Fresh Thoughts and Ideas : Eco Friendly Parenting and More!
Eco-Friendly Lunch Ideas September 8, 2017 12:15
It's that time of year! School has started and vacation is definitely over. It's back to the meal planning and lunch packing fun of September.
In order to inspire you to make your lunches as eco-friendly as possible for you, your partner or your kid(s), we've pulled together some pretty terrific ideas.
Eco-Friendly Lunch Ideas
**these recipes are plant-based because plant-based is always eco-friendly.
- Coconut & Tofu Thaï Red Curry - 4 servings of easy-to-bring-with deliciousness
- Tofu feta & sun-dried tomato orzo salad - a big batch of family-friendly salad that can be used as a side or even a main dish.
- The classic "picnic" lunch : fresh veggies, hummus, crackers and veggie pâté
- Bean-based sandwich mixes
Tips For a "Green" Lunchbox
- Invest in some good tupperware that you can use and wash and repeat
- Choose reusable snack bags vs. plastic snack bags (for example these bags from Itzy Ritzy with adorable patterns)
- Avoid juice boxes and individual yogurt containers (or at least recycle them). Use instead small plastic or glass containers such as mason jars (you can get tiny little 4 oz ones that are perfect for small portions)
If you make just one eco-friendly recipe or put into place one "green" lunchbox tip, you'll be making a difference. We sincerely hope that your back-to-school/work experience is a great one and don't forget to focus on what's important : the people you love. It makes every day brighter.
Save 10$ on Earth Day April 22, 2017 07:00
Save 10$ on Earth Day when you buy a Violet 3 pack of Piperoos on Amazon.com (offer valid on April 22nd, 2017 only - don't miss your chance!)
Did you know?
We celebrate Earth Day every day through our eco friendly practices :
- the fabric for the changing pads is 100% organic cotton
- the manufacturing is done locally (in Los Angeles, California)
- the boxes for the packaging are made of recycled cardboard and the printing is done with low impact, soy-based ink
- the boxes are printed in La Mirada, California, just an hour's drive from L.A.
- and, every time a box of Piperoos Basic Baby Changing Pad is sent to a customer, an extra fee is paid to offset the carbon footprint of the shipping!
Make a difference by buying a green baby product that is both earth-friendly and gorgeous!
Three Things we Love About Gardening April 20, 2017 09:30
Gardening is such a fun activity and for so many reasons, but here are the three main reasons we love to garden.
1) It's fun!
Gardening is an activity enjoyed by many and it's because it is genuinely fun. Seeing your plants start popping out of the soil and being amazed by the speed at which they grow are a big part of it. The planning, the planting and especially the tasting contribute as well.
2) It's a learning experience
For toddlers, kids and adults, gardening means learning about how food is grown. When you take the time to garden, you learn what a pea sprout looks like and how long it takes till the plant produces the food. You also get to learn what kind of plants grow best in which climates and how much sunlight and water different plants require. For a quick beginners guide to starting a vegetable garden, read this article provided by the Old Farmer's Almanac. You can also just go the trial-and-error route but you may get less produce your first year.
3) It means local and fresh food at our doorstep (literally)
Gardening means that tomatoes, peas and other veggies can be enjoyed at their freshest ! The peak season here in California is summertime, but we enjoyed fresh tomatoes last year up until January. Eating locally is a very eco-friendly gesture, so be assured that the time and effort put into your little garden is also great way to be green.
Gardening doesn't require a big backyard or elaborate tools... it can easily be done in big pots or square "beds". You can even upcycle pallets to make a garden if you want an extra project to add to the fun. It's also possible to garden on a balcony, if that's the space you have. The only really big limiting factor when it comes to gardening is lack of sunlight. If your backyard or balcony is really shady, it'll be more difficult to grow your own vegetables. But, other than that, you can just get creative with the space you have and enjoy the process.
And if you're gardening with little ones but need some ideas as to what to plant, click here for a list of ten easy veggies to grow with kids. Also, we would love to see some pics of your garden if you decide to start one (or if you are already a fan of gardening), so please feel free to share!
Why we love Earth Baby March 23, 2017 02:00
Finding Earth Baby was such a victory for Piperoos! This charming, earth friendly boutique on Ventura Blvd. in Studio City is like a treasure chest full of green baby treats.
This store has so many adorable things that you have to allow yourself some time to really look and absorb what's in here. Also, Renee and her team have done such a great job on the decor that on one of my initial visits I tried to buy one of her decorations.
Best of all though, is that this store is filled with green products made by local moms! They source locally and are a great voice in the community encouraging people to invest in local businesses. They also focus on organic products and do a wonderful job educating people about green and eco-friendly options for your baby and home.
Speaking of local... it's always a treat when the team shares which local celebrity has recently stopped by.
A Green Tradition March 17, 2017 04:57
St-Patricks day is one of those Holidays that has changed SO MUCH over the years. Other than it being a day to wear green and decorate the house and/or office, do you know who St-Patrick is or why he has a place in our calendars?
