Category Archives for "Parenting"

Best Places to Go to See Animals in Nature

See animals in nature

Sure, anyone can see all the animals they could ever want in a zoo. However, it's much more thrilling to spot an animal in its natural habitat, rather than locked away in a cage. Below are some of the best places to go to see animals in their natural habitats in and around the United States.

Alaska bears

Bears in Alaska (Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay)

Bristol Bay

The northernmost place on this list is Bristol Bay, located in Alaska. Not only is this area beautiful with its wonderful plant life but it also has a range of animals that can't be easily found elsewhere. Some of the animals that can be found on land include American bald eagles and waterfowl. However, it's the animals that live in and around the bay itself that are even more exciting.

The marine life in Bristol Bay is astounding, to say the least. Visitors who take boat tours of the area will likely see both sea and river otters, beavers, and seals. If the are really lucky, they can see beluga whales! Perhaps what Bristol Bay is most popular for is its salmon. The fishing industry here is huge, but the fish are in trouble due to dam building and other human interferences. If you want to learn more about it, check out this article by Louise Gund. Whether you like to look at fish or eat them, you can view the salmon jumping up the river-- a rare and mesmerizing site.

Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park is one of the United State's most famous wildlife parks. This park is so large that it spans across several states! All in all, there are about 400 unique animal species that can be spotted here. How can so many animals be found here? Well, it's because the area is protected. No one is allowed to take anything from the park--let alone hunt in the park. This gives the animals a large area to thrive and reproduce, ensuring that there are animals for future generations of visitors to enjoy.

Bison in Yellowstone National Park

Bison in Yellowstone National Park (Image by Klaus Stebani from Pixabay)

Yellowstone National Park doesn't operate like a zoo. This means there are no cages. Instead, the animals roam freely in their native habitat. There are fences to keep visitors from getting too close to the animals, but there is nothing keeping different animal species away from each other. Some animals you might be lucky enough to spot while visiting the park are listed below.

  • Black bear
  • Lynx
  • Red fox
  • Bison (Buffalo)
  • Elk
  • Beaver
  • Peregrine falcon
  • Trumpeter swan
  • Sandhill crane
  • Western tiger salamander
  • Columbian spotted frog
  • Rubber boa
  • Sagebrush lizard

These are just some of the 400+ animal species you can find at the park! So, keep your eyes peeled (and keep a safe distance) to see how many animals you can spot on your trip.

Whether you travel to Bristol Bay, Yellowstone National Park, or another national park or animal reserve, always make sure to keep a respectful distance between yourself and the animals. Even though they are in a protected park, they may not be totally used to humans. Remember, they are wild animals! With this in mind, you can surely still enjoy your visit!

May 31, 2018

6 Ways To Be Eco-Friendlier After Having a New Baby

Eco-friendly New Baby

Following is a guest post contributed to this blog:

Dirty diapers… baby food containers… mounds of laundry… is it possible to have a new baby and still be eco-friendly?

While new babies can make it tough for families to lower their carbon footprint, there are plenty of ways new parents can opt for an eco-friendly lifestyle, even with their new arrival.

Here are six ways you can make greener choices when your new baby is born.

1. Cloth Diapers

To start with, stay away from disposable diapers.

Approximately 20 billion disposable diapers are trashed in landfills every year, and every new baby born increases the amount of waste being put into the ground.

An alternative to disposables is to use cloth diapers. Today, cloth diapers have come a long way. They are more absorbent and convenient, and they can be washed at home without a pricey diaper service.

Here’s an example of a one-size-fits-all cloth diaper available at Amazon:

Amazon Image

breastfeeding baby2. Breastfeeding

Next, choose to breastfeed your new baby instead of formula feeding.

Women who breastfeed saving money on the cost of expensive infant formula, feeding bottles, and sterilization for the first year of life. Breastfeeding also helps eliminate another source of plastic packaging that you would get from the formula company.

Even before your little one arrives, get help from a lactation consultant so you can be more confident in your breastfeeding technique. Over time, it will get easier, your bond with your baby will thrive, and you’ll enjoy the other benefits of breastfeeding.

3. Table Foods

When it’s time to start solid foods, you can choose to be greener with your baby.

