Posted on August 25, 2011
Recently Wolf has been on this wicked DIY kick. I’m totally cool with him doing things such as fixing his motorcycle, changing the brakes on the car, and cleaning the totally disgusting bathroom drain by himself. He reports these things are not quite as difficult as we’ve been led to believe. Read more…
Posted on August 2, 2011
Throughout the summer, I have built up a great collection of pre-loved nature craft books for children. My son, Colin, has built up a great collection of natural craft supplies. Pine cones, barks, lichens, shells, and twigs have been collecting on a shelf in our family room, just waiting for the perfect project! Read more…
Posted on July 13, 2011
Dig! Toss! Splash! Vroom! Scrape! Wheee-ohhh, Wheee-ohhh! These are just some of the sounds of summer when two little boys, a lake, and Green Toys are combined.
Posted on November 11, 2010
J and I have a lot of furniture that’s older than we are. Not the cool, full of history, antique kind of old, but the ugly, outdated, full of baggage kind of old. Hand-me-downs we were grateful for as new homeowners trying to furnish our house are now big heavy eyesores that irk me. But they do serve a purpose, and the frugal greenie in me has a hard time buying something new to replace what we already have.
Plus, while we have no plans to move house in the immediate future, we know this isn’t our forever home. So buying new (or new to us) furniture doesn’t really make sense right now. We’ve always said that when we move, we’ll sell or donate most of our furniture instead of paying to move it. But when I redid my home office a few months ago, I realized that even the most outdated of furniture has potential, and being frugal and green about our furniture choices doesn’t have to leave me feeling like a martyr. Read more…
Posted on October 8, 2010
Posted on September 28, 2010
This past weekend, my husband and I took our sons apple picking for the first time! I will never forget the expression on my two year old’s face as we walked into the orchard, wagon in tow, as he viewed endless rows of beautiful trees, just dripping with brightly colored fruit. “Yes, apples grow on trees Colin,” I said, answering the question on his face. We picked together and filled our bags quickly. Colin raced around, searching for apples dangling like ornaments from low branches to yank with paired hands. “Gently,” reminded my husband, as Colin excitedly dropped an apple into the bag sitting in the wagon. Read more…
Posted on September 20, 2010
I’m a big fan of Method cleaning products. They get the job done and they come in cool packaging, which I’m a complete sucker for, and I really like the company and its whole “people against dirty” mission. I like Method hand soap and its teardrop-shaped pump bottle so much, I kept the bottles as permanent fixtures in my kitchen and bathroom and now buy the refill packages whenever I run out of soap.
So when I saw that Method now makes laundry detergent, I knew I wanted to check it out. (Plus, look at that cute bottle! I am a marketer’s dream.) But to be honest, I had my doubts that this one bottle would provide me with 50 loads of laundry, as it promises. It just doesn’t look like enough to cover 50 loads.
Well, I’m pleased to tell you that I was wrong. I’ve now gotten 46 loads out of this bottle, and there’s easily enough for at least four more. That adds up to more than 50 loads, and it’s already lasted me for months! Read more…
Posted on September 16, 2010
Have you ever gazed up at the night sky, alive with so many stars you’d swear you could sense the depth of it all, like looking cross-eyed at one of those Magic Eye posters, following the splash of the Milky Way across the cosmos, with maybe a meteor or two silently punctuating the scene? Or is nighttime when you might glimpse a star here or there through the glare of street lamps, headlights and digital billboards? If you answered yes to the first question, you’ve seen the sky as it is, absent light pollution. If you answered yes to the second question, you are light polluted and I recommend a vacation in a dark, starry place. Idaho is nice this time of year.
Posted on August 24, 2010
Image credit: http://www.himachal.us/
You may have heard about Sustainable Dave, the man who saved all his garbage for a year. Imagine it! Piles of plastic wrappers and take-out containers stacked all over the house. It surely got stinky along the way, but Sustainable Dave’s experiment with trash gave him a clear idea of just how much we consume and how little we think about what we’re consuming.
Inspired by this adventurous man, I decided to tackle a smaller challenge. Whenever I put a new liner bag in the trash can, I write the date on the bag. Everything that can’t be reused or recycled goes into the trash, and the date (written in big black permanent-marker numbers) reminds me that I’ve come home from a shopping trip with more unnecessary packaging or one-use items that can’t be recycled.