By Gemma Marriage
Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to come along to our green parenting themed baby group on the first Monday of each month, there have been some really great and thought provoking discussions! We try and have a demo kit of a few different items for people to look at, talk about and demonstrate. Our next date is Monday 2nd December, come along with some ideas and get inspiration for how to have a green christmas!
We’ve had lots of discussion about cloth nappies, with many parents keen to learn how to use them! There are many different types, and the Suffolk Cloth Nappy Library does an amazing job supplying kits for parents to borrow for free to try before they buy. Our important take home message was not to be overwhelmed by it all and just to give it a go! Even if you only manage to use one cloth nappy per day, that’s 365 nappies per year saved from landfill! If you are planning on more than one baby, the savings are massive as if cared for properly they can be used for years!
If cloth nappies are not your thing, then cloth wipes are still a great swap. Cheeky wipes are probably the market leader, but there are many other suppliers if you look around. We’ve seen some great examples at the group of home-made versions – if you are handy with a sewing machine and some towels. I’ve found them hugely useful for cleaning hands and faces for the early days of weaning and for messy play.
Household cleaning is an area where there is potential for lots of harsh chemicals and throw away plastic containers. There are more environmentally friendly brands such as Ecover appearing on the scene now, and several local shops will refill your bottles with things like washing up liquid. There is also a company called Splosh that will send out concentrated sachets of eco-friendly cleaner for you to mix with water in your existing containers. Cupboard Love is a great local company which travels to many markets and other businesses and also does refills and zero waste food shopping.
Thanks to Jo and a few others, we have had some great discussions about menstrual cups. Not only are they a good environmental choice, but they can have many benefits for your body such as reduced cramping. They can be a little daunting to get to grips with, but once you have found the cup for you, you’ll never go back to traditional sanitary products.
As a first time mum myself I was worried about the costs of all the clothes, toys and equipment for my new baby. And as we’ve been through the first few months, realised how little use they get before they’re grown out of! I’ve become a huge advocate of second hand buying; charity shops, eBay and Facebook marketplace are great resources for amazing quality second hand pieces. The big St Elizabeth Hospice shop at Martlesham is a treasure trove!
Personal care is another area where there are some easy swaps to be had. I’ve recently been trialling a solid deodorant stick from Kutis skincare and soild shampoo from Lush – both of which are going to be permanent swaps for me!
If you are an expectant parent or have a new baby and an interest in being a bit more environmentally friendly, please do come and drop in and see us 🙂
Green Parenting Drop-In Baby Group
1st Monday of the month, 2-4pm
All dates are on our timetable.
We also have a drop in baby group every week during term time on Mondays 2-4pm, so come along any week!