Thursday, January 12, 2012

Going Granola, Part I

This might be the only part in this series...or it might be the beginning of a lifestyle change. I'm just not sure.

Luke seems to be suffering from some digestive issues. We are certain there is an allergy to peanut butter--we saw the quite frightening reaction one evening at church. I'll be fine if that never happens again. It wasn't as bad as some, but it was enough to raise my blood pressure to a dangerous level and cause a relatively sleepless night. There also seems to be a sensitivity to milk. When we transitioned him from formula to whole milk, he was congested all the time and I couldn't get him to dry out. We went on a trip, so we put him on pre-mixed formula and within 3 days, he was completely dry, despite getting many less hours of sleep than normal every day. Since then, we've been playing around with the best milk alternative to give him. Rice milk seemed to leave him less than satisfied, so we're trying coconut milk right now and that fills him up.

After talking with some friends, H and I are going to continue to try some alternative feeding options for him. I'm going to make kefir and see if he'll take and digest that. There is research indicating that it is very benficial for digestive problems. Luke really likes yogurt, so I am going to attempt to make home made yogurt for him. It just seems that anything I can offer him in a more pure, more natural state will be better for his little body.

All of this talk about natural food opened my eyes to a world of more natural living. Truthfully, I always thought that was a little much...a bit over the top. Make your own detergent? Not wash your hair? Are these people FOR REAL??? My arguements: Stuff can't be THAT bad for you. I don't have time to worry about that. It didn't hurt me and I grew up eating it, washing with it, wearing it. You get the idea.

I was in the "convenience" camp. Firmly planted. Perfectly content.

But if you changed the diapers I change every day, you'd consider making some changes, too.

I'm going to make our family's laundry detergent this weekend.
The benefits are many:
~The cost is pennies per load. The initial investment will be less than $10. I will not use the entire contents of the material for the first batch, so I will be able to make more than one batch of detergent. We're looking at less than $0.05/load.

~One batch of home made detergent will last us more than a year. There will be no more panic about how much detergent we have left. I will have enough detergent TO LAST A YEAR. There is very little time investment in this as it will take me about an hour to make a batch of detergent. It is not something that will need to be made regularly.

~No chemicals. All of the ingredients are natural. Nothing is harmful to the environment or our family. Win/win.

I don't see how I have anything to lose by trying this. If we hate the detergent, I haven't invested a lot of time or money into this project.

The other evening I used the last of our dishwasher detergent. Instead of buying more, I'm using vinegar and baking soda. Again...natural. No chemicals. Clean dishes. Win! Win! Cheaper. Win!

I am slowly putting my toe in the pond. Testing the waters. Reading. Learning. Trying. I see granola living far in the distance. I am not fully committed to the path. But I'll meander along and see what happens.

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