There’s something about spring that just makes me want to clear out all the cupboards and give them a good cleaning. The kids recently had their spring break and I have to admit that I spent about 1/3 of vacation finishing house projects and cleaning. That doesn’t sound very exciting, but it was necessary. And, it feels so good to have a clean and organized space!
I wrote a post recently about a DIY non-toxic wood cleaner and about how conventional household cleaning products can negatively impact the indoor air quality in one’s home. It prompted me to want to share a recipe for a DIY non-toxic cleaner that I’ve been using for years. Many cleaners, especially glass cleaners, have a natural (but harmful) substance as a common ingredient – ammonia. This is an excerpt from the New York State Department of Health website:(1) (more…)
We have begun a new habit recently in our kitchen – sprouting. I saw some sprouting jars at the organic grocery store and I decided to take the plunge and grabbed a few. I have sprouted before using cheese cloth and a glass jar. Sprouting using that method, of course, is an easy way to do it, but I figured I would be sprouting regularly so I wanted to find jars that were made especially for sprouting and have special lids to make it easy.
I’ve started to sprout alfalfa and lentils and then add the sprouts to our salads. I have sprouted mung beans before and they sprouted, but they did not get as long or look as beautiful as the mung bean sprouts I bought in the grocery store. So, when it comes to mung bean sprouts, I tend to leave it to the professionals. (more…)
I remember over a decade ago after reading Annie B. Bond’s book, “Better Basics,” I decided in one fell swoop to throw out all of my conventional cleaning products. After reading what chemicals many of them contained and their effect on the body, I’d decided they no longer had a place in my home. It never occurred to me until then that I could make simple cleaning products myself that were just as effective, easy on the environment, and non-toxic.
While many are aware of the dangers of indoor air pollution, I’m still surprised to learn that they are not as commonly known as they should be. There was a study released in 2006 by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, where scientists studied such chemicals as indoor cleaning agents and toxic air contaminants and their effects on air quality.(1) They found that many common cleaning agents, among other things, had a significant and detrimental effect on air quality. The US’s EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) even warns that the indoor air quality in many homes rivaled the outdoor air quality in the biggest and most industrialized cities.(2) (more…)
If you are interested in eliminating preservatives and questionable ingredients out of your diet, making everyday food products at home can help greatly in this regard. I have wanted to make homemade nut butter for a while, but it wasn’t until recently that we’d invested in a quality food processor. I can’t believe I lasted this long without one!
I started a candida cleanse a couple of months ago and one of the protein sources that was allowed was cashew butter. I bought a jar from the health food store and was hooked. It was so creamy, so delicious and even slightly sweet. I wondered if I could make it at home and adjust the recipe to my tastes. I was so happy with the result. (more…)
“…Know what excites you, what you won’t tolerate, what your priorities are…”
I believe that our lives and experiences provide us with a wealth of information. Some of this information helps us to blossom and grow, while some of it can keep us stuck and stagnant. And sometimes we need help from a teacher or a facilitator to help get those ‘stuck’ things unstuck. I had the pleasure of interviewing holistic voice teacher, Angela Peterson Winter, and she shared with me her approach to teaching the whole person in her voice studio. She melds classical vocal training with a systems-based method that looks at cultivating the entire singer and not just the voice.
Endeavoring to merge technique and a nurtured spirit, she saw her students blossom right before her eyes. She shares her philosophy of teaching holistically, and how spirituality is an integral part of who we are. (more…)
Winter is winding down, but people are still in the midst of cold and flu season. And, to complicate matters, once the cold and flu season ends we head into spring when many suffer with allergies and colds can often reappear during this time.
I have tried from year to year to set a health goal of not getting an upper respiratory infection. I’d heard of people not having a cold for many years in a row, and I thought it was impossible! The more I learned about health and wellness, the more I realized that this actually was possible, and I wanted to try and make it a reality in my family. I have (knock on wood) not had a cold yet this winter. I do, however, suffer from seasonal allergies and when the springtime comes around, I find it difficult to not catch a cold. I do hope this year is different, though. (more…)
Miso soup is comfort food to me. I remember when I was pregnant for the first time and I desperately wanted something comforting and soothing to get me through the cold, Maine winter. The first thing on my mind was miso soup. It’s light, but still full of flavor.
After having my first daughter, I’d determined to make miso soup at home. I wanted to have it more for myself and to feed it later to my growing baby girl. I bought the miso paste and made it many times but I could never get it to taste the way it did in the restaurants. I realized that I was missing one very important ingredient – the fish stock. (more…)
Are you a beet lover? I have to admit that I came to love beets later in life. I never grew up eating them much, but now as an adult with a family I understand why it’s a good idea to incorporate beets into one’s diet. Beets have a really earthy flavor when eaten raw, but roasting them helps them take on an entirely different taste. (more…)
Sometimes you just need a quick pick-me-up beverage. If you are looking for an alternative to coffee or energy drinks, here’s an all-natural drink that will help to give you that energy you need but without any side effects.
I’ve been juicing for many years, but it wasn’t until I tried juicing myself that I saw the benefits and recognized the importance. My skin was brighter, elimination was easier (TMI?) and I felt more energy. That was my personal experience, but there are many other reasons to give juicing a try if you’ve never done it before. (more…)
You can make fast, easy, organic, and most importantly non-toxic hand soap in minutes. We are certainly not perfect in the ‘green’ department, but we do our best and make continued strides every day. Changing out my personal care products to something non-toxic has been a goal for a while now and I was really pleasantly surprised to learn that it was not that difficult to do.
There are so many chemicals and additives in personal care products. They are not only detrimental for your skin but they are also harmful to the environment. (more…)