Easter is such a delightful time of year. The kids have fun searching for colored eggs and receiving baskets filled with treats and goodies. However, many traditional Easter baskets are filled with toxic plastic grass, sugary candies, and eggs that are dyed with dangerous food colorings.
Surprise your children this Easter with a pretty basket made of natural wicker and line the bottom of it with natural raffia, dried grass, or even shredded coconut husk. Fill the basket with thoughtful gifts that are not harmful to them or the environment and add natural treats to satisfy their sweet tooth.
The kids can still enjoy all aspects of Easter, go on Easter egg hunts, have great baskets filled with naturally dyed eggs, delectable treats, and natural toys and gifts that they will treasure forever.
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What Kind of Toxins are Found in Traditional Easter Baskets?
Easter baskets are filled with candies that have artificial colors, flavorings, and sweeteners, cheap toys, and harmful plastics. Let’s look at some of these harmful things you can find in an Easter basket.
Plastic Eggs. The shiny and colorful plastic eggs found in Easter baskets are made from petroleum products and often contain high levels of lead. Not only are these plastic eggs hazardous to your kid’s health and filled with BPA’s, but the compounds used in the manufacturing of them are harmful to the environment.
Shredded Cellophane – Plastic Grass. Although the plastic grass used to line Easter baskets is pretty to look at, it is harmful to toddlers, animals, and the environment. The plastic grass is made from petroleum and the thin strips of shiny grass are tempting for toddlers to play with and they may end up choking on them. Birds find the strings attractive and may try to build nests with it. Baby birds can get wrapped in the string which is very difficult to break and they may end getting strangled. Plus, the grasses can get blown into waterways ending up in the oceans and adding to the plastic pollution crisis worldwide.
Cheap Jewelry and Toys. While kids enjoy receiving plastic bunnies, animals, and other toys, these plastic toys again are made with petroleum products and have BPA’s, and heavy metals in them as well.
Sugary Candy. What would an Easter basket be without candy? Kid’s love chocolate bunnies, marshmallow treats, jelly beans, and all of the assorted candies normally found in an Easter basket. Most of these candies are made with processed sugar, high-fructose corn sweetener, toxic food colorings, and chocolate that may contain harmful ingredients and is not fair-traded. According to California’s Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act, cheap chocolates contain levels of lead and cadmium that are above safe levels. Lead exposure may cause neurological damage to your child.
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Eggs Dyed With Food Coloring. Everyone loves colorful Easter eggs, but traditional ones are dyed with artificial colors that contain toxic and harmful ingredients such as benzidine which may cause cancer in humans. Even though you are not eating the shell of the egg, the food colors leach through into the edible part where you can ingest the artificial colors. In addition, when you dump the excess food coloring down the drain, the toxic substances may end up in the ground and drinking water.
How Can I Make the Basket Toxin-Free?
Instead of plastic baskets, use ones that are made from natural ingredients such as wicker or twined sticks. Add nuts, dried fruits, natural toys, stuffed animals made with natural fibers, and treats made without highly processed sugars. You can also make fun themed Easter baskets that reflect the child’s unique personality.
Garden Theme. Inspire children to get involved with gardening. Create a basket that has vegetable, flower, and herb seeds in it. Add a little trowel and cute gardening gloves as well as a children’s book on gardening.
Arts & Crafts Theme. For the crafty ones in the family, make a basket filled with fun coloring books, colored pencils made with natural dyes, beeswax crayons, natural watercolors, sketchbooks, and cute stickers.
Natural Makeup and Cosmetics. For the older girls who still enjoy the magic of Easter baskets, build a basket with natural and organic makeup and cosmetics. Include coconut butter lotion, beeswax lip gloss, toxin-free eye makeup, brushes with natural fibers, essential oils, and toxin-free nail gel.
Handmade Jewelry and Accessories. For teen girls, add a lovely silk scarf, hair accessories made with natural materials, and hand made jewelry that is not made from plastic.
Sports Theme. For the athletic ones, make a basket and fill it with baseball cards, a hat from their favorite team, stickers, and a ball from their favorite sport. For extra fun, throw in a bag of organic peanuts and popcorn.
What Can I Put in the Basket to Make it Traditional Yet Toxin-Free?
Natural Treats. Kids love edible goodies in their baskets, so instead of sugary ones, opt for treats such as coconut rolled dates, fruit roll-ups, whole nuts, and dark organic chocolates. You can even find jelly beans that are made with organic fruit juice and are fun and tasty.
Naturally Dyed Eggs. Vegetables, flowers, berries, and herbs make beautiful toxin-free dyes. you can also decorate eggs by hand painting lovely designs on them, or wrap feathers, dried flowers, and twigs tied with hemp twine. Use your creativity and get the kids involved in making them. They will love the project!
Handmade Toys. Kids love stuffed Easter bunnies, lambs, and baby animals as toys so add animals that are knit with natural fibers or made with wool or felt. Wooden toys are fun as well, just be sure that all of the parts of the toy are solidly attached so the little ones don’t swallow them.
Books Made From Recycled Paper and Soy Ink. Add books that you can read together, or that they can share with their friends. For older kids, add journals, sketchbooks, and inspirational books.
As you can see, you can have a wonderful Easter and make delightful baskets filled with non-toxic, toys, healthy treats, and gifts that everyone in the family can enjoy.