We just had our little guy last summer and we do have most of the things we need for the new baby, however, since I have become more “green” conscious there are some things we are working on to change for the new baby. We also need to transition LA out of the nursery and into his new room with a toddler bed. The whole toddler bed kind of scares me, but we’ll see how he does. If we need to buy another crib, then we just have to buy another crib. I definitely want to transition him before the baby’s arrival though because I don’t want him to feel that baby has taken over his room/bed. For those of you expecting (or for those wanting to make changes) here are some tips for making your nursery more green.
1) Although this is not a green tip, make sure to get a car seat and make sure that the car seat is up to safety standards. This is one of the most important things, because you have to have a car seat for that special “bringing baby home” day.
2) Consider changing your household cleaners to either something all natural that you make or to something all natural that you can buy in the store. Which ever way it is easier for you, you want to try to stay with the all natural cleaners. Harsh chemical cleaners can irritate baby’s eyes and lungs.
3) Try to have organic bedding on hand. Newborn babies can be very sensitive and you just never know when something may bother them so I think it’s best to try and use as much organic as possible. This is one change we are making this time. LA’s bedding when we brought him home was not organic, my goal this time is to have organic sleep blankets, bassinet sheets and crib sheets when we do move baby to the crib.
4) We do use cloth diapers, but I admit we do not use cloth 100% of the time. We did not use them in the first 2-3 weeks after LA was born, allowing us time to adjust to a routine as well as letting his belly button and circumcision to heal.We use disposable diapers part of the time (including at daycare) and we make sure to have diapers on hand such as Seventh Generation diapers. Their diapers are free of chlorine, latex, fragrance and petroleum based lotions. We also have their wipes on hand because they are free of alcohol, synthetic dyes and fragrances.
5) Be sure the toys you get for baby are non-toxic. Baby will eventually put everything in his/her mouth so you want to have safe items around. Avoid products with PVC and BPA – organic cotton toys are a great fit for baby’s nursery!
6) If you are using bottles, be sure the bottles are BPA free as well. Make sure you have at least 6-8 bottles for each day and for those first few weeks, I would have at least a 2-3 day supply of bottles to be on the safe side. You never know when you’ll feel up to washing those bottles so have plenty around.
7) Use eco-friendly room paint and/or wallpaper. Be careful with the new paint smell, it’s not good for baby. Be sure to paint (if possible) months in advance and make sure the room has been thoroughly aired out. The paint you chose should be low in VOC. VOC stands for volatile organic compounds, which are hazardous gases and chemicals released from the paint. Think of that “new paint smell”. The big problem with VOC? It’s released not only when the paint is fresh, but throughout the life of the paint so be sure to use low VOC paint. If wallpaper is your thing, be sure to get natural materials and fibers.
8) Although this isn’t green related, it’s family related and very important. Make sure to talk about baby’s arrival with your other children and get them prepared for this big change. There are many books available that may help younger children have a better understanding of the changes coming.
9) Use compact florescent light bulbs in baby’s nursery. These types of light bulbs use about 75% less energy over their lifetime and will last about 10 times as long as regular light bulbs.
10) Another important thing to do is to child-proof your home so that when baby does start moving around he or she will be safe. Cover the outlets, get cabinet locks and install baby gates. You may be jumping the gun a bit by doing this prior to baby’s arrival, but after baby’s arrival you will not have much time so I suggest doing these things in advance!
As parents or new parents we all want to be sure to keep baby as safe as possible and away from harm. I hope these tips help you get started on greening your nursery and getting ready for that special day you get to bring baby home! Comment below with any additional tips you have for greening your nursery or preparing for baby’s arrival.
I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Seventh Generation blogging program, for a gift card worth $50. For more information on how you can participate, click here.