Wednesday
Nov282012

Parent Soul Fever

by Stacey Libbert, Running Monologue 

This morning, I washed baseboards, cleaned behind the refrigerator, organized a closet and mopped all the floors.  It has been bliss. 

For a few weeks, I have been on a relentless schedule of work, travel, volunteer activities, and looming deadlines.  Not to mention nightly homework and extracurricular activities, which we purposely keep at a bare minimum for everyone’s sanity and well being.  What I needed most was some good, old-fashioned home time.  I wanted to sort some things, clean out the cupboard and knock down cobwebs.  I wanted to put on music and zone out while washing dishes.  I wanted to be alone in my house without any disruption or urgency. 

 

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Tuesday
Nov062012

This Week's Win! November 5 - November 15

One lucky subscriber will win a Handmade Felted Wool Explorer Bag valued at $200 from Rosy Toes Designs!

 

Contest is now closed. Congrats to Ondrea for winning this stunning bag!

 

The Blue Tulips Explorer Bag from Rosy Toes Designs is truly a work of functional art!
This gorgeous messenger style purse was knit and felted from 100% cream-colored wool and lined with a sturdy cotton duck. Using wool roving, the bag is created with a large blue tulip on the body. Each one of these bags is slightly different, due to the free form nature of the embellishing. No form is used. You'll find two large pockets inside, one of them closing with a hidden magnetic snap.

 

Felted wool has some amazing properties - it is odor-resistant, stain-resistant, fire retardant, wrinkle-resistant, and water-resistant. It is also eco-friendly and extremely durable and long wearing, making it the ideal material for a well-loved and often used purse. Cared for properly, felted wool can last for through many generations and become a felted heirloom. 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 To enter to win this Handmade Felted Wool Explorer Bag valued at $200 from Rosy Toes Designs: 

1. Become a Bamboo subscriber

AND

2. "Like" or comment on the Bamboo Facebook page's "This Week's Win" posts OR leave a comment on this blog post!

 Please check out the many other beautiful, high-quality handmade creations Rosy Toes Designs has to offer!

 

 

Monday
Nov052012

3 Simple Green Things You Can Do for Your Child to Help Reduce Environmental Impact  

by Srikant Chellappa

photo: gingerlillytea photography

Like it or not everything we do has a direct environmental impact, some of which can last generations and have profound, undesirable effects on the ecosystem. As busy parents, we are often too busy running around and raising our children to place too much attention and effort towards eco-friendly ways. Fortunately, living an eco-friendly lifestyle doesn’t have to be all-or-nothing, even small things which require minimal effort and expense can go a long way. You don’t have to necessarily buy an electric car and install solar panels on your roof to be eco-friendly and feel dejected if you cannot afford it. When raising children, small habits started while they are young can lead them to respect the environment and create a generation of low-impact consumers.

Here are 3 simple, but impactful, eco-friendly and green actions you can take with your child:

 

1.     Ditch the disposable plastic bottled water

Disposable plastic water bottles have a deep impact on energy consumption and the environment even if they are “recyclable.” According to a recent study, bottled water can produce plastic waste in tune of 1.5 million tons in a year. Not to mention, this plastic takes an estimated 47 million gallons of crude oil.  It is also estimated that around 80% of these bottles may never be recycled. Even if they are recycled, there is more energy required in the process, and the downside is consequent pollution. This is not a win-win as may be perceived. Your best bet is to get a high-quality water bottle that you can use for several years. There are several BPA free and eco-friendly bottles on the market, some of which have double lining so they don’t sweat if you carry them around in your child’s school bag. Look at some options on eco-friendly bottles online here at or look at your local stores to see if they carry some good options for you. You can also use some of the newer versions with a built-in filter if you are concerned with water quality in your area.

 

2.     Go eco-friendly with reusable lunch boxes

Lunch trash is a growing problem in our schools. This is another overlooked area with the common use of zip-lock style bags and other materials that end up in mixed trash, never to be recycled. It is estimated that an average elementary school generates 18,000 pounds of school lunch waste. Obviously not all of it is the packaging but there is a growing trend towards “no-waste” lunch. Here is how you can work towards that goal:

 

  • Get a high quality lunch box preferably made with eco-friendly material. There are several options including high quality steel, BPA- and PVC-free plastic with “safe” paint coating.
  • Use a lunch bag that will last a long time and keep your child’s food warm or cold as the case may be.
  • Pack real silverware and cloth napkins that don’t get thrown away
  • Pack foods your child will eat. (We know this one is the hard part!)

 

3.     Take a walk and get outdoors

Increased use of electronics, TV, video games as entertainment for our children not only takes a toll on the environment (electronics and batteries are notoriously toxic for our environment and are rarely recycled) but also impact the behavior of our children.

