Have you guys used the Good Guide? I recently came across it as I was looking up the ingredients in some of my baby’s bath products. The Good Guide is this great online resource that rates the best products for baby, home, pets, food, apparel, electronics, appliances and cars based on the health, environmental and social footprint they leave. It’s been so helpful for us in choosing products for our baby and home.
Just today I was having a conversation with a friend about real foods. The conversation started when we got to talking about how we plan to feed our kids as they grow and just how much food has changed in the last 50 years. Our bodies are designed to eat real, natural foods from the earth but today we are almost “forced” to eat an abundance of sugars, salt, preservatives and an array of chemical additives. As much as we try to eat whole, organic, natural foods you still never know if the food your buying deemed “organic” truly is. It’s a scary realization that our society has gone down the path of eating this way. Don’t you wish we all had the time and know how to grow our own food? I know I do. What’s alarming to me is that most people are just okay with the way our food is grown today. Chicken’s pumped with hormones so large they can’t walk, strawberry’s grown double their natural size because of the chemicals used to fertilize them. Scary, isn’t it? So how can we change the way we eat? What are some of the things you and your family do to eat in a more natural way?
During my pregnancy I had the hardest time coming to terms with the fact that most baby items are way too colorful, way too plastic, and not at all gender neutral. It really was hard to create our baby girls gender neutral nursery (we did it, but we sure did have to hunt around for earth tone baby pieces.) Unfortunately for her bassinet we settled on something we found at our local chain baby store. It works well and she seems to really like it, which of course is what is most important but I sure do wish we would have come across some of these bassinets when we were in the market. If you are interested in beautifully crafted / eco home and baby products, these are for you!
In honor of Earth Day we’re having a sale over on Zulily! Hop over and check out the goodness! Also, get outside today and honor our planet. We are so lucky to live in a place that provides us with everything we could ever need, so lets start treating it and ourselves a little bit better this day and everyday. Happy Earth Day!
I admit, I really don’t have much of a green thumb…Strange right? As someone who writes the blog for an organic, eco company this seems like it should be a prerequisite but unfortunately It just does not come naturally to me. Since owning our home for almost three years now I continue to try each spring to plant the right things in my flower boxes and around the yard- It always starts good then bam, I wake up one morning and it’s all dead. I am beyond determined this year to not kill anything! Our yard is kind of wonky and we don’t have much direct sunlight which makes things a bit tricky. Our garage is built into a hill so you are able to walk on top of it which is the place that gets the most sunlight. Because of this set up I’ve been dreaming of raised bed gardening this season and since we’re huge supporters of organic produce we thought we’d try growing some of our own!
Raised beds are manmade gardening areas where the soil is formed in 3-4 foot wide area’s with the soil above ground, in any shape or design. There are definite benefits to raised bed gardening: they extend the planting season, they can reduce weeds if designed and planted properly and reduce the need to use poor native soil. I also really love the idea of constructing the beds from repurposed wood pallets or metal tubs.
I’ll keep you all posted on how it goes as the season really starts to stick around (we’re still having 40 degree days!) Any experienced raised bed gardeners have any advice?
We’ve been on a real juicing kick at our house lately and so I thought I’d share a little bit about why we’ve been juicing and a few favorite recipes. First of all, we had to really examine what types of vegetables and fruits we were juicing since I am currently breast feeding. We started juicing lots of green veggies ( spinach, cucumber, kale ) which are known to not only provide incredible amounts of beneficial nutrients but are also known to detoxify the body. As good as they tasted and are for your body, I noticed after just a day the green juices were upsetting my baby’s belly. Because of their detoxifying abilities what was left in my breast milk were some of the not so great toxins. Since then we’ve switched to juicing mostly fruits which not only taste delicious but like the veggie juices are just so dang good for you. If you are thinking about juicing I’d definitely do a little research on the effects juicing certain types of foods can have on your body. It can be quiet a shock to your body if you are going from a not so great diet to home made juices. They are so great for you but initially you want to be careful and make sure you know what you’re getting into. Here is a favorite we’ve been enjoying a ton lately:
Apple, Lemon and Ginger Juice
3 apples (any kind will do)
1 small piece ginger root
*Make sure your fruits are clean, and cut in halves or thirds. Follow the instructions in accordance to your specific juicer. We use a hamilton beach juicer and really like it.
Back in my college days, those days of living independently for the first time, I shopped solely based on how much things cost. I rarely read labels, had probably never eaten anything termed “organic”, didn’t seek anything local out and mostly lived on carbs- maybe a few veggies and fruit from time to time. In hindsight, I can’t believe I felt okay and appeared healthy. Now, years later, after living in various cities, watching one too many food documentaries and seeing the organic / local trend grow we are much more apt to spend a little more money on quality, natural foods than less money on processed, factory produced things. We realized that after making the decision to want to eat “food” (not chemicals) we noticed our portions became smaller -in a good way, (not so glutinous) and we seemed to have more energy and felt better overall in our every day lives.
I think often times people who are not used to shopping organic assume that it’s SO much more expensive, when really, it’s not. Sure, some things, like a gallon of skim organic milk or the meat you would normally buy are more expensive but there are ways to cut down on your grocery bill and still eat healthy foods.
1. Think about what you can take out of your current diet / grocery trips. Do you really need the frozen dinners or soda? (I understand too that giving up some of the things we are used to eating and drinking is a challenge but I think you will find that even just after a few weeks of eating less processed, sugar filled foods it will be come like second nature) In our house we drink water, buy one sugar less juice and organic skim milk.
2. Think about eating less meat. I’m not here to make a case for becoming vegetarian, but I am aware that organic meat is much more expensive than non organic. When my family decided to make the switch to organic foods we simply started eating less of it because it is expensive. We noticed that we started eating more vegetables and fruits to make up for the lack of meat. Seems like a pretty good trade off to me.
3. Cut coupons. Most people assume you can not use coupons on organic products but you can! Sites like Organic Deals has just what you’re looking for!
4. Talk to your family about the changes that are going to happen. Get the kids involved in picking things out and helping cook in the kitchen. Having them feel like they are a part of something new for your family will make for a smooth and healthy transition over them feeling like you are simply taking things away.
We recently got into Earth Mama’s lip balms and have to say – they are just wonderful! There’s no season where our skin and lips are drier and finding products not filled with chemicals to help soothe cracked skin can sometimes be a bit of a challenge. My personal favorite is the Lavender Meringue! Your lips will thank you, I promise.
Kombucha tea has been on the rise now for the past several years and now these starter kits have been popping up and we couldn’t be more excited. If you are not sure what Kombucha is, let us explain. It is a fermented tea that contains a culture generally made of a number of yeast, bacteria, organic acids, active enzymes, amino acids, and polyphenols produced by these microbes. It all seems pretty scientific but the easy-ness of the kits and health benefits of drinking Kombucha are very well worth it. You can also find Kombucha tea already brewed and bottled at natural food stores and in some organic sections of your local grocery store.
A few health benefits of Kombucha tea:
-Detoxification: Known to help keep livers healthy and prevent certain strains of cancer
-May prevent arthritis or help treat arthritis
-extremely rich in anti-oxidants which improves immune system and boosts energy levels
If there’s one type of greenery that’s a constant in our home it’s baby’s breath. It’s simple, beautiful and even when dried and dead it’s still beautiful. We have baby’s breath scattered through out our home in mason jars and hanging above the mantels with a little piece of washi tape. It’s the perfect spring touch around the house in the midst of the winter season.