Read about why this mom ascribes to a “granola lifestyle”–for reasons you might not have thought.
I consider myself a half-crunchy mommy. I do a lot of things that fall into the category of being a “crunchy” mom, but I’m not a die-hard naturalist. Really, most of the crunchy things I do are not because of proposed health or wellness but more because I’m cheap and lazy.
I had my eldest two kids at the hospital and it was a miserable experience. After being constantly poked at, listening to other babies cry and mommies moan all night, sharing a shower and toilet with other women who are a hot (and often drugged up) mess and feeling like I was being held hostage with my babies after uncomplicated natural births, I chose homebirth for my next two kids.
It wasn’t just because I don’t like the “medicalized system”, but also because I really didn’t want to get in the car while labouring and then spend days away from home. I preferred sitting in the dark corner of my bedroom or the warm water of my bathtub during labor. After delivering, I just wanted to climb up in my own bed with my new baby and sleep.
I totally started breastfeeding because I felt it was the healthiest choice for my babies and myself, but I’ve continued for a total of over 7 1/2 years partly because I’m too cheap to buy formula and all the bottle feeding paraphernalia.
I’m also too lazy to pump, make bottles, feed a bottle and wash bottles, so I have a lot of respect for the mommies who make the sacrifice day-in and day-out for their babies. I’m pretty sure I’d get nothing else done all day because I’m not very efficient at any of those things and breastfeeding, for me, equals instantly-ready baby feeding with no preparation or clean up. I’m sold!
I only started with my fourth baby, but I’m hooked and wish I had started earlier! I chose to cloth diaper because it is saving us a ton of money (we broke even over using disposables at just over 6 months and won’t have to buy any more diapers, ever).
Plus I don’t have to clip coupons, watch for sales, store massive amounts of diaper boxes or make last-minute trips to the store that result in extra unnecessary spending. Yes, cloth diapering involves laundry, but with four kids and a clean-freak husband, my life already revolves around laundry already. So what are a few dirty diapers?
Yes, I love having my babies close to me and giving them that secure feeling. But more importantly, I’ve never been a big fan of trying to push a baby stroller through a busy parking lot while also trying to manage a toddler who is a flight risk, a free-spirited 7 year-old and a sassy 9 year-old who thinks she’s 18.
I need all the hands I’ve got just to get everyone safely from here to there! It also keeps my hands free for pushing and loading the shopping cart, and the cart space free for the massive amount of stuff a family of six requires. Plus, babywearing makes the boob instantly accessible should baby become hungry, fussy or tired wherever we may be.
The process of introducing new foods by way of finger foods instead of spoon-feeding was a much needed option for me once baby number three came around and life got crazy. And after making all homemade food and spoon feeding my second daughter (which was only slightly easier than spoon feeding a lizard), I wasn’t all that interested in doing the purees thing again.
Chopping up whatever the rest of the family is eating and letting baby go at it himself is so much easier, and way cheaper too since I don’t have to pay a premium for pre-smooshed food. And cleanup is usually a breeze as most whole foods don’t make nearly the same glorious mess as liquid foods.
We homeschool, but not because I want to be in charge of every aspect of my children’s lives, it’s because we tried “real” school and it kind of sucked. None of us liked waking up early every day, making lunches, walking to school, not being able to travel except when it was ridiculously expensive, rushing around, yelling at each other over homework, and more.
We like homeschooling because our schedule is completely our own and we can do what we want when we want. Plus my kids get a personalized education and can pursue whatever other passions they want (and I no longer have to worry about my kids becoming depressed at 5 years old).
I’m not perfect and certainly don’t always make the best choices. We enjoy Wendy’s once in awhile and all my kids sleep in their own beds. (No co-sleeping for this mommy–I need my space some of the time!)
But when managing a busy and full household, convenience is key. For me, if it’s easier and saves our family money in the process, I’m sold. And it just so happens that a lot of those easier and cheaper things fall on the “crunchy mom” end of the spectrum.
Where are you on the “crunchy” spectrum, PLNers? What do you love about being more granola or not-so-granola?
*Opinions expressed are those of the author, and not necessarily those of Parent Life Network or their partners.