Recently, I've been reading on a new parenting forum called GCM (Gently Christian Mothers). I kept seeing the word "crunchy" pop up. I had to ask! Emily (saturnfire16), was the first person who explained it to me. She had very many thought-provoking explanations...and I thought that they were very interesting since she has made them from a Christian perspective. I thought it was very mind-expanding to simply read why she believes what she does, and so I asked her if I could use her responses for my blog, and she graciously agreed. So, here are her takes on being "crunchy":
Well, like AP (Attachment Parenting), being crunchy isn't a list of do and don'ts, or meeting certain criteria. It's just a lifestyle that has certain things in common, and a general life philosophy in common, and takes on different roles for different people. Personally, I believe that God designed our bodies to be healthy, when we eat the food he made and use the cures for sickness that he created. I believe that he designed my body to be capable of giving birth, that he made my breasts to nourish my baby and my hips to carry her. That my children are a blessing, and that I should treat them with love and respect. That he created them with a natural curiosity and love of learning and desire to please. That he gave us dominion over this earth and animals to care for them and not destroy them. So for me, that has led to babywearing, cosleeping, breastfeeding, GBD (Grace-Based Discipline), homebirth, raw foods and traditional foods, homeopathy, homeschooling/unschooling, cloth diapering, not vaxing or circumcising, sustainable living etc. Some of this is new for me too, and I'm always learning! There are a lot of ways I'd like to be more "green," and the cloth diapering will be a new thing with this baby due in July. I just try to always be learning and adjusting, with the goal of getting as close to living the way God designed us to live as possible. But not all of these things are for everyone, and that's ok! And since our culture is mostly so far removed from "natural," I think it is often just a matter of people not knowing the options that exist. For me, it's fun to find out! I'm thinking that crunchy is probably a more liberal, hippy, coastal word, so I'm guessing that there wouldn't be many people using it in the Midwest, but I could be wrong.
*when I asked her to elaborate on some of these things she replied:
I try to eat mostly raw foods, which means eating them in the state that God created them. So uncooked fruits, veges, nuts and seeds. Obviously some things have to be cooked, so I try to eat them in the "traditional" ways. I'm just learning about soaking grains, which makes them easier to digest. I'm also just learning about fermented foods, like keifer and kombucha. Many of our ancestors did this. Our modern day sour cream and yogurt are takes off of traditional fermented foods, but with additives and so processed that it takes away a lot of the nutritional value. I do eat meat and dairy, so I'm not a vegan or vegetarian, though I think these diets are good too. I get my meat and eggs from a local farmer who raises them free-range on organic pastures. I'm trying to find somewhere local to buy raw (unpasteurized) milk, but in the meantime I buy organic from the store. I just joined my first CSA (community supported agriculture), so starting in June, I'll be getting fresh, organic produce from a local farmer. The way a CSA works is you basically buy a share of the crops up front, and then get a weekly variety of whatever is in season.People will argue back and forth about whether it's best to eat raw or traditional or vegan or vegetarian. But the one thing all these diets have in common is that they avoid processed and refined foods, additives, preservatives, excitotoxins etc. Basically, its just eating the food that God made vs. eating food that someone in a white coat in a lab made. For a variety of reasons, some people can handle meat, and others don't feel as good when they eat it. I think that when someone is sick, the first thing they should look to is their diet and see what might be the cause of the symptoms.
Co-sleeping's not for everyone. The important thing is that you and your baby are happy with whatever you're doing. I loved it, because I couldn't stand the thought of getting up in the middle of the night to nurse. We did it for 2 years and probably would have gone longer, except now I'm pregnant, so I didn't want two in my bed. But she was ready for her own bed, and the transition was really easy.
For me, not doing vaccinations is just an extension of the rest of my beliefs. God created our bodies to be strong and healthy, when we take care of them. He didn't make a mistake that only modern medicine can cure. I did research them, and everything I found just convinced me more not to do them.
Sustainable living is kind of like environmentalism, but I don't like being grouped with tree huggers. So things like recycling, less materialism and consumerism. Just living simply. Organic food is sustainable because it doesn't destroy the land.
Sorry I'm so long winded! I guess I just get excited about all this stuff.