Monthly Archives: November 2010

Supportland Card!

A few months ago I shared my excitement about a new rewards card for shopping local, Supportland – Part 1

I was psyched to pick up my card at one of my favorite kids shops – Milagro’s.  Instead of needing to run out and buy disposable diapers, I find myself running to Milagro’s or Mother Nature’s every few months to buy more poo liners for Girly’s cloth diapers (yes, they capture most poo to drop easily into the toilet). I also happened to be running errands and sold $25 worth of clothes as credit at Bella Stella (apparently you need an appointment at Milagro’s).

Supportland is still expanding their business network, and I can hardly wait until my favorite local shops and restaurants are on board.

If you really must get your holiday shopping, many communities are offering special incentives to shop locally this Saturday.

Do you think shopping locally matters to the environment and your wallet?

Sustainable Family Finances 
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

Buy Nothing Day

With all the hype of Black Friday, we’ll be honoring Buy Nothing Day this Friday. 

Yes, we’ll miss some ridiculous sales, but I guarantee you we’ll save money…kind of like the age old financial savvy of spending less than you earn. 😉

Here’s a 30 second ad by Adbuster to remind of us how glutinous we are and why Mama Earth needs us to limit our consumer craze. But you won’t see this ad on any of the major networks between shop-til-you-drop commercials, because it’s been rejected by ABC, MTV, etc! I can understand wanting to monitor content to a degree, but this is plain and simple censorship.

Have you ever honored Buy Nothing Day?
What will do instead of shop with your family?

Sustainable Family Finances 
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

Sound of Sunshine

Walking to the bus my Big Guy commented about how pitch black it is here, and I explained how it will continue to get a little darker each day until just before Christmas. He found it hard to believe that it could get any darker, and I agreed!

For many this season of darkness it’s hard to get motivated, especially with our finances.  I know personally I need to start planning for the holidays, and even though we don’t buy many gifts, I tend to be a last minute shopper. No “Black Friday” sales for me…we’ll be in the woods finding the perfect tree! But alas, I need to focus on our finances before all the holiday revelry begins. 

So instead of researching a lengthy post, I’m going to share a song that brightens this dark season. When I first heard the Sound of Sunshine on the radio, I almost felt my spirit elevate. I hope it will inspire to think about what makes you happy and how working on your finances will bring you closer to your family goals.

Sound of Sunshine  – by Michael Franti

What motivates you?

Sustainable Family Finances 
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

Eco Baby Shower

Last fall I hosted my first baby shower, and it’s hard to believe this weekend is his 1st birthday party! I’ve also been to two showers this week, so I’ve been thinking more about them.

Baby showers are an important milestone, and way to show support for the family-to-be. I remember being overwhelmed by the love and friendship that came with ours. But I also think there’s a lot of room for greening up this right of passage to lessen the impact and deepen it’s meaning.

It truly takes a village, and people want to help host. Recruit close friends to set up and clean up, and any other talents they may want to share. Prepare in advance and try to share the work load.

Invitations – Go paperless with an e-invitation. I used to send with E-vite, but I was recently turned on to Socializer. It’s free and green.

Decorations – Keep the decorations s imple. My favorite is decorating with a clothesline and baby clothes. If you want centerpieces, create them around baby items they can keep – like reused books standing up or a homemade lovey. A co-worker created towers of blocks in Danish for our shower, and I was so surprised. Now Girly plays and learns from them almost two years later, much better than something that goes in the trash!

eco friendly baby shower Games – Go with a more personal approach. Know your guests and tailor any games to a mixed age or co-ed group. For the co-ed shower I threw, the parents-to-be answered questions about their childhood in advance and guests guessed the answers. At another friend’s shower where I did the games, the theme was “A Star is Born,” so I taped the names of famous mothers on the backs of guests to guess as an icebreaker. Guests also tried to guess the baby names of celebrity stars. I gave organic/free trade chocolate bars as prizes.

Non-Games – Don’t feel like you have to do traditional games, many of which are honestly quite wasteful and not very meaningful to the expecting parents. While many groups may not be comfortable doing a more spiritual blessingway ceremony, you can still go a little deeper. Create something together for the parents. Share stories.

Gifts – Let guests know that reused gifts are welcomed. Since having a plentiful supply of used kid stuff, I’ve been giving a combo of reused and new. Here’s a short list of my favorite gifts:

Beyond the shower – Create a meal train for the family to get meal delivered 2-3 times a week for the first month, or after they return to work. This can be the most valuable gift ever!

I’m hoping that my experience will help you plan an eco-friendly shower. The Oregon Environmental Council has a fantastic resource, with an entire Tiny Footprints Baby Shower how-to kit.

Have you hosted an earth-friendly baby shower?

Sustainable Family Finances
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.