Thoughts on my August garden…

August ….a beautiful month but one that makes me realize Summer is slowly closing her door….

I spent a few hours this morning trying to tame the chaos…viney weeds twisting their way where they’re not wanted….creeping charlie….ugh!!!

Neighbour’s grape vine filling my back corner….etc. etc. !

At this point in the season its a case of deadheading the flowering plants in hopes of encouraging a few new blooms , keeping ahead of the weeds …losing battle that one…and enjoying the late blooming perennials like Black Eyed Susan, Phlox, Rose of sharon and my white and pink Cone Flower .

These are filling one side of my front bed !

This is my Oak Leaf Hydrangea…here’s a close up of the colour… so pretty . I pick them when the turn pink and they dry beautifully !

My Annabell is done blooming and the blooms have turned green …the exact time to pick for drying ! Cut a fairly long stem as it’s easier to handle , place blooms in a vase with just a couple of inches of water and they will naturally dry in a week or 2. If you try to dry them when the blooms are white it is hard to do as the blooms are very delicate. They usually just droop and dont dry! Here are mine that have dried in about 10 days.

My Rose’s are in full bloom right now …the Sunset one has a beautiful scent ! They will bloom till first frost !

Had to include a cute little Bee! Without them my flowers and veggies would not “bee” so magnificent !๐Ÿ˜‰

This white Coneflower I planted last year …it only gave me 3 or 4 blooms but this year is putting on a show ! Love it! They last a long time as a cut flower so of course there are some in the house !

The purple campanula self seeded, don’t they look amazing together!

The veggies have done well …my heirloom tomatoes are HUGE! Just need them to ripen !

The lettuces and kale and multiplier onions are done ..just waiting for my carrots and beets to get bigger.

I will make more beet pickles…made some last month with beets from the farmers market .

As summer winds down I find myself not wanting to do too much in the garden and come fall I’m ready for a winter’s rest from it all!

Sounds weird I know, I live to garden but it becomes more tiring the years progress! Wow did I just admit to getting old !!!??

In a few years I’ll be able to hire the Grands to help me !

Marjorie Harris is a gardener , author and teacher in Toronto who I have followed for years ….she is so interesting !She’s one of these people that I would love to have a good old chat with over a cup of tea !

She was interviewed in her Toronto garden for the show Ageless Gardens on the Knowledge network…and talked about how gardening changes as we age .

She hires out the heavy work and now weeds sitting on a stool, trims, waters and deadheads almost daily. She attributes her good health in her 80’s I believe, to a lifetime of digging in the soil and communing with nature.

Yes Marjorie I agree….

It’s so good to see schools realizing the importance of teaching kids to garden …planting green spaces to play in, instead of all tarmac and cement .

Workplaces incorporating living walls of lush tropicals and hotels and restaurants growing rooftop veggie gardens !

Finally people are realizing the importance of being in Nature and gardening organically even in our little postage stamp city yards !

I just love watching all the bees and butterflies when they visit . I know nothing here will hurt them …I only hope they dont find flowers with deadly pesticides on them in someone else’s garden!

Here is my bee watering station . Don’t laugh, it’s a thing !! Bees cannot get their wings wet or they cant fly so need a shallow place to safely get a drink .

I know I will garden till the end of my days …whether it’s a big garden or a few pots , I will always need something .

So my friends …go forth and grow something …in your yard ,on your patio or balcony or maybe just a pot on a windowsill, it will nourish your soul, I promise you !!

Well calling it quits today …tomorrow I’ll do some more !

Happy August !!๐Ÿฆ‹

Jaye

Lazy days of Summer!

Hello friends …I know , I’ve been AWOL again !! Its Summer and boy have we been busy!

We spent 10 days or so at our cottage in Muskoka Ontario on Bruce lake . My oldest Daughter and her family were there for the week before with her husband’s cousin from Australia…then at the end of our week my youngest daughter and her family came up for the weekend .

So much fun but I came home exhausted!

We just had a great family weekend at my kids Great Aunts cottage in the Kawarthas…all 3 kids and their spouses and kids !

Some of us had colds so that put a bit of a damper on things and babies didn’t sleep well….but we had a great time! My kids grew up spending time there every summer so to see their kids enjoying the lake too was wonderful !

Early mornings ..late nights…little ones discovering new things and perfect weather…who could ask for more!

One of our favorite things to do while up North is to go thrifting ! Well in truth my Daughters and Daughter in law and I enjoy it ..not the guys …they fish !!

Here are a few of my finds …at our cottage the area community centre has an annual “garage sale” and it always has great stuff for great prices!

This old bike basket was $2 !

The blue saucer was a set of 3 …I love blue and white transfer ware ! They can be used for lots of things …under a plant , hold a candle , corral odds and ends , rest your stirring spoon in the kitchen …and lots more I’m sure !

The enameled fridge container I found in a small antique store in Port Carling . I was thrilled as they can be hard to find .

As I’m phasing out plastic in my home I plan to use it to store veggies like celery and carrots….just keep a little water in it ….my garden greens washed and wrapped in a damp tea towel will keep beautifully in it as well!

I also like red and white transfer ware. This little cookie tray I found in a junk/collectables shop in Bala Muskoka.

We went there to go to the hardware store but when I saw this place beside it my Hubby laughed and said “ok ,you go look around I’ll head into the hardware store !”

Gotta love that man ! He knows me so well!

It was $3.50 I think , I also found some pretty little serving dishes I left at the cottage .

In Havelock my Aunt, Daughter in law and I went to a small antique place we make sure to visit every year .

I found the copper pot for CHEAP! And Jen found me the little pink vase to hold my posies from the garden .

Most of what is in my house , furniture included was inherited or thrifted. I love beautiful things but I love a bargain.

I buy things like mattresses new and our couch is new ..we need good support at our age !!

My parents had mid century modern teak which is beautiful ,well made and still in fantastic shape . Now I enjoy it as well!

The first chairs they bought in 1952 I still love and use ….I think they have been recovered about 4 times !

Old things speak to me…they have a history . Generations of women home making …utilitarian items that were well used ..made well …and continue to give future generations pleasure .

In this age of out of control consumerism I believe we need to cut back , learn to fix ,reuse , and make do like past generations .

My Mom was surprised I wanted these chairs but they are super comfy and hold alot of memories!

Well how can it be August already !!?? My garden has exceeded my expectations …we have had lots of rain and hot sunny days so things are thriving !

I’ll do another post on that and share how I make sure all my potted plants outside survive my absences!

My Hubby is off this week with one of his son’s for Yellowknife in the North west Territories of Canada to visit his oldest 2 kids and his 6 grandkids and do some fishing with old friends!

I have plans to do alot of relaxing …make some jam …paint some trim ? Maybe !

I have joined a bookclub…just for people in my neighbourhood, so have a new book to read…we don’t take it too seriously…talk alot and eat and drink wine ! Met a fellow artist who had me over for a pouring workshop.

Felt like these were my people right away ..they all love reading ,gardening ,art and we are all passionate about the beautiful Heritage area that we live in!

That’s what life is all about ..the comfort of old friends , meeting new friends, new experiences, spending quality time with family…..

I hope your summer is filling you up with good memories and lots of love!

I leave you with one of our beautiful sunsets….

My son sent me this one from our time together this past weekend …

Till next time … I hope your enjoying your summer or winter if your in the southern Hemisphere….๐Ÿ’ž

Jaye

Happy Belated Canada Day !!๐Ÿ

Hello friends …so I’ve been AWOL for a bit …well its Summer and things are busy with gardens and family and friends !

I hope your enjoying Summer here in the northern hemisphere or winter in the southern !

We try to make the most of summer here in Canada as it’s a relatively short season ..May to October here in South Western Ontario, even shorter further north !

My Step Daughter who lives in the North West Territories, not too far from the Arctic circle had single digit temps this past weekend …like 6ยฐcelcius….while ours were in the high 20’s !Could not live in the far North …I like relative warmth !

I’m nursing an injured knee so I’m forced to take it easy…but weirdly 2 of my friends hurt their knees at the same time ???

Everyone keeps telling me it’s the Universe telling me to slow down but honestly ,what is the fun in that !!??

So it’s hot and muggy here and I really dont feel like baking or doing much of anything …thought you might enjoy a little tour of the inside of my Little Green Cottage!You’ve seen the outside …Ontario Regency style Ontario Cottage .

