February 28, 2011

Clean + Green Furniture Refresher Cleans and Eliminates Pet Odors Naturally

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We have some very stinky dog beds on our deck.   I sometimes sprinkle them with baking soda to eliminate odors. Clean + Green Furniture Refresher Odor Eliminator for Dogs offers another solution:

Powerful and Effective
Professional strength. Used by pet and cleaning professionals. Exclusive Patented Encapsulation Technology and Advanced Eliminator Formula.

All Natural Ingredients:
Cane sugar derivatives, proprietary botanical extracts and hydrated cellulose (cleaning agents), purified water and nitrogen propellant (non-flammable & eco friendly.)

Quick and Easy
Works on contact. Just spray - no need to soak, scrub or rinse.

Safe and Eco Friendly
Safe on all water-safe surfaces. Environmentally Responsible Formulation: non-toxic, non-flammable, non-corrosive, non-carcinogenic, biodegradable and natural propellant.


This product is even suppose to eliminate skunk odor, but I don't think it is safe to spray directly on dog fur.

I sprayed our stinky dog beds, and Clean + Green Furniture Refresher Odor Eliminator for Dogs did seem to help. I am wary of aerosol cans though, even though the National Aerosol Association assures us they do not deplete the ozone layer. Even so, they can be trickier to recycle, so I would prefer to see this product in a pump spray.

Disclosure: I was sent free samples of these products to review. No prior assurances were given as to whether the review be positive or negative.

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 25, 2011

H2O + Sea Results Eye Mender Plus Reduces Wrinkles and Puffiness

h20_sea_results.jpgH2O Plus Sea Results Eye Mender Plus claims to:


    • Over 28 days see a 47% decrease in wrinkle depth

    • 24% reduction in puffiness

    • 19% increase in firmness

    • Patented Marine Micropatch Technology delivers intensive ongoing hydration with long-term preservation of the dermal water reserve
I personally cannot attest to such claims, but I did look up the product on the Environmental Working Group's Skin Deep Cosmetic Database, where this product received a hazard score of seven.

The list of ingredients is very long, and I would not call it all natural. For example, it has Polysorbate 60, which is:

Derived from sorbitan and esterified with fatty acids, polysorbates are oily liquids. The number 60 following polysorbate refers to the fatty acid chemically associated with the polyoxyethylene sorbitan component of the molecule, in this case monostearate.

This is a nice eye cream, but you may want to chose one whose ingredients you can trust as truly all natural, like Dr. Hauschka Daily Revitalizing Eye Cream.

Disclosure: I was sent free samples of these products to review. No prior assurances were given as to whether the review be positive or negative.

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 24, 2011

Natural Weight Loss Secrets: Drink Water!

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Americans don't drink enough water. Americans are overweight. Could there be a connection? I've always thought so. In fact, whenever I have a friend who is trying to lose weight, my advice has always been: Drink water! When your belly is full of water, it is not hungry. I also think that sometimes people mistake thirst for hunger, and eat rather than drink to fulfill that need.

Apparently, scientists agree with my advice. Baseline of Health Foundation reports:

Scientists at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg decided to see if this old wives' tale actually held any water (pun very much intended). They found there was a definite connection between drinking water prior to meals and losing weight.
 The participants, 48 sedentary adults between the ages of 55 and 75, were split into two groups over the period of the 12-week study. Those in the first group were instructed to drink two eight-ounce glasses of water before breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day. The volunteers in the second group were given no directions about what to drink. Prior to the study, all of the subjects had been eating a typical American diet with a daily intake of 1,800 -- 2,200 calories. The researchers restricted the participating women to 1,200 calories a day and the men to 1,500 calories a day.

Less than three months later, the results were in. The subjects who drank water before their meals had lost an average of 15.5 pounds each, while those in the other group showed an average loss of 11 pounds per person.

Remember to use a glass reusable water bottle rather than plastic. Chemicals in plastics have been linked to childhood obesity.

Photo:  Attribution Some rights reserved by gromgull

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February 22, 2011

Scientists Predict 30 Years for Human Health to be Affected by Climate Change

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How old will you be in 30 years? How old will your children be? In just three decades, scientists predict the affects of climate change will impact human health. Eureka Alert reports:

A panel of scientists speaking today at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) unveiled new research and models demonstrating how climate change could increase exposure and risk of human illness originating from ocean, coastal and Great Lakes ecosystems, with some studies projecting impacts to be felt within 30 years...
Climate change could prolong toxic algal outbreaks by 2040 or sooner

Using cutting-edge technologies to model future ocean and weather patterns, Stephanie Moore, Ph.D., with NOAA's West Coast Center for Oceans and Human Health and her partners at the University of Washington, are predicting longer seasons of harmful algal bloom outbreaks in Washington State's Puget Sound...

More atmospheric dust from global desertification could lead to increases of harmful bacteria in oceans, seafood

Researchers at the University of Georgia, a NOAA Oceans and Human Health Initiative Consortium for Graduate Training site, looked at how global desertification -- and the resulting increase in atmospheric dust based on some climate change scenarios -- could fuel the presence of harmful bacteria in the ocean and seafood...

Increased rainfall and dated sewers could affect water quality in Great Lakes

A changing climate with more rainstorms on the horizon could increase the risk of overflows of dated sewage systems, causing the release of disease-causing bacteria, viruses and protozoa into drinking water and onto beaches. In the past 10 years there have been more severe storms that trigger overflows. While there is some question whether this is due to natural variability or to climate change, these events provide another example as to how vulnerable urban areas are to climate.

Photo:  AttributionShare Alike Some rights reserved by thebadastronomer

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February 22, 2011

Really Natural Cookbooks: Raw Food for Real People

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Raw food contains the most nutrients compared to its cooked counterpart. Other than fruit, most people don't eat enough raw food. Raw Food for Real People: Living Vegan Food Made Simple by Rod Rotondi makes it easy for anyone to be a raw foodie!

Many have touted the health and energy benefits of raw foods, but few have presented recipes and instructions for making raw food appealing -- and satisfying -- to everyone. Chef Rod Rotondi demonstrates that going raw isn't hard -- in fact, it's fun, easy, and more delicious than you've ever imagined. You will learn all the fundamentals of preparing your own raw foods at home, including setting up your raw kitchen, transitioning to raw foods, sprouting, dehydration, and raising your kids on raw foods. Best of all, he offers a wealth of recipes for smoothies, breakfast, appetizers, soups, salads, dressings, entrées, and decadent desserts. Rod demonstrates that the best -- and utterly delectable -- way to go green and get healthy is to eat fresh food in its natural state.

I especially like the section on "Making a Salad a Meal". We do this a lot in our home, and I feel so much better after a salad meal. I don't feel weighed down. From "rawsagna" to nut "mylk", there are recipes sure to please anyone, even skeptics.

Disclosure: I was sent free samples of these products to review. No prior assurances were given as to whether the review be positive or negative.

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 21, 2011

Green Diamond Reusable Shopping Bags Feature AP-360 Anti-Bacterial Protection

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Last year, the mainstream media reported reusable shopping bags were a hazard because they harbored bacteria. For many people, it was all they needed to hear to go back to single-use plastic or paper bags. Green Diamond Bags has a solution with their AP-360 protection.

As research continues to uncover the looming risks associated with reusable shopping bags, AP-360(tm), an all-natural, hypoallergenic renewable resource proves to be a lead-free and Triclosan-free solution. Environmentally-friendly and family-friendly are now synonymous with the introduction of AP-360(tm) treated shopping bags. AP-360(tm) naturally inhibits the growth of dangerous odor-causing bacteria on a treated article. Presently, the only shopping bags treated with AP-360(tm) are the Green Diamond Bag(tm) and AB Bag (a private label Green Diamond Bag used by Haggens).

