Live Happy, Live Healthy, Live Green

My tips for living happy, healthy, and green!

Archive for February, 2011

Make Your Own Baby Food

Since my little man started eating a month ago I have been making all of his baby food. I started him on solid foods at 6 months old. He is loving eating solid foods! Making his food from the start is my way of influencing his eating habits for the rest of his life. I want to teach him from the beginning to eat healthy fruits and vegetables.

There are many benefits to making your own baby food:

1. You know exactly what is in the food! If you make it yourself you know there is no added sugar or preservatives.

2. Saves money…baby food in jars can get expensive. By making your own you can fruits and vegetables that are on sale, in season, or you can grow them your self.

3. Its good for the baby and the environment. No buying jars and recycling them. Think about how many jars of food you would go through in a month!

4. The food is Fresh. Even if you make a week or months worth of food at once and then freeze it, it will be fresher then the stuff in the jars at the store.

Its easy to make baby food. All you need is a pan, steamer baskets, and food processor or baby food grinder.

Step 1:

Wash and prepare fruit or vegetable. I leave the skin on until after I have steamed the item to keep more of vitamins and nutrients intact. I try to always choose organic fruits and veggies, this way I know they are free of pesticides and other harmful toxins.

Step 2: Steam fruit or vegetable. Place steamer basket over a couple of inches of water and cover. Timing depends of what item you are making. I just check the softness periodically.

Step 3: Peel fruit or veggie if needed.

Step 4: Place in food processor and blend to desired consistency. If stage 1 food you can add breast milk, formula, or water from the pan used for steaming to create a smoother consistency.

Step 5: If freezing place in freezer safe containers and place in freezer. Most items are good in the freezer for up to 3 months.

I like to take a day each week to make a week to a week and half worth of foods. That is what works best for me. I know some people will make food once a month and that works also.

Cloth Diapering 101

So when my little man was about 4 months old I started using cloth diapers….we have been at it for about 3 months now and things are going well. I wanted to share with you a few tips that I come to use along the way.

First here is what I use so far:

I use the GroVia One Size shells along with the snap in inserts and some pre folds. I use the prefolds during the day when we are at home and I can change him often. I use the snap in GroVia inserts at night and if we are going out and about. Also at night I have started using the GroVia soaker pads which I have found to be very helpful. My little man is a heavy wetter at night and was soaking through every night until I started using the soaker pads. He sleeps about 10 hours every nights so its great now that when he wakes up his clothes are not soaked!

To start I would have to say you should have at least 3 shells and 12 inserts of some type. I started with less of both and ended up ordering more within in 2 weeks because I couldn’t keep up with the laundry. Currently I have 12 prefolds, 12 snap inserts, 4 soaker pads, and 3 shells. For my next purchase I will get 2 more shells and 4 more soaker pads and probably 2 more snap in inserts. After that I think I will be set at least for awhile. GroVia is the only brand I have used so far, but didn’t feel the need to try anything else because I really like the way they work. I did a lot of reading and talked with a few people before choosing and I think I made the right choice for me and my little man.

Tip 1: Have enough inserts and shells right from the start. If you are just starting and can’t get a lot to begin with…make sure you have some backup disposable diapers. There is nothing worse then getting ready to leave for the day and realizing that the load of diapers you thought you put into the dryer, you didn’t! Now you have no clean diapers and are running late.

Tip 2: Follow the directions! I know this may sound obvious, but you really do need to wash the inserts and soaker pads multiple times before using if you want them to be effective.

Tip 3: Remember that the inserts are not going to look brand new forever. I have some perfectionist tendencies and that has caused me to obsess over the smallest discoloration on the diapers.  Yes you want them to be clean, but there will be some spots you just can’t get out no matter how hard you try!

Tip 4: Figure out what works best for you. I did a lot of reading to try to figure out what I should do. Then finally I just went and got some stuff to start. You just have to start and go from there to see how it works for you.