7 Ways I've Become Surprisingly Crunchy

Friday, May 20, 2016

Linking up with Kelly at This Ain't the Lyceum for another round of 7 Quick Takes!

I have lived in the San Francisco Bay Area going on 8 years now. It has changed me in surprising ways - espeically when it comes to some crunchy parenting and living choices.

Yup, I drank the Kool-Aid a little bit.

Here are 7 things that I never saw myself doing that I do now.



This one isn't super weird - we had a big hiking style carrier when my sisters were little - but I did not foresee myself using babywearing in place of a stroller 95% of the time.

But the realities of needing to navigate stores with narrow aisles, and using public transportation means that throwing the baby on my back in the Ergo is often the easiest option.
I'm not ideologically opposed to strollers. We have one. It's not great - I call it the Hummer of strollers - but it is fantastic for hauling the 20+ kids books we get from the library every week.


Cloth Diapering

This one surprised me. Never did I think I would end up cloth diapering, and probably wouldn't have if we didn't have cool neighbors who were doing it when our oldest was a newborn.

Actual thought process: "Well the neighbors do cloth diapers and they're not crazy or a masochistic. Not having to order diapers online would be nice. They say they potty train faster....Let's do this!"

We've lucked out with a pretty awesome cloth diaper service (for which I'm sure our neighbors who share laundry with us are very grateful) and it's been a great fit for us.



Another thing I did not see myself considering before I had kids.

Our oldest was born in a hospital with a CNM. It was not a great experience, and postpartum care was terrible. When I turned up pregnant with #2 I was less than keen to repeat that situation.
So we looked into homebirth!

We surprised ourselves and ended up going with a LM/CPM. She was awesome! Prenatal appointments were largely at our apartment (no need to worry about childcare!), the birth went really well, and postpartum care was fantastic.
It's not the best choice for everyone, but it works great for me.

**You made it through the birth section. Yea you! Now it's going to get a little grosser. You can skip to number 6 if desired.**


Placenta Encapsulation

After our oldest, John, was born I had a really bad round of postpartum depression. After surviving that, I was willing to do just about ANYTHING to prevent it.

I still have to do a little mind distraction in order to swallow the weirdness of ingesting a human organ, but I can do it.
I didn't have any issues with PPD the second time around. Whether it was due to using the placenta medicine, knowing better how to handle recovery + newborn, or just a better support system is unclear. I would probably do it again. Just in case.


Mama Cloth

File under "Things That Sounded Super Weird and Gross": reusable menstrual supplies!
But it's surprisingly clean and easy.

I even used them postpartum (with this kit from Lunapads). So much more comfortable, and it takes up significantly less space than my old stockpile of disposable supplies. 

**See that wasn't so bad, was it?**


All the Weird Veggies

We started getting a farm box when we were newly married. I would probably never have cooked with celery root, butternut squash, kale, chard, or a number of other veggies had they not just appeared in my kitchen demanding to be used or rot.

I have learned how to make things tasty to our family's palate without a lot of waste, and I've become a much more adventurous and confident cook because of it.


Cleaning Clean

Never did I see myself having so many uses for vinegar!
Once I had little crawlers underfoot, it became a lot more important to use cleaners that I did not have to worry about baby fingers touching (for the sake of my poor stress levels.)

As life as gotten busier, I've discovered some pretty great commerical green cleaners. I swear by this Mrs. Meyers Scouring Powder. Comet did not work nearly as well on soap scum and greasy tea kettles. And it smells so good!

Anyone else have the experience of our location changing your choices? Do you do any of the stuff on my list?


  1. The Bay Area does it to you! Love and do almost all these things except the homebirth and placenta encapsulation, wasn't in the cards for me. Miss you guys!

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  3. Haha Kirby, this is great :) My descent into crunchiness didn't come about because of a physical location change, but just gradually over time with the influence of some of my friends and my growing love of self-sustainability and independence (and frugality). I was actually highly amused when my husband and I visited my parents a month ago-we hadn't really visited them since Christmas, and in that span of 4 months, based on their reactions, I guess I became a lot more hippie/crunchy than I had been. I had my parents & sister sitting around cutting out fabric for mama cloth, cloth diapering wipes, and baby carriers, and all the while was discussing how I no longer use shampoo :P

  4. I agree with AnneMarie-- location didn't cause crunchiness for us, just increasing frugality and information. For my family it's come about slower, though. :)

  5. Awesome! Hey, now that you've done cloth diapering and mama cloth, why not go whole hog and do family cloth?! :D I jest. (A little!) This was the one change where I got the biggest eyebrow raises from everyone in my family. However, my (then) 8 year old niece was sooo fascinated by it and every time she came over she wanted a tutorial in how to use it. (lol!) Personally, I found the savings on toilet paper more than enough to justify its use, though I have to admit, I also like environmental aspects as well.

    OK, was that TMI? If so, sorry! Please then amend my comment to read, "We love our CSA and all the weird vegetables too! Though you can keep the kohlrabi - cause ain't nobody got time for that."


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