Stay away from expensive jarred baby foods and choose to make your own baby food instead. It’s easy and quick to mash up soft foods, such as bananas and avocados. for your baby’s first solid meal.

Or, you could try baby led weaning, which brings your child to the family table and has her participating and choosing the foods everyone is eating instead of purees and mashes.

baby solid foods

Super Baby Food by Ruth Yaron was my favorite reference when my babies were learning to eat solid food.

4. Second-hand Clothes and Toys

The amount of baby gear and other stuff a new infant needs can be overwhelming and costly. You can make it easier and cheaper for yourself by going for second-hand items whenever possible.

Clothes, toys, furniture, and other gear can be reused. Find out among your family and friends who are looking to get rid of their old baby clothes and gear. Or, look online at yard sale groups to pick up some items for a little bit of money.

In turn, make sure to reuse and recycle your baby items. Clothes can either be given away, donated to thrift stores, or sold at yard sales. You can also get creative and repurpose baby furniture into other useful items for the household.

5. Water Conservation

Water usage for a new baby is also something to watch out for if you want to be kind to the planet.

Educate yourself about water conservation practices and efforts, such as the Cadiz Water Project, and make sure you don’t contribute to water waste. For example, you don’t have to bathe your baby every day during those first few months. Instead, give him a bath every couple of days. This could help keep his skin supple and smooth.

If you are using cloth diapers, use an energy-saving washing machine and dryer. And line-dry the diapers, whenever possible. That way, you reap the benefits of the sun’s sanitizing properties as well.

6. Green Products

The last thing to do to have an eco-friendlier experience when you have a baby is to choose products carefully. Research the best options for you and your family for your baby’s skin, such as soaps, lotions, and shampoos. Choose products from responsible companies that use green practices for manufacturing. Shop for baby items made of natural materials, like cotton, linen, and bamboo. If you must use plastic, make sure it’s BPA-free and recyclable.

Amazon Image

When your new baby arrives, you can continue to practice eco-friendly habits as long as you make choices with your products and child rearing.

Follow the tips above to give your baby a great new safe start in life while helping to contribute to a healthier planet!


5 Uses for Baby Furniture After Baby Grows Up

Don’t you just love finding multiple uses for things? If so, then you’ll enjoy this guest post. You don’t have to get rid of the baby furniture when your youngest baby grows up. Just check out all the possibilities below.

by Kaitlin Krull

Choosing furniture for your new baby’s nursery is exactly like shopping for a new car: exciting, nerve wracking, and so (so) expensive.

After months of searching for the right pieces to fit you and your family, you finally choose the perfect models. Once you’ve kitted out your baby’s room with the finest furniture money (and baby shower gift cards) can buy, you might think your job is done.

Fast forward five or 10 years, when your children have moved out of the nursery and are on to bigger and better things, like bunk beds, computer desks, and forts. Your precious furniture is left in the garage and you can see the money you’ve wasted.

If this sounds familiar, don’t worry! Over at Modernize, we know this sad story, and are here to help you out with a little upcycling DIY.

Here are five of the most ingenious (and simple) ways to reuse your baby furniture once your little one is all grown up.Continue reading

What to Look for in Baby Clothes

Below is a post from Marks & Spencer, one of my favorite stores. I’d like to add that, aside from zippers, you’ll want to beware of long ties and ribbons on baby’s clothes, because these pose a strangulation hazard.

How to Make Your Baby Protected and yet Fashionably Cute

When it comes to dressing your baby with the latest fashion trends, there’s no pressure of disappointing your babies. There’s no real reason to go for anything expensive as long as safety is prioritized. Whatever you decide to put on your little angel, as long as it keeps them warm on a cold winter night or cool during summer, then you are good to go.

Here are a few tips to keep your baby fashionably cute and happy:

Going greenContinue reading

Do Cloth Diapers Really Make a Difference?

When disposable diapers were first invented, I bet parents thought they were the best thing ever.

But as interest in protecting the environment and avoiding toxins increased, parents have revisited the cloth diapers. Now we have all kinds of options in both disposable and cloth diapers.

The question for new mothers is – do cloth diapers really make a difference for your baby and the environment? Continue reading

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