I unknowingly jumped head-first into "crunchy life" when I decided to have my baby in a bathtub. Something about choosing to birth your baby naturally automatically surrounds you with people + opinions that go against today's conventional way of life. So, since having Madelynn and being influenced by the new friends and acquaintances I've gained through that experience, we've made some major changes in our life -- specifically for the health of our baby girl.
A lot of close friends + family have been making fun of and rolling their eyes at our new "way of life," so I thought I'd take y'all through a day in the life of this newbie crunchy fam -- just to give you more ammo ;-)
Madelynn wakes me up somewhere between 7 and 9 AM by rolling over in the bed next to me and "asking" to nurse. Sam has usually already left for work, saving lives one new roof at a time. After M's first breakfast we get out of bed and I change her cloth diaper, using wipes made from fabric scraps and soaked in a homemade solution of witch hazel, pure aloe juice, castile soap + essential oils, and finish by spraying her little bottom with a mixture of fractionated coconut oil, lavender + tea tree oil. I do my oil pulling routine, and then brush my teeth with coconut oil + Thieves essential oil ((traditional toothpaste is poison)) and rinse with a bentonite clay solution. We head out to the kitchen where I prepare my breakfast of farm fresh eggs (from our very own backyard chickens) and pastured, nitrate-free bacon (for the health benefits) and wash it down with a nice, tall glass of raw milk (from local grass-fed cows, of course).
am I boring you? are you joining our "mainstream" friends in the eye-rolling yet?
no, you're intrigued? Great, I'll continue -- and speed things up a bit.
We eat a strict paleo diet, only drink + cook with water from our Berkey water filter and are 100% paper-free (yes, we even use family cloth -- if you don't already know, you may not want to ask). We compost, grow most of our own veggies + herbs, and only purchase the rest from the local farmer's market. Madelynn is not vaccinated, and we stand by this decision that we made based on extensive research. I make all of my own toiletries + cleaning products. I don't wear makeup. Sugar is not allowed in our home, even fructose consumption is limited to only the most nutrient-dense organic fruit. Madelynn's first food was homemade chicken bone broth to prepare her gut for digesting solids, and at 8 months we will begin feeding her soft-boiled pastured/cage-free/hormone-free/vaccine-free/antibiotic-free/farm-fresh egg yolk. We only bathe her in bathwater after it has been dechlorinated with a Crystal Bath Ball and purified with bentonite clay. She takes raw baby probiotics, fermented cod liver oil and organic wet-mill fermented/heated virgin coconut oil. At the end of our long, healthy day filled with natural vitamin D from sunlight and baby-wearing, I give her a baby massage with homemade magnesium body butter before nursing her to sleep in bed next to me.
Ok, I'm sorry. Most of that is untrue -- somewhere between a slight exaggeration and a complete fabrication.
I could go on -- and on, and on -- about all the things I've learned that I "should" be doing to protect my daughter from cancer + autism + ADHD and prevent her from developing trust issues, diabetes or tooth decay. However, I have failed miserably at adhering to these strict and never-ending guidelines for being the best parent possible. And that's okay. I do my best day-in and day-out to love her well and keep her healthy -- even amidst our lifestyle of cheeseburger dinners, tap water and Aquafresh toothpaste.
***please understand this post was for mostly fun, and a little bit for reflection on some decisions I have actually made and changes I am working towards. I am NOT making fun of anyone's "crunchy" lifestyle or judging anyone's non-crunchy parenting decisions. I think we're all doing the very best for our kiddos, whatever that looks like.
Since one thing I HAVE actually changed is the use of most commercial baby + beauty products, I'll leave you with a few of my favorite homemade recipes.
for Baby :
for me :
- honey body wash
- clarifying skin toner
- beach waves spray
- natural shaving cream
- safe spray hand sanitizer
A big thanks to Wellness Mama, the Mommypotamus, and Mama Natural for their super helpful blogs that teach & inspire me to make healthier choices for myself and my family -- if you are interested in making healthy life changes too, you should definitely follow all 3 of them!