When I was pregnant the first time, I didn’t have a baby shower. Did I
feel bad? Of course not. It wasn’t a big deal. How much stuff did a
baby need? A few friends gave me some presents: a piggy bank, a little
hat, stuffed animals, a diaper bag. Then I started reading What to Expect When You’re Expecting.
What did we get ourselves into? We went to Babies ‘R Us and I
felt overwhelmed the second the sliding doors opened. Baby tub? Check.
Baby nail clippers? Check. Baby lotion, wipes, diapers, stroller, baby
carrier, crib, bibs, blankets, onesies, diaper rash creme, baby bottles,
hooded towels, formula? Check, check, check and check.
For the second pregnancy, we were more prepared. We had the crib and
stroller already, but there were still so many other things to buy. Baby
products are a multi-billion dollar business and they have quite a lot
of our money.
I’m the go-to person when someone in my family or circle of friends
needs a baby shower gift idea. I’m not sure why, since I could hardly
get prepared for either of my two children.
“I’m going to another baby shower.”
My friend was going to her third baby shower this year. I’ve only
been to one baby shower in my life.
“You’re the mom, what do you think I
should get?” she continued. “I want to give something different, like I
put a lot of thought into it.”
“How about some baby wipes?” I mumbled.
“Are you serious? I can’t just show up with a package of baby wipes and call it a day?” She was getting irritated.
“Who said anything about a package of wipes? Give ten!” I don’t think my response helped the situation.
I started thinking about babies and the environment. Wouldn’t it be great to raise a “green” baby as soon as he was delivered?
Your own baby’s green life can start with some of my favorite things:
Every mom needs a bag to carry baby stuff in. Not just any bag,
though. This bag needs to be sturdy, have lots of pockets, be
stain-proof, water-proof and yet have some style so people don’t mistake
the diaper bag for a garbage bag. To the rescue is Fleurville’s Re-run Messenger bag.
Containing no PVC’s or Teflon, the Re-run is constructed out of
recycled water bottles. Available in different colors and patterns, like
the Maidenhair, the Re-run is a versatile bag that can carry diapers,
wipes, bottles, formula, pacifiers, a blanket, your cell phone, wallet,
keys and your favorite lipstick without breaking a sweat. Now that’s my
kind of bag.
Forget the plain-colored onesies that you had when you were a baby.
Things have changed. Onesies today have a lot of character. Take, for
instance, Light & Gravity’s
onesies, crafted with love from organic cotton. I gush over the Octupus
— colorful and spunky. Dyed with low-impact dyes and printed with
water-based inks, these whimsical onesie are definitely a keeper.
Neither of my children took to pacifiers when they were babies. They
pushed them out of their mouths with their tongues and made terrible
faces. At least I didn’t have to ween them off these things; I’ve heard
harrowing stories about this weaning process. For those of you who can’t
live without a pacifier, behold the
Natursutten Pacifier. You won’t find any BPA or phthalates here. Feel safe with the Natursutten in your little one’s mouth.
Every baby needs a bottle. Look for bottles that are non-leaching and
don’t contain BPA and phthalates — potentially harmful chemicals that
many plastics have. Look for Green to Grow bottles and know that toxins aren’t coming out of the bottle and into your baby’s developing body.
Wrap your baby up with Robbie Adrian’s organic cotton fleece blankets. They’re soft and come in warm colors that will brighten any nursery and keep your baby warm.
When you give your baby his first bath, dry him with Kate Quinn’s
hooded towel made from organic terry. Water is no match for this
luxurious towel. Your baby will look too cute for words.
Instead of running to the store and buying boxes and boxes of diapers
that will take too long to decompose, opt for reusable cloth diapers. Better for Babies offers organic velour diapers that come in happy colors and look great on your baby at the same time. Go to Diaper Swappers and join a a great community dedicated to cloth diapers.
My friend took my advice and she walked proudly into the baby shower
with her green baby products wrapped in recycled paper. The diaper bag
was a hit and she’s considering getting one for herself, even though she
doesn’t have kids.