Looking for Sustainability ideas

I thought I find a way to keep costs down while still trying to stay eco-friendly. Trying to keep striving for sustainability. This a record of that journey.

Sometimes blunt and straight forward then sometimes sarcastic

This frugal crunchy hipster single momma is doing what she can to save Mother Earth while not breaking the bank!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

The Other side of the story...

With the green sites warning us of the cosmetic ingredients.  I founds was researching a ingredient when I found this site. Personal Care Truth or Scare. Where I found the article The 12 Most Maligned Cosmetics I like this site because they give you links to sites to back up their claims. Were you can make up your own mind!

I found that the one site that is a database of all cosmetics would disregard  a cosmetic that
listed something that was concerned a harmful ingredient but used a natural substitute.  If studies show ingredient xxxxxx cause a health concern and a product uses  this ingredient   xxxxxx derived from coconut oil ;  the ingredient  was deemed  harmful. I can understand that maybe this is a computer program that does a search of the words. But it seems that they miss the mark to many times and I have yet to see studies to prove the claims.

  So I have been using the site called  Goodguilde.  I find a product and if the ingredient that has a red dot beside it says when I roll over this ingredient, the  warnings are  This ingredient has been restricted for use in cosmetics in fill in country name.. or This ingredient has been banned for use in cosmetics in  fill in country name.  Ok so I use this manly because yea it still bothers me that in Europe and other countries  the companies must prove that the ingredients are safe so they have 1400 ingredients that are banned.. Here in the states 140 ingredients are banned  and they need to prove that the ingredients cause cancer.  Gee business is number one in this country.

Plus it is easy to not search the companies that you never have seen their product and only search the companies you know..... makes it easier for you to modify

ivy

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Sure if you say so...

It seems like the popular thing around here is to carry a tote bag as a purse.  Not the over size things but open top bags.... Many of my co-workers are carrying them and now my young ladies....  I am getting on the bandwagon and making me one from "fake leather"  material, cause I like tons of pockets and long handles. My purse is falling apart and I need a new one.  I can't find one I like. You know it is always the time you can't find one you like. You always see ones you really like when you have no  money!!  Ok so I did see one online I liked but..... really don't have the extra $250 for a purse. Paid 6 dollars for the material. 

I made Miss Animal Rights a grocery bag from a bright red t-shirt of hers... She has been carrying a  tote bag with the Twilight logo on it... But it is black and now her uniform is all black.  She is getting a little tried of all black.  She saw this and decided to make this her purse!  So in all black with a bright red bag many people have commented on her cool purse.

This is kinda how I made her purse.



Now with all the comments she has a idea. She said I could buy a bunch of  Cleveland Browns tees. I get to make a bunch of these bags and she gets to drive all the way to Cleveland and tailgate party before the Browns games and sell these tote bags.We will split it 50/50. Of course I said huh? I get to do all the work and pay for the materials and you get to drive and sell??? She was like she pays for gas and I pay for shirts. I really don't think that is 50/50 work and expense...  She looked at me and said MOM we'll go to the goodwill stores and places like that.... We pay what a couple dollars for the shirt make a tote bag and charge $25....

Of course I want to change the tote bag a little to make it look more like a tote bag. She is not going for it wants to stay just like her bag..... Well we haven't found any Brown shirts yet.... Really have NOT been to the goodwill stores yet either... giggles.... oh well looks like we have some ideas for holiday gifts for some friends

ivy

Thursday, September 23, 2010

What's cooking?

Get rid of your Teflon pans when they start to flake!  The pans themselves warn of  high heat with pet birds in the room... that you can kill a pet bird with the overheating of a teflon pan. Of course they down play that the teflon can  make humans sick. But the fact is some of us humans can get sick from overheating the teflon pans themselves and the reaction is flu like systems. You could be having a reaction to the chemicals but think you are just coming down with the flu....Or that the flaking of the coating can and most times is ingested by anyone who eats the food cooked in the pan.  Even DuPont officials found (back in 1986) that the telfon will stay in our bloodstream for up to 2 years. Tests found telfon in all subjects.

What cook ware is concerned green? The basic stainless steel, cooper, Ceramic,  cast iron and  hard anodized pans .  

Stainless steel we know doesn't have the non-stick bonus we want... but is great for things like heating up vegetables and soups.  As long as you don't let them go dry and burn.  Same with the copper pans. Most of the time the copper pans are lined with stainless steel. My mom got us a cooper pan cooking set for my wedding present and I have a most of the pieces left........ Over twenty years old!  Sauce pan, dutch oven and a saute pan with the matching lids.


Cast iron is the pans that are heavy start out as a shinny gray pan and turns into a dull  jet black pan.  The one benefit from this pan is the pan does effect your food, you get some iron from the pan.  I use a cast iron pan quite a bit for the vegetarian meals so Miss Animal Rights can get her iron....Ok so we all can get some iron.... You need to season them after purchasing. Which is adding a thin  layer of oil and cooking at a low temp for hours.  The down fall and Miss Animals Rights hate for the pan, is you need to use oil and watch closely. You see  things can stick to the pan.  The secret is let it brown and cook thoroughly before turning over.... Great for the recipes that we brown the food first then finish cooking in the oven. Because the pan can take the heat! 


