Organic, Child Friendly Pesticide

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While gardening with our Little One this week, I was struck by the absurdity of my teaching “spray the pesticide on just the weeds”.

Children using pesticides, sounds totally irresponsible for a parent to ordain. Right??

No sooner than the words left my mouth, I immediately sensed the need to verbalise an explaintation.

There is no need to stress, as the ‘pesticide’ was an organic, home made recipe – totally safe for little ones to give a helping hand.

One a side note, according to biology, a weed is just a plant that someone doesn’t want.  It is quite possible for one person’s weed to be another’s valued plant.

Also according to permaculture, a weed is just a plant we have yet to find a meaningful use for – our knowledge being the problem and not the weed.

This week I was killing my weeds organically and environmentally responsibly.  Tomorrow I might be actually growing weeds or at least allowing them to live, for a greater purpose.

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A Gluten Free Playdough Recipe

I can almost hear the instant negative reaction to my post title, “gluten free playdough is totally unnecessary etc etc”.

Yes I would agree IF your child isn’t a celiac or IF you have normal gluten flour.  However in my pantry, you will only find gluten free flour.  So hence why buy gluten flour just for playdough…..

Gluten Free Playdough

2 cup gluten free, plain flour
1 cup salt
1 tbs oil
1/2 cup cold water (I have found you need less water with gluten free flour than normal gluten flour)
2 drops liquid food colouring

* Combine gluten free plain flour and salt
* Add water, food colouring and oil. Mix well
* Knead well – if consistency is too wet add more flour
* Watch the smiles and fun, that a lump of dough can generate

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Recent Inner Reflection on My Blog Writing

These last few days of blog silence, I have been smiling while reflecting.

From the beginning of my blog (way back in 2008), blogging was a way to journal my thoughts, findings and changes.  A way to remember what, when, who and why for my future reference but in a public medium, so I remain accountable and open.

Earlier this year, I was seriously considering changing the purpose of my blog writing.  From writing for myself to monetising my efforts.

However after much investigation, consideration and inner reflection, I decided this was not the direction that would be most beneficial for my family’s goals (at this time). 

There is never enough time to do everything but always enough time to do what is most important.

These past few days of my blog silence, confirms I have made the correct decision.

All this being said, I can assure you that I will continue posting GreenerMe posts – just for the pleasure and enjoyment of it.  ‘Business as usual’ as nothing changes.

I’d like to take this time to say “thankyou” to you!  To you the reader (the quiet lurkers and the many who have reached out over the years, to share with me – I appreciate you all).

Going forward there will again be times of frequent post updates and yes sometimes infrequent updates too (life sometimes gets in the way of what we want to do).

Until tomorrow….

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Tomorrow I will share my gluten free playdoh recipe - for some sustainable children play fun.

A Cold, Mental Health Day

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While the temperature drops outside, my family remains inside – we are all still recovering from winter illnesses (but who isn’t).

With this cold weather, I deemed yesterday to be a ‘mental health day’.  A day when I allow myself to remain in PJ’s all day.  A day when playing, drawing and having fun with our Little One, is the only item on my to do list.

A large saved cardboard box was brought inside, to be made into a kid’s cubby.  Our Little One played inside while the white fluffy ‘crocodiles’ kept guard outside.

I savour these days – these ‘young’ days are fleeting.

Children’s Sustainable Nutrition for Fussy Eaters

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The waitress watched in disbelief “she is eating broccoli?” Our two year old was quick to correct her observation by responding “small trees yummy”.

There is no doubt that at times our Little One is fussy and picky.  However generally I would conclude that she is a good eater.  Generally it isn’t a challenge ensuring she is getting 7 to 10 proportions of varied fruit and vegetables daily.

Listening to parents share their toddler eating behaviour frustrations, puts me in a reflective mood.  Why them, why not me?

Short answer is I don’t know.  I say it is because of some luck and some good genes (I was a toddler garbage disposal – eating any veggies my older brother would not).  However I feel instinctively that there are two activities that have fueled our toddler’s love of eating a wide variety of nutritious food.

Firstly the simple activity of growing your own veggies.  From six months of age I have been gardening with her.  Now she will venture into the garden to eat sugar snap peas, cherry tomatoes, chick peas, snow peas or whatever is in season (without my prompting or help).

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Secondly the equally simple activity of cooking.  As our Little One showed interest in our cooking pursuits, we have encouraged her involvement with age appropriate tasks.  Always keeping in mind the bigger picture when she makes a mess, refuses to give back the pepper shaker or fights us for the spoon – short term annoyances allows for long term, life skills learnt.

Our Little One is planting seeds, watching them grow, harvesting food from the garden then cooking the produce.  This has to be contributing to her willingness to then eat the food, she has had envolvement in producing and preparing.

Food for thought.

Major Milestones – How Do You Handle Change?

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What a difference a week makes.

Without tears or hesitation our Little One took her first swimming class without me in the water too – just her and the teacher.  To say the transition went swimmingly is not only a pun but an understatement.

Then two nights ago, our Little One announced loudy “potty” while tugging at her nappy.  Once I helped her remove her nappy, she then proceeded to do a number 1 and 2 in the potty.  My husband and I danced, clapped and cheered for the rest of the night.

To my surprise, she has continued to successfully use the potty every time without my prompting – I had no idea how often a child does number 1’s.

I sense this developmental mile stone, signals things will change very quickly on our home front.

The only constant in life, is change. The happiest people I know, understand this and embrace it (not fight or attempt to control it).

I Choose Hope, Joy and Positivity

Positivity, hope and joy always trumps negatively, as tools for influencing change.

In regards to environmental matters, the negative “sky is falling” strategy, often achieves the exact opposite to what is wanted.  Instead of motivating people to change, people’s ears become closed and eyes shut.

In comparison; inspire people, make them ‘feel good’, make them laugh and give them believable and achievable hope – then people will listen, learn and more likely change.

Last night I was reading our Little One a bed time story, that was borrowed from the Library.

It depicts a young boy’s love of the only tree left in his city.  One day the tree was removed.  The boy’s pain and loss turned into hope, when he found a clipping of the tree.  He planted the clipping in the basket of his tricycle – so it could be close to him wherever he rode in the city.

On the last page of the book is a beautiful illustration – showing people being inspired by not negativity but by the boy’s hope and joy.

Look closely and ‘feel’…

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'Last Tree in the City' book by Peter Carnavas. Thankyou Peter for such a wonderful children's story - a story and message for all of us!