Welcome! I’m Anna and I’m so happy you found our website! I launched this blog in 2020 during the global pandemic as a resource for other parents like me who value a life that is GREEN and GENTLE.
I can’t lie though- I’m not a naturally laid-back hippie mama. I’m really an anxiety-prone, Type-A workaholic. I live by lists, schedules, and plans.
But I don’t want to be. I want to be peaceful. I want to be calm and joyful. I want to be meditating in nature while my kids roll in the mud.
And that is what this blog is all about. Oh, that and healthy eating, avoiding toxins, and reducing our family’s impact on the planet! So, there’s that too.
If you are also trying to consciously create the family of your dreams, live a green and healthy life, and remember to care for yourselves in the process, you’re in the right place! Those are my priorities too, and I write here about ways to do JUST THAT!
Oh, hey! And it isn’t just me! I’ve got a whole team of PhDs, Chinese Medicine doctors, and yogi masters who are going to help us along the way.
And don’t worry. There will still be lists. Lots, and lots of lists :-). Hey, they help me be more peaceful, okay?
Why do I write?
Years ago after several miscarriages, the doctors told me I had bum eggs and wouldn’t be able to get pregnant without donor eggs. I researched like crazy, overhauled our diet and lifestyles, healed my hormones, lost weight, cleared up my skin, lowered my blood pressure, and had two gorgeous children.
I wound up writing a blog about it (To Make a Mommy). And I LOVED it. And it turned into this beautiful massive thing sort of super naturally, and I have LOVED connecting with women all over the planet on their baby journeys.
Sharing how I solved problems with my readers motivated me to write, write, write.
But, of course, I wasn’t always trying to conceive.
When I got pregnant and had babies, I couldn’t stop researching. What are the safest products in pregnancy? What are the most evidence-based choices to make for a natural birth? What baby products and children’s toys are the safest and most non-toxic?
The questions continued with parenting . . .
What was the most evidence-based way to parent? Why was there so much terrible non-evidence based parenting advise on the internet, and why were my friends listening to it?
Was it possible to parent gently? What if it felt like our children weren’t listening to us? How could we teach our children to manage anxiety? How did we make sure they didn’t end up like US?! 🙂
How could we teach them to love the earth? How could we help them grow in faith and magic?
And, what about turning all our fertility recipes into family-friendly, child-pleasing recipes?
Would my children eat collards, kale, and mustard greens? How could I feed my children enough green leafy vegetables? Should I let them have gluten? What about dairy? (I’m gluten free and dairy free). How can I get enough healthy fats into them? Can I get them to drink bone broth? Are there safe children’s supplements? Should they be taking them?
And, my husband and I went further into our non-toxic journey. We weren’t just worried about our health, we were also concerned about and committed to the health of the planet. We doubled down on our commitment to non-toxic products and supporting businesses who care about people and planets. We started trying to minimize our carbon footprint.
And, we are *trying* to move towards a zero-waste lifestyle.
So basically, how could I NOT write about all of this? I spend my life researching, implementing, either failing or succeeding, and researching and implementing more. It would be a terrible waste to not write it down!
And, honestly, I HAVE to write. I can’t sleep if I don’t write. When I figure out a solution and it works, it literally drives me crazy if I don’t write it down and share it with the world. So here I am. Fertility blogger now turned mommy blogger.
Let’s be friends.
Who am I?
Anna Rapp, MBA, MPPA, turned fertility blogger, turned mommy blogger :-).
I’m a North Carolina gal who went to graduate school and got a Masters in Public Policy and Administration and a Masters in Business from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. In those degrees I learned how to critically consume the news, how to research, and how to read scientific journal articles with an eagle eye for research design structure, faulty assumptions, and other issues.
With my degrees in hand, my plan was to make the world a better, safer place, of course. I landed the job of my dreams in Washington D.C., and moved there with my wonderful husband, who had similar dreams.
But when our babies arrived after multiple miscarriages and a struggle with infertility, suddenly my work wasn’t as satisfying.
It felt like my “job” was taking me away from my true vocation- purposefully creating a healthy, happy family. And snuggling the babies. Always, snuggling the babies.
As the fertility blog and my job took up more and more of my time, I knew something would have to give.
It felt like my “job” was taking me away from my true vocation- purposefully creating a healthy, happy family.
I was incredibly blessed that my blog work endabled me to quit my public service job in 2019 to spend more time with my children. I blog part time, during naps, and one day a week when hubby watches the kids. Sometimes I blog after they in bed when I’m super motivated.
Honestly, it’s the best schedule I could imagine.
Of course, in my quest to not be a workaholic, I try to remember my other hobbies 🙂
I love cooking, reading, hiking, gardening, kayaking, anything outdoors, and once upon a time I loved to craft- scrapbook, quilt, make jewelry, soap, candles, herbal remedies, etc. I’ll get back to those someday!