The easiest and cheapest form of entertainment for a kid is to be in natural surroundings. Looking for a fun activity to do with your child? Work in the garden or take a walk in the park. A wonderful way to wean our little ones off their request to watch TV or play a game on the computer or iPad is to go on a mock treasure hunt in the back yard or pick some flowers and herbs for the flower vase or the next meal to be made. Hiking in your local preservation is a great way to help your child become one with nature and appreciate the natural gifts we have. Recent studies have identified new symptoms around “Nature Deficit Disorder.” Walking creates better neighborhoods, more social interaction and reduced incident of social behavior disorder. Next time your child is bored and wants to sit in front of the TV, take a walk!

What other ideas do you have that are easy and fun? 

Srikant Chellappa is the dad of a 4-year-old and loves to promote eco-friendly lifestyles. He believes children are never too young to learn about the environmental impact of our actions and can be an active participant in families living in an eco-friendly and sustainable manner. Srikant also founded Zenoobi.com, an eco-friendly e-commerce site for baby and kid products.

Monday
Oct292012

The Importance of Playfulness

photo: melissa jean/www.melissajean.com.au

by Kia Imandel

Children play… and they do it full-time. This is how they learn about life. Being playful helps to develop imagination and expand abstract thinking.

Playfulness works for adults, too. The “life-is-a-playground” approach teaches us how to think outside the box and find creative solutions. It develops confidence and brings great people into our lives. People like to be around light-hearted, outgoing individuals with a good sense of humor.

Seeing life as a game brings light into a daily routine. We all have some playfulness inside, although some people show it more than others. If you want to be young at heart (and also look younger) re-capture your playful attitude!

 

“Humanity advanced not because it has been sober, responsible and cautious, but because it has been playful, rebellious and immature.”

-Tom Robbins 

 

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Wednesday
Oct172012

Some Enthusiasm, Please!: Finding Your and Your Child's Inner Passion

by Stacey Libbert of Running Monologue 

Life is about happiness, inspiration and following our passion.  Charles Kingsley once said, “All we need to make us really happy is something to be enthusiastic about.” 

The best part of this is that passion, which is defined as boundless enthusiasm, is not some elusive thing that we must search out.  It is already within each and every one of us. 

I have been a teacher for many years, and one of the most important things I learned in working with students is that finding what interests the student is key to his or her success.  If I can tap into what really lights a student up or what most captures his or her imagination, progress skyrockets. 

But this concept does not apply only to students with special needs.  It applies to all of us.  What we need most is to follow our innate spirit.

 

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Wednesday
Oct172012

This Week's Win! October 17 - October 24

 

One lucky subscriber will win a Sweet Orange, Cinnamon + Clove Sugar Scrub from Celadon Road!

 

Perfect for fall! Close your eyes and just relax ... Celadon Road's sweet orange, cinnamon and clove sugar scrub brings the comfort of home to any shower or bath. With Certified Organic ingredients and an essence sure to warm the soul, this sugary scrub will gently exfoliate and polish your skin without chemicals or synthetic substances! A $30 value.

Visit Celadon Road:

Website

On Facebook

On Twitter

To enter to win a Sweet Orange, Cinnamon aand Clove Sugar Scrub from Celadon Road:

1. Become a Bamboo subscriber

AND

2. "Like" or comment on the Bamboo Facebook page's "This Week's Win" posts OR leave a comment on this blog post!

 


Thursday
Sep202012

Say Yes to Messy Parties!

by Stacey Libbert of Running Monologue

Look inside most purses, glove compartments or bathroom and kitchen cabinets, and you’ll find at least one bottle of anti-bacterial hand sanitizer or a box of Clorox wipes.  We remind our children to wash their hands and faces, and we shake our heads in frustration when they track dirt into the house or collect small piles of sticks and rocks and moss under their beds.  We want them to be clean; after all, to be clean is to be healthy.

But in our race to eradicate germs from our lives, have we gotten a little too sterile?  Recently, I overheard two different children express concern about getting dirt on their hands, and another child was upset about getting her hair wet.  In our pursuit of an orderly and germ-free environment, are we robbing our kids of one of the greatest pleasures of childhood? 

Is getting messy becoming a thing of the past?

 

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Monday
Aug062012

This Week's Win! August 6 - 12

One lucky subscriber will win a $50 coupon for All-Natural and Organic Baby + Kids Products at Zenoobi.com!




Zenoobi carries a great selection of all-natural, eco-friendly and organic baby + kids products -- with a social mission! Their mission is to promote a sustainable and eco-friendly lifestyle for children through their products. Zenoobi is also a 1% for the planet member -- they donate at least 1% (currently much higher) of their revenue to environmental causes. The cause Zenoobi is currently supporting is American Forests wherein they donate to plant 1 tree for every purchase.

To enter to win a $50 credit for products at Zenoobi.com:

1. Become a Bamboo subscriber

AND

2. "Like" or comment on the Bamboo Facebook page's

"This Week's Win" posts OR leave a comment on this blog post!

AND

3. "Like" the Zenoobi Facebook Page