I wouldn’t call my self ‘all natural’ by any means. I like the idea of certain things done naturally, and I tend to lean in the ‘crunchy’ direction from time to time. However I can’t say I’m fully ‘crunchy’. Where does that leave me? In the ‘moderately crunchy’ section. Some would refer to it as ‘scrunchy’.
“In layman’s terms, a crunchy mom is a mom who practices natural living. She is an advocate of natural birth, non or selective circumcision, not vaccinating, baby wearing, breastfeeding, co-sleeping, cloth diapering, attachment parenting, homeschooling, organic and green living, etc.”
So, where do I stand on the crunchy scale? I’ll tell you!
Reasons that make me a moderately crunchy or scrunchy mama are…
I had a natural birth.
At first I was very pro epidural. After we watched a few birth videos, my husband said he didn’t want me to get an epidural! I was like…sorry dude…not your choice! The further along I got and the more I educated myself, the more I realized I didn’t want an epidural. It became a solid decision after I took my Hypnobabies classes around weeks 32-36 of pregnancy.
I learned so much about birth, typical hospital procedures, possible side effects, and what my options were. I have some serious feelings on the subject and could probably ramble on forever, but I won’t bore you. I know a lot of women who go into the delivery room just ‘winging it’. That was not going to be me. I was going to be informed!!
Another reason I decided to skip the epidural was for all the women who scoffed at me when I told them my choice. For all those bitc…ahem…ladies…who said “puh! You’ll get the epidural. Trust me.”
So I put it out of my mind. It wasn’t even an option. And you know what? I did it. Birth is natural, normal, healthy and safe for me AND my baby. It’s not like breaking a bone or having your appendix removed. It’s supposed to happen. I don’t judge those of you who did get an epidural…not at all! But I’m happy with my choice and I’m excited to go for it again in the future!
I breastfed…for nearly two years.
If breastfeeding isn’t for you…I mean…it’s your body…not mine. Sure, I might judge you a little if you just don’t try AT ALL. Forgive me for that, but I’m just trying to be honest here. It’s just so crazy good for you and baby…I don’t know why you would want to pass up free, perfect nutrition and antibodies! I think any length of time spent breastfeeding is a big win. I know it’s not easy…trust me…I KNOW. I was in toe curling pain the first few weeks while we struggled with his latch. But it was something that was important to me so I pushed on.
Looking back, I really should have seen a lactation consultant. I don’t think it should have been that difficult.
I also nursed in public. I don’t like to fling my nipple to and fro for all to see, but I wasn’t afraid of a little boob skin getting exposure. Honestly, I always really wanted someone to stop and say something ugly to me. Like…I really did. That sounds silly but I had so many comebacks just waiting on the tip of my tongue and I never even got to use them!
Maybe I was just really good at the two shirt method, or maybe it was my extreme resting b**** face that deterred any possible naysayers…but no one ever said anything negative. I did get a few positive comments!
I wanted my son to be ready to quit, and when he was about one week away from turning two, I knew it was time. I was very much over it, and he was only nursing every now and then. I knew it would be a simple process. Finally I just stopped offering and he only asked a couple more times. I told him my milk was all gone and that he could have some other milk (aka cow milk).
I love baby wearing!
I bought my first Ergo when I was out and about with my mom and I didn’t want to carry him in his car seat. It was an impulse buy but was so worth it! I’d been using a Moby wrap given to me by a fellow mom friend but I was ready for a soft structured carrier.
I started attending babywearing meetings at my local chapter where I tried out a number of different brands and learned how to properly use them.
I don’t wear him much now that he’s super independent and mobile, but it’s nice to have the option!
I didn’t circumcise my son.
This, for me, wasn’t really an ethics decision as it was a father/son thing. I let my husband choose because he’s the only one of us with a penis. However I think if I had to make the decision on my own I would do the same thing. To be completely honest, I really feel like circumcision is either a religious custom, or a fashion statement.
The whole “oh I don’t want him to get made fun of in the locker room” argument is kind of a stupid reason to chop off part of your child’s anatomy. Those who worry about keeping it clean…there is LITERALLY nothing to it. Nothing. Just don’t retract and you will be fine.
Side note, our pediatrician told me to retract it EVERY TIME I CHANGED HIS DIAPER. I was a new mom and knew nothing about baby penises at that point, but luckily my husband told me how wrong that was. A simple Google search left me mortified and worried that my son’s pediatrician had damaged my child for life. Especially after he got a little yeast infection that I was certain was something else related to it being retracted.
Lesson here: Don’t always take what your pediatrician says as law. Sometimes they are wrong, or not educated in that area. He also told me to feed him rice cereal four times a day once he hit four months old. After that I found a different, much better doctor in the same practice. But I’m still full of rage just thinking about that guy.
Being circumcised is not as rare as it used to be. I know a good many baby boys that aren’t circumcised. So all of you who are worried about locker room drama, let’s just all teach our children to be good humans and not bully other kids for their differences. Problem solved!
I used cloth diapers.
Yeah, they are good for the environment. That’s definitely a perk. It’s not the only reason I decided to use cloth though.
