Tuesday, May 28, 2013

No Waste Wednesday #22–No More Paper Napkins

Reference:  2013 Resolution posted 12/31/2012

napkinsThis is easy and adds style to your table.  Colorful cloth napkins or sparkling white are so much nicer to use than paper.  A bit of class at the table.  Toss them into the wash when finished.  If you are especially finicky, buy only white and add bleach to the wash.  

Thursday, May 23, 2013

No Waste Wednesday #21–Honey, Honey

Just north of our home is an large orchard and apiary (home for honey bees)—the Sailing S Orchard and Apiary.  The farm has a small shed (known as the 'Honey House”) next to the road selling pints and quarts of local honey.  Purchases are on the honor system and you return the empty jar when your honey is gone.

IMG_2769We love buying locally grown, raw honey.   Once you taste high-quality, local, unpasteurized honey you will not buy syrupy, grocery-store honey in the little bear bottles again.   Not only is it delicious, but local honey contains the immune stimulating properties needed for your body to adapt to its environment (helps alleviate allergies).

Read the following post from the Leaf and Grain blog for more information on raw honey benefits:


Wednesday, May 15, 2013

No Waste Wednesday #20–Homemade Lotion

Reference:  Resolution posted 12/31/12

homemade lotionI use a lot of lotion.  Every morning after I shower,  I slather up my arms and legs with body lotion.  I moisturize my face and lips every day.  Plastic pump containers.  Plastic tubes.  Plastic jars.  Have you noticed all the chemicals in the listed ingredients?  I decided there had to be a less expensive, healthier and plastic-free approach.

After searching websites for homemade lotion recipes, I found an wonderful blog containing all kinds of recipes for homemade products.  And probably the best and truly simple recipe for homemade lotion. 


After gathering the ingredients to make lotion (there are only three—beeswax, olive oil, and essential oil scent), a friend and I set out to make our lotion today.  And I am happy to announce it turned out fantastic!  Maybe only one downside is the color—made from local beeswax the color is yellowish-brown.  Not pretty, but the moisturizing result is great. 

What I especially like are the multiple uses—body lotion, lip balm, and facial moisturizer.  AND the storage container is the same container you use to “cook” the product. 

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

No Waste Wednesday #19–“The Green Thing”

The following “joke” has been circulating on Facebook for a while now.  Funny, but sad.  I know I am part of the problem.  I think the “older” generation had it right.  We have lost our way in our quest for what we think is progress or efficiency.


Checking out at the supermarket recently, the young cashier suggested I should bring my own bags because plastic bags weren’t good for the environment. I apologized and explained, “We didn’t have this green thing back in my earlier days“.

The clerk responded, “That’s our problem today. Your generation did not care enough to save our environment for future generations“.

She was right about one thing–our generation didn’t have the green thing in “Our” day. So what did we have back then? After some reflection and soul-searching on “Our” day, here’s what I remembered we did have….

Back then, we returned milk bottles, pop bottles and beer bottles to the store. The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled, so it could use the same bottles repeatedly. So they really were recycled. But we didn’t have the green thing back in our day.

We walked up stairs, because we didn’t have an escalator in every store and office building. We walked to the grocery store and didn’t climb into a 300-horsepower machine every time we had to go two blocks. But she was right. We didn’t have the green thing in our day.

Back then, we washed the baby’s nappies because we didn’t have the throw-away kind. We dried clothes on a line, not in an energy gobbling machine burning up 240 volts — wind and solar power really did dry our clothes back in our early days. Kids got hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always brand-new clothing. But that young lady is right. We didn’t have the green thing back in our day.

Back then, we had one TV, or radio, in the house — not a TV in every room. And the TV had a small screen the size of a handkerchief (remember them?), not a screen the size of Wales. In the kitchen, we blended & stirred by hand because we didn’t have electric machines to do everything for us. When we packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, we used wadded up old newspapers to cushion it, not Styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap.

Back then, we didn’t fire up an engine and burn petrol just to cut the lawn. We used a push mower that ran on human power. We exercised by working so we didn’t need to go to a health club to run on treadmills that operate on electricity. But she’s right. We didn’t have the green thing back then.

We drank from a water fountain when we were thirsty instead of using a cup or a plastic bottle every time we had a drink of water. We refilled writing pens with ink instead of buying a new pen, and we replaced the razor blades in a razor instead of throwing away the whole razor just because the blade got dull. But we didn’t have the green thing back then.

Back then, people took the bus, and kids rode their bikes to school or walked instead of turning their mums into a 24-hour taxi service. We had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to power a dozen appliances. And we didn’t need a computerized gadget to receive a signal beamed from satellites 2,000 miles out in space in order to find the nearest pizza joint.

But isn’t it sad the current generation laments how wasteful we old folks were just because we didn’t have the green thing back then?

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