Tag Archives: books

Great Books for Green Parents

Whether you read them enough to make them worth buying, or just borrow for a quick read from the library, books are another great resource for parents wanting help in taking care of the environment and their families. There’s so much to know!

Free Range Kids
I was lucky enough to be sent a review copy of this one for one of my other sites. Great book, and while it’s not about environmentalism, there’s a lot to it that can be combined with teaching kids to care about the environment.

Healthy Child Healthy World: Creating a Cleaner, Greener, Safer Home
I reviewed this one a while ago. Lots of tips on living cleaner and greener, and broken into separate sections so it’s easy to pick the areas you want to get started with.

Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children From Nature-Deficit Disorder
Another book I got to review a while back. Lots of fun and a great reminder of how very important it is to get your family outside.

Books I haven’t read that sound promising:

The Green Teen: The Eco-Friendly Teen’s Guide to Saving the Planet

The Green Parent: A Kid-Friendly Guide to Environmentally-Friendly Living

Raising Baby Green: The Earth-Friendly Guide to Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Baby Care

Healthy Child Healthy World Review

I was recently contacted by a publicist for Healthy Child Healthy World: Creating a Cleaner, Greener, Safer Home to see if I would like to review the book. What could I say except “yes”? Talk about a pet topic of mine!

They very kindly sent me out a copy to read, and I recently finished it. I very much so enjoyed the read.

The book is separated into sections of related things you can do, such as preparing for baby, natural body care, pet care and so forth. Each section has a range of tips on how you can do these things in a way that is better for your family and the environment.

Of course, some of the things suggested I do already, but there were some good ideas I hadn’t thought of either.

One of the things I really appreciated was the suggestion in the book that you do not need to try to do everything right away. You can work your way through the things you are ready for and make progress at your own pace. I think that’s a very important thing to remember. Going green doesn’t have to be an instant or frustrating solution.

It also got me thinking about things I hadn’t before, such as how lead gets into soil around older homes. We’re renting a home that I believe is of an age to have such a problem, so I know it is potentially relevant. As a renter I don’t know that I can do much about it aside from being aware of the potential for a problem. It’s a topic my husband and I have discussed before, because he didn’t see why kids would chew on paint chips, and now I can explain to him how it really works. See page 164 if you need to know.

The section on food (chapter 3) is one I think I need to bring up with a friend of mine who I had been discussing organic produce with the other day. She wasn’t sure what she needed to buy organic versus conventional to avoid pesticides (page 36). I’ve seen the same list online, but it’s nice to have a physical copy of the list.

There’s a great section at the back of the book on Healthy Resources. You can find out where to learn more on your favorite topics or learn about some of the products they recommend.

Of course, every parent reading this will have their own favorite sections, depending on what they need to learn. I do strongly recommend you get this book. Check your library if it’s not in the budget, but with all the resources it provides, you’re probably going to want to buy your own copy to keep referring back to.

Teens Gone Green?

My kids are quite a bit too young for this one, but there’s a book about to come out that might be a welcome gift to any green teen you know. It’s called The Green Teen: The Eco-Friendly Teen’s Guide to Saving the Planet.

Obviously, I can’t review the book; it’s not out yet. But it looks promising. The description says it will give tips on making eco-friendly decisions on a tight budget and schedule and how to get concerns recognized by decision makers.

Given that kids these days are very aware of the need to help the environment, I’m glad to see a book like this coming out.

Parents, what other titles do you recommend for teens? What about younger children?

Environmentalism the Lazy Way

Is there such a thing?

That depends on how you define environmentalism. There are so many levels to being green, and some really don’t go well with being lazy about it.

Especially if you really want to make a difference.

But if you don’t have the time to really focus on making a difference, but want to change your own consumption levels, there are things you can do. You can buy a book or get it at the library. Books such as The Lazy Environmentalist and It’s Easy Being Green cover some of the ways any of us can go green.

If nothing else, they’re probably great gifts for friends and family who don’t know how to get started.

Of course, the best thing you can do for the environment is to consume less. That may be one of the most challenging things too. It’s hard to break habits when you grew up in  a time where most people thought nothing of buying anything they needed or wanted, ignoring both the environment and financial common sense in a lot of cases.

Next best is to buy used when possible. That’s really not so hard, and some thrift and resale shops have amazing finds in them.

Using handmedowns counts the same as buying used, of course, except you don’t get to shop around.

We do this a lot in my family, and are working on being more deliberate about it. We’re talking toy and movie swaps between families, because, let’s face it, between Christmas and birthdays, friends and relatives, kids these days get way too much stuff. We can decrease the amount of stuff we as parents buy with appropriate trading and handing down.

Steps keep getting bigger as you go, but for many that’s the way to start. You do the lazy things first and then realize that some of what you thought was too hard is starting to make sense.

Ethical Shopping Help

Christmas isn’t the only time we need to be thinking about ethical shopping. It’s something to work on for the entire year.

This is a topic I’ve been thinking about a lot, mostly due to the sheer consumerism of this time of year. This year is probably better than most, since so many people are cutting back and even looking at used gift items and thrift stores. It’s a nice change, but so much more can be done.

Going through the books at Amazon, I found The Better World Handbook: Small Changes That Make A Big Difference. By the reviews, it looks like a good book.

The book gets into choosing the right bank, buying the right groceries, alternative transportation and more. Sounds to me like the kind of guide a lot of us need to cut back on the guesswork.

I have no doubt that bits of information in it are already out of date, of course. More and more stores have been adding organic selections, for example. The current economy has put many companies out of business, and others are looking for ways to cut costs, which often comes at the sacrifice of environmental efforts. But even with that I think the information is going to be good.

One reviewer didn’t like all the small changes, but as others have noted, small changes are often what lead to big changes. This looks like a nice way to get moving on more small changes.

It’s going on my wish list. Not quite in the budget yet.