Being a parent in a modern world is like creating an oxymoron between fabulous and puzzling. The parenting journey can be overwhelming and you want nothing but the best for your child. We also live in an age of convenience, where most things that we want for our children, can be easily ordered to our doorstep. However, this age of convenience, has slowly become an inconvenience for the environment. Sustainable is easy, we simply have to un-learn and adapt to new sustainable techniques, ideas and consumer choices. I personally find it extremely important for us to adopt new habits and approaches to our lifestyle because these little changes can change the course of our tomorrow.
It all begins with home education- what are we teaching our children, what ways of life and habits are we instilling in them? Are we raising them to live in a livable world? Here are three very basic and easy ideas that every modern parent may want to keep in mind while raising their children at different stages of childhood:
Ditch the Car
Getting into your car and rushing to your nearby appointments is not only convenient, it’s also comfortable. It’s also easier to contain all your children in the car instead of having to herd them like kittens in other ways (bike, walking, etc.)
Season appropriate- it is time to ditch the car. Encouraging your child to ride a bicycle when the weather is favorable at all times is a great way to ensure your child stays healthy and active. Worried about their safety while riding? These days helmets are made in the coolest designs and according to hamax USA, family bike rides have many long term, benefits so try going for rides together as a family to bond with your kids.
Cloth over Wipes
The simplest switch that one can make towards sustainable parenting right at the beginning of the journey, is adopting cloth over ‘use and throw’ wipes. These ‘flushable’ wipes not only clog sewers but also affect marine life in catastrophic ways. A report published in The
You can collect dirty cloth wipes in a laundry bag and wash them with the rest of your laundry load every few days.
Incorporate vegan/vegetarian habits right from the start
Veganism was introduced to most modern day parents, much later in our lives. It is considerably tougher for a person to convert to a vegan diet when they have been on dairy and meat for a better part of their lives. The diet your parents introduce you to consequently becomes your natural diet for a major portion of your life. Of course, everyone grows up to develop their own dietary preference with distinct choices, but we all adopt a great deal of who we are from our parents. Introducing your child to a vegan diet right from the start will not just ensure a better environment but also make your child healthy. And you don’t even have to go 100% vegan, how about you start with Meatless Mondays and see how you go from there? Read 10 great reasons to ditch dairy, and aim to adopt a meat-free lifestyle while raising children.
Incorporating veganism: we all adopt a great deal of who we are from our parents.
Carry your own shopping bags
Carrying your own shopping bag is a great way to minimize plastic overload on the planet. Resuable shopping bags are not just eco-friendly, but also very easy to incorporate in your daily routine. Reusable bags are cost-effective, light-weight and easy to carry around. Besides having them in your house, you can consider carrying a spare bag in your purse, having one in your office drawer, or the glove compartment of the car.
Having spare cloth bags in the house can be an effective way to teach your children the importance of saying no to plastic. Douglas Lober, the owner of reusethisbag.com, gives us 25 Reasons to Use Reusable Grocery Bags.
Make composting a fun family activity
Composting is one of the most effective ways of reducing trash that otherwise ends up in landfills. According to Science Buzz, you can start by separating your trash into greens and browns. The greens can include fruits and vegetable wastes, leaves, tea bags, and coffee grounds, while the browns can include shredded newspapers, twigs, dried grass, and leaves. You can prepare your own home-made compost by simply adding some water and air to this combination.
Composting can be a brilliant learning activity for your kids. Tom’s of Maine has some super fun composting game ideas that you can play together as a family. Composting is not just an eco-friendly activity, it is also a great way for children to learn patience, and a great way for your family to bond while trimming the garden!
The most effective way to introduce your child to sustainable living is to live it yourself.
As role models, your children pick up most of their habits from you. It is important to lead by example and show your kids what way to follow and lead a happy eco-friendly life.