How to organize your gift bags (paper or fabric), wrapping paper, and other items that might be handy to embellish a gift.

DIY Gift Wrapping Station

The simplest way to wrap your gifts in an eco-friendly way is to use what you have. Using what you have means if you still have paper gift bags left over from last year, by all means, use them!  Don’t think of paper as your enemy – it’s really one of the best options for wrapping bigger gifts. …

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Play Up Your Child’s Imagination and Creativity with “No Battery” Gifts

Remember that thing you played with all the time when you were a kid?  It was with you from sun up till sun down.  You didn’t buy it at any toy store… it was free.  And it’s what could turn an empty box into a dollhouse or a broom handle into a light saber. Where…

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Creative Fun with Kids - DIY Magical Fairy Bridge

DIY Magical Fairy Bridge

Embrace your child’s wonder of the magical world of fairies by building the perfect size landscape for their imaginary friends. This bridge is made using found items from the recycling bin. While parents will need to help the kiddos with some of the cutting and gluing, children will have a blast decorating the bridge, adding…

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A Little Free Library Can Make a Big Difference

Maybe you’re homesteading on a super rural road and don’t have ready access to a public library. Perhaps you and your neighbors are avid readers without the time to hit up the library regularly. Or, maybe you just want to connect with your community and share your love of good books. Then, the Little Free…

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Green Festival Returns to Chicago

If you’re a Green Child reader in the Windy City, mark your calendar for America’s largest and longest-running sustainability and green living event, returning to Chicago on October 24-26.  And we’re offering a special 50% discount on tickets with code GREENCHILD14. Now in its 9th year in Chicago, Green Festival is attended by more than 25,000 area…

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Giving Thanks Together: Celebrating the Autumnal Equinox

This article kicks off a series on the solstices and equinoxes: four annual opportunities to celebrate and learn as a family. I find myself ever more deeply aware of and affected by seasonal changes. Light and darkness. Heat and—especially in my adopted state of Minnesota—cold. Living farther north than ever before, I feel the changing…

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Upcycled Desk Craft

ReUse Craft: Create a Colorful Desk Organizer

Whether you’ll be gearing up to send your children off to school or dusting off the shelves of your home classroom, the season of school prep is here. This fun project uses a handful of household leftovers and is endlessly customizable. Materials: An empty box (we used an old shipping box) Toilet Paper Tubes Glue…

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Eco Spotlight On: Beautiful Earth - a company that sees the importance of supporting a global economy by considering their customers, clients, and employees beyond their bottom line.

DIY Baby Wipes Solution {& wipes!} using Beautiful Earth Natural Products!

Cheaper, safer for your baby, and a lot less waste. The reasons for making your own baby wipes are pretty convincing! We’re delighted to share a recipe with ingredients from a trusted personal care brand. Beautiful Earth has been in the business of gentle, environmentally friendly wash products since 2008. Their products are certified natural…

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Creating a Family Command Center

Taking Charge of the Chaos: Creating a Family Command Center

Running a household can be messy, especially when it comes to schedules, mail, meals and paper clutter. Back to school means even more paper, more activities and less time to deal with it all. That’s why creating a family command center can simplify the chaos. Here are four simple steps to creating a command center…

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Easy Upcycled Planters

Easy Upcycled Planters

Gardening in small spaces is a great way to bring fresh ingredients into your diet. Try these easy upcycled planters (perfect for herb garden!) to get you started. Planter Materials: Empty Cartons Scissors Soil Seeds or plants Planter Instructions: Have one or many, these easy planters are cute, functional and perfectly sized for herbs or…

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Take a volunteer vacation and get a chance to soak up the local flavors and culture, while making it a meaningful trip!

Travel for Good — Volunteer Vacations

As their children get older, many conscious families look to Ecotourism for their annual family vacation.  Essentially it is responsible travel, replacing indulgent vacations that are either no longer affordable… or just don’t feel right to green-minded travelers. The Travel Industry Associations of America says nearly 56 million Americans have taken some form of volunteer…

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The importance of ritual

Returning to Ritual: The Hidden Value of Rituals and Traditions in Childrearing

Nine year old Yuu looks like a little butterfly in her bright yellow flowered kimono. Her face is solemn, but her eyes dance as she follows her mother into the tea dojo>, or practice room for the Japanese Tea Ceremony. Together, they approach the tokonoma – a built-in niche at one end of the tea…

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DIY Baby Wipes

Make Your Own Baby Wipes – Cloth or Disposable

Hypothetical question: Have you ever gone to the bathroom at a friend’s house and found yourself staring at an empty toilet paper roll? Maybe you look under the sink and above the toilet, but in all the usual places there’s no spare roll in sight, and you start to panic a bit, thinking “Oh my…

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Little girl running on meadow with sunset

Free-Range Summers

Chickens aren’t the only ones who deserve to roam in the grass and breathe in the fresh air. Kids are naturals when it comes to free play, but it’s always helpful to have a few ideas up your sleeve to combat the inevitable “I’m bored” whine.  This summer, try a few of these tips to…

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Blueberry Picking

DIY Nature Camp: A Summer Boredom-Buster

When I created the At-Home Summer Nature Camp – an 8-week guide to DIY summer fun – my hope was to help families foster a connection to the natural world, encourage togetherness, initiate learning through play, and support a commitment to simplicity. So I was delighted when hundreds of families from all over the world…

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Cleaning with Kids

Spring Cleaning with Kids: They Can Help, Too!

It may feel like you’re trying to clean during an active hurricane, but getting the whole family involved with Spring Cleaning can teach kids responsibility and give them pride in a worthwhile accomplishment. Kitchen Give your child a spray bottle of water with one drop of dish soap (or a bottle of non-toxic cleaner) and…

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Screen Free Ideas

50 Fun Activities for Screen Free Week

Screen Free Week is May 4-10! This annual, international initiative was created in 1994 to encourage families, schools, and communities to embrace screen-free entertainment for a week. Hundreds of organizations such as the American Medical Association, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America and the YMCA, support the movement. Here are some fun ways to shut…

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