I did not set out on this post to illicit the most comments I've ever received (non give-away related). Neither did I expect that each commenter would be so passionate about granola living and write a 5 page thesis in the comment box. I love it! It makes me feel good, down to my sock with sandals, that my friends and family are just as weird as I am.
I used to make fun of Granola Mamas when I was a kid. My family ran in the homeschool crowd and we used to see a lot of them. They seemed so weird and counter-culture. A Granola Mama, if you are not familiar, is a definite stereotype made up by me with help from my sister when we were kids. It is a fitting description of a select group of women.
This is what a Granola Mama looks like: She is a mom, usually a home-school mom, who wears turtle-necks with jumpers she sews for herself and her daughters, and she wears socks with Birkenstock sandals; she has at least 5 children who were all born at home and those babies never wore store-bought disposable diapers; She recycles everything even going so far as to make cute crafts from household left-overs (tin-can pen holders and costumes made from cardboard boxes); she cooks from scratch and going to McDonald’s is considered a field-trip once every 5 years; she grows her own vegetables and fruit and cans them all so she is more than organic; also, she treats all her family’s ailments homeopathically and she must have an aloe plant in her kitchen; and she most definitely makes her own granola and eats it every morning for breakfast.
I saw these kinds of women as extremely weird when I was growing up. The lifestyle choices a Granola Mama accepts looked so hard. My own mother had her touches of granola-ish-ness, but thankfully she didn’t wear turtlenecks with jumpers after 1986. My mom made my sister and I can things we grew in the garden, she had an aloe plant and I am pretty sure her children never wore disposable diapers. Now that I am a mom, I’ve become more and more like the stereotype I thought was so outlandish. I can almost certainly sat I am well on my way.
Here are some of the ways I am a Granola Mama:
- I am a home-school mom to my 4 year old. I can’t say I love it, but it is the best educational and environmental choice for us right now.
- Although I don’t sew jumpers (yet), I do enjoy sewing.
- My sandal of choice is the Chaco, not the Birkenstock, but they're close. I have actually worn them with socks, but only to put mail in the box. I’ve been temped though to wear that look out in public in the winter… so very, very tempted. They are so comfortable.
- I love the idea of having a home birth. I probably would have done labor and delivery at home with a midwife for Mandy's birth, but I chickened out. Then I watched The Business of Being Born and wished I would have.
- I just bought clothe diapers for Mandy. I’ve used disposable diapers for my hospital-born-children for nearly 4 ½ years and finally got sick and tired of spending $40 a month on something I throw away. I bought Tiny Bumz (click here) or Coolababy diapers, similar to Fuzzy Bunz, that I purchased from my sister-in-law, Kelly who got them for her baby and toddler. I really like the diapers and will be buying a few more. They are well made and I love using them. I’m doing laundry anyway, it hasn’t been difficult at all to wash them and re-use. This makes so much sense to me. And Mandy is so darn cute in clothe diapers.
- Recycling is super fun for me. I am such a nerd, but I actually enjoy being able to take-in everything from cardboard to milk jugs to my recycling center in town. I even use clothe shopping bags for my groceries. That I sewed myself, of course.
- I cook from scratch the majority of the time and eating out is a rare treat, although going to McDonld’s isn’t called a field-trip, yet.
- I love growing my own produce. I’m not very good at it, but I’m getting better as the years go on. I also love to preserve by canning summer’s harvest.
- Yesterday I went to Alternative Health and Herbs and bought a whole bunch of homeopathic remedies for common maladies. I had some oil for ear aches made by them and it works splendidly. Emma had an ear infection this week and this stuff helped it heal and took away the pain in a day. This topic deserves a post all its own.
- I make my own granola and eat it every morning. Here is the recipe.
Is there hope for me? Probably not. How much of a Granola Mama are you?