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Big (and Small) Ways to Go Green: Real Mom Tips

Need some eco-friendly tips from parents? Check out these ingenious (and easy!) ideas.

Photo: Shutterstock / The Bump

“I use vinegar and baking soda for pretty much all my homemade cleaning supplies. Vinegar kills a lot of nasty things like viruses and bacteria.” -- JustSomeChick

“We go green by composting and really trying to not use plastic bags. I sometimes forget, so I should just keep some folded cloth bags inside my diaper bag.” -- MoinMoin

“I make my house naturally smell good by simmering a pot of orange rinds and cinnamon. It smells awesome!” -- Sinafey

“We’re starting a garden this summer in our backyard and planting trees.” -- kristinleigh

“For environmental reasons, my husband and I have decided to use cloth diapers.” -- k8edgerton

“I take my plastic bags to Kroger or Walmart to recycle, and I also bought some grocery tote bags. We’re also replacing our lightbulbs with CFL ones.” -- daves_sweetpea

“We do little things like getting off the junk mail lists, buying as much local produce as possible, repurposing items instead of throwing them away and carpooling to work. We also take reusable cups everywhere -- for water and for coffee. Some coffee shops give you a discount if you bring your own mug!” -- jerseygirl81

“We're about to have new gutters put in and install rain barrels so we'll be able to use rainwater to water our yard all summer.” -- notapetrock

“We plan on getting new doors and windows that will use less energy and ultimately save us money.” -- jgeiman

“When my husband and I go out to eat, we bike to the restaurant. If we need something small, we bike to the local drugstore around the corner.” -- brown_bride07

"I use my Cuisinart Processor to make homemade baby food. It cut down on our excess spending and we don't have to worry about getting rid of dozens of baby food jars!" -- Reyna B.

"I breastfed exclusively until our daughter was able to pick up solids and put them in her mouth (around 6 months). No pureeing or fooling around with spoonfeeding. We're glad we went that route and would hopefully be able to do the same with another child -- in the end we felt that we spent more time with our daughter and saved big at the grocery store!" -- Hannah W.

"We used breast milk as a natural remedy for tons of baby's ailments -- and even a few of our own. We didn't waste time shopping for product after product at the store, just wasting money, and we tried to use what worked best." -- Leslie K.

"After I gave birth to my twin sons, I knew we might want to try for another baby down the road. Instead of getting rid of everything, I kept the baby gear so that if we did get pregnant, we'd already have everything we need!" -- Gayla D.

"When I lived in an apartment, I used to use a window box planter for my herbs. Sure, we didn't have a ton of space, but it worked for us! It was nice because you can put a few plants in it, and have them all right in one place. We didn't need to run to the store to buy herbs every time we needed them. When we have a bigger house with land, I want to grow everything we can at home!" -- Jen L.

"We took small steps to going green. We started by focusing on more efficient choices for the house (low-flow, high-efficiency, etc.) and less toxic purchases (chemical-free sofa and mattress). We also compost organic materials from the house and yard, and for cooking, we converted to stainless steel, glass and cast-iron pots and pans. And now we try to mostly shop consignment and thrift stores. We didn't make the change all at once; we did it gradually." -- Corinne R.

*Some names have been changed.

Plus, more from The Bump:

Best Eco-Friendly Baby Products

Eco-Friendly Parenting

Outdoor Fun with Baby

-- Sarah Yang

See More: Eco-friendly , Parenting Styles