Welcome to the July 2013 Natural Living Blog Carnival: Inspiring Change in Others.
This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Natural Living Blog Carnival hosted by Happy Mothering and The Pistachio Project through the Green Moms Network. This month, our members are talking about how they inspire others to make positive changes in their lifestyles. If you have tips to share, feel free to comment on all of the posts! And maybe you'll walk away with a few tips you can use in your own life.
|Lil Man & Dad planting pumpkins|
Our land is our "training ground' for our boys. In fact, they have helped us grow our fruits and veggies from seed. They have helped us in every process from planting, watering, and even chemical-free pest control.
This gardening project has truly been a blessing for our family, not only will we have a source of food free of commercial pesticides, but our children have "grown" in miraculous ways.
|Leettle loves our garden fresh peas, In fact...they are his preferred snack!|
* Self-reliance - by growing our own food, we help our children realize that we can provide for ourselves and discuss how to preserve some of this food (by not only freezing, but canning, or drying)...which is extremely important during times of financial crisis or natural disasters. We live in tornado country, so having a stocked pantry is pretty important.
* Responsibility - each year, we allow our children to choose a couple of crops to care for, and in the process they learn the value of hard-work.
* Self-worth - this is the "by-product" of responsibility. My boys were filled with joy when they were able to see the result of their labor. They were able to do things that momma and da da could do!
* Importance of organic food - my children are old enough to know that non-organic produce are sprayed with harmful substances that can make them sick. Additionally, we want to avoid genetically altered seeds, so we have chosen to purchase heirloom and organic seeds from reputable sellers. From the plants that we grow, we harvest the seeds to use for next years crop, so not only do our children know that we will get food from these seeds, but they will make more seeds to plant as well.
* Respect - even in caring for vegetables that were not their favorites, by caring for the plants, my boys were more likely to try them. My oldest would not touch leafy greens with a ten foot pole, so I wash shocked when he wolfed down (after a little coaxing) his salad made with lettuce from our garden.
More often than not, as parents, we tend to underestimate our children. Even at a young age, they can be taught the values that will last them a lifetime. They are curious about everything and soak up information like sponges.
My husband and I remind ourselves frequently to include our boys in every activity from meal preparation to homemade cleaning supplies (my oldest loves experimenting with different essential oils for his hand soap), under close eye of course.
|My children love to help make our meals|
Here are some other ways that you can teach your family about where our food comes from our how the products we use are made :
- Take your family to a nearby orchard to pick you own fruits and plan a meal around them. If you have a juicer, make fresh juice!
- Visit a farm to see how plants are harvested or milk is extracted.
- Tour a mill, purchase some flour, and bake your own bread.
- Go to a farmers market and ask the vendors how they make their products (many have samples too!) or the process involved in growing their food. Purchase their products and ask your child to recall how that item was made.
- Check out books from your library about the places listed above.
- Make your own cleaning supplies and discuss the reasons for making them chemical-free. Check out my DIY section for recipes.
Do you participate in any of these activities with your family?
In what ways do you inspire change in others?
—–Visit Happy Mothering and The Pistachio Project to learn more about participating in next month’s Natural Living Blog Carnival!
Please take some time to enjoy the posts our other carnival participants have contributed: