April 1, 2008

I Get High With a Little Help From My Water

I thought this National Lampoon video parody on drugs in our drinking water would be perfect for April Fool's Day. Too bad the reality of it is truer than we would like to imagine.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

February 6, 2008

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 at Permalink social bookmarking

November 30, 2007

Solar Powered LED Holiday Lights Update

A quick update to our earlier entry on solar-powered LED holiday lights. Looks like Sportsman's Guide is sold out of their stock. But Get Organized has 26' strings of 60 lights available for $20 a string on Amazon.

The lights don't need to be plugged in. They charge up by day, turn on automatically at dusk, and last for approximately eight hours.

Buy them at Get Organized.

Jess Brooks at Permalink social bookmarking

November 17, 2007

Holiday Gift Guide: Really Natural's Top Picks for 2007

You asked for it, you've got it. Here are Really Natural's top green gifts for all the folks on your list. More coming soon...

For Him
iPod Nano. Green because of the packaging you'll save by downloading music instead of purchasing CDs. Because it's recyclable. And because, well, it's actually green. Don't forget to pick up a solar iPod charger to go with it! Oh, and a gift certificate to the iTunes music store. Voila - you're done!

Pacific Shaving Oil. Big things come in small packages.

Hemp Chuck Taylors
. Limited edition Chucks, made with hemp. Now those are what we call hi(gh) tops. (Via Treehugger.) We also like the look of the waterproof and oh-so-eco-friendly new Timberland Earthkeepers boots.

Stainless steel water bottle
. BPA-free to replace those old Nalgene bottles.

An LED flashlight. Everybody needs one -- for emergencies, camping, your car. Shake for 60 seconds and get 30 minutes of light.

For Her
Maine Warmers heating or cooling animals. Like a hot water bottle you can snuggle. All natural, filled with corn. Microwave for three minutes and your toes (or back, or bed) will be nice and snuggly warm for hours.

Hotter Than I Should Be T-Shirt from World Wildlife Federation. Proceeds support efforts to reduce global warming.

Hetty Rose Handmade Vintage Kimono Shoes
. Made from vintage kimonos. Sooo awesome.

solar charger.jpg
Solar Charger. Not just for guys. This solar charge comes in hot pink. Better still, you can use it to charge your cell phone, your GPS, your iPod, or your digital camera.

21saC4QyFhL._AA115_.jpgAlice Water's new book, The Art of Simple Food. A beautiful book, providing real insight into how the Chez Panisse chef thinks about food.

Recycled Juice Container Bag. There are lots of these bags on the market. We like this one from Globally Cute.

For Babies and Kids

erba_organics_doing_good_feels_good.jpgErba Organics Baby Products. We like their shampoo and body oil.

A Handknit Hat - Make it yourself using the patterns in Itty-Bitty Hats.

Under the Nile Teething Carrot. Eat your veggies. Organic cotton. Yum.

piggyLEDflashlight.jpgKikkerland Piggy LED Rechargeable Flashlight. Squeeze the pig to charge this LED flashlight. Saving energy was never so cute. Oink, oink.

Done shopping?
baggu-feet.jpgSave a tree and send an earth-friendly message by "wrapping" your presents in a reusable shopping bag, like these ones from Baggu.

Looking for more amazing gift ideas? Check out our extensive set of holiday
shopping guides
on electronics, fashion, cooking, and more.

Jess Brooks at Permalink social bookmarking

November 5, 2007

Solar Powered LED Holiday Lights

solar-LED-lights.jpgUpdate: Sportsman's Guide appears to be sold out of their solar-powered LED lights, but Get Organized is carrying them for $20 for a 26' string of 60 lights. Buy them at Get Organized LED holiday lights.

We've switched our clocks for Daylight Savings Time. And what better use is there for that extra daylight than....solar powered LED holiday lights?

Sportsman's Guide
is stocking these lights, available in strings of 50 or 100 bulbs, and in white or colored lights. Place these lights anywhere outside - cover your house, string them on a tree, deck the front bumper of your hybrid SUV - and the sunlight will recharge the battery. When the sun goes down, the lights turn on automatically. Voila! Twinkle, twinkle, without the high electric bills or eco-guilt.

ArrowContinue reading: "Solar Powered LED Holiday Lights"

Jess Brooks at Permalink social bookmarking

October 31, 2007

More Eco-Friendly Halloween Tips

Here's a link to more eco-friendly Halloween tips from Mother Earth Living. I like the idea for a solar-powered jack-o-lantern.

More at Mother Earth Living.

Jess Brooks at Permalink social bookmarking

October 30, 2007

Planning an Eco-Friendly Halloween

GreenPumpkin-m.jpgProps to Ask Umbra and NatureMoms for offering suggestions on how to plan an eco-friendly Halloween.

