Friday, May 30, 2008
Monday, April 21, 2008
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
I struggle with the whole "Green" thing. I want to recycle, I really do. But I am very lazy. As such, I will gladly separate out recyclables - if you will come to my house and pick them up for me. Well, maybe not YOU personally, but someone. Otherwise, in spite of my good intentions, those bottles and newspapers are going into the trash. I suffer tremendous guilt over this obvious character flaw. If the powers that be here in Candyland would begin a curbside recycling program, I would be the first to stand up and champion it. I would even be willing to PAY MORE for it. *gasp* So, you see when I saw the opportunity to read Healthy Child Healthy World: Creating a Cleaner, Greener, Safer Home by Christopher Gavigan, I saw it as an opportunity to assuage my guilt. I was pleasantly surprised to discover a book that explains how and why the little changes we can make in the way we go about our day-to-day lives can truly affect the health and lives of our children right now. It gives realistic suggestions as to how we can make those changes - what household cleaners we use, the foods we buy, the building materials we use - and does it without getting too preachy.
And best of all, Gavigan states more than once that just making one or two changes in our lives can make a difference. This book isn't expecting us to all trade in our minivans for a Prius, start composting, grow our own foods AND spin flax into linen to make our children's clothes. This book is about people in the real world. REAL moms and dads. Those of us who would like to make the world safe and cleaner for our kids but don't know how. Or at least feel overwhelmed by the enormity of it all. He explains how buying locally grown foods is healthier (duh) but also, in the long run, is going make the air a little cleaner, because then we won't need to transport produce all over the world. (Which, incidentally, would reduce the demand for fuel and bring down gas prices, but that's another lecture for another day.)
He also discusses one of my favorite (or least favorite!) topics - high fructose corn syrup. If you have ever spent any amount of time with me IRL, you have heard me rail against this evil stuff. And HERE IN THIS BOOK, I have in writing the same stuff I have been telling all of you people. HA! These same friends also look at me like I'm crazy when I insist on buying organic foods and read labels obsessively at the supermarket. It's really just that I love my children much more than they love theirs. *snort* (Please know that that last sentence was dripping with sarcasm. Also, please don't beat me up.)
The book also has contributions from celebrities about how the things they do to be "green." I was awfully skeptical about these. Some are very cool and helpful. Some made me giggle, because COME ON. I will never be Gwyneth Paltrow and make my kids' baby food from organic brown rice and organic carrots that I grew myself. And no, I don't have a Prius and don't plan on it. I have three kids and all their accompanying crap to haul hither and yon. I need my minivan.
But, I did find quite a bit to think about. I do think that I can recommend this book to you. If you are interested, the Healthy Child, Healthy World website is also chock full of suggestions and all kinds of information about living a greener life. In the mean time, I will be writing notes of apology to all of my friends who read my blog. LOVE YA!!
Thursday, March 27, 2008
For the rest of us, who enjoy living our lives with tongue firmly placed in cheek, this book is just what we need! Stephanie is a real mom and makes no apologies for it. She cops to bribing her kid with chocolate milkshakes to eat cauliflower and to letting her watch TV for more than 30 minutes of TV a day. (gasp!) In fact, she even gives us little hints as to how to "decode" the Smug Mommies at the playground by using "New Mommy Math." For example, if a Smug mommy tells you that her little darling only watches "one hour of mind-enriching, educational television a day, just go ahead and add two hours. If she tell you 'No TV ever!' add six. It's
that simple!... Similarly, if Smug Mama tells you that her child is allowed only two small cookies after dinner, feel safe adding five more. If she tells you no cookies, only fruit, go with eight."
Wilder-Taylor is wonderful at getting us past our mommy-guilt and making us see that we are all just doing the best we can. And that anyone who tries to make you think otherwise is full of it. She even gives some suggestions for alleviating that stress that can make your head explode, including:
- Make time for Twinkies. A lot more time.
- Three words: Amateur Strip Night
- Get some dental work done just for the Percocet, become addicted, & then if insurance covers it, kick you addiction at Crossroads in Antigua for at least ninety days
I found myself laughing out loud all the way through this book. SD is really tired of me reading it to him. Honestly, I had to restrain myself from sharing excerpts from each chapter with YOU. But then you might not get it for yourself and I really couldn't spoil that pleasure for you. See what a loving soul I am?