How To Drink More Sustainably

When it comes to consuming alcohol, there’s more than one way to drink responsibly. Many of us don’t consider the fact that our alcohol consumption could have a high carbon footprint. From the manufacturing process to what ingredients you choose, there are many ways in which your drinking habits can affect the planet. Below are some tips on how to drink more sustainably. 

Support local breweries, distilleries, and wineries

Many of the beverages we drink come from other states or are imported from other countries. This results in a lot of carbon emissions.

When choosing to buy from local producers, these carbon emissions are greatly reduced as the beverage doesn’t have to travel so far to get to you. 

Consider researching local breweries, distilleries, and wineries to see what is available to buy in your area. You may be able to buy these drinks in local stores or directly from the producer.

In some cases, it could be worth trying new types of beer or spirits. For example, there may not be any local rum or vodka producers, but you may have a bourbon distillery nearby. Experimenting with whiskey cocktails such as this paper plane cocktail recipe could open up your tastebuds to new drinks while reducing demand for imported goods. 

Look out for beverages that strive to be green

Some producers go the extra mile to make their products eco-friendly. This includes using energy-efficient manufacturing methods, using organic ingredients, or giving proceeds to earth-friendly causes.

This list of sustainable beers is a good example. Choosing these beers could help to reduce your damage to the environment and possibly even go some way to undoing environmental damage. 

Go vegan with your drinks

The meat and dairy industry has a huge negative impact on the environment. For many people, going vegan is not just a way of protecting animals, but also saving the planet from excess greenhouse gases.

Some people assume that all alcoholic beverages are vegan, but actually many aren’t. Some wines add extracts of egg or casein to reduce bitterness and browning. Meanwhile, animal extracts like honey and gelatin are sometimes added to beers. 

By sticking to strictly vegan beverages, you can reduce any harm to animals and any harm to the planet. This includes alcoholic drinks and mixers if you like to have cocktails. 

You can check whether a drink is vegan by looking it up online. There are also online guides that you can read through. Check out some of the best vegan wines here at this post

Use less disposable plastic (such as cups and straws)

Do you often drink cocktails through a disposable plastic straw? Do you give everyone plastic cups whenever you have a house party?

These disposable plastics are often not biodegradable and some aren’t even recyclable. This means that they often end up cluttering landfill sites. 

By using a reusable straw and sticking to glass or reusable plastic cups, you can help reduce your plastic waste. 

How to Make Organic Dried Apple Slices this Fall

Many of you may have a family apple-picking adventure on your fall calendar. We try to visit our favorite apple orchard The Historic Orchard at Altapass in North Carolina. We have so much fun hiking through the orchard picking and eating apples as we go!

If you find that you have more apples then you know what to do with after your orchard trip, you can make simple, dried apple slices. These treats are perfect for the school lunchbox. Read on to learn how to make these simple treats in a couple of short steps.

What you will need:

– organic apples
– cinnamon

Directions:

Dehydrating: Line your food-dehydrator shelf with parchment paper. Cut your apples into super-thin slices and arrange the slices on the shelves of your food-dehydrator. Sprinkle with cinnamon and either dehydrate at 135° until crisp.

Baking:
Line a baking sheet with a reusable mat or parchment paper. Cut your apples into super-thin slices and arrange the slices on the baking sheet. Sprinkle with cinnamon and bake in the oven at 225° for about 1.5 hours.

Do you make apple slices during the autumn season?

How to Make Organic Instant Oatmeal for Cool Fall Mornings

I love oatmeal on cool, crisp fall mornings! Am I the only one? You can make your own organic instant oatmeal packed with flavor in a few simple steps taking your regular oatmeal from ho-hum to yum-yum. Read on to learn how you can make organic instant oatmeal and wake up to a better tomorrow.
 
Step 1: Bake It!
Preheat the oven to 350°, spread 4 cups of organic old-fashioned rolled oats on a baking sheet. Bake until lightly toasted, about 15 minutes. Let cool.
 
Step 2: Pulse It!
Pulse in a food processor until coarsely chopped.
 
Step 3: Mix It!
Mix in a cup of your favorite oatmeal add-ins such as; almonds, walnuts, dried cranberries, sunflower seeds, brown sugar, and coconut.
 
Step 4: Store It!
Store in an air-tight container for up to 2 weeks.
 
Step 5: Boil It!
Stir boiling water into a cup of your organic instant oatmeal until you reach your desired consistency.
 
Step 6: Enjoy It!
Oatmeal is my favorite on a cool, crisp fall morning – top with honey too!

How to Embark on a Vegetarian Lifestyle that’s Healthy and Delicious

If you’re considering embarking on a vegetarian lifestyle, you’re in luck! Not only is a vegetarian diet healthy and delicious, but it’s also one of the easiest ways to reduce your environmental impact. This blog post will discuss some tips for making the switch to vegetarianism, as well as some recipes for delicious and healthy vegetarian meals. So whether you’re a full-time vegetarian or just looking to add more plant-based meals into your diet, read on for some tips and recipes that will make the transition easy and enjoyable!

