Wednesday, May 23, 2012

The crunch factor

I've been spending the past few months researching parenting styles/approaches and discovered I'm probably going to be pigeon holed as a "crunchy parent". Luckily, it's not a mainstream term just yet, but I can guess that I will be getting questions from friends and family on my intended techniques.
What is crunchy parenting you say? Well, it's loosely a set of "alternative" ideas to parenting. (You say alternative, I say NATURAL) Which help develop a close bond between parent and child.
I've stated before that the bond between us and our baby is extremely important to me, and with the gentle style of alternative parenting I think this will be the best thing our little family can do.
So what's involved and what do we intend to do?

Breast Feeding This one is a no brainer for us. I intend for doing it for at least 2 years, just as the WHO recommends 
Co-sleeping Not in our bed, but beside us in her own bassinet, then when she gets bigger we will side car with a cot.
MCN/EC Modern cloth nappies will take place after I have the nappy changing technique down pat. We will be using biodegradable disposables for the first few weeks and hope to teach her Elimination Communication too
Home made foods None of those sodium filled jars of baby mush from the super market for us. 
Baby wearing Hands free baby carrying. Seems almost too easy. And who wants to wrestle a pram and run down people in the shops with those massive wheels? We have 2 Boba carriers so far
Natural material toys We are trying to minimalise the amount of useless plastic toys and stick to educational wooden ones instead.
Environmental awareness  Being vegan, we already have a high awareness of our impact on the environment. We have a small herb garden which I would like to expand into a full veggie patch. We have a massive, albeit slightly neglected, compost pile too. I would love for Clem to learn first hand where her food comes from and stick her hands in the dirt.
Education I'm really enjoying reading about Montessori at the moment. I'm not as researched as I'd like to be just yet, but we know she will also be involved in Kodaly.

Now, I'm sure there is a lot more to parenting than just these few short points, but I feel that these are well researched and suitable for our little family. I'm not one to be self righteous, especially on a topic I have no actual experience with, but this is all going to be a steep learning curve for us. I think that going into it open minded and flexible, but with a slight plan and basic structure is as well prepared as we can get!


Sarah (compostkitty) said...

invest in a woven wrap!! they are awesome :) addictive but you need to always have one available when the others need washing :P

Renée MBM said...

Have you found any info/studies on the long-term results of Montessori? I found an Aussie study showing Steiner kids have better results in higher and tertiary education, but nothing like that for Montessori... and I think Montessori will be better suited to Ms A, but I'm not sure...

Stacy said...

Sarah - I think we should get at least one woven wrap! They are so pretty and colourful! Do you have a favourite brand?

Renee - Interesting about Steiner.... I have a few Montessori books favourited on bookdepository, I'd like to read more into it too.

Sarah (compostkitty) said...

i can't really say much for others as i have only tried girasol and hoppediz
Both are awesome! And easy to care for.
I have some links on my blog to stores that stock them :) (staying sarah blog)

Rebecca said...

Wow! I didn't plan on anything at all, I didn't read about anything beyond the birth and breastfeeding, and it turned out I had a 2 hour labor and a baby who just knew how to breastfeed! She wasn't much of a sleeper though and I found myself at 7 months doing controlled crying which I never ever thought I would, funny where parenting takes you!

And don't underestimate prams. We have a sling and we rely on both it and the pram in equal measures, sometimes you don't want to hold the baby! You just need to go for a walk, and chill and clear your head. We have a small one which only weighs 4kg and fits perfectly in our hatchback.

Renée MBM said...

We're thinking of investing in a Buddhist curriculum or something like this:

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