"It's no secret that recyclable bags have the potential to host a multitude of bacteria," said Bret Schnitker, president of Stars Design Group, the exclusive U.S. supplier of AP-360(tm). "While making a diligent effort to go 'green,' many shoppers are growing increasingly concerned about the impact untreated bags may have on their families. I believe people are thinking twice about the purchase of recyclable bags in an effort to decrease any risk of cross-contaminating and spreading bacteria. Research shows that bags treated with AP-360(tm) reduce the possibility of contamination by creating a negative environment for harmful odor causing bacteria."


With our sample shopping bag, we were sent so much paperwork on the benefits of AP-360, that the paper saved by using the reusable shopping bag is null.

AP-360 appears to be safer than triclosan, and Green Diamond has done their homework in presenting the information. AP-360 is food grade, so it should be safe for grocery shopping.

I am not a fan of anti-bacterial products. I refuse to succumb to that fear tactic used to sell products, especially when it comes to reusable shopping bags. NPR's reporting on the subject was more sane than the phobia created by other reports:

Yes, a study funded by the American Chemistry Council, which by the way represents some disposable plastic bag makers, found there might be microbes hitchhiking in your reusable bags. But a few germs aren't likely to pose much of a health risk.

Academic researchers recently tested 84 reusable grocery bags from shoppers in California and Arizona: More than half the bags contained some sort of coliform bacteria, a category that includes Escherichia coli.


University of Arizona microbiologist Charles Gerba, lead author of the report, tells Shots the findings don't suggest there's going to be an outbreak of disease from the bags.

Instead, the plastics industry-sponsored work, which found 97 percent of the people interviewed never washed their bags, concludes the public should be educated about keeping them clean.

AP-360 may be perfectly safe, but I will stick to organic shopping bags that I wash between trips to the grocery store.

Green Diamond does support Project Eden supporting orphans in Ethiopia. 

Disclosure: I was sent free samples of these products to review. No prior assurances were given as to whether the review be positive or negative.

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 18, 2011

Pretzel Crisp All-Natural Spreadable Pretzel Cracker

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Pretzel Crisps are a unique, all-natural, although NOT organic, snack. They taste just like a real pretzel, only they are thinner and flatter allowing for spreadable toppings. One of my personal favorites dips for pretzels is hummus, and Pretzel Crisps allow for you add additional toppings like a sprig of basil or some avocado.

Using a patented technology to compress the center of the pretzel, Pretzel Crisps, has turned one of America's oldest snacks into the world's first spreadable pretzel cracker, with no fat, cholesterol, artificial flavors or preservatives and only 110 calories per serving.

Created by the husband and wife team behind New York Style Bagel Chips and Pita chips, the vision for Pretzel Crisps was of a thin and crunchy pretzel that could be great for spreading, dipping and adding toppings.

We tried three varieties of Pretzel Crisps:

 These are good snacks; however, I would prefer organic ingredients.

Disclosure: I was sent free samples of these products to review. No prior assurances were given as to whether the review be positive or negative.

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 17, 2011

Honey Reduces Weight Gain Compared to Other Sugars

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In a study involving rats, researchers discovered that a honey-based diet promotes lower weight gain. According to the abstract for "Honey promotes lower weight gain, adiposity, and triglycerides than sucrose in rats":

Thirty-six male Sprague-Dawley rats (228.1 ± 12.5 g) were equally divided by weight into 2 groups (n = 18) and provided free access to 1 of 2 diets of equal energy densities differing only in a portion of the carbohydrate. Diets contained 20% carbohydrate (by weight of total diet) from either clover honey or sucrose. After 33 days, epididymal fat pads were excised and weighed, and blood was collected for analyses of serum concentrations of lipids, glucose, and markers of adiposity and inflammation. Body weight gain was 14.7% lower (P ≤ .05) for rats fed honey, corresponding to a 13.3% lower (P ≤ .05) consumption of food/energy, whereas food efficiency ratios were nearly identical. Epididymal fat weight was 20.1% lower (P ≤ .05) for rats fed honey.

We've known that honey does contain "small amounts of a wide array of vitamins, minerals, amino acids and antioxidants". Now we know it also helps maintain healthy weight. Next time when deciding what sweetener to use, consider honey.