I’m a faith-filled gal with a love for God and Jesus, and a strong believer that prayer works.
I’m also a huge fan of SCIENCE; for me God & science go together naturally. After all, God made the Universe and all the beautiful, and intricate math and science of it.
I love dark chocolate and cashew cheese.
I love opening a freshly delivered box of clean, non-toxic beauty items.
I’m super Type A, and it takes all the meditation and mindfulness to slow me down and keep me calm.
My husband, Jeff, and I are big believers in lists, plans, and organization to make a household run smoothly.
My family loves to read books, hike, and travel (although not so much with the travel since the pandemic . . . )
And, for the blasphemous bit- I don’t drink caffeine. I don’t drink alcohol. I don’t eat gluten or dairy. I avoid simple sugars. I live clean, and I like it that way. Hopefully this doesn’t kick me out of the mommy bloggers club :-). Can we make jokes about green smoothies and adaptogenic beverages instead of coffee and wine? 🙂
What does Green Living Mean to me?
Our journey to Green Living started with our fertility journey. I was diagnosed with high FSH, low AMH, low antral follicle count, and endometriosis. I had several early miscarriages and we were told our only chance was with donor eggs.
We totally overhauled our lives– including our diets and our household products- and we wound up having two perfect, naturally conceived children.
We aren’t perfect when it comes to Green Living. But it is what guides us every step of the way, and every day we are making decisions to lessen our footprint.
Green Living has come to mean three things for us:
- Avoiding toxins and minimizing our footprint. When we started our journey, this just meant eliminating exposure to as many toxins linked with harm to human health as possible. But now, it also means making decisions with the health of the planet in the forefront of our mind. We aim to only use products that are safe for people AND the planet, and we try to vote with our DOLLARS by supporting businesses that have this same primary value. We try to avoid plastic, and switch away from single use items to forever items. We compost, try to create the least amount of waste possible, and re-purpose whatever we can. When we buy, we try to buy in GLASS, which is infinitely recyclable.
- Eating GREEN! We changed our diets to literally be more green- eating leafy greens 3-4 (OR MORE) times a day when we were trying to conceive. I know that sounds crazy, but we’ve never felt healthier, and we’ve kept up trying to hit those numbers- although we often use smoothies to help us get there! We also drastically reduced our meat intake to lighten our load on the planet, and switched to a mostly plant-based diet. We try to buy as much organic and local food as we can also switched to organic, and started trying to avoid plastic packaging. We did all this for health and fertility- but we soon came to realize that this kind of diet was also better for the planet. Now, we try to make conscious decisions about our diet to protect the health of the world.
- Teaching our children to love and enjoy the EARTH! We try to be OUTSIDE parents with OUTSIDE children. We value the earth, and we want to be WITH her. We build gardens with our children, and we build mud pits with our children. Our number one family activity is hiking, and we love exploring new and interesting forests, lakes, waterfalls, and beaches. Our homeschool preschool values learning about the science of the earth, the magic of nature, and basic skills over reading and writing. I want my children to grow up with dirt on their hands and nature in their hearts.
Voting with my dollars
Every single day we have the chance to vote with our dollars whenever we make a purchase.
Purchasing one product might support regenerative agriculture, sustainable materials, ample wages, dedicated social missions, and contributions to charitable causes. Purchasing a different product might mean contributing to the exploitation of working children, agricultural practices that pollute our world with pesticides and deplete the soil of nutrients, or the continued spread of toxic chemicals.
If there is one thing I’m super passionate about in my blogging it is about doing my part to make capitalism a force for GOOD. What does that mean? It means that in my personal shopping and in the products I promote I work very hard to find companies that I believe in.
For example, recently I got fed up with not having pockets. How am I supposed to be out in the woods with my kids, rambling aimlessly and totally relaxed, if I don’t have pockets filled with snacks, band-aids, and my cell phone for emergencies (And, let’s not lie, photo opportunities).
I decided I needed a fanny pack. My husband was appalled.
I googled for the most eco-friendly fanny pack and discovered the brand Cotopaxi. It is a B-corporation, and they have a fanny pack entirely made from scrap pieces, the entire company is devoted sustainability, and they donate 1% of their profits. The fanny pack is also not water-proof, which is good, because that means we don’t have to worry about it being coated with toxic perfluourochemicals chemicals, like PFOA, or PFCS that have replaced PFOA.
I try to make as many shopping decisions as I can like this. And I have SO MANY AWESOME FINDS to share with you.
Stick around. Hang out. Sign up for my newsletter. Shoot me an email. Message me on Instagram.
Let’s change the world- starting with us.