Welcome to Going Green, a new feature on Dainty Mom! This feature highlights people, places and products that inspire and challenge me to live a more green and earth-conscious lifestyle.  

What Does it Mean to be an Eco-Friendly Family?

{an interview with Panjee Tapales, panjeetapales.com}

The good Lord–who made everything in this wonderful planet–knows I’m trying my best to love the earth as best as I can. I am aware that our world is slowly passing away, and I know I can do little things to help revive it. That’s why I’m using less plastic in our home, trying to eat sustainable and organic foods as much as possible, and cloth diapering my son as often as I can. I’m not yet 100% green in my ways, but I do try. Maybe I’m 65-35 right now, so “yay” to me for effort. (Haha.)


I totally look up to those moms who are able to live as true “green moms.” I’ve come across a few of them, both online and on the street. I am, at times, floored by their methods and practices: raw food, intentional parenting, etc. But more importantly, I am moved by their values, and challenged by the choices they’ve made in order to help this world live a little longer!


I wanted to know how they managed it, so I asked around. A handful of moms responded to a simple email I sent out some months ago. In it, I asked some questions about their beliefs as “eco-friendly” moms.


One of the first moms to reply was Panjee Tapales, a full-time mom, blogger, writer and Steiner/Waldorf Education advocate. She’s known for being an inner change and truth advocate, and has written about her support for sustainable ventures, organic/biodynamic agriculture.


Here’s what she had to say to my questions:


Panjee Tapales


DaintyMom (DM): The term “eco-chic” is thrown about a lot at times. What does it mean for you?

Panjee: I’m finding that there are more aesthetic choices now for ecobags, for example ,and other earth-friendly products, so I guess it’s a levelling up of aesthetics where before the term “eco” was limited to very basic designs (in clothes and fabric, for example).


DM: What is your philosophy when it comes to being an “eco-friendly” mom?

Panjee: I don’t preach. I simply live it.

I’ve been toting reusable bags and water bottles for years so my children grew up seeing that. They also see that recycling is part of our lives. They get new toys but give away the old. We make sure they share their books. Our kitchen is equipped with different bins, we segregate, compost, plant our own organic veggies, we eat organic and biodynamic whenever possible.

We don’t do soda and fast food. We try to heal ourselves with homeopathic remedies and use allopathic medicine wisely and with utmost care. My kids know to turn off the tap while they are brushing. They know they have to make sure they have all their belongings ready for school because I’m not happy about having the car make extra trips just because they didn’t get organized. They experience me plan our car trips economically.

I chose not to put lights in our garden when I saw them experience darkness and fireflies. Anything that brings them to a real and living appreciation of nature and their role in supporting it, not destroying it, is part of our family agenda.

So, my philosophy is: live it and be the change so that “eco-friendly” is not a term but a way of life.


DM: What are a few simple changes a mom can make so that she gets her family on the path towards an eco-friendly lifestyle?

Panjee: Make conscious choices. Read labels. Anything that is close to the earth has more life in it and is healthier for the family, organic is superior to sprayed produce. Anything you buy in a can or in a fast food place is not. I like the Filipino word “sapat,” which means also living with a consciousness towards what’s enough so that our kids have a good grounded sense of that.

The world is going towards an alarming trend of excess. Once you learn to live with “sapat” in mind, you will have taught them to consume less. That’s a simple way to do it, but it goes deep towards living a lifestyle that supports a healthy planet.


What are some ways you try to live as a more eco-conscious family? Leave a comment and let’s discuss.