Seattle's Child

Your guide to a kid-friendly city

green living tips

Minimalist and decluttering expert Denaye Barahona offers tips for reducing your family's environmental footprint.

Green living tips for Seattle-area families

It's Earth Week, and going green doesn't have to be difficult.

Does Earth Week have you looking for green living tips to reduce your family’s environmental footprint?

You’re not alone.

Research by Seattle-based Zulily found that 88% of parents wish that their environmental footprint was smaller. However, many also indicated they weren’t sure how to go about this.

It doesn’t have to be difficult or totally life-changing.

To get started, Zulily offers these green living tips from minimalist and decluttering expert Denaye Barahona:

Build your connection with nature: Raising green kids can be as simple as taking them outside to play. When we have a connection and appreciation for the natural world, we will feel compelled to protect it. Another way to build this connection to the natural world is incorporating green, eco-friendly toys into play time – like these options from Green Toys Inc., many made from recycled material like milk jugs and yogurt cups. It’s a fun way to teach kids about reusing materials and the importance of recycling.

Start buying better: Everyone loves a good deal, right? Shopping for good value is important, but we also need to focus on quality over quantity. That means focusing on buying better-quality items that will last longer like reusable bags that fit easily in a purse or your car’s cupholder. When we buy better quality, the items we buy will be more durable and can even be passed along to other families after we are done. This means less waste and less clutter. Zulily has launched its first ever Sustainability Shop, a one-stop-shop for sustainable items.

Shop locally and cook seasonally: Believe it or not, many kids think food originates in the grocery store. Take your kids on a trip to see farms and meet the people who grow the foods. They may even have a chance to pick their own fruits and vegetables. When we shop for local food, it’s easy to focus on buying what’s currently in season. The bonus is that buying food in season usually saves money, too.

 Be a teacher and a learner.  Research shows us that kids learn through watching the people around them. It’s important to be role models for our children and live a life we’re proud to show them— including making more earth-friendly choices. When it comes to habits at home, parents ranked turning off the water when brushing their teeth (44%) and avoiding single-use plastics (32%) as most important when it comes to teaching their kids sustainable practices, but kids wasting their food (45%) and taking long showers (35%) are top sustainability pet peeves for parents. Not only do our kids learn by watching us, but they can also learn through reading books and watching videos about sustainability. When we learn together with our kids, we can team up to develop a family culture of sustainability that will last long after Earth Month has passed.

 

Originally published Feb. 20, 2021

Related: More on green living

Activities and events for Earth Day

Bainbridge Home is very green — and kid-friendly

Zero-waste store will help you without making you feel guilty

Other interesting things that have landed in our inbox on this topic: Car-seat manufacturer Chicco has launched its ClearTex line of safety devices that have fabrics with no added chemicals.

Ubabba is a new marketplace featuring sustainable baby and children’s goods. It grew out of a parent’s frustrating search for these items.

 

About the Author