Now that we are parenting our second child, Jeremy and I are being reaffirmed that we fall into a certain camp of parents. This camp goes by many names: Crunchy Moms (c'mon, really? That makes it sound like we don't wash our hair.) Granola Parents, or simply good ol' fashioned Hippies. Now Jeremy and I never decided we "wanted to be" Hippie Parents; we don't parent according to a certain hippie ideology. We just decided each issue as it came our way. Some decisions we made based on principle, and some were just based on practice, but they still landed us in the hippie camp.
We made one parenting decision based solely on principle. That is that we "sling" or "wear" our babies more often than not. Sure the car seat-carriers are great, you can take your baby from the house, to the car, to the stroller, back to the car, to the shopping cart, to the car, and back home. Pretty soon the better part of the day is gone and your baby hasn't gotten any actual physical contact from you. Weren't there babies in Romanian orphanages dying because they never got held? Yes I'm being extreme, but don't worry, this is the only parenting practice of ours based solely on hippie principle.
Consider these next few practices of ours. With #1 I breastfed for the first year until he could drink cow milk, made homemade baby food until he moved on to table foods, and we even cloth diapered on and off. Now, while I do see some of the beneficial hippie principles behind these parenting practices, that wasn't the driving force behind it. I call it parenting by practice, as in--It's just what we do ok? As in--Although I "plan" on breastfeeding all my children, I don't want to be a member of the La Leche League. (I actually don't really like those guys. They do a lot of good, but also a lot of bad because they are too stuck on their "principles" to be helpful in certain individual situations.) As it is, if you wanted to pin down our motivation behind breastfeeding, homemaking baby food, and cloth diapering, it's probably economic--we don't want to have to pay for that stuff.
There is one parenting practice of ours based solely on practice, and that is the family bed. I know there are arguments for, and arguments against, but I don't want to hear it. The point is--I'm tired dang-it! I want to be able to sleep at night, and with newborns the best sleep for us has come in the family bed. So then, why is this topic on my brain today? It's because the apartment we're renting this summer has a queen-sized bed. (We have a double bed at home.) All I know is the queen sized bed is REALLY nice. The bed isn't that comfy, but the size is great. At home our three-year-old is no longer sleeping with us, but this summer things are so crazy and mixed up that he's been coming into bed with us in the middle of the night again. Well, 4 bodies in bed is a LOT easier in a queen-sized bed. Who knows--When we get back home this fall, we may have to knock out a wall in our little house to get a bigger bed!