Photo:  AttributionShare Alike Some rights reserved by mynameisharsha

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 16, 2011

Two Degrees: Every Bar = Nutrition Pack for Hungry Child in Malawi

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Two Degrees is a unique company offering all natural, gluten-free fruit and nut bars. In exchange for every bar purchased, children in Malawi are fed.

For every Two Degrees nutrition bar sold, a medically-formulated nutrition pack is delivered to a malnourished child around the world. With the launch of Two Degrees nutrition bars, consumers can now feed a hungry child by purchasing food that tastes good and does good for the global community at www.twodegreesfood.com.

"Two degrees of separation is all that stands between Americans and the 200 million hungry children around the globe," says 24-year-old social entrepreneur Will Hauser, who co-founded Two Degrees Food. "We see ourselves not just as an innovative food company, but as a movement against childhood hunger. Our customers can join us in this fight through simple, everyday purchases of delicious Two Degrees nutrition bars."


Two Degrees bars are delicious; however, they are not made from organically-grown ingredients. I like the concept of the company, but I think that they should be supporting healthy nutrition in both the rich and impoverished countries with organic ingredients.


Disclosure: I was sent free samples of these products to review. No prior assurances were given as to whether the review be positive or negative.

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 15, 2011

Where's the Beef? Taco Bell Uses only 36% Beef

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Hopefully if you are reading Really Natural, you do not frequent fast food restaurants. Not only is the quality of the food poor and caloric intake high, there are often issues of mislabeling or misleading consumers. Take for example Taco Bell.

"Where's the beef?" may have been the motto of the Wendy's fast food chain many years ago; however, it is applicable today for Taco Bell not because of small quantities, but because of actual beef content. In fact, a lawsuit has been filed about their "meat filling". The Consumerist reports:

The suit claims that Taco Bell's meat-like offering is filled with extenders and other non-meat substances listed in the lawsuit like water, "Isolated Oat Product," wheat oats, soy lecithin, maltodrextrin, anti-dusting agent, autolyzed yeast extract, modified corn starch and sodium phosphate as well as beef and seasonings. Yum!

As the USDA definition in the lawsuit says, to be called "ground beef," the product must "consist of chopped fresh and/or frozen beef with or without seasoning and without the addition of beef fat as such, shall not contain more than 30 percent fat, and shall not contain added water, phosphates, binders, or extenders."

Dr. Mercola further explains why it isn't even food, let alone beef:

Taco Bell is known for its inexpensive Mexican food available at all hours of the night -- not their dedication to serving healthy food. Still, passing off "taco meat filling" that contains only 36 percent actual meat as "beef" is pretty low, even for Taco Bell....

There are major incentives to center your diet on real foods as opposed to "food products" like the ones sold at Taco Bell and other fast-food outlets, the primary one being it is essential for optimal health. Real foods also taste delicious, and when bought from sustainable sources help to protect the environment. It's actually very easy to tell the difference. Real food almost always has the following characteristics:

  • Grown
  • Variable quality
  • Spoils fast
  • Requires preparation
  • Vibrant colors, rich textures
  • Authentically flavorful
  • Strong connection to land and culture
"Food products," meanwhile, tend to have these traits:

Produced, manufactured


  • Neat, convenient

  • Always the same

  • Keeps forever

  • Instant results

  • Dull, bland

  • Artificially flavorful

  • No connection to land or culture

Gizmodo posted a photo of what appears to be the label from a package of Taco Bell's taco meat filling, and you can see very clearly that it meets the definition for a food product, not a real food.

Photo:  Attribution Some rights reserved by compujeramey

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 14, 2011

Water Matters: Why We Need to Act Now to Save our Most Critical Resource

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You've probably heard of peak oil, and you've probably heard of peak water. The truth is without fresh, clean, water, it doesn't matter if we have oil. Water is life sustaining; oil fuels modern luxuries.

