1. Your whole family is walking around with chia seeds stuck in their teeth (good fish-free source of omega 3 oil and protein)
2. Your small people know who Howard Carter and Lord Carnarvon are but haven’t a clue about celebrities from within the current century.
4. When your largely vegetarian small people grill grandparents on whether the meat they have been given is free range (and you’re equally embarrassed and proud of this).
5. You’re not that great at knitting, but your small people still proudly sport odd home made outfits.
6. After a day out you have a list of questions from your small people that you have to Google, including ‘how old is the oldest magnolia seed ever found and successfully germinated’.
7. You’re outdoors so much that sometimes the kids just don’t want to go to the beach ‘can’t we just stay in and watch Cbeebies today?’.
8. Your idea of a good soap opera is watching a friend’s/your own chickens bossing each other around
9. You don’t dream of owning a fancy car or the latest fashions- what you’re aiming for is a patch of woodland to call your own.
10. You’re idea of ‘grounding’ a child involves helping them be fully conscious and present in the moment and feeling the connection between their energy and the Earth.
11. Your small people completed the ’50 things to do before you’re 12′ list by age 4.
12. Your kids are better at ‘downward dog’ than you’ll ever be and bounce you awake in the morning demanding to do sun salutations together.
13. You spend waaaay to long scrutinizing the labels of any product you couldn’t make yourself because you’re avoiding ‘chemicals’ (I know, as a scientist this is a dumb thing to say because everything is made of chemicals, but you know what I mean), or gelatine, or sulphites, or wheat, or dairy, or palm oil.
I’m sure many of my friends will read this and smile because either they recognise the above list in themselves or in me and because yes, it does all sound a bit pretentious. I don’t think any of us try to live in a different way because of ‘holier than thou’ pretentiousness, it’s just that the more we read about and the more we see for ourselves that the formula where life revolves around tv and consumption doesn’t make for happy healthy families, communities and environment, and the more we try to make small steps away from this.
I’m sure as well that this list could be a lot longer (we’re planning on going on holiday to Germany by train for goodness sake) and it would be great to hear the things you do yourself that make you smile at your own hippy pretentions. Living differently gives so much, but what it can take more of is time – fortunately at least reading labels for palm oil could be a thing of the past as my lovely environmentally friendly friend is setting up a palm oil free online marketplace. Check out her progress at Plutoniumsox. Our power as voters may be a little doubtful, but as ethical consumers we can change the world.