Built in 1875 when this area was the village of Petersville. It was annexed to be part of London in the late 1800’s.

Thomas Egelton built it for his family …5 kids in an 800 square foot or less home!

I recieved my heritage sign a couple of months ago !

The cottage is now 985 Sq. Ft.It was renovated and flipped in 2001and a porch in the back of the house was closed in and is my laundry room / mudroom.

Here is my entry way …just over 6 ft. long and 45 inches wide…sorry I’m old school with my measurements !

It has 4 doorways off of it !

Definitely going to change the colour but can’t seem to decide to what …grey owl is a possibility as I have some left from my kitchen …we will see!The mirror is an antique given to me by my late Mother in law . It was her fathers shaving mirror!

I love Antique keys and have some of my favorites framed beside the door .

Here is the small room to the left of the front door …7ft ร—9 ft.

The dresser was my childhood dresser …I love it ! The bookshelves and open shelves were all free from great friends ! Those green boxes?? All full of fabric !

It has,always been my craft room but since I inherited my Mom’s newish Sewing machine it is my sewing and painting room.

The basket of finished baby quilts waiting to be gifted are sitting on a cedar chest my Father made my Mom to hold all the quilts she made …there are treasures in there let me tell you !

Portrait I painted a few years ago of my late pup Tika ..a watercolour of rose buds done by my late Mother in law and odds and sods !

Living room…love this room as it is always full of light ..south and east windows.

For years I left it Dijon by Ben Moore…yellow gold colour which I liked but changing it to Yarmouth blue was such a great choice! Just makes you happy!

We put new hickory hardwood down 6 years ago as the old strip oak was in terrible shape.

As an Artist I NEED colour on my walls …my painting room and bedroom are the most neutral …Benjamin mMoore Moonshine …pale grey with a blue undertone …very soothing !

The living room art is all my work …favorites I can’t part with ! Four are painted from photos I took on trips to England and British Columbia.

This corner has a clock and lamp made by my Dad, both Oak. The book is my first and probably last attempt at book folding! Fun but tedious !

My dining room is a good size …both bedroom doors are off of it which was common way back when .

We had a friend make the custom cabinetry 4 years ago. I love china and I needed storage!Boy did he curse my crooked little house !!

The teak dining table and chairs..8 of them ..were my parents . They bought it at a Danish Teak store here in London in 1964 when I was 9 I think .

It is in excellent shape and I love it ! I had the chair seats recovered as Mom had them in red Velvet …not my thing !

Its fits the room nicely as it has a low profile and I can sit up to 12 around it when all 3 leaves are in !

The mid century modern chair ( its mate is in the living room) was bought by my parents in 1952…Dad made new arms and legs for them in the 60’s and when I got them we had them recovered. Very comphy!

It can get pulled into the livingroom when we need more seating !

I bought this little antique dresser at a small antique store outside of London…it holds all my kitchen/dining linens .These old homes never have enough storage ….no linen closet and the 2 bedrooms only have tiny closets in them .

It makes you purge regularly that’s for sure !

Here’s the master bedroom …not big …our Queen size bed takes up most of the space !

Our two dressers are opposite the bed but too messy to photograph!

The guest room is where my Dads old desk is and the laptop. He also built the doll house for my girls when they were tiny …now my 3 Grandaughters play with it!Believe it or not this room was once 2 very narrow rooms …one…where the tiny window is ..was the bathroom with a 4ft. long roll top bath in it !As you can see this room tends to be a mish mash of stuff! Also the Grandkids toy room. Hmmmm! Hubbys hat storage too I see!

The small closet is hubby’s…and apron hanging space !..the IKEA cabinet is my makeshift linen closet !

This room is Ben Moore Bluegrass.

On to my kitchen …not big but well organized and easy to work in !We did what I call a soft Reno on it 4 years ago just a few months before our wedding .

It had been renovated before I bought it and in general it was fine…But it had a sage green tile backsplash and green “stone look”counter…I’m not a green person…!

The floor which runs into the mudroom was cheap linoleum that was showing wear .

So…we kept the white cabinets ..our carpenter friend cut out the center of the corner doors so I could add glass.

Then we covered the tile backsplash with white beadboard…cost all of $32!