Do your research

As with any major lifestyle change, it’s important to do your research before you dive in headfirst. This means learning about the different types of vegetarian diets and what foods you’ll need to avoid (or eat more of) in order to maintain a balanced diet. You can find plenty of resources online or at your local library, so take some time to educate yourself on the ins and outs of vegetarianism before you make the switch.

In addition, it’s also important to research recipes like instant pot potato soup! This may seem like a no-brainer, but you’ll be surprised how many meat-based dishes you’re used to eating that can easily be made vegetarian. A quick Google search will yield tons of results for delicious and healthy vegetarian recipes, so take some time to peruse some cookbooks or food blogs before you start your new diet.

Find healthy substitutes for meat-based dishes

One of the best things about vegetarianism is that there are so many healthy and delicious substitutes for meat-based dishes. If you’re used to eating a lot of meat, you may be worried about giving it up, but there are plenty of plant-based proteins that can easily take its place. Tofu, tempeh, seitan, lentils, beans, and quinoa are all great sources of protein that can be used in a variety of recipes. And if you’re not sure how to cook with these ingredients, again – research! There are tons of resources available online or at your local bookstore that can help you learn how to cook with meat substitutes.

Incorporate meatless meals into your diet gradually

If you’re not ready to commit to a full-time vegetarian lifestyle, that’s perfectly okay! You can still reap the benefits of eating more plant-based meals by incorporating meatless dishes into your diet gradually. Start by substituting one or two meat-based meals per week with vegetarian alternatives, and then slowly increase the number of meatless meals as you get more comfortable with the idea. Not only will this help you ease into a vegetarian lifestyle, but it will also give you time to experiment with different recipes and find vegetarian foods that you really enjoy eating.

In conclusion, embarking on a vegetarian lifestyle is a great way to improve your health and reduce your environmental impact. With a little bit of research and some delicious recipes, you’ll be well on your way to enjoying a delicious and healthy vegetarian diet.

7 Simple, Fun Eco-Friendly Ways to Spend Fall with Your Family

Happy 1st Day of Fall! 

I love fall – it is my favorite season and my favorite time of year! What’s not to love? We are at our mountain home in North Carolina right now and it is fall perfection! The cooler weather, morning hikes, snuggles by the fire, chai tea, cozy sweaters, and pumpkin everything. Looking for some fall inspo?

Here are 7 simple, fun eco-friendly ways to inspire you!

1. Take a Listening Hike
One of my favorite fall activities is hiking! And one of my favorite ways to enjoy a hike is when we take what we like to call “a silent hike.” A silent hike is just that – we hike together as a family in complete silence. It’s amazing how the act of simply being quiet and listening can have a huge impact on your hiking experience. There have been many times that we come upon an animal grazing or fish swimming in a creek – it’s amazing. We also like to stop along the way to listen to the rustling of the trees, the chirping of the birds, or to watch leaves quietly wafting to the ground. It is a great time to reflect within too, while still being with the ones you love.

2. Take It Outside
Fall is the perfect time to take whatever you are doing – outside! The mister and I start every morning by taking the dogs on a hike right out our backdoor. It’s quiet and there are always a ton of deer and turkeys around every corner. I also LOVE to take my tea and blanket and head out to the back porch to snuggle by the fire table while listening to the bubbling of the creek. 

3. Slow It Down
Now that school is back in session, you have to admit that you are much busier than you were all summer. I know that if something isn’t on my schedule, it probably isn’t going to happen. This is why during the fall months, we really take extra consideration to slow things down at our home. We like to schedule extra time in the morning and afternoon, just to be. We usually spend this time snuggled up chatting about our upcoming adventures.

4. Get Centered
Along with slowing down, fall is a great time to get centered. Spend time each day doing whatever it is that makes you feel connected and centered. For the mister, this means yardwork – he loves to get outside in the North Carolina fresh air and work in the yard. For Eben, this means a hot cup of cocoa and a really good book on the back deck (it’s his happy place!) For me, I like to snuggle down with my iPad to pin my favorite eco-friendly things (usually on the back deck with Eben when he’s here with us!) or end the day with a soak in the hot tub! 

5. Plan Ahead
One thing that I have definitely learned along the way is that it is super important to enjoy the moment. To ensure that every moment of fall is enjoyable for my family, I like to plan ahead. I sit down with my journal and jot down things that I really want our family to do together during the fall. I include all of our traditional fall family activities, as well as new ideas that I can run by the guys (when Eben is home from college). The idea is that if I plan these activities ahead of time, we spend the time we have together doing fun things together without much thought – since everything was planned well in advance.

6. Find an Adventure
One of my favorite parts of fall is the cooler weather – which always equals more time outside. We always schedule a trip to our mountain home during the fall season. I HAVE to visit the pumpkin patches! We really enjoy the cooler days spent outside, followed by the crisp nights roasting marshmallows over the fire!

7. Get Cozy
Fall is a great time to reconnect with family and friends. Our best friends are visiting us next week while we’re still here in North Carolina. We have all kinds of fun things planned: bike rides, hikes (of course), visiting our surrounding small town, and peeping all of the leaves (they are already starting to turn colors!)

In what ways do you plan to spend fall with your family?