Ask Umbra's column
from this year focuses on green, safe, economical alternatives to Halloween candy or plastic toys:

You need something cheap that is easily available in bulk, and that is acceptable to children. What do kids want, if not silly toys and tasty candy? Pens and pencils, and tiny boxes of crayons, are a traditional, sort of academically focused item. You could also buy several boxes of fat markers and strew them about in baskets; if you combined all these drawing utensils, children of varying ages will be able to choose one they like. Small musical instruments like kazoos, mouth harps, and whistles could be fun, if they aren't made of toxic Chinese plastic. Stickers, temporary tattoos, and trading cards are small and cheap. You could look up a variety of knock-knock jokes at the library, pick 10, and print each one on 30 business card-sized papers. There, that's my big idea -- knock-knock jokes.

Last year's Halloween column, also a favorite, dished up this advice:

(M)ake a collection of things that you own and are ready to get rid of, like CDs, books, jewelry, trophies, trinkets, and the like. Put them in a treasure chest of your own devising and let the children choose one item each. Ooh, sparkly.

NatureMoms' article includes a list of eco-friendly Halloween candies, trick or treat bags, party treats, decorations, and Halloween costumes. Read more at NatureMoms.

Jess Brooks at Permalink social bookmarking

December 21, 2006

Homemade Cranberry Almond Granola Recipe

Here's something for folks who'd rather make their gifts than head to the store for a last minute shopping frenzy. Or who think spending quality time with the family is more important than material things - and if you can end up with something tasty to give away at the end of it, so much the better. Think of this as my gift to you.

Jess's Cranberry Almond Granola Recipe
(Adapted from Eating Well Magazine)
2/3 cup frozen concentrated apple juice
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/3 cup canola oil
1 Tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt

5 cups oats
1 cup chopped almonds
1 cup toasted wheat germ
1/2 cup sunflower seeds

1 cup dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line two cookie sheets (with sides) with parchment paper, or grease them.

Place frozen juice concentrate, maple syrup, brown sugar and oil in a saucepan. Bring to a simmer and turn off heat. Stir in cinnamon and salt.

Mix oats, almonds, sunflower seeds and wheat germ in a large mixing bowl. Add wet ingredients and stir to incorporate.

Distribute mixture evenly on two cookie sheets. Bake for 15 minutes, stirring once. Reverse sheets and rotate top sheet to bottom oven rack and vice versa. Bake for another 15 minutes, untiil granola is golden brown. Remove from oven and cool on baking sheets.

Mix in the cranberries and transfer to mason jars. I like to tie a raffia bow around the top to make them more festive. Granola will keep for two months stored in the mason jars.

Enjoy with yogurt or milk.

Jess Brooks at Permalink social bookmarking

December 4, 2006

Treehugger: How to Green Your Gifts

Treehugger published its 2006 Green Gift Guide, which includes some great tips for making your gift-giving a little greener this year. Among them:

1. Be sure your material gift will get used It may be the thought that counts, but a gift that the receiver does not use is simply wasted: not a very nice thought. Give material possessions only if you know the recipient well enough to pick out something they were on the cusp of getting for themselves, or which they really need and will certainly enjoy using.

2. Give a consumable gift

Your friend will love your consumable gift twice: once while enjoying the organic teas, fair trade coffee, fresh flowers, fresh or dried fruits and nuts, or other consumable gift; and again when they appreciate that your gift leaves them with no guilty conscience about a gift left unused in the corner of their closet.

3. Share a piece of yourself

Avoid material consumption altogether. Instead, offer your services to baby-sit while your friend enjoys a cozy date with their partner, give a gift certificate for a relaxing massage, or a winter’s-worth of driveway shoveling (in which case you just save that massage for yourself).

4. Make a gift of a green service
If your time is prioritized elsewhere, you can buy a green service. Consider a gift of carbon offsets for a commuting colleague or a Zipcar membership for a friend who more frequently must turn to taxis to supplement their public transport lifestyle.

Read more at Treehugger.

Jess Brooks at Permalink social bookmarking

November 30, 2006

Candle, Candle, Burning Bright: LED Rechargeable Candles

philips aurelle.gif

My candle burns at both ends; it will not last the night; but ah, my foes, and oh, my friends - it gives a lovely light! - Edna St. Vincent Millay

I'm a huge fan of candlelight around the holidays. Heck, at any time of year. But I hate dealing with melted wax on my dinner table. And don't get me started about the time one of our dinner guests (who shall remain nameless!) set himself, and nearly the whole house on fire.

That's why I was excited to learn about the Aurelle Rechargeable Candles from Philips. They're kind of like our old reliable Candelas, only they come in pretty frosted glass vases and flicker like real candles. Plus, they're wind and water resistant, won't catch fire, and last for 10 hours on a single charge. Great for worry-free instant ambience - for your holiday decorating or as a gift.

Aurelle LED Rechargeable Candles are available from Philips.

Jess Brooks at Permalink social bookmarking

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