One small box fit it all….

I am still on my new clean and healthy home kick, bear with me. One very important thing I must address is the concentrated packaging. When I shop at Costco to supply my family of 5 with certain foods and other items as needed, I always feel so guilty. The detergents and cleaning products are priced about the same as the grocery store would be with coupons and if I catch a good sale. Financially, it made sense and saved me the time of shopping around- until I found my new favorites of course. The huge Costco packaging, although recyclable in most cases, is still a large piece of plastic that had to be produced, shipped to a store taking up large amounts of space and weight in a large truck/train/boat or wherever it comes from, and stored in my home. It also contained chemicals so I had to keep it out of kids reach.

I groan and bear it.

This product is concentrated. One 8 oz. bottle will make (6) 16 oz. bottles.

So no- I didn’t order six bottles of some cleaning solution because then I would feel like that was just wasteful, too. I ordered one small bottle of each type and mixed it with water in a spray bottle. The water didn’t need to be shipped- so that saved a ton of packaging space and let’s not forget delivery truck emissions. I will feel so much less guilty when I re-purpose, or recycle this small bottle. An added benefit- there’s no harmful chemicals! This is helpful because repurposing becomes oh so much easier.

I am seriously into this stuff. It’s kind of ridiculous because I barely even tried a dozen of their products, there are 450 or so more to try!

Like I said before, I was skeptical, I always am. I take every day as a new day and if I decide it’s not worth it- I will let you know that too. My brutal honesty is both my blessing and my curse I guess.

Dr Vandana Shiva is a leader in environmental politics, and an excellent researcher/scientist/scholar/pioneer. You can read more about her here: http://www.vandanashiva.com. She writes about the enormous greenhouse gas pollution that is due to shipping, among many things in her book “Soil Not Oil.” One obvious goal in this book is to make us aware of how our habits and routines can change, positively affecting the earth with simple lifestyle modifications. Local, local, local is a big theme in her writing.

I have been aware of this for several years, and try my best to not only grow as much of my own food that I can, but also to support local companies whenever possible. Sometimes the local specialty/artisan products are much more expensive and therefore cost prohibitive, but I will always look for a product that comes from a closer location if available.

This product ships from a state 10 hrs away, and they have a 2nd location for the eastern/midwestern U.S. that is also about smack dab in the middle of that shipping territory. Although not located in my state, I don’t blame them as they are actually able to ship to the Pacific coast and Canada from their western territory location. Once a month, a truck delivers a small box to my home. I can live with that considering how frequently people order one item from Amazon and that same truck is driving down my street daily. Also, now I don’t frequent Costco as often to “stock-up”.

I am sharing this with you because I care about the earth, and about health. The more people who are open to trying to change their habits will also benefit our society and culture. I dare you to look in your cabinets and see how comfortable you really are. I wasn’t and I knew I had the power to make a change, and I did.

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Planting Trees Is Good For The Soul

When we went to get pumpkins with our children, we decided to visit a nursery. Since we wanted to add trees to our landscape, and they were buy one get on 1/2 off, we purchased eight 5 quart trees. They sat in our backyard, sheltered against the fence for a week, until we figured out exactly where we wanted to plant them.

Since it was raining yesterday, I got to play in the mud! Anyone who thinks they know me, should also know that I love to play in the dirt. Mud is just wet dirt, so I love it too. What a fun project it was. We got to work together and put something natural in the earth that will grow and we can enjoy as long as we live in our home. I must say, my husband and I make a great team (most of the time). He let me master the soil composition ratios, depths, and locations of each tree. While he graciously dug, and did most of the hardest manual labor. I love my ox. Even though he does the brunt of it, I don’t get off easy at all. Oh no way. He expects me lift, dig, haul, and put in whatever I am capable of doing. My physical strength will just never measure up to his, no matter how determined I am.

Working with our hands and bodies is healthy, it provokes a sense of ownership to the work we are performing. Although we were both very sore afterwards, it was immediately rewarding. Now when I look out my kitchen window I see the trees I planted with my husband, and I get to watch them grow everyday.  Did I mention how it was also good for our marriage? We had to work together, cooperation is key in a marriage. We managed to problem solve and think long-term together.

No matter how stressed we can get at times, it is good for the soul to work towards something you can enjoy everyday.

My Pajamas Are Dirty

So, I have been gardening!
Went outside early in the morning last week to see how the earth was feeling. As it turns out, she is feeling like making food for my family.
I couldn’t help it so I played in the dirt awhile, turning it over and seeing where the moisture is from the night before.
Rushed inside once I realized it was almost 7 a.m., and made my plan for where things will go. I did a little research on CSU Extension- this is worth checking out if you are going to garden. Certain to save you some time and headache trying to figure out where to put what.

My biggest task was getting the kids excited to garden together.
We went outside and my daughter helped sow some seeds. The other one wanted to play with her babies so that was fine too. Now I can’t help but have dreams about those first little tender plants poking out of the ground!

Here is what we planted: Sweet corn, spinach, buttercrunch lettuce, yellow italian squash, dark green zuccini squash, black bush beans, green bush beans, and sweet peas.
Still have to plant sage, and butternut squash seeds.
Will also purchase tomatoes and peppers as it is too late to start seeds outdoors in CO for these.

I love to play in the dirt.

I am a Writer.

I am in the process of reinventing my life, perhaps my 30 year milestone ushered the newfound urge to embrace who I really have been this whole time. My confidence is driven by my desire to do good, not only for myself but to put into the world good things, so there is more good than there was before I came. And no, I will not make any religious assertions, so there is relief there. I do respect other’s belief systems, as any open-minded and thoughtful person would.
So here it is:

I am a writer.

Whew, that felt good! So I write that a lot, because it helps me remember that I am a writer. The psychological effect of writing this is reinforcing and reassuring. Now when people ask me to tell them about myself I am getting better at admitting I am a writer. Wait a minute, did I just reference the word “admit”? As if it is this problem I need to get over? Well, this word is inserted quite intentionally. I struggle with the idea of doing “some” “thing”, making something, or being someone, or whatever it is that people need to do/be in order to make $. Actual dollars. Can I just be what I want? If I get paid for it, even better! So I admit, I am a writer, and hopefully there will be someone who knows someone who needs a writer. Perhaps, my name will be mentioned, and if I am lucky, so will my information so I can be contacted about said writing work. *wink<nudge<nudge

Until I get this writing work I seek, I will write anyway. As Carol Tice encourages, if you want to be a successful writer, "write a lot, keep writing, write some more". So I write, a lot, and I keep writing, and then I write some more. While I am admitting my deep dark secrets here's one to chew on and I will also admit, my perfect English grammar is on it's way (in other words, it's not here yet). However, my interest in the nature of this world, paired with my observations, and my experience working with the public, I think we will find enough topics in common for many of you to engage and appreciate my presence in this whole "blogosphere" world thingy. I know you know what I mean… Everyone started from the beginning one day, right?

So look past those little perfect english grammar book mistakes, and look into the content. What it is that is being said, and question yourself… is your writing perfect?