Hard anodized is a process that uses electro-chemical interaction to harden the pan. It basically oxidizes the surface of the aluminum, forming aluminum oxide. It's not a coating. It is part of the pan. This keeps the pan from flaking or peeling plus making it non stick for ease in cooking and clean up. This reaction process is  used on the satellites and race cars.

There area couple points that might make you not want to purchase hard anodized pans. First is cost. They do cost more than traditional pans   Bad news for those on a diet;  they don't  well with the non stick  sprays, you need to use oil or butter instead, most times you only need a little . Plus they are not dishwasher friendly.  I know really it is so strange that something so green can't be used in something green like a dishwasher... but I don't have a dishwasher so I got that covered... But there is talk about dishwasher safe hard anodized pans, they might have some on line somewhere but I know I haven't seen them in the stores...  I got some hard anodized pans and really thin they are worth the money.  I am not eating the flakes of Teflon and my food isn't sticking.  


My Dad use to tell me all the time you get what you pay for. I think I got what I paid for ...

 ivy

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

World Peace Day.....

Today is the International Day of Peace (September 21).
The perfect video for today:






Yea I am so hippy..........

ivy

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Art is Selective.......

The Bones of Francois Robert:
Art with human bones. It is his collection he calls “Stop the Violence”




How cool is that... I do have to say that reading this on Oddity Central. that he found the bones in a truck really is kinda weird, I mean finding bones in a truck you got at a yard sale and you don't report it? Or that you still have them years later.... ok I can see that being child of a pack rat and ex-wife of one.... 

So he uses this stark white bones places them on black paper. Then he takes a picture of them........ Very striking! 

Yea I have been seeing the blog post with the
30 Day Challenge: An art piece and saw this and had to share.........

SO now you know I have a very very dark unusual side. I find  way out there things like human bones as art very cool.


ivy

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Right! Corn Sugar sounds so much better.....


The Corn Refiners Association (CRA) has petitioned the FDA to change the name of High Fructose Corn Syrup to Corn Sugar.  They want to clear up any misbelieves that the product isn't natural.  For it is made with corn hence the name corn sugar.  But the forget to tell you that it is chemically altered and zapped into the product. It isn't even 100% fructose it can be a high as 58% glucose..

  HRCS  (High Fructose Corn Syrup) sales are at a 20 year all time low....  Now the new ad campaign is to change the name and even more commercials on TV a brand new website  Sweet Surprise dot com.... Where they have some experts telling us that the sugar is natural and the body doesn't know the difference - even after studies show that it is. With links to diabetes in study from Rutgers University as well as obesity as a  Princeton Study shows.   Mercury in the product also according to the Ethicurean  The heavy metal blamed for autism and many brain disorders See they use caustic soda is to separate corn starch from the corn kernel. See the caustic soda is made in industrial chlorine plants that where the mercury becomes part of the HFCS. FDA and USDA knew about this and did NOTHING! But here is a site that has a list of the worst and the top of the list Oatmeal to go......

Yes, HFCS  is ok in moderation..  but truly look at your labels and you will see that many items have HFCS in them.  The diabetes study shows that just adding the compound found in tea can off set the effect  in diabetics.....  Many people also say the obesity study could be wrong due to the fact the subjects could be also eating high processed foods, with additives. preservatives and colorings. Yea that can't help the cause either, so that is more reason to cut down on all of them!!

Sales of items that have labels of Contains No High Fructose Corn Syrup are popping up all over the place. Log cabin syrups, ketchup's, both Heinz and Hunts, many things even the throw back  sodas! So I think that the public is catching on.....  I also hope if the FDA agrees with the name change that most consumers will  catch on to that too... Guess No corn sugar isn't as strong sounding as  No  High Fructose Corn Syrup! 

What do you think? A name change fair?  Have you cut back eating htings with HFCS?

Monday, September 13, 2010

A Blast from the Past

 No this is not a review or a giveaway just little oh me found this out and had to share....

I saw  Mrs. Steward's Bluing liquid ad and thought wow I used to see that in my grandmother laundry room but never knew what it was for. Plus I used it to make salt crystals for my Girls Scout troop.. So I had to check out their site.
Seeing  how it was around in my grandmothers day I thought it had to be eco-friendly! Sure enough in was made in the early 1880's.  If you think about it; that when they used to do laundry by hand.  Wash water was used in the garden, and still is in many Amish homes. My grandfather told me that is helps keep the bugs away. Then again he told me that baths did that too... LOL

The bottle to the left was made in the 1920's when the bottle where hand blown. The stamped the bottles necks with the words "This contains Mrs. Stewart's Bluing". That bottle is no doubt worth some money, no it's not mine.  Found this with a google image search with the filter reuse! 