For one, they are super cute. There are so many cute prints out there and I’m a sucker for baby gear!
They saved us a ton of money. It was really nice not having to go out and buy diapers all the time. It was extra nice in the early days of breast milk poop when I could just toss them in the wash.
We did baby led weaning.
I don’t know how crunchy this can be classified as, but I feel like there is a little crunch involved. We LOVED baby led weaning. It was very successful for us and I loved that he learned how to chew first, so we never really had a problem with choking. He was a great eater with a pretty refined palate for a while! Now he is a toddler and all rules go out the window…but still.
He had absolutely no teeth until he was 11 months old, yet his first foods included asparagus and pork chops. You don’t need teeth to eat good food! I feel like it was easier for him to tell us when he was done this way too. Compared to shoveling baby food in his mouth and not letting him have any control.
We waited until he was 6 months to start, because their little guts simply are NOT ready for any food other than breast milk/formula before then.
I like the idea of homeschooling.
I don’t know that I’m cut out for it…but I love the concept and would love to be able to do that with my son one day. But I’m such a procrastinator that I’m not sure it would be in his best interest.
Here are some things that make me less ‘crunchy’…
I DO vaccinate.
I understand altering the vaccine schedule a bit, or opting out of one or two things, but in all honesty, I think not vaccinating your children is irresponsible. I’m not trying to debate anyone. I don’t like arguments…especially on social media (Pointless) but that’s where I stand.
I use disposable diapers.
Yep, I did cloth diapering from the time Leopold was about 2 weeks old, to about 1 1/2. Once I started nannying and making a little cash, I used it to treat myself. To disposable diapers. No more spraying turds into the toilet. No more stripping and washing and trying to figure out why my diapers were giving him rashes. I was so done stuffing liners into pockets.
He’s so wiggly now that I can’t even think about buttoning the snaps anymore! It’s hard enough to fasten the tabs on his disposables!
I use ‘sposies’ and I LOVE IT. It’s very ‘lazy’ of me but I need a little lazy in my life.
I like modern medicine.
Sure, I like to try natural remedies when I can. I have a bunch of essential oils and I like to use them when I get a chance. But I don’t swear by any of that stuff. I know people who make their own toothpaste and then wonder why their kids get a ton of cavities. The ingredients in toothpaste and other similar things are there for a reason.
Coconut oil isn’t always the answer!
I don’t like medicating my child if it’s not necessary, I do like to try and let a sickness work it’s way out…but I know when he needs more than my ‘natural’ remedies. Sometimes you gotta pull out the Tylenol and call it a day.
We don’t eat all organic.
We are neither wealthy enough or motivated enough to do this.
I like to stay away from processed and pre packaged foods when I can, but sometimes this mama just want’s to throw a freezer pizza in the oven and kick her feet up. I don’t have time to make cauliflower crusts all the time.
I really do try to cook only fresh meat and veggies rather than buying frozen. I try to feed my family healthy foods…but we like to indulge in fun stuff every now and then too.
I didn’t co-sleep.
Okay in the early days, there were definitely times that I went to sleep with him by my side, on my chest, or attached to my boob. I have no problems with co sleeping. I think when it’s done right, it’s the best thing for the baby. When I did co sleep, my husband was sleeping on an air mattress in the other room because he had to work and didn’t want to be up all night. With him in the bed, I would have never trusted his flailing elbows around my sleeping infant.
I loved having Leopold close in the first two months, but after that he went in his crib and did wonderfully there.
We didn’t ever let him cry very long, so yeah, I’m very anti cry it out. But once they are older (say, 7 or 8 months) I don’t think there is any harm in letting them fuss and cry for a little while. We never let it go longer than 15 minutes and it was never a distressing cry, either.
So tell me, where do you fall on the scale? Are you Crunchy, Scrunchy, or neither (called ‘silky’ apparently). I hope I haven’t offended anyone, but if I did…well, you really shouldn’t be so sensitive.
I’m SO excited to be a part of MommyCon’s Blogger Collective this year. The conference is designed to encourage natural parenting and exploring your options. It’s a beautiful collections of moms and dads who fall anywhere on the ‘crunchy’ scale.
I can’t wait to meet up with tons of like minded individuals and talk about parenting, baby gear, and self care in a couple of months! It’s a special conference especially for mamas who fall anywhere on the crunchy scale. There will be a lot of special guest speakers, giveaways, workshops, and (what I’m most excited about) a product showcase. I’m stoked to see the latest in baby and toddler gear!!
You are obviously free to breastfeed wherever you so please, and there will even be a section where you can try on baby carriers to see what works best for you.
I’m happy to be giving away two tickets to any of the following events…so stay tuned for that!
I’m so thrilled that there will be a Mommycon so close to my home town! If you plan on going to the Charlotte MommyCon, let me know so I can say hi!
Tickets are 25$ for general admission, 45$ for premium admission, and 150$ for VIP admission. Check out the website for more info on each package!
Remember to use my code, LITTLEPRINCE18 for 10% off your ticket price!