Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Toxic Christmas Gifts

Most people have go-to gifts that they give over and over again, often to the same person. For example, I can count on shower gel from my sister-in-law on every birthday. Since I appreciate being clean and smelling good, it is a welcome gift. I, too, have gifts that I fall back on when I don't know what to get, or when my brilliant idea doesn't fill the gift bag and I want to add something else.

For kids, it is tempting to buy them pajamas: Christmas pajamas, fleece pajamas, footie pajamas, pajamas with their favorite characters...I have discovered something rather unsettling, though. A lot of kids' pajamas are flame retardant, meaning they are coated with a chemical that makes clothing "self-extinguish when exposed to flames". Many people think this is a good thing, but I disagree. My reasons are sound: (1) the chemicals have been proven to bind to the skin, and they can never wash off. You think that doesn't sound that horrible? Well, (2) they are considered carcinogenic and can possibly  cause "brain damage, hyperactivity, hormone disruption and damage to the reproductive organs of human children". Yeah, um, merry freakin' Christmas to you, too.

I know it's hard to pass by warm, fuzzy, snuggly, cute jammies, but just imagine them with a Mr. Yuck sticker on them. The "better" alternative is snug-fitting cotton pajamas. I put the word "better" in quotation marks, because cotton is one of the most pesticide-sprayed crops in the country. If you buy them used, it's likely that all residual pesticides have been washed out. However, they will not look as enticing as the brand new ones on the Gymboree rack.

I can't control what other people give to the kiddo for Christmas; however, I can veto a toxic gift and donate it to Goodwill (commencing the "are contaminated pajamas better than no pajamas at all to a child who would be cold otherwise?" argument within my conscience). I'm really hoping it doesn't come to that, because I don't want to be the one to crush the kiddo by not allowing her to keep, say, Hello Kitty jammies. That would be so mean, I wouldn't feel completely OK with it. (I'd still do it, though.)

Check out http://www.naturalnews.com/024797_child_children_toxic.html     for more information. It is a simple article, but it has links if you want to investigate it further.

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