As promised, here’s another chance for you to win a great book about raising a baby without breaking the bank – or the environment. Rebecca and Joy of Green Baby Guide are the authors of The Eco-Nomical Baby Guide, and they kindly sent me a copy. I loved it, and knew that a lot of my readers would too. So I’m passing my copy on to one lucky reader. Since this is a paper copy rather than an e-book, I can only send it to a US address – sorry! In order to enter to win the book, just leave a comment on this post, and I’ll be drawing a winner next Friday, November 5th.
The Eco-Nomical Baby Guide is a beautifully written, nicely packaged summary of most of the ways that my husband and I have been raising our son for the last two and a half years. And how we’ll be raising our new little one. Rebecca and Joy have a very similar approach to parenting and the environment as I do, and it’s great to see other parents raising their children without spending a ton of money or buying a bunch of chunks of plastic that will eventually sit in landfills for hundreds of years.
Although I was already doing a lot of the things that the book describes, I did make one big change after reading it. Ever since our son was born, he’s been wearing home-made cloth diapers. The diapers cost very little to make, and were extra eco-friendly as we used recycled fabric. We don’t own a dryer, so they have always been dried on the clothes line or an indoor rack. But until I read The Eco-Nomical Baby Guide, I always washed them in hot water. Since our son turned one, we have had a front loading washing machine, which uses a lot less water than our old machine. But still, two or three times a week, I was using energy to heat the water to wash diapers. I wash everything else in cold water, but for some reason I felt that I should be washing diapers in hot water. And I always added an extra rinse cycle. Our son is only in diapers at night now, and occasionally if we’re going to be out and about for a long time, so I’m only washing diapers about once a week now. But the last two times I’ve washed them, I’ve used cold water, no extra rinse cycle, and I’ve added 1/4 cup of hydrogen peroxide to the wash. The diapers are just as clean as ever, and the hydrogen peroxide is doing a better job of disinfecting the diapers than hot water ever was. As Joy and Rebecca pointed out, hot water isn’t sanitizing diapers unless it’s boiling. I wish I had thought of this two years ago, but better late than never. Especially since our diaper washing days are going to start all over again in the spring…
The Eco-Nomical Baby Guide provides all sorts of great ideas for what baby gear really matters, how to find safe used items, and recommendations about eco-friendly supplies that might be best purchased new. If you’re skipping most of the non-essential baby gear out there, you can better afford to buy the stuff that you really want for your child. In addition, the book is packed with detailed info on cloth diapering (one of the best resources I’ve ever seen on the subject, actually), making your own baby food, green day care options, and ways you can put your craft skills to use and make things for your baby (as an fyi, I didn’t think I had any sewing skills what so ever, and yet our son has been wearing diapers I made for him ever since he was born – if I can do it, anyone can do it!). Joy and Rebecca’s book would make a great read for anyone who has a baby or is planning to have one in the future. It would also make a great gift for an expectant parent. If you’d like to enter to win a copy, just leave a comment. Good luck!