Category Archives: Eco ideas

BPA-free water bottles – good for you, good for the planet …

WEDNESDAY: NATURAL LIVING

I made a New Years resolution this past year that I have stuck with – use a BPA-free, reusable water bottle and to use canvas bags for my groceries. Can you believe it – my resolution is still going strong? I bring mine to work with me everyday.

How do I clean it? Easy … with a baby bottle brush, soap and water.

Drinking out of BPA-free water bottles is a big deal and dramatically reduce plastic bottle consumption.

For those of you who don’t know: BPA is Bisphenol A, which is used to make epoxy resins and plastics. It also mimics the body’s hormones and some doctors are concerned about it’s effect on fetal and infant brain development. It’s pretty scary stuff – so whatever you can do to avoid it, the better it will be for your health.

I found these really fun graphic bottles that you should check out. You can find them everywhere and for cheap. TJ Maxx and Marshalls sell them for $7.99 each.

Interesting and unique ways to recycle glass and plastic bottles …

WEDNESDAY: NATURAL LIVING

If there is one thing Alex and I do really well – it’s recycle. We have two recycling bins that are filled to the rim (and sometimes are overflowing) each Monday morning with cardboard boxes, plastic bottles, aluminum cans, glass jars – and on and on.

I do wish, however, that we just didn’t use these items one time and then discarded them into the recycling bin.

So, I looked up creative ways other people have done to reuse recyclables – particularly glass and plastic bottles. Would you do any of these? I’m thinking the igloo would be fun in the backyard – haha!

See more cool recycled items – click here!

Click here for nature-inspired home decor.

Cloth napkins and kitchen towels …

WEDNESDAY: NATURAL LIVING

Stoplight – Napkins, set of 2 (white on GO green)

One thing my family does that is not green is use paper towels. With a three-year old (almost four – Kai would be devastated if I didn’t share this fact) in my house, paper towels and napkins are so convenient. I’ve been conscious of these anti-green products in my house for quite sometime. Lately, I’ve been trying to consume less of them by using towels and rags to clean up messes. I mean, I still use paper occasionally, so don’t shoot me if you come into my house and see me with a roll of paper towels by my kitchen sink, but I am using them less frequently – and that’s a start, right?

I sifted through Etsy and found these cute screen printed kitchen towels and napkins that might encourage you (and me!) to use less paper products!

If you’re feeling really artsy, here’s a link to re-nest.com that teaches you how to make your own no-sew cloth napkins

four organic napkins – little pig print in black and red

Simple Sprouts Napkins – Set of 4

Spring-themed animal napkins, sunshine yellow, set of 4

two organic cotton napkins – brown henna blossom

Dutch Heart – linen tea towel (cherry)

Circles in Orange Screen Printed Kitchen Towel

Do your part to help the Gulf from BP’s nasty gobbily oil goo …

FRIDAY: RANDOM

It’s Day 81 and the oil is still gushing into the once aqua blue Gulf of Mexico. Fish are suffocating, birds are drenched in the black goo and my heart is breaking.

My friend sent me a link this morning about a $10 t-shirt, whose proceeds (all of them) are donated to the Gulf Restoration Network (healthygulf.org). Buy one and do your part!

Click here to check out my fave 15 Florida cities that you should visit before the oil does!

Colors in my garden: nature’s art …

WEDNESDAY: NATURAL LIVING

Last night after work, Kai and I planted cucumber seeds in the same spot where we grew our broccoli and cauliflower this winter. As we placed them into the Earth and covered them with rich soil, I looked around our yard. It’s bursting with vibrant colors, and I just had to share it all with you. Enjoy!

ps. I think next year, I’m going to dedicate a section of my yard just to flowers!

See more posts about our garden:
Edible garden
Tree art
Planting our garden
Garden signs

Homemade facial mask recipe …

WEDNESDAY: NATURAL LIVING

While in Seattle last week, I pampered myself with a 90-minute facial. My skin has been dry lately and has needed extra care. To keep up with a regiment, I decided last night to make a facial mask for myself. (I’m also taking a couple extra fish oil pills a day to also nurture my skin. *Be sure to choose a fish oil that comes from cold water and wild caught fish for maximum results and minimum environmental contamination.)

Facial mask ingredients:

1 organic egg white to tighten the skin
1 teaspoon of organic plain yogurt for moisture

Then just whisk the two ingredients together until the mixture becomes frothy.

