My husband loves to fish. Even if he doesn’t catch anything (which he rarely does), he loves being outdoors in quiet nature. So naturally, with Father’s Day approaching, new fishing equipment came to mind as the perfect gift for him. Little did I know that purchasing this equipment would ultimately result in the pollution of our lakes and rivers and the death of waterfowl.
I was strolling through Lowe’s, checking out their gardening supplies, looking for a new spray nozzle for my garden hose. I picked one up to examine it more closely and noticed a warning with words like “birth defects” and “cancer.” Being 27 weeks pregnant, I almost threw the thing across the store. It turns out that this seemingly harmless nozzle was full of lead. And it wasn’t the only one. Every single nozzle in the entire gardening department had the same lead warning. As did the hoses and soakers and brass fittings and who knows what else. I was shocked. I have spent tons of money and time putting together the perfect organic garden and here I am watering my plants with lead, phthalates and BPA.
The Charlottesville City Market opened earlier this month. The reasons to buy local hit me full force as I browsed the local eggs, plants, honey, crafts and baked goods. Our post on The Dangers in Kids’ Jewelry brings to light how dangerous cheap jewelry from China can be for children and adults. This jewelry is often contaminated with toxins such as lead and cadmium which have been linked to cancer and hindered brain development. The safest solution is to buy locally made jewelry from artisans dedicated to using safe materials.
I’m lucky. My son is a vegetable lover. He will happily munch on fresh cherry tomatoes or red bell peppers. And his lunch of choice is a fresh spinach salad with herb vinaigrette. But like most children, there are times when Monster doesn’t eat enough vegetables. So I have gotten into the habit of adding veggies into other foods whenever I can. I do it for myself and my husband as much as I do it for my son.
I have not posted on this blog (or really had anything to do with One Part Sunshine) in months. Instead, I have been confined to my bed overwhelmed by nausea, vomiting and extreme fatigue. We found out we were pregnant with our second child shortly before Christmas. And a week later, I was a mess. I became one of more than 60,000 women each year to be afflicted by a condition known as hyperemesis gravidarum (HG). HG is a condition that occurs during pregnancy characterized by extreme nausea and vomiting which leads to dehydration and weight loss.
My goal this holiday season is to step up the DIY. I’m handcrafting gifts, ornaments, decorations and snacks. And I plan to involve my son as much as possible. To get a look at my Christmas craft inspiration, check out my Pinterest board. You can see the crafts I did last year in my blog on My Green Christmas 2010.
It seems as though the cold weather is driving all of the bugs to find warmth in our house. We are currently battling ants, fruit flies, stinkbugs and these little black beetles. Of course, using conventional insecticides is not an answer in our home. Such products are poisonous to both people and house pets. And children are particularly susceptible to the dangerous effects of insecticides since they are more likely to pick up that roach motel or crawl on the floor where you just sprayed ant killer.
About a month ago, I asked Monster, “So what do you want to be for Halloween?” His answer: “A lightening bug.” Of course, I was extremely happy with his answer. I was dreading that he would say something like Buzz Lightyear and I would be forced to go to a Halloween super center in order to find his costume. But a lightening bug I could do . . . somehow.
Now it is the day after Halloween and I am pleased to report that the lightening bug/firefly costume was a huge success. And I was able to do it without buying anything! It was cheap, green and safe. Here is how I did it . . .
Vampires, witches and ghosts have nothing on a child made of toxic chemicals and artificial ingredients. Our 100% organic cotton t-shirt is the perfect frightening Halloween accessory for your green kid. You can easily turn it into a one-of-a-kind Halloween costume by accenting it with a third eye, green hair or smears of slimy face paint.