Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Clean it Up

So I'm really diving into this new (to me) world of trying to live a less toxic life. I'm almost finished with the book Little Changes by Kristi Marsh and it has really awakened a desire in me to clean up my whole life: from the products I use, to the food I eat, to the dishwasher detergent and laundry cleaners in my house.  It feels challenging but it also feels exciting.

So far I've researched washing my clothes with soap nuts, but haven't pulled the trigger yet, opting instead for toxin-free laundry detergent. We've stopped using the dry cleaner for the husband's dress shirts (admittedly we did that to save a few bucks each week, but are continuing now that I'm not real keen on the dry clean chemicals). I'm switching over to less toxic cleaning products and may try to make some of my own from Baking Soda and Vinegar, but haven't quite found the time for that.

The food thing is where my mind is currently swirling.  Mostly, I'm not reading anything I didn't already know about food, but it seems that the more I read, the more it keeps sinking in. (Though my eyes are more opened to what factoring farming of animals actually means.  And those growth hormones given to cows to produce more milk?  Well, I read last night that this leads to mastitis in cows! Ugh, the pain that must cause....I've experience a clogged milk duct or two in my life and I can't imagine having 4 inflamed, hard teet at once! Poor cows.) The few dollars we're saving by not switching to all USDA organic fruits/veggies, dairy and meats doesn't seem worth it now. So the husband has been instructed to only buy organic meats - he asked me if our chicken tasted better now that I knew it wasn't living its life in a cage without a beak.  He may mock me a bit, but he's on board, so I'll put up with a bit of teasing.  I do think we'll reduce the amount of meat we eat simply because it is more expensive to buy organic meat.  And my boys are really going to need to find some other fruit to eat since organic strawberries are quite pricey.  But we're going to be even more conscious of the food we put in our body than we were and I'm excited for the change.  It will be a challenge for sure, but I really feel it's important to teach the boys healthy eating habits and to actually feed them REAL FOOD, as opposed to whatever it is that makes up most processed foods.

We're even going to try our hand at a container garden this summer.  Lukas is excited to have a garden at home since he already has one at school - maybe he'll have a greener thumb than his momma. The plan is to also start a compost pile out back to help the soil in the vegetable garden. I'm thinking we might should just sign up for a CSA rather than attempt the garden, but I'm feeling adventurous (I'll just keep the CSA website handy just in case)! And I must admit the thought of backyard chickens has crossed my mind, although I'm not there yet.  Nor is the man of the house. I really should introduce things one at a time or I may risk driving him crazy!

I've stopped wearing antiperspirant and instead wear deodorant - though you have to try a few to find one that works for you!  I'm loving LaVanilla, the Healthy Deodorant (specifically, the lavender) and have heard great things about Pit Paste, but it doesn't do a thing for me.  And BO is just not going to work for me. I'm enjoying the Beautycounter products and sharing them with friends and family. I love knowing that I'm able to use great beauty products that aren't putting my health at risk!  I just saw a great article that named Beautycounter as one of the top Beauty Brands to watch out for this year!  We have new makeup launching May 1 that I'm excited about too (lip gloss, dew moisturizer with SPF and cream blushers to name a few!).  We don't have nail polish though so one of my next products to hunt down is a safe nail polish - I've heard there are a few out there, so I'm ready to find them. 

I know this is nothing new to a lot of people, but for me, it is all another step in trying to live as healthy of a life as possible.  What is most important to you in living a healthy life? Have you switched out any of your chemical filled products for safer ones?  Do you grow your own vegetables or keep chickens in your backyard?  I'd love to know what tips others have to help me get going even more!

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