New laminate counters were made in a matte black called Basalt slate.The price of solid surface counters was way too high and I have to say these have been amazing !

We chose a Silgranite sink by Blanco …amazing product! Durable ,super easy to clean and no polishing stainless or trying to keep a porcelain one clean ! Love how it just blends into the counter!New faucet and under cabinet lighting ..LEDs of course! I kept the polished nickel cabinet hardware as it was fine and dandy !New fridge and stove …we are waiting for the old dishwasher to pass away but it continues to do its job perfectly !

The floor was a bit of a trial as you see these old homes have no square anything and my floors are very slopey…is that a term ?? Well it is now..

Therefore we needed a flooring option that would follow the waves of the floor…๐ŸŒŠWe chose a new vinyl product ..looks like wood ..has some texture and is very bendy…we just laid it down on the original floor..it is only secured on the periphery. You can easily pull up one piece if needed. A breeze to keep clean!

My mudroom …Butterchurn yellow from Pittsburg paints . Took forever to find my yellow !Behind that knee wall is my basement stairs. They take up almost half the width of the room but I’ve been able to cram alot in here !

The blue cabinet I was given by my daughter in law who saved it from someone’s garbage! It looked terrible ,worn woodgrain…filthy .

My Husband could not figure out why I wanted it !

Well I cleaned it ..primed and painted it…John put shelves in the right side and I made it a little curtain.

Now it houses a TON of stuff. Vases ,my bread machine and crock pot…rags ..BBQ stuff…laundry stuff…well you get it …My small upright freezer and, squeezed in between, my microwave!

I hated how it took up so much precious real estate in the kitchen and really I dont use it alot so putting it here was genius!

I made the Roman blinds from old vinyl mini blinds that were on the windows. Quite easy to do …just use fabric glue ..no sewing . Lots of tutorials on Pinterest!

Last but not least my little bathroom . The only room we haven’t done anything to except paint. I painted the walls which had been green ,Grey Mist by Ben Moore and the counter as well (Ashphalt) as it had matched the kitchen …green again !Plans are in the works to run the same floor as the kitchen in here and put in a new vanity.For now it is just fine !Well that’s it …my little piece of Heaven!

I’ve enjoyed every minute I’ve been in this house…as a newly divorced lady starting over…then meeting my husband and finally remarrying at 60!

Everyone who enters comments on how cozy and sweet it is .Yes sometimes I yearn for more space as I love to decorate and it’s sometimes too cozy when my growing family all converge on it but it really is perfect for me and hubby loves it too !

Living small has so many advantages ..lower utility bill’s, lower taxes, easy to clean, a feeling of security as you can see or hear what’s going on in the whole house at once! Less upkeep and it forces you to keep purging and living with less !

Oh and no stairs ! Good as we age to not have to worry about those !

I could easily stay in this house forever….I hope you enjoyed this tour …make your home a place of refuge , a happy ,warm place that nourishes you and yours !

Till next time ! Cheers !

Full Moon Week

Hi everyone ! Hope you are well. Busy week here but thought you might like to see what’s happening in the gardens of the Little Green Cottage!

I love the morning light ….birds chirping ,chipmunks and squirrels chasing each other…I’m trying not to hear the traffic noise !!

Oh well ,city life !

Had my coffee outside today ,the weather here is finally staying warm . It’s been a wet cool Spring but with Summer Solstice a couple of days away hopefully it will get better !

I hate to complain about too much rain as so many places here in Canada and abroad are in a drought…but a bit less would be good !!

My view as I enjoy my java !

This little guy would not be still…his pollen sacs were bursting ! Loves the spiderwort! Always happy to see the bees in my garden !

This shrub rose is a favorite! It blooms till frost in the fall….just needs deadheading to keep those pretty blooms coming ! It gets to about 4 feet across in one summer !

I have another one in a different colour that’s a bit behind …pics to come !

I think this may be a wild rose coming over from the neighbour’s…so pretty but only blooms once !

Peony love !!

My fuschia one is about done …nice they bloom a week or so apart…I get to enjoy longer!

Can’t have too many in the house ! Why is there tape on the cabinet you ask ?? Well I have an 18 month old Grandson who loves to explore Grandpas Inuit carving collection !

When he’s older we will check them all out together !!