Water Matters: Why We Need to Act Now to Save Our Most Critical Resource is an amazing resource of photographs and articles by leading environmentalists about our most precious resource.

Who controls our water resources and how much water do we have left? Can we enact meaningful changes in our personal lives, our policies and our laws to protect our remaining freshwater reserves? Can we learn to share water equitably with each other and the planet? 
 In this collection, some of the world's leading writers, activists, photographers, and artists have come together to answer those questions and put us on a path for change. Water Matters: Why We Need to Act Now to Save Our Most Critical Resource is a call to action and a solution-focused guide to solving our global water crisis. Authors take on both the good and the bad--the impact of climate change on water resources, the threat of privatization, and the challenge of thirsty agriculture, as well as a growing grassroots water justice movement, tools for watershed literacy, and success stories in conservation and efficiency.

I highly recommend this book! Everyone needs to read this and become educated on one of the most pressing critical issues of our time.

Disclosure: I was sent free samples of these products to review. No prior assurances were given as to whether the review be positive or negative.

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 11, 2011

Win a $20 Gift Certificate from Ollie Olio!

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I recently discovered Ollie Olio. Ollie Olio is a unique site that offers deals on great products, many of them organic, for your family.

Ollie Olio is a family of families, small and large, young and old. Everyday we see the joy in our children, their infectious smile and unbridled happiness. Inspired, we asked ourselves, Can we package a smile, wrap happiness in a box and send it off near and far? You know, we can.

Our mission, each week, we curate and gather products that encourage us to smile, items and objects that make us happy. Each week we offer these wonderful finds to you.

Our selections need to possess four qualities:
Good design ... because who wants bad design?
Good function ... it has to work.
Good construction ... to survive our kids, to charm our sense for detail.
Good value ... so we can work less and live more.

Doesn't that list make you smile? It's the foundation of who we are.
Ollie Olio. Good goods for the modern family.

Ollie Olio is offering to give one of our readers a $20 gift certificate. To enter:


  • Visit Ollie Olio

  • Name your favorite item

  • Return to Really Natural and leave a comment to this post about that item

  • A winner will be selected randomly from the comments on Friday, February 18, 2010.

  • Entries limited to the US.


Don't forget to follow Ollie Olie on Twitter and Facebook, as well as enter their giveaways for more chances to win! You can also sign up for their newsletter for the latest deals.  Good luck!

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 10, 2011

Clorox to Fully Disclose Ingredients: Preservatives, Dyes and Fragrances

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In a move that surprises me, Clorox has agreed to disclose all of its product ingredients. UPI reports:

The Tuesday announcement of the disclosures marks the first time a mainstream cleaning product manufacturer has revealed all the ingredients used in all of its products -- about 200 items in the case of Clorox, the Los Angeles Times reported...

 

"This additional information about our products is a natural next step to take ... as we continue to drive transparency and industry leadership in the area of product ingredient communication," Clorox Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Don Knauss said in a statement.


Environmental groups are applauding the decision, and finally consumers will know what really is in Clorox cleaning products. Even with full disclosure, I'll still stick to green cleaners not made by Clorox.

Photo:  Attribution Some rights reserved by Clorox Toilet Products

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 9, 2011

HOT: Living Through the Next Fifty Years on Earth

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If you are a parent, then your children are part of what author Mark Hertsgaard dubs "Generation Hot". After becoming a father, Hertsgaard realized climate change had arrived a century earlier than predicted. In Hot: Living Through the Next Fifty Years on Earth, Herstgaard writes on climate change with some optimism in this personal book.

Q: Is that why you say your daughter belongs to what you call Generation Hot?

A: Not only my daughter. Every child on earth born after June 23, 1988, belongs to Generation Hot. Generation Hot includes some two billion young people, all of whom have grown up under global warming and are fated to spend the rest of their lives confronting its mounting impacts.

I date Generation Hot to June 23, 1988, because that's the day humanity was put on notice that greenhouse gas emissions were raising temperatures on this planet. The warning came from NASA scientist James Hansen's testimony to the United States Senate and, crucially, the decision by the New York Times to print the news on page 1, which made global warming a household phrase in news bureaus, living rooms, and government offices the world over.

