Green Beginnings with Sustainable Wood

Guest contributor Joanna joins us this week to talk about the option of sustainable wood for baby furniture. Beauty and earth-friendly all in one.

Babies need furniture!

If you’re looking for alternative materials for baby furniture other than plastic, then wood can be an appealing option. However, when you’re purchasing wood furniture it’s best to look for sustainable wood to avoid deforestation for furniture production. Try your best to stay away from slow growing trees such as oak, redwood, beech and Colorado spruce. Look for medium growth rate trees such as red oak, birch and red-bud. Most importantly, they should be purchased from sustainable resources.

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7 Eco-Friendly Tips to Redecorate Your Living Room

Does your living room need some help? Guest contributor Joanna shares some eco-friendly tips on redecorating your living room.

Change of slipcovers and pillow covers

Easy touches like changing your sofa and pillow covers makes a big difference in your living room. The best thing is you can have multiple options throughout the year to change the look and wash the old covers in the mean time. Slip covers are one of the few accessories that doesn’t cost a fortune to give your room a complete face lift. The best options are always organic cotton covers as they are softer and contains no chemicals in the making of the material – perfect to be around small children in the home.

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Eco-friendly Strollers

As new age parents learn about supporting the environment when purchasing household items, it has sparked the trend of Eco friendly strollers.


There’s not as vast of a selection as there should be, but a few companies are emerging as leaders in producing non-toxic strollers for babies and toddlers. These two companies are recognizable for their quality product as well as their initiative in providing a toxic free environment for your baby.

Strollers are going green

Maclaren Strollers
This international company is dedicated to their corporate social policy (CSR), as one of their major concerns is responsible manufacturing. They use recyclable materials as much as possible as well as restricting chemical compounds that harm the environment such as phthalates, lead, PVC and brominated flame retardants (BFRs), which have been eliminated from all their products.

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Green Inconvenience

I do a lot of the “usual” green things. I recycle. I compost. I shop second-hand. I carry reusable grocery bags and a stainless steel water bottle. I walk my daughter to kindergarten and back every day. I turn down my thermostat and put on a sweater.

But there is an obstacle to my green efforts – much of the time, I don’t want to be inconvenienced by going green. I bring my reusable grocery bags when I go grocery shopping, but if I occasionally forget, I don’t sweat it. I drink tap water, but when I forget my water bottle at home, I sometimes buy water in a plastic bottle.

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Growing Green Kids

As adults we understand the effects of our lifestyle. We can see how eating healthy foods makes a difference in the way we feel and function. We know the responsible things to do are Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. But, what about our kids?

My parents raised me and my seven siblings on a very healthy diet of whole foods. We made or bought whole wheat; everything from bread to cookies. We drank real fruit juice and ate real cheese. Dad refused to buy things like cheap hotdogs, bologna, and processed lunch meats. We were taught to be responsible with all our resources which meant not wasting food and supplies, taking care of our tools, cars, and home and of course, never littering.

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Recycling Electronics The Safe Way

This past week my husband and I finally broke down and bought another computer. It has been almost five years since our last computer purchase. In computer years that translates to one hundred people years. The purchase of a new computer led me to wonder how to dispose of the old one.

Computers and other electronics contain some of the most toxic materials of any other product group. Technology items such as cell phones, gaming systems, and computers contain lead, mercury, plastics harmful to the air, and many other chemicals that can cause serious damage to the environment. Because of these contaminants, disposing of electronic items can be extremely difficult.

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The Dangers of Polyvinyl Chloride Plastic (known as PVC)

In my last article I discussed some of the dangers and chemicals associated with back-to-school supplies. One of the toxins commonly present in school supplies is Polyvinyl chloride plastic (known as PVC). I had not heard about the dangers of this plastic before, so I decided to further investigate the dangers associated with PVC plastic.

PVC is a material that is commonly used in many different forms of products. Toys, vinyl flooring and seating, shower curtains, dishes, and some technology items all use PVC as a form of plastic. Fifty percent of all PVC plastic manufactured is used for building supplies because it is cheap.

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Healthy Peach-Banana Smoothie – Recipe

1 ripe medium banana
1 cup vanilla low-fat or nonfat yogurt
¼ cup fresh orange juice
¼ cup wheat germ
1 cup ice
1 cup sliced fresh peaches or banana slices

Put banana and yogurt in a blender with peaches, orange juice and wheat germ. Add ice and blend until smooth. Garnish with peach or banana slices and sprinkle 2 tsp. wheat germ on top.

Go a little crazy! Put 1 cup of yogurt, ½ cup of milk, and 2 cups of ice in a blender and add any fruit from your basket that’s getting a little too ripe. It’s hard to find a combo that doesn’t taste good together!

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Straws – A Plastic Alternative

If you’re looking to eliminate plastics, you need to check out this post from The Nourishing Gourmet.

Honestly, I never thought of using anything but plastic straws. I didn’t even know there were alternatives.

Thanks to Leah at Abundant Life for pointing out this post.

Now I want some pretty glass straws to slurp down my fruit smoothies!

Image credit: GlassDharma

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7 Tips for a Greener Halloween

Halloween is almost here, and I am going to come right out and admit that I am way behind on my preparations. I’m sewing my kids’ costumes, and so far I have … wait for it … cut the fabric for one half of one kid’s outfit. I’m pretty sure I know what I’ll be doing on October 30.

Whether you’re organized (go you!), or you’re procrastinating like me, there are a few things that you can do to make your Halloween a little friendlier on the planet. And you don’t have to sacrifice any fun in the process. Because who wants to do that?

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