China's Milk Kills: America's Processed Food ____

As China comes out of it’s adolescence and moves toward a true free market it stumbles and rights itself. Chinese people aren’t bad or silly, two of them appear to be, and may face the death penalty. You see, two brothers have been arrested for selling contaminated milk.

My sense of justice has me delighted. My motherhood has me alarmed. The most recent number is 52,000. Fifty two thousand sick babies, 104,000 parents wondering what else they could have done. 208,000 grandparents praying over their children and their grandchildren. Communities in fear and businesses struggling to right themselves.

Two greedy men + one chemical additive = international chaos pain and death.

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Parenting Means Empowering Youth

Apparently Siemens got the message.

The Siemens Foundation, Discovery Education and the National Science

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Sunday Swap Party

This Sunday I was invited to my first ever book swap party. In keeping with the green party theme there was an email invitation that asked us to bring 3 or more books, there would be light snacks and it was an “open house” setting. They would be book swapping from 5 to 9.

In my usual manner I put way too much thought into it. I had the kids pull out books that they didn’t want to keep. Each of my kids was able to fill a cloth grocery stack with paperbacks they didn’t want to read again. I thought about adding my books to the batch, but I have book sharing issues, all of which bring me some measure of shame.

1. I read books with a red pen, if there are too many typos I circle them. It’s the only way I’m able to get through the book. I realize that with the number of posts I churn out (some of questionable quality) that this is hypocrisy with a capitol H. I’m okay with that online but not with the friends IRL (I’m so hip).

2. I read trash. Really, I read historical fiction and chick lit. Not exclusively, but Great Expectations isn’t on my nightstand. When I want to trade my trashy novels for real literature I use Swaptree. Meet me there, I’m a mediocre swapper but they haven’t kicked me out yet.

3. I read in the tub, in the steam shower and in the hot tub. I read in water and my books resemble sponges when I’m done. Trading those books would be downright embarrassing.

We arrived at the book swap around seven. The first wave of swappers was exiting as the kids and I arrived with ours. As we walked in the door there was Kaitlin (9 years old) manning the ticket table.

We gave her our books, she counted them and gave us tickets.

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For You, Dear Reader, I Ate Baby Food – Plum Organics Review

Remember my baby food review wherein I assured y’all that I would never eat it? Well, for this one I did. Plum Organics has a new line of quick frozen food for kids.

I couldn’t help it. You see there was this box of TV dinner looking things. They’re frozen meals that look an awful lot like a Lean Cuisine (with some important differences I’ll get to soon), so I thought that I’d rather not give it to the kids straight away. I thought I’d try it myself.

Honestly, I do not like frozen, prepackaged food. I don’t trust it and I don’t want to eat it. I certainly don’t want to put most of what’s in the freezer section into my kids.

I was pleasantly surprised. It tasted like real food.

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Wordless Wednesday: Perfect Food Packaging

(big payoff after the jump)

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Back to School Tomorrow: Head Lice Shampoo Today Happy Heads Review

Happy HeadsI am so wasted on cheap wine tired from all the summer activities that this will be a short post.

Y’all may or may not remember my head lice trauma. If you don’t recall, the journey begins here. Unfortunately it continued here (careful I cuss a lot). I learned a lesson, it’s a horrible lesson.

Not every mother will keep their child home when they have headlice. *sigh*

Today we did the lice wash. Not because we’re infested, but because we don’t want to be. We’re a few weeks out of any infestation, and I’d like to keep it that way. In preparation for back to school I’m washing everyone with Happy Heads, I’ll continue doing so two to three times a month ad infinitum.

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Tasty Baby Review: Food I Refuse To Eat

Hah! Another completely misleading title from me. I refuse to eat this because it’s baby food and, frankly, my kids are bigger and I’ve done my time. If you’ve got a baby though, you’ve got to get some of this goo food for him/her.

My neighbor has an infant who is just adding solids (squishy ones) to her diet. Like many other really great parents my neighbor wants to feed her daughter good organic foods. She loves the idea of making it herself and freezing it all into little cubes a la Martha Stewart.

But she’s too farking tired.

In any event, the UPS guy came and brought her this.

