At Target, we’ve been celebrating Earth Day since its inception in 1970. While Earth Day takes place on April 22 this year, we think Mother Earth deserves an entire month of celebration, so we’ll be sharing a look at what sustainability means to Target throughout April.
What better way to start off the month and celebrate than by making your home more sustainable? Target Inner Circle member Jennie Lyon of Sweet Greens features an Earth Month makeover for your pantry using items that can be found at Target.
As part of this simple, sustainable and healthy pantry makeover, Jennie caught up with Target Mommy Ambassador Soleil Moon Frye on how she integrates sustainability into her home and her family’s lifestyle.
My husband and I purchase most of our organic pantry staples in bulk, which makes having a functional pantry system essential for keeping staples organized, easy to access and fresh. This is something that we struggled with for years – our pantry was hard to utilize, making it difficult to know what we had on hand or what staples we needed when we did our shopping. We were craving a better pantry system and knew that a makeover was essential to living a more sustainable lifestyle.
Before starting the pantry makeover project, I was excited to chat with Soleil about how she keeps her pantry organized, influences the way that her family eats and how she’s able to balance it all.
Jennie: Have you found a great way to organize your kitchen pantry?
Soleil: I love organizing pantry staples within clear glass containers to ensure they stay fresh and are easily accessible. For example, I store fresh granola and treats in mason jars. I also find it helpful to group pantry items by type, so I can see what we have in stock. Finally, knowing what we use and how often we purchase items helps avoid the common mistake of filling our pantry with foods we don’t often use, which helps us to avoid food waste.
Jennie: As the mother of an eleven-year-old son, I really want him to understand the importance of the food that he puts in his body. By involving him in all aspects of our food consumption, from purchasing ingredients to prepping and cooking meals together, he is much more connected to the food we eat. In what ways do you ensure that your girls are connected to their food?
Soleil: We do a lot of cooking together in our house – the girls are amazing little chefs! I look for ways to involve them in the creative process such as having them add favorite ingredients and personal touches to salads. Baking is another favorite family activity. It’s so much fun to bake together, and it also helps the girls practice their math and reading skills and understand measurements. I think involving them in the kitchen is so important and helps them grow their appreciation for food. For example, my daughter Poet is currently taking a cooking class. Edible gardens are another great way to help connect children with food. We love growing strawberries at our house. The girls get so excited to watch their garden grow.
Jennie: Do you have any tips to get your kids excited to try new foods?
Soleil: We have really encouraged adventurous eating since the time the girls were young. We let them explore and work to teach them a healthy balance. As parents, we try to lead by example. We want trying new food to be fun. For example, when we go out for sushi, we love to watch the sushi being made and be part of the whole experience.
Jennie: What are your organic go-to snacks for your girls?
Soleil: The girls love fruits and vegetables, especially grapes and mangos. They also love almonds, crackers, olives and pickles for snacks.
Jennie: Besides leading by example, what other ways are you teaching your girls to live a more eco-friendly lifestyle? How do you keep them engaged and excited about it?
Soleil: We teach them the importance of recycling, reusing and being kind to the environment. We love using reusable bags for shopping or repurposing them for other uses such as lunch bags or beach totes. If you’re in need of a new reusable bag, Target is giving away 1.5 million reusable bags on Sunday, April 21, to encourage guests to make small changes to live more sustainable lifestyles!
Jennie: I was vegan for several years and now my family eats mostly vegetarian fare. Over the years what have you learned about the foods that you and your family eat? Have there been big changes to your diet?
Soleil: We are really aware of the ingredients in the foods we buy, especially when it comes to snacks. We also strive for balance—we enjoy healthy eating but also allow ourselves a few indulgences. It is all about moderation and being aware of what is going into your body.
After chatting with Soleil, I was more than ready to get started. To see the end result of my simple—yet effective!—pantry makeover, check out the rest of my post on Sweet Greens.