"They can turn into hippies. Tree-hugging, hemp-wearing, John Butler-listening, earth children" ... Ashley Walmsley

"They can turn into hippies. Tree-hugging, hemp-wearing, John Butler-listening, earth children" ... Ashley Walmsley

An important question has arisen: will we be organic parents?

In this modern age of consumer awareness about knowing where products come from and what the thread count of your sheets are, we notice some new parents going a bit “green”.

Oh, all right - they can actually turn into hippies. Tree-hugging, hemp-wearing, John Butler-listening, sandals and singlet-flouting, baby-in-one-of-those-wrap-sling-things Earth Children.

All of a sudden, they're on high alert for anything that might contaminate the newborn babe.

Food gets analysed for ingredients, soap has to be made from platypus milk, and any music with too much D-minor (the saddest of all keys) is forbidden.

I’ve heard of a couple who strictly adhered to the idea, implementing an inspection policy on all clothing and toys given as gifts.

I've seen one shop selling all natural rubber ducks, free from chemicals and harsh plastics.

Sure, they look like deformed bantam hens and are the colour of dirty dishwater, but at least the bub will be safe to chew them.

But then, how far do you take it?

Do you agree to only give the child natural, non-chemical wooden toys to play with?

Or do you go the extra step, insisting it be handmade by a global fair trade organisation that used Australian hardwood that was harvested from a renewable forestry plot which acknowledges the traditional owners of the land who are also being paid carbon credits, which in turn are being re-invested into climate change research in the hope of better understanding the nutritional potential of native vegetable production within third world countries?

Chances are it’s not going to be half as interesting as one of those toy phones you pull along and the eyes go up and down with every step.

Of course, I’m not suggesting we’re going to be leaving a packet of Ratsack in the cot to see what happens.

It’s just that we’re hopefully not going to be wrapping our child in cotton wool. (At least, not until we’ve checked how that cotton wool was bleached ...)

Read more of Ashley's blog at Queensland Country Life