Preparing for the arrival of a baby can be overwhelming…and that’s before I add my commitment to social justice into the mix. As I begin to come to terms with the idea that there will soon be another little person in our home, I have started to think about ways to approach motherhood that are beneficial not just for my growing family but the wider world too.
Yesterday my husband suggested we could buy a moses basket from a store on my blacklist (due to its lack of integrity as a retailer). *gasp* My horrified response indicated just how passionate I am about maintaining my commitment to fair trade and ethical practises, even at a time when the cost of having a baby can easily escalate. I suggested I would rather buy something second-hand than buy it new, at a low price, from a shop which I knew did not share my values. However, our views on used items differ somewhat and the conversation ended very quickly (on hubby’s side) when I suggested I would even consider buying used reusable nappies. I fear I may have lost that short-lived battle. But when it comes to furniture and buggies I will likely still sneak onto gumtree or Preloved to see what I can find.
Despite the extra work involved, I’ve decided to use reusable nappies rather than disposables. After reading this study by the Environment Agency I feel I can do my little bit this way to alleviate my family’s carbon footprint. Provided I don’t frequently use the tumble-dryer and boil the nappies in the machine, I could reduce our environmental impact by almost 40% compared with using disposables.
Now the really tough choice is deciding which ones to buy? This handy guide by Ethical Consumer shows which nappies score the highest in terms of environment, trading standards, sustainability etc. Having taken note of the scores I headed over to Babipur’s ethical webshop to find my nappies of choice. It sounds so simple writing it here but, in all honesty, I have been tearing my hair out over this during the last few days. I have finally decided on TotsBots due to their exceptional values and great reviews.
As regular visitors to this blog might know, I’m quite particular about avoiding any products tested on animals. This reduces the list of available baby toiletries somewhat but has lead me to find some super products which I can’t wait to try out on mini-Fox. I’ve order a Newborn Hamper from Green People which contains the essentials for the new arrival (and mum) so I can bath baby knowing no animal, human or soil was harmed in the making of the products! For a bit of variety, Ethical Superstore has a good range of baby toiletries which are not tested on animals, are fair trade and organic.
When it comes to teeny-tiny clothes, so far our little-one-to-be only has three items hanging in their wardrobe; these all come from the H&M Conscious collection. Other fair trade stores I suspect I will browse more thoroughly in the near future are Little Green Radicals, Piccalilly (maybe more during sale season) and The Natural Store.
If I am going to have the inevitable piles of toys marring the aesthetics of my home, I would like to know they have left a trail of good before cluttering the corners of my living space. Traidcraft has some really great options. I especially love this giraffe mobile to remind our little one of their South African heritage. I also came across this sweet jungle mobile on Oskar & Catie – an ethical company on notonthehightreet.com. This fair trade bunny from Natural Collection looks pretty hug-able but I won’t know whether to buy it in pink or blue until baby arrives. Finally, for a good night’s rest, this poverty-fighting musical teddy from Toys to You should be of some help soothing our little bundle of joy.
With just three months until baby arrives it’s time to starting stepping up the efforts to get ready and ensure the latest addition to the Fox family starts doing their bit to change the world from day one.