Ensuring you do everything you can to live an environmentally sustainable life is a wonderful thing. However, if you have kids, it’s also important to inspire them to have a sense of responsibility for the environment. After all, they themselves are going to have to look after this planet one day! There’s a tonne of information out there to educate the younger generation about carbon footprints, greenhouse gases and climate change. However, making sure your kids grow into environmentally conscious adults with eco-friendly habits is a whole other story. Getting them to adopt these new behaviours doesn’t have to be a strenuous task, in fact it can be quite a straight forward – dare I say – enjoyable experience.

Get their hands dirty

A sure-fire way to get your kids to respect and want to protect the environment is to get them outside! If you take them to the park, lake or beach as often as you can, a natural appreciation should grow from there. Gardening with your kids and growing food for the dinner table is also a great way to get them interested in both the environment and healthy eating, and it takes care of your child’s natural instinct to get their hands dirty!

Teach them daily water saving tricks

The things we do around the house every day to save water can be easily taught to your kids. Turning off the tap while brushing your teeth or scrubbing your hands can become a general rule of thumb in your house for all family members, including the little ones. Putting a shower bucket and shower timer in the bathroom will add another level of water-efficiency, with these visual cues becoming a part of your child’s everyday life. Provide small incentives for saving water. Perhaps using the shower bucket to water the household plants or wash the dog could earn your child some extra TV time?

Let the outside in

A smart way to strengthen your child’s environmentally sustainable house-hold habits is to let outside influences support the behaviours. There’s amazing resources out there, like entertaining children’s books with eco-friendly messaging. You can find a great list of some of the best at Greener Ideal.  You can also further engage your kids with other resources and provide visual learning tools, like this activity sheet from hipages.

Make recycling a normal part of life

As your child reaches their later primary school years and you’re teaching them how to take out the rubbish, ensure that you’ve included recycling as an essential part of the chore. Teach your kids which items can be recycled and how, and make sure that they do it properly the first few times. From there, the behaviour should become a habit! In the same vein, make sure you avoid single-use plastics in the house. Replace all those little plastic bags for school lunches with Tupperware and take reusable bags with you when you go grocery shopping. If your child sees you making these efforts, it will instil a sense of commitment to being more environmentally sustainable.

Implement ‘powering down’ as part of the bedtime routine

Habits are best formed in conjunction with other habits. To link some eco-friendly behaviours with daily household actions, you can teach your kids to switch off all the lights and power points in the house before they go to bed. Make this ‘powering down’ tradition a staple nightly ritual in your home, and make sure everyone in the family is assigned one or two rooms as their sole responsibility to ‘switch off.’ You could make a fun game or competition out of it, with the first person back to the dining table after having switched off their rooms, getting an extra 10 minutes before lights out the next night!

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Every good parent wants to ensure they lead their baby down the right path to grow into the best human being possible when their child is born. Plans begin to form and ideas are shared. Parents begin to ask themselves whether or not they should buy a home, what school they should put their child in and of course what they will name him.

Perhaps one of the most important questions though is whether or not the child is going to be christened. Christening a child will change his life, as they will then be devoted to their religion until the day they re-join god in heaven.

But before making the choice to christen a child, there are a few things that parents should know about the process that just might make things a whole lot easier.

  1. There is no difference between baptism and christening.

It may sound silly, but often, parents end up heavily confused when going through the process as to what the difference between the two is. This can lead to them believing they aren’t doing the right thing when people all use different terminologies while planning.

  1. What exactly is a christening?

A christening is when a child becomes a member of the Christian church, although it can technically happen at any age. Holy water is used to bathe the child and wash away any impurities/sins that may be clinging to their soul and allow them to be born again to God.

  1. How does it work?

When a child is christened, they are taken by the priest to be bathed in holy water. When the water is poured over their head, it symbolises the cleansing and purity of the soul. Then, the baby is signed with a cross and olive oil is rubbed onto the baby’s chest as a symbol of strength and guidance.

After this, the child is rubbed on the forehead with oil of chrism as a symbol of sealing with gifts of the spirit. Next, Hymns are sung to the child and prayers are offered to it as well as the child’s family. Both godparents are then brought forwards to make their promises to the child to always be there for guidance.

After this process is complete, the child is then considered a Christian always and will be considered a member of the Christian church.

  1. What the baby wears

Originally, prior to the mid 1700s, babies were wrapped tightly in swaddling clothing and then wrapped up tightly in a large square of silk that had gold braiding, called a bearing cloth. After the mid 1700s, parents began to dress their children in extremely long robes that flowed freely and other clothing items such as booties and mittens.

These days, however, parents generally elect to dress their children in Christening rompers. Boys christening rompers are exceedingly different to those for girls. Boys christening rompers are generally similar to a onesie and are completely white and relatively plain. A girl’s one is generally similar to a kind of dress. On top of this, baby boy christening outfits Sydney will generally include a sort of hat like a bonnet.

The reason this is important is because the symbolism of a christening is quite intricate and is best kept to. Whatever the child’s sex; the clothing will always be the same colour: white.

  1. The celebration is just as important as the Christening itself

After a christening, it is tradition to celebrate and surround the baby with loved ones such as close family and relatives as well as friends. There are many reasons for this, but the simplest is that it is a perfect opportunity to properly introduce the baby to his or her family and have everyone familiar with him/her.

Another reason for this is to begin the baby’s new life surrounded by the people that will always be there for him/her and love them no matter where their life leads them.

It is a smart idea to plan ahead for this and choose the colour theme, catering, etc. wisely. A good tip is to host it on a Saturday or Sunday in order to make sure that everyone may attend and maybe even bring a dish to contribute! Also, a place to keep the gifts is a good idea, because there will be lots of them!

After all is said and done, christening a baby is one of the best things that can be done to lead him or her down the right path for the rest of his/her life. Making sure that the traditions of the ceremony are upheld are extremely important, however the best thing to remember is to not feel too much pressure for the day.

The day that a baby is christened is a day to feel the love and support of all the people that will help guide him or her for the rest of their life and should be enjoyed as one of the best days of the parents’ lives.