very interested in when I had my first child but didn’t know much about. In some instances, there are certainly situations when choices are right and wrong, from a safety perspective and I am happy to receive support around this.

But it’s the picking apart, the constant questioning and challenging in a way that makes you feel like crap rather than promoting deeper thought. I feel sometimes like people assign themselves certain labels are so concerned about getting their agenda across that they cease to respond in a relevant manner and rather, just poke and tear at any word or statement until the person asking the original question is so tied in knots they have no idea where to next.

One group I belong to, which I adore, is a writers group for mama’s. Such a diverse group and while I’m not a hugely active poster, I read almost everything in there and often turn it over in my head. And I have NEVER felt uncomfortable asking questions or offering my thoughts. A couple of wonderful ladies started a campaign a few weeks back, to Keep It Kind Online, and it was with joy I saw many of my favorite groups and bloggers support this. 

So, what have I learnt from this? Definitely to be more discerning when joining groups but also to think more when I respond to threads.

Is it kind?

Is it relevant?

Is it helpful?

We can share information, or disagree with others without being dicks. Trust me, I’ve seen it ๐Ÿ˜‰

Until next time

โœŒโœŒ

C

Day Two – A Delicious Morningย 

As you’ve heard me talk about on here, we are keen Playcentre attendees. The kids love it and I have met some fab people who have made Feilding home for me.

We have recently switched from a Wednesday to a Tuesday session, and today we took advantage of a cold day and made a delicious vege soup. I loved watching the children get involved in the process and sitting around chatting and prepping felt like the village I love.

Today, the space where my children feel safe and confident, made me happy โค

Until next time 

Ta ra for now

C x

Day One – The Simple Life

Hello! Today marks the start of my 100 Days Project. For those who haven’t read my past blogs, I am concentrating on 100 Days of Happiness. I will be documenting, via my blog, a moment each day that that I have reflected on with joy.

Today, it was pretty easy. Well, it wasn’t really.  And then it was.

#vague 

I was determined to snap a joyeously fabulous photo showing a wonderfully happy moment so set about with my camera with gusto.

But I ended up getting blurry, out of focus shots as my primary models are easily distracted. I also got 6 photos of my own butt, which may be joyeous to some, but I personally didn’t feel like it was a secure springboard to start from.

So, after starting to get a bit fidgety, I put my phone down and stepped back. I made myself  a cup of coffee and just sat for bit.

And that’s when I realised what has filled me with happiness today. 

Today.

We all slept all night, the morning was peaceful, we ate a delicious breakfast, the Hubs left for work looking particularly handsome, I straightened my hair, we went to Playcentre, a lovely friend dropped Tilly home so George and I could leave early for his nap, I got a few jobs done and made curry for tea, we had afternoon tea with Nana and Poppa. 

It was a lovely day and I realised that as my children are getting older, these days are becoming more frequent. 

Don’t get me wrong, there are still hard bit. But, as they grow and gain bits and pieces of independence, some of those all consuming needs of babyhood slip away. And before you know it, you’re leaving the house on time wearing mascara.

Today, today filled me with happiness. How blessed I am.

Until next time ๐Ÿ˜˜

Ta ra for now 

C xx