Unfortunately, Hansen's and countless subsequent warnings by others went unheeded. The U.S. government, under Republican as well as Democratic leadership, listened as much to corporate-funded deniers of climate change as it did to actual scientists. So instead of shifting to greener technologies, U.S. emissions have soared over the past twenty years. That, in turn, helped accelerate global warming to where it triggered outright climate change. And as David King explained, once climate change gets triggered, it can't be turned off quickly.

As a result, my daughter and the other two billion young people of Generation Hot are destined to live with rising temperatures and stronger climate impacts for the rest of their lives. Which is why our new mantra in fighting climate change has to be "Avoid the unmanageable and manage the unavoidable." On the one hand, we must redouble our efforts to slash greenhouse gas emissions and stop global warming before it unleashes an unmanageable amount of climate change. On the other hand, we have to put in place better defenses against sea level rise, more effective water conservation systems, and many other measures to manage the climate change that is already unavoidable. In short, we have to live through global warming even as we strive to stop it.

Disclosure: I was sent free samples of these products to review. No prior assurances were given as to whether the review be positive or negative.
Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 8, 2011

New Study: Nitrates in Dark, Leafy Greens Build Muscles, Not Iron

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Spinach and kale are foods I equate with healthy eating. I feel good when I eat spinach, and I always assumed it was from the iron-rich dark leafy greens. A new study has found it's actually nitrates in greens, like chard and spinach, that helps us build muscles.

The Globe and Mail reports: 

In the study, healthy people took nitrate supplements - the equivalent of 1.5 cups of cooked spinach - for three days. At the beginning and end of the experiment, participants rode an exercise bike while their oxygen intake was measured.

Taking nitrate supplements resulted in more efficient muscles - the amount of oxygen needed to fuel exercise was reduced by as much as five per cent.

It's thought that dietary nitrate helps the mitochondria - the power plant inside every cell - run more smoothly and effectively.

I would think that fresh, dark leafy greens would yield better results than supplements.

Photo:  AttributionShare Alike Some rights reserved by avlxyz

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 7, 2011

The Great White Bear: A Natural and Unnatural History of the Polar Bear

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The polar bear has become a symbol of climate change. It is the symbol of global warming, in particular, as it is completely dependent upon sea ice for existence.  The ever shrinking polar ice on our planet may bring about its extinction except in conservation programs at zoos. The great white bear is cuter and fiercer than other species that are equally as threatened by global wierding, and thus the story of the polar bear is one that fascinates humans.

The Great White Bear: A Natural and Unnatural History of the Polar Bear by Kieran Mulvaney is the story of two fictional bears.

Polar bears are creatures of paradox: They are white bears whose skin is black; massive predators who can walk almost silently; Arctic residents whose major problem is not staying warm, but keeping cool. Fully grown they can measure 10 feet and weigh close to 2,000 pounds, but at birth they are just 20 ounces. Creatures that may wander thousands of miles over the course of a year, they begin life in a snowdrift.

Human encounters with these legendary beasts are cause for both excitement and apprehension. Tales throughout history describe the ferocity of polar bear attacks on humans; but human hunting of polar bears has exacted a far larger toll, obliging Arctic nations to try to protect their region's iconic species before it's too late.

Now, however, another threat to the polar bears' survival has emerged, one that is steadily removing sea ice and the life it supports. Without this habitat, polar bears cannot exist. The Great White Bear celebrates the story of this unique species. Through a blend of history, both natural and human, through myth and reality and observations both personal and scientific, Kieran Mulvaney masterfully provides a context for readers to consider the polar bear, its history, its life, and its uncertain fate.

This book is also adorned with a section of beautiful photographs in the middle section.

Disclosure: I was sent free samples of these products to review. No prior assurances were given as to whether the review be positive or negative.

