Tag Archives | eco friendly

Helping Holidays: 4 Green Gifts That Give Back

The holidays are all about celebrating acts of giving, making it the perfect opportunity to make your gift giving smarter this season. There are so many amazing businesses out there that give back when you purchase one of their products. These companies are tied to doing good somewhere in the world every time a purchase is made. Read on for my 4 favorite gifts that give back – and if you hurry you can still get these goodies by Christmas.

1. Warby Parker Glasses
Eben and I both wear glasses and love the stylish, affordable frames from Warby Parker. For every pair of glasses that you buy, a pair is donated to a person in need. If you don’t wear glasses, that is alright – Warby Parker also offers fantastic sunglasses.

+ Warby Parker  

2. Feed Bags
I have been familiar with FEED Bags for a very long time – I remember first seeing them in Whole Foods back when we lived in Georgia! FEED Bags come in a huge selection of styles and sizes and with each purchase a portion of the proceeds go towards feeding the children of the world.

+ FEED Projects

3. TOMS Shoes
Most likely you are already familiar with TOMS shoes – for every pair you purchase a pair is donated to a child in need. With a great selection of shoes for everyone on your list, TOMS is the perfect holiday gift!

+ TOMS
4. Smile Squared
Every year I stick a toothbrush in the holiday stocking – this year I will be stuffing a brush from Smile Squared! Smile Squared is another company that donates a product to a child in need – in this case, an eco-friendly bamboo toothbrush – because a healthy smile is a happy smile.

+ Smile Squared

Do you have a favorite gift to give that gives back too?

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Hello Friends!

Can you believe the holidays are officially here? I am super excited! We kicked off the holiday season last night making pies as a family and watching a Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. So fun. Today, Eben and I spent the morning getting our home ready and putting together the tablescape. We think it turned out pretty great! We are calling it a success.  The mister does all of the cooking and we are drooling over all of the amazing smells and sights coming from the kitchen. Yay!

I hope you have an amazing Thanksgiving Day full of family, friends and amazing food! I hope you get to spend the weekend doing whatever makes you smile (relaxing, sleeping in, reading a great book, shopping or like us, heading to the beach!)

Happy Thanksgiving!
Sweet Greens

Healthy Habits for Green Kids Start at Home

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As parents, the most important lessons we can impress upon our kids are the sorts of healthy habits that will stick with them throughout life, especially once they’re off on their own for the first time. Healthy lifelong habits can include eating well and exercising, but also extend to things like keeping their living space clean and following good hygiene practices. Today I want to talk about the latter, as no parent wants to see their kid end up as a stereotypically smelly, unkempt teenager!

Of course, kids have to be given freedom to explore their identities and express themselves creatively with their clothing and hair choices. I think it’s only natural for kids developing their sense of self to explore those avenues. But good hygiene is simpler than that, and important for everyone. Teaching kids to maintain healthy habits and take good care of their bodies starts at home, and is something the mister and I have tried to approach in a positive way.

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Personal hygiene is also an area fraught with marketing campaigns (some of which rely on shaming tactics or other nasty approaches to selling their products) surrounding the products we supposedly need to use in order to keep clean. Many of these are full of synthetic scents, untested ingredients, or are otherwise not very eco-friendly, being tested on animals or produced in unsustainable ways. So even our choices of hygiene products can be a big influence on our kids, and what they choose to use in the future. One of my favorite brands of natural personal hygiene products is Tom’s of Maine, who never use artificial colors, flavors, fragrances, preservatives, or animal testing.

You’ve probably seen Tom’s at your local drug store or grocery, and they’ve been around since the ‘70s. I would bet that they’re the most recognizable brand of natural body products around today, not just relegated to health stores or other specialty retailers. I think Tom’s of Maine is great because they aim to operate sustainably and care for both the environment and the communities we live in.

I would say that three of the most important hygiene habits to build with your kids are the following:

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Brushing Teeth: Keeping teeth and gums in good shape is important to overall health and maintaining good breath. It can also be a task which kids (especially young ones) are more likely to shirk or do a half-hearted job of. Being a good role model by brushing and flossing with your children can go a long way to building good dental hygiene habits. Tom’s makes a wide range of oral care products including all-natural toothpaste that my family loves using.

Washing Up: Whether we’re talking regular hand washing to prevent the spread of germs, washing your face each day to help with teenage skin concerns, or getting active kids into the shower to rinse off sweat and dirt after they’ve been out playing, washing up is a huge part of personal hygiene.

Using Deodorant: This one can be a little more controversial, as depending on how you were raised, you might not think of deodorizing products as a necessity. However, in modern society they’re a pretty prevalent part of personal hygiene, and even if you choose not to use antiperspirants due to health concerns, a simple, natural deodorant is a good choice. Tom’s is probably best known for their extensive line of natural deodorants, for men, women, and children. If you’re looking for a healthy, natural deodorant, I don’t think these ones can be beat. My whole family uses them, and we’ve been really impressed by the quality and effectiveness.

I’d love to hear your tricks for helping your kids develop healthy hygiene habits, or your experiences trying natural body products. Have you successfully swapped your conventional hygiene products for eco-friendlier options? How do you teach your kids about the importance of taking good care of their bodies? Have you tried any Tom’s of Maine products that I haven’t mentioned? Let me know in the comments!

 

This post was created in partnership with Stonyfield.  All opinions are always my own.

Take a book, Return a book: Celebrate Back to School!