Let the mask sit for about 10 minutes and then wipe off with clean water. Yes, you’re face is going to feel like it’s stone, but I’m weird and I liked the sensation.

This recipe yields two nights worth of masks. Make sure you place the leftover portion in the refrigerator. But I think for tonight’s mask, I’m going to add a splash of olive oil for extra moisture.

I felt as if I was in a Neutrogena commercial as I applied the mask with two of my fingers, smiling and taking pictures of myself for this blog post. Hilarious.

Funky nature-inspired home decor …

FRIDAY: RANDOM

To continue the spirit of Earth Day, which was yesterday, I scoured the web for some funky nature-inspired home decor. Who says everything that a tree hugger owns has to be tie-dye?

Florida spring hopping getaway …

THURSDAY: MY ADVENTURES

TRAVEL LOG: Spring hopping across North Florida, Hart Spring, Convict Spring, Troy Spring, Peacock Spring, May 27, 2006

Since today is Earth Day (yay!), I wanted to share with you the one place on the planet that I call my happy spot – a Florida spring. In fact, during my 36-hour labor with Kai – this is where I went so I wouldn’t feel the pain.

For years, Alex and I spent every weekend exploring the state’s springs We’d snorkel and swim in the cool and invigorating 72-degree water, which energized and rejuvenated my soul. Plus my skin smelled so good afterward. (There are over 700 Florida springs and I think we swam in 32 of them so far. Where’s my wetsuit? I have 668 left to go.)

When I was seven or eight months pregnant, I needed to cool off from the intense Florida summer heat. So we decided to drive a few hours north, where a majority of Florida’s springs are found, and discover four more.

1. Hart Spring – It seemed pretty popular and crowded. Lots of splashing kids.
2. Convict Spring – Privately owned. We stumbled upon this spring, which was perfect because the owners also ran a motel, cabin and campground. This is where we stayed overnight. No, it wasn’t the Ritz, but in the middle of the country, it worked.
3. Troy Spring – This was a very large and deep spring. Alex snorkeled around, but because I was winded easily due to my every growing belly, I stayed closer to the rocks and stairs.
4. Peacock Spring – One of our favorite springs. We were practically alone, except for a nearby alligator, but we went into the water anyway. Daring each other to jump in and jump right back out, laughing the entire time.

Check out more of my adventures:

Florida ruins

Washington D.C.

West Fork, Sedona

A healthy honey and pecan popcorn recipe

WEDNESDAY: NATURAL LIVING

Protecting the Earth is more than just recycling and reducing carbon emissions. It’s also about living a healthy lifestyle, focusing especially on what you put into your body. The Earth can’t be healthy if its inhabitants (us) are not. Remember: Act locally, think globally. (Okay, that’s enough preaching for one day – but its Earth Day tomorrow and I’m jazzed and can’t resist.)

Although, I am known to add flax seed, spinach and carrots in my wheat free oatmeal and chocolate chip cookies, this recipe isn’t as hard-core as some of my others, such as these raw food recipes.

It’s simple, yummy and good for you.

I normally eye ball it when I make it, but I’ll give you some rough measurements and you can take give or take accordingly.

Ingredients:

½ cup of popcorn kernels
1 ½ tablespoons of butter
2 tablespoons of honey
2 handfuls of pecans

Steps:

1. Air-pop the popcorn.
2. In a saucepan, melt the butter and mix in the honey and pecans.
3. Place ½ of the popcorn in a glass dish.
4. Drizzle the nuts, melted butter and honey over the popcorn.
5. Add the rest of the popcorn on top.
6. Mix it all together with your hands.
7. Put it in the oven at 350 degrees for seven minutes, mix it up, and then put it in again for another seven minutes. This sort of caramelizes the honey.

It’s so yummy!

See more of my fave recipes:

Tomato poppers

Quiche

The art of reusing + recycling furniture ideas …

TUESDAY: ART, FURNITURE, HOME DESIGN

Earth Day is on Thursday, so this week it’s all eco, all the time. I was searching the web and discovered this inspiring site – recycleart.org. I pulled a few of my favorites recyclable ideas from it. I’m totally smitten!

Row, row, row your garden



The carpet itself uses the paper of the cigarettes unrolled and layered on top of each other. The design utilizes the yellow and white pieces from the paper to create a pattern similar to a woven textile rug.


Glass tumblers transformed into a chandelier.

A table created out of legos.

A curtain made out of the bottoms of plastic bottles.

Sonic Fabric Neckties are made from 50% colored thread and 50% recorded audio cassette tape.