There are so many places in our lives where little switches can make a big difference – when I first read the title I immediately thought about the environment, but as I read a little further, the Social Moms program was asking about relationship advice, so rather than pick one or the other, I thought I’d share my thoughts on both.
When my sons were born, I became more and more aware of how much our choices impact our environment. In the past four years, I've been dedicated to making little changes to our home and routines on a regular basis that will help eventually make a big difference. I’ve also made a commitment to making sure that my relationship with my husband and older daughter don’t suffer because of having the youngsters in the house.
One of the first things that I did, even before kids was to buy in bulk - in Canada, my favorite place to shop was called the Bulk Barn, because you could literally find aisle after aisle of bulk dry goods and get exactly what you needed - large or small quantities and with very little packaging. It means way less waste and was also a huge money saver. Here in the States, we don't have the luxury of that type of store all in one place, but several stores have started bulk sections and I am great about frequenting those.
Another little change is to grow our own vegetables and herbs. Here in our townhouse, we don't have space for a huge garden, but I have lots of room for containers - so we grow tomatoes, lettuces, peppers, cucumbers and a variety of herbs. It teaches the kids about where their food comes from, is fun and is environmentally friendly.
For those herbs and vegetables that I can't grow, we try to source locally - Charleston County has a great buy local program and I have fun taking the kids to pick-our-own and also to shop at farm stands all over the Sea Islands. Growing and preparing food has become a family affair – Robyn enjoys cooking in the kitchen and Liam is learning to measure and stir! Everyone in our family is part of the meal planning process, too!
In terms of making time for Wayne and I, that’s really tough – especially with the baby and a special needs pre-schooler, so instead of trying to get date nights, we take Date days – and either go out for breakfast after dropping the kids off and before he goes to work, or meeting for lunch! Erik is still little enough to go with us, but it will still be easier to find a babysitter during the day for one little guy than to get one for all three kids at night! We still get to spend time together and really talk, but we don’t have the stress of worrying about a babysitter and the kids – nor the expense!
Little Switches can make a big difference and if you look for a solution before you have a problem, you can really make a huge difference in your life and that of those around you!
Disclosure: I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Cottonelle blogging program, for a gift card worth $25. For more information on how you can participate, click here