A (very brief) history lesson
Saint Patrick wasn't born in Ireland and his real name was probably Maewyn Succat. His Romanicized name was Patricius and he eventually came to be called Patrick. He was born in Britain, but spent time in Ireland as a missionary. His life mission, after joining the Catholic Church was to convert the Gaelic Irish to Christianity - and he was very successful at it. He passed away on March 17th, AD 461, which is why we celebrate St-Patricks Day in the middle of March. If you're interested, you can learn more here.
Each family has it's own traditions to celebrate Holidays. As for us, it's the time of year we start choosing what to grow in the garden! Gardening is a way to connect to nature, eat locally and reduce the distance our food has to travel to get to our plates.
Taking the green tradition to a whole new level
Since this holiday has changed so much over the years, why not change it some more and turn it into a time of year where we choose to do something for the planet, where we choose to "be green"? Gardening, if you like, is one of the ways we choose to be green on St-Patricks Day.
There are other ways of course and we'd love to hear about your ideas and/or current green traditions. Let us know!
3 Things We Love About Patagonia February 23, 2017 09:00
Patagonia is an AMAZING store! Recently, on one of my favourite podcasts (How I Built This), I learned some new and inspiring stuff about this truly eco-friendly company. Right on their website they declare themselves as environmental activists - I love that!
In the name of respecting our new series of "Three Things Thursdays", I had to chose just 3 things I love about Patagonia, but it was hard...
Here they are:
- Patagonia has been encouraging people to buy less stuff and find ways to reuse and restore their equipment! How cool is that!?
- In 2016, they pledged 10$ million from their Black Friday Sales to grassroots environmental groups.
- For the past 20 years, they've been using organic cotton and been pesticide-free!
Like I said, those are only a few reasons we love this company. If you are interested in learning more, check out this short video (click on image below) to see everything that they are doing to be a green (and more and more fair trade) company.
Piperoos strives to be green in every way possible and it is so inspiring to see big companies like Patagonia making the environment a priority as well.
An Eco-Friendly Valentines Day February 13, 2017 09:00
Happy Valentines Day (in advance)! We hope you'll be celebrating with your family and saying "I love you" a few extra times tomorrow.
If you'd like to make a Valentine's Day craft with your little ones but haven't decided which one yet, check out this blogpost offering 14 cute ideas.
We tested out these cute little cork love bugs!
It makes a truly eco-friendly craft because it uses mostly recycled materials and only stuff we already had at home. We didn't even get the glue gun out but instead used pins to stick on the "wings".
On top of making a craft from recycled materials, here a few other suggestions to make your Valentine's day greener this year.
- Choose fair trade and organic chocolate - it makes a huge difference, environmentally. If you don't yet know about Theo Chocolate, you will LOVE the quality of their chocolate as well as their beautiful packaging!
- Make your own chocolate instead of buying individually wrapped candies. Melt down some (fair trade and organic) chocolate pieces bought in bulk and pour into heart-shaped molds.
- Celebrate simply by wearing pink and red clothes (kids love participating!) or choosing to eat red berries for breakfast.
- Give a potted plant or organic flowers instead of the classic bouquet to your loved ones.
Going green on Valentine's day shows our kids that we love our planet and want to take care of it. So *cheers* to a green (and red, and pink) February 14th!
Being Green in the Kitchen - A Few Recipe Ideas February 7, 2017 12:11
I was planning to chat with you today about a favorite winter recipe, but... I can't decide.
So instead maybe this set of suggestions will help you get out of a rut. Whatever season it is, our family can get to a place where we just buy the same groceries, week after week, but sometimes you need something to shake things up. Here's hoping this helps to mix it up for you:
Lentil soups: I'm super into lentil soup these days and if you do it in a crockpot it's so easy. You have maybe 15 min of prep time and voila - a protein filled, cost effective, eco-friendly, yummy, yummy meal. Add some cumin for a funky tweak and some spinach for some extra green. A side of warm fresh bread and a slice of cheese can be heavenly.
- Potato, lentil and spinach soup -
Buffalo cauliflower sandwiches: So we're lighter on the protein here, but we do really well in terms of delicious flavors. The melty blue cheese, the spicy buffalo sauce, it's all making my mouth water right now. Make sure you have some great crusty bread to set it off.
Veggie chili: Another crock pot favorite. As long as you have some beans, you should be in good shape. Our "designer" options are some frozen corn, maybe celery, and garbanzo beans in addition to your chili basics. This also freezes well which is handy.
Whatever you're making these days, please try to stay eco-friendly by choosing local, seasonal ingredients. Here's a hint - the things that are plentiful and reasonably priced in your grocery store are usually the ones that are in season. Of course, buying organic can be a little more pricy, but I'm happy to do it when I can for the health of our families and our food growing communities. Using the EWG's Clean Fifteen & Dirty Dozen Guide for prioritizing which fruits and vegetables to buy as organic produce is another way to be green without busting your budget. Lentils and beans are of course especially great options for the green diner as they pack so much protein into an eco-friendly package.
So there it is... a few ideas for you. Of course, reach out if you'd like more details on any of these OR if you have a recipe to share!