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Back to school is the perfect time of year to join the excitement and encourage your children to adopt good reading and learning habits. We strive for the best for our children which is why we spend so much time looking for the best schools and making sure teachers are exceeding our expectations. However, parents often forget how much power they have to influence their children’s learning potential. This can be done simply by making books an integral part of kids lives and introducing fun ways to learn!

Reading with your children helps them form a special bond with you as well as fosters academic excellence. Reading specifically improves speech, communication and language skills. Additionally, it gives children of all ages and walks of life an avenue for adventure and new experiences. A new way parents and families are bringing excitement to reading is by offering the fun of reading to their whole neighborhood through Little Free Libraries. Read on for my favorite Little Free Library design.

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You may be asking yourself what is a Little Free Library?! It’s a “take a book, return a book” gathering place where neighbors share their favorite literature and stories. In its most basic form, a Little Free Library is a container full of books where anyone may stop by and pick up a book (or two) and bring back another book to share. Little Free Libraries can be found all over the states but don’t fret if your neighborhood doesn’t have one yet!

You can find simple instructions to build your own Little Free Library but know the options for this project are limitless! Your children can experience the joy of helping others by donating some of their already read books as well as enjoy the benefit of being able to read books other families donate. This is a win/win for all involved and a great way to get involved in your community as well as foster your child’s academic future. Perhaps spoken best by Dr. Seuss, “The more you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” Cheers!

Save Money this Summer on Terrific Summer Eco-Goods at Vitacost

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Summer is in full swing! With our summer schedule jam packed, we have been ordered a lot of our favorite supplies online. It’s just too easy to order whatever we need online and then spend the day at the beach. A couple of days later, everything we need has been conveniently delivered to our front door.

Lately I have been checking out Vitacost, they are a terrific online source for all sorts of eco-friendly and healthy products at discounted rates. Prices are up to 50% less than they would be at other retail shops. They have eco-friendly cleaning products, cosmetics, vitamins, supplements, health foods, and a lot more. Here are some of the summer products that I think are too good to miss:

Summer sun protection is a high priority for my family and me. I’m really impressed by the savings of up to 39% that Vitacost is offering on a wide range of sun products. They have all sorts of the natural product lines that I look for, like Badger, Kiss My Face, Alba, and a whole lot more.

Badger-SPF-30-Plus-Sunscreen-All-Season-Face-Stick-Unscented-634084472004I really like this All Season Face Stick from Badger. It’s certified natural, contains organic ingredients with non-nano zinc oxide and is biodegradable. Just look at the rave online reviews – I’m not the only one who loves this product!

Vitacost has just about any natural home cleaning product you could possibly think of. The selection is enormous, and the prices are all excellent. From laundry detergent, to dish soap, to all-purpose cleaners, the selection is endless and the prices are unbelievable.

Seventh-Generation-Natural-Dish-Liquid-Lemongrass-and-Clementine-Zest-732913227327Take this dish soap. I can’t believe the current sale price of $2.89 on this Seventh Generation Natural Dish Liquid. As most environmentally conscious people have learned, natural products are often more expensive than mainstream products but this website really proves that to be a fallacy.

Sunwarrior-Classic-Protein-Raw-Vegan-Superfood-Vanilla-718122514793I was browsing around the site and I realized that I had never taken the time to check out some of my go-to smoothie ingredients. It just hadn’t occurred to me to check. As a devoted green smoothie drinker, and I particularly enjoy a smoothie in the morning over the summer.

OMGoodness! My favorite raw powder, the Classic Vanilla Protein from Sun Warrior, more than $15 less than what I’ve seen it go for at some health food stores. The prices are really unbeatable.

Overall, I’m really impressed with this website. I’ve found several products that I use regularly that will amount to hundreds of dollars worth of savings a year, while still being healthy and environmentally conscious. Not to mention that having these items delivered will save me both time and the cost of gas to drive around to several different stores where I used to go to get some of these hard-to-find products. You can find Vitacost coupons here.

Do you shop online for your eco-friendly and organic goods? What is your favorite website? If you discover any deals that you’re really excited about, let me know what you find!

This post was created in partnership with Groupon. All opinions are my own.

The Impact of Recycling: Making a Difference

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Did you know that the average American household generates more than 11 pounds of waste every day? Wow! That is a lot. That adds up to 251 million tons of waste each year nationwide. Approximately 75 percent of that waste is recyclable, but more than 135 million tons of it still ends up in landfills. If every American household doubled the amount of waste added to the recycle bin instead of the trash bin, 71 million tons of waste could be kept out of landfills each year.

Reducing household trash has other positive effects on the nation besides keeping waste out of landfills. Recycling also benefits the environment and the economy. Recycling products reduces the amount of fuel needed to produce new materials. Americans recycle 87 million tons of waste per year, and the amount of greenhouse gas emissions saved is equivalent to removing 33 million cars from the road. Just the number of aluminum cans saved from American trash bins annually saves enough gasoline to fuel more than 722,000 cars for over three years. Recycling is a big deal! To learn more about the benefits of recycling, and how this simple act can make a huge impact, check out the infographic below!
The Impact Of Recycling: Making A Daily Difference

 This post wasn’t written by me, thank you for supporting the businesses that keep Sweet Greens running!

38!

birthday-cake-380178_1280Today is my 38th birthday! I love birthdays! Over the weekend, the mister surprised me with a birthday luncheon at The Morikami Japanese Gardens with all of our Florida family. When a birthday starts out with family, Japanese gardens, and green tea ice-cream – it was destined to be the beginning of a great year! Thank you Mister Lyon. I have a feeling 38 is going to be pretty amazing – I can’t wait!

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