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Composting in Baby Steps: In Which I Prove That You Are Better Than I

Catalina CompostMy family has just returned from an awe inspiring vacation on Catalina Island. One of the (seemingly endless) ways that the camp lessens it’s carbon footprint is by composting. Can I take a moment and make an announcement please?

I am not a farmer.

I am a housewife from Los Angeles who happens to have access to a computer and an insatiable need to leave the world a teeny bit nicer than I found it. That need does not include turning lemon rinds into bougainvillea. Travis Langen, I blame you, because today I am researching what we need to begin composting. Why? Because you presented composting to my children in such a manner that they are very excited about the process.

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Free and Paid Online Games For the Aware Child: Woogi World

Last week the editors at Green Options asked me if I wanted to write a review of Woogi World. “Uh, okay, I haven’t written a hatchet piece an ages.” was my unenthusiastic reply.

Here’s the deal in my house. My kids get 30 minutes of media; it can be a TV show or some computer time. I’ll give them longer for a movie when we watch together or an hour or more when they’re playing with pictures or Garage Band, but really, leaving my kids parked in front of the computer on a glorious summer day is not my idea of time well spent.

With all that being said, this review may surprise you.

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Go Green Mommy and Discourage Gluttony

There are seven deadly sins. I can’t rattle them off to you but I’ll apologize in advance, because I’m fairly certain I’m guilty of some many most of them. With that being said I have two children and an obligation to turn them into stewards of the Earth. My children (like yours) are kind little people, but they have a propensity towards gluttony.

The common thread with families who conserve is that they’re part of a community and their children have a sense of obligation. Children are born narcissists and can evolve into selfish beings or amazing, giving and inspired members of our society.

How do we grow them up green?

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Listen To Your Children: Playing is Green

This morning I had the good fortune to play tennis with a recent high school graduate. Why good fortune? Have you spent time with a teenager lately? I mean, have you sat down and listened to them, really listened. Teens (rightly) believe that they can change the world. Their enthusiasm is contagious and they don’t see the boundaries that we sadly erect in our adult lives.

As I asked her about her day she mentioned that her father drove to work. She thought he should walk, drive or take the bus. “Because of the environment?” I asked her, maybe a little too hopefully.

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Curriculum Vitae: How This Green Mommy Got to Blog (Part 1)

Recently I was with a girlfriend and she asked me about when I was going to go back to work. “I’m writing,” was my half whisper.

“What?” she asked.

“I’m writing. I’m writing about environmental issues and green parenting,” I gushed. “I never really told anyone, because I was afraid to fail and have my friends see it, but I am a writer.” I sat up a little straighter and taller, proud of having let my secret out.

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Mindful Mama: Good News for Mom, Baby and the Planet

I was happy to hear about the launch of a new magazine for mamas who care about the environment and healthful living, called Mindful Mama Magazine.

The magazine, which will be available through health care practitioners, at bookstores, boutiques and natural food stores in July, will actively promote (according to a recent press release):

o Simplicity
o Products that are non-toxic to mom and baby
o Products and services produced using sustainable practices
o Companies that make efforts to green their workspace
o Companies that actively work to reduce their carbon footprint
o Companies that donate a portion of profits to a good cause
o Mother-owned businesses or parent-friendly workplaces
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Reusable Swim Diapers Make Pool and Beach Time Greener

Konfidence-USA Baby Swim PackThe advances in cloth diapering over the last few years, not only in availability of handy diaper services, but also the quality and simple use of the diapers themselves, have converted many a disposable diaper user to “greener” ways. But while many cloth diaper enthusiasts and flushable diaper users have strong opinions about which cloth diapers work the best, I’ve yet to see commentary on reusable swim diapers.

If you’re already a cloth diaper user, than the concept of using a resuable swim diaper is probably not a far stretch. But if you use disposables or ‘sposies, then you might be glad to know that reusable swim diapers are a fantastic budget conscious choice, particularly since disposable swim diapers are super expensive.

Truth be told, disposable swim diapers are more for easing our minds and less about containing bodily fluids and bowel movements. Basically, they just don’t contain all the chemicals that regular disposables do, therefore keeping them trim and less saggy when they hit water. But, they certainly don’t hold urine well. And, while they might hold a bowel movement for a good five minutes, you do not want your kid swimming around with a swim diaper full of poop.

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