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 4, 2011

5 Things Not to Feed Your Dog or Cat

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You've probably heard that chocolate is bad for dogs, but that is not all that can harm your pet. I was alarmed to read in "How the Doctor Almost Killed Her Dog" about all of the common human medicines and foods that can be very harmful to pets. Here's a list you'll want to remember to avoid:
  1. Ibuprofen/Motrin
  2. Acetaminophen/Tylenol
  3. Dark chocolate
  4. Grapes and raisins
  5. Onions
  6. Macademia nuts
  7. Xylitol and other artificial sweeteners
From kidney failure to damaging the central nervous system, we have to remember our pets are not humans.


Photo:  Attribution Some rights reserved by mikebaird

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 3, 2011

BPA-Free Medela Breastmilk Labeling and Storage System

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Medela makes the best breast pumps, and even stay-at-home moms sometimes need to pump. Medela Breastmilk Labeling & Storage System makes it easy and safe to store breast milk:

A new Breastmilk Labeling and Storage System -- one that helps parents and caregivers track, label and organize breastmilk bottles in the refrigerator or freezer -- is now available from Medela.

The all-in-one system includes one organizer tray, two labeling lids and two 5-ounce breastmilk bottles. The organizer tray provides dedicated space to protect up to six breastmilk bottles or storage bags, and keeps them organized and upright in the refrigerator or freezer. It also features a convenient handle that allows parents and caregivers to easily move the tray around or remove it for cleaning.

To help parents identify the freshest breastmilk and avoid waste, clearly marked "in" and "out" arrows identify which breastmilk bottle is "next in line" for a feeding. Twist-and-lock labeling lids -- also available separately in a pack of six -- allow parents to select a day of the week and time of day (a.m., p.m. or midday) to track when milk was pumped, or a "feed by" day for other caregivers.


I spent two weeks pumping round the clock when my son required open heart surgery as a baby. Although I did not enjoy pumping, I can see how this storage system would be very useful for long-term storage. It would have been really helpful for the nurses in the NICU too in helping care for my baby.

Disclosure: I was sent free samples of these products to review. No prior assurances were given as to whether the review be positive or negative.


Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

Really Natural Redux: 100% Recycled Valentine's Day Cards

vday_group.jpgValentine's Day is around the corner, and although I am not a big fan of greeting cards in general since they usually just get tossed out, the childhood tradition of giving Valentines to your friends is very sweet. Stubby Pencil Studio offers do-it-yourself, 100% recycled, chlorine-free, made with renewable energy Valentine's Day cards.

Eco-friendly cards for kids to color, trace the letters, and create their own greetings. Printed on heavy, 100% post consumer waste stock, our recycled cards feature crisp, black and white illustrations to encourage do-it-yourself card making for young children. Interactive, educational, and green!

Stubby Pencil Studio also offers earth-friendly art supplies, such as soybean crayons and eco-friendly colored pencils. Did you know that some crayons contain asbestos? Most companies have voluntarily phased out the use of asbestos containing talc from their crayon production, but there are no government regulations requiring crayons to be asbestos-free.

Don't forget to give your sweeties some organic chocolate for Valentine's Day!

For more ideas on having a green Valentine's Day, visit Crafting a Green World.

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking

February 1, 2011

Takeya Glass Water Bottle Made in Japan

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I've never had a problem with stainless steel water bottles causing the water to taste like metal, but I often hear this complaint from friends and family. Recently, I discovered another glass water bottle that I adore.

The Takeya Classic Glass Water Bottle with Silicone Sleeve is made in Japan.

Product Features

  • Size: 22-1/2-Ounce

  • High quality glass bottle provides a healthier way to drink

  • Silicone sleeve provides a good grip, a see-through window, and protects the glass vessel

  • Eliminates toxic leaching that plastic can cause

  • Innovative design holds 22-1/2 ounces

  • Dishwasher safe


Of course, a glass water bottle is heavier than its plastic equivalent, but it is much better for your health. You don't have to worry about any leaching with a glass bottle, and I like the ease of being able to throw it into the dishwasher, sleeve and all!

Jennifer Lance Permalink social bookmarking
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