Blue white is the brightest white. So basally this liquid helps the blue in your whites shine or brings them out more. With the effects of bleach, no orange spots on your black clothes from spills or residue from the last load!! All without harmful chemicals. 

A quote from Mrs. Stewards Bluing site:

Basically, bluing is made of a very fine blue iron powder suspended in water ( a "colloidal suspension"). We add a nontoxic amount of a pH balancer and a biocide to prevent the buildup of algae and bacteria. (This may be why Mrs. Stewart's Bluing is loved by farmers who tell us they use it in the water troughs of their farm animals and by owners of lily and fish ponds.)

With the girls and their love for the nasty smelling bleach  that makes me inch if it get on me. It makes me sneeze if I smell it.... I have to try this stuff out again...... Introduce it to the girls ladies,,, for bleach isn't really get some of their clothes white...

Economical too for you don't need to much to add to the wash.  With just 1/4 teaspoon or a couple drops while your water is filling up the machine....... So really is saving you money!  Maybe pennies a load.  

PLUS my granny could have using it on her hair to keep it shinny... It only takes a couple drops of bluing.  well... I not that gray yet...but you never know... I just might try that... when I am completely gray...

Dog owners use it for the white haired dogs also. It is said that is helps their coat look whiter and shiny.  Hummm Our canine is brown..... not going to try that here, but if you have a white hair dog.... go for it

For the teachers out there they have a PDF file Teacher Brochure that has many craft and science projects for you to expore with your class 

ivy

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Speaking of Fall

Just looking around the web today and found this wonderful tutorial ok a couple of tutorials. Making boots out of sweaters. Number one is embroidery designed sweater boots.
I really don't like the whole embroidery thing. Then I find this blog... Happy Together . She even made some boots for her daughter. With ideas on how to make a pattern to help you sew up a great pair of boots...

Off to try this out...

ivy

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Discovery and Oil Rigs...

Sorry but my hours have picked up can you tell??? So to draw me out of hiding the news goes crazy... I see. First we have the Gulf Oil Rig explode then we have some guy making news by taking  people hostage  to make them show more green shows.... Sigh..... Violence isn't the answer. Not to mention the whole 9/11 mosque and the attack of the cabby.

Wow another explosion in the Gulf. The platform, known as Vermilion Oil Platform 380A  exploded and luckily the 13 people there was picked up from the water with only one person hurt. They didn't release how bad this person was or any names. But it is burning.... one more thing for the people of Louisiana.  With most of the news show showing Louisiana after Katrina.... Oh yea really what does the American people think that the president could do that would make the gulf oil spill better??? Gessh I think I need to stay off line for awhile... I keep reading how he should have done more... he went to Louisiana faster then the last president-and told BP humm no you need to pay for this your own damn self......... Cutting corners cost you BIG time didn't BP. We need to get BP to do more not the president...

So some guy: who thinks that the Discovery channel  should take off shows like Kate plus 8 and put on a show about gorilla that talks to a 12 year old girl (kinda cool..),  James J. Lee took three office workers hostage having bombs that he treated to drop. The station did know about his guy. He has a website entitled My Demands. A very interesting read but more like a look into madness.  He tells the station that the Kate plus 8 and 19 and counting shows are  encouraging the birth of more  parasitic human infants. AND the station needs to add more show that would encourage human sterilization and infertility. Right!  So just tell people to deny the most basic human desire and biological urge to help the environment.That their show "Planet Green" was more about making money not real solutions.. humm welcome to the US. Someone had to help pay for the show and well it does get kinda irritating that it does seems like one big commercial that many shows turn into. Well  rest in peace James J. Lee. I hope you found your peace.

The whole mosque wanting to be build blocks from ground zero had me saying please, there is one closer than that already built.  Are we going to make them tear it down? But that we need to get along with all religions  cause that is what this country was built on right? Can we say First Amendment? Then I see that  developer Sharif el-Gamal is the past has been in trouble with the law. Things like being with a hooker doesn't bother me but rouging up someone you rent too does. Violence isn't the answer. But then some drunk stabs a cab driver after asking if he was Muslim.
Violence isn't the answer!!!! AND I can't find now... I really wanted to find the site where I read this and really wanted to post the site... But some Muslim  leader basically said that American need to just get over it... I thought WTF? Get over it? AND that the mosque at ground zero has done so much for the al-Qaeda and that many Muslim are running to join. Because of the racial hatred in this country. I thought WTH was this their plan... but Violence isn't the answer. Yea I really am a hippy... But just like most Christians, Jews, Islamic, Mormons, Pagans, or Muslims  we have some good guys and some bad guys....They all  aren't the  al-Qaeda, . They just want to worship peacefully and like I said there is a mosque closer they just want to make a Islamic center.....


Can't we all just get along? Rodney King


ivy

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