Archive | HOME AND GARDEN

A Bright Idea: CFL Light Bulbs Cut Electricity Costs By 75%

Did you know that Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFL’s) can cut your electricity costs by 75%? CFL’s use 66% less energy and last 10x longer than incandescent bulbs? You don’t have to remove all of the bulbs throughout your home today, but once the bulbs go out, replace them with CFL’s. Want to see how much money you can save using CFL’s?

* Don’t forget to turn off the lights when you leave the room.

Do you use CFL’s? What do you think?

7 Sustainable Ways to Welcome Fall with Your Family

Fall is my favorite time of year, it seems like we start to slow-down as a family and spend more time reconnecting with each other. Since the days get shorter and it gets dark outside so much earlier, we really focus that time on family time. This is the time of year that our bowl on the dinner table gets filled with card games and brain teasers, and our nightly dinners get dragged out by long conversations and hot steamy beverages for dessert!

It is also the perfect opportunity to go green together as a family. To get you in the autumn mood, while getting your excited about sustainability, check out my 7 favorite eco-friendly ways to welcome fall.

1. Make it Family Dinner Night
One of my favorite fall family traditions is to have make-your-own organic pizza night a few times a month. There is something fun about kneading the dough, cutting up vegetables, and pulling hot vegetarian pizzas from the oven. We like to make ours look like sweet, smiling faces and it always ends in a night of laughter and fun!

2. Green Your Overall Health
Fall is the perfect time to amp up your healthy lifestyle before winter hits – because with winter comes sniffles, colds, and the flu. You can start by boosting your immunity, packing healthy, organic school lunches, adding some super-foods to your marketing list, and by doing a whole-body cleanse. You want to stay healthy through all of the fun fall and winter holidays, right?

3. With Fall comes Leaves, Lots of Them
When it comes to the leaves that fall in your yard, the way that you dispose of them can have a huge impact on the environment. The best option would be to mulch them and use them as ground cover for your garden. The worse option would be to blow them around with a noisy, emission polluting leaf blower. If you want to have fun with leaves, consider making leaf prints for your family room or you can always jump in piles of them.

4. Enjoy Your Natural Environment
One of my favorite ways to enjoy a lovely fall day with my family is by taking a bike ride. In fact, I think we should take our bicycles on our fall family trip this year. Another fun thing to do this time of year is to visit your local botanical garden – you could try one of these surprising ways to make it a day full of fall fun.

5. Prepare for Winter
Before you know it, winter will be here – and fall is the perfect time to prepare. When we lived in Colorado, I liked to stock up on non-perishable organic goods so we didn’t have to go marketing as often. It is also a great time to weather-proof your doors, windows and prepare your garden for the cold, winter ahead. I also like to think of fun ways to cozy up our home – this usually means bringing out stacks of books, blankets, and pillows and sipping hot organic tea and cocoa.

6. Green Your Halloween
Whether you are making plans to make your own Halloween costumes, decorations or you want to turn your home into the ultimate eco-friendly haunted house– now is the time to get started. We like to scour our local thrift stores and tag sales for fantastic Halloween decor well before the holiday. It always gets us in the mood for Halloween and when the holiday actually gets here, we are completely ready!

7. Go Local 
In Florida, our farmer’s market season starts at the beginning of October – which is the perfect time to stock up on those yummy fall vegetables. (I don’t think there will be a farmer’s market this year, but I will cross my fingers!) I love it when the mister whips up a batch of one of his fantastic soups during the fall months using local vegetables from the farmer’s market. And pumpkins from the farmer’s market, oh my, they are my favorite. If you live in a cooler climate that doesn’t offer a farmer’s market during fall, consider joining your local food co-op.

How do you welcome fall with your family?

Why Did the Free-Range Chicken Cross the Road?

To get to the fabulous chicken home on the other side, of course.

I love chickens, always have – I love their plump bodies, beautiful colors, soft downy feathers, and the way they strut around, makes me smile. Someday I would love to have half a dozen of them clucking in my yard. Unfortunately, we don’t have the room (they’d fall in the pool!), so no chicks for me.

When I am able to have some cluck clucks of my own, I believe it would be quite grand if they lived in an eglu from Omlet. Not the kind that you eat silly, but the fabulous chicken house seen above, complete with free-range doors.

What do you think?

Free Vintage Printables

 

I came across a fabulous Pinterest board full of free vintage printables. It’s an archive of thousands of FREE high resolution images of vintage travel posters, botanicals, birds and a lot of other lovely images (like these Halloween images). 

These printables are at a high enough resolution that you can print them out at a poster size without the image being fuzzy or pixelated. Just save the image to a flash drive and take it into your local oversize printing center or order online. Once they are printed, you can put them inside a ready made frame with matte and voila, you have a beautiful piece of artwork for a fraction of the cost.

This one from The Navage Patch is my favorite for Halloween! 

Madsen Cycle: Love For A Bucket Bike

I am really enjoying riding my bike everywhere this fall. So far we have ridden our bikes to the library to pick up some great summer reads, the grocery store to pick up groceries, the beach, and to enjoy lovely brunches and dinners on the patios of our favorite local restaurants. I really love my bike, but think it would be fabulous to have a bike that could hold everything that I need all at the same time.

This is why I would really love to have a Madsen Bike. Not to mention the fact that their bikes are fabulous. I think it would be the perfect bike for my lifestyle. I would put my Madsen Bike to work transporting library books, groceries, beach essentials, and Olive, our Frenchie would look quite dashing riding in the back. Not to mention they are a Utah company and I am from Salt Lake City!

Now how would I choose between turquoise and orange? 

What do you think of Madsen Bike?