Peonies in old tarnished silver , antique books and a cloche ….sigh!

Parting wisdom for today …find something you find beautiful in your day today and take the time to really enjoy it……

Till next time ! Happy Summer Solstice !๐Ÿฆ‹

Sourdough!

Hi everyone ! How are you doing on this beautiful June day ?

Had to show off some of my peonies that have finally bloomed ! That colour is amazing !

I have spent the morning making gluten free Blondies for my Daughter…just wanted to try out the recipe!…..looking after her 18 month old for a couple of hours …so fun…Making some sourdough Apple Walnut muffins !

Ask we discussed in a previous post , eating fermented foods is very good for your gut health!

When it comes to fermenting grains it can make them easier to digest as well.

I promised you a tutorial in making and using sourdough in a previous post so here we go!

Don’t be intimidated…its easy ,just takes 5 min a day for 7 days to get it started and then you can store it in your fridge.

When you want to use it , you take it out of the fridge , feed it and leave it on the counter overnight to get the yeasts reactivated and nice and bubbley!

Then it will be ready to use !The cool thing about this method is that the natural yeasts in the air are what is causing this fermentation to happen !I can’t take credit for this tutorial as I follow an amazing lady named Lisa at her blog Farmhouse on Boone, check her out !

She ferments alot of food and drinks and has other recipes on her site !

So… Day 1- use a glass or ceramic bowl and wooden spoon ALWAYS!

Mix 1 cup of all purpose unbleached flour with 1/2 cup water preferably filtered.

Stir vigorously and scrap down sides.Place a clean tea towel over it and leave at room temp for 24 hrs.

Day 2- remove 1/2 and discard …yes throw out ! It seems wasteful I know but if you dont you will have too much to deal with !

Add 1 cup flour and 1/2 cup water. Mix in well and cover with your tea towel.Repeat this for days 3,4 and 5.

On days 6 and 7…..feed the same amounts of flour and water every 12 hours instead of 24hrs.

By day 7 your mixture should be nice and bubbly and smell like yeast!

At this point you can use some for a recipe or cover it with foil or beeswax wrap and store in the fridge.Feed it once a week and let it sit out for 24 hrs or so before you use it.I have actually forgotten mine for 3 or 4 weeks …Horrors ! I take it out, feed the poor thing and leave it on the counter for a day before I use it .It’s quite forgiving so if your going away don’t fret…your sourdough starter will forgive you !Here is our favorite recipe …oh and Grandaughter Clara’s…she requests it every time she has a sleep over!

Sourdough Pancakes or Waffles…We prefer waffles but either is delicious…light and fluffy and crispy on the outside …yummy!

2 cups of your sourdough starter

2 eggs

4 tbsp( tablespoons) coconut oil melted or any mild vegetable oil

2 tbsp honey

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp baking sodaMix everything together EXCEPT THE BAKING SODA .

Heat up a waffle iron or frying pan if making pancakes..medium high temperature. ..brush with a little veg oil …when hot add the baking soda to your batter.

For your waffle iron …pour in whatever amount you usually would …cook till nicely browned !

For pancakes:

Drop 1/4 cup or so of batter in the fry pan ….when bubbles form on the top flip and cook till cooked through.Keep warm in the oven while you make the rest .For my Hubby and I, I make 1/2 this recipe .Keep warm in a low oven till your ready to eat !I have made pizza crust …tortillas.. bread and muffins with my starter …there are so many recipes on the internet ..pinterest is my favorite resource.

Start with something fairly easy like muffins till you have the confidence to try bread or buns !

Here are the Apple Walnut muffins I made today …so good with a cup of tea !

Just remember with all quick breads ( meaning they are made with Baking powder as the leavening agent) dont over mix when you add your wet ingredients to the dry …just fold the two together gently.Apple Walnut Muffins

Preheat your oven to 350ยฐf

Line a muffin tin with papers or grease lightly.

This can be mixed by hand or if you have it an electric mixer you can mix the wet ingredients in that ..then add the dry ingredients by hand so it is not over mixed!

1/4 cup butter softened

1/2cup white granulated sugar

1/2 cup Brown sugar

Beat these together till well blended then add:

1 egg

1 cup sourdough starter

1/4 cup milk

Mix well… then add :

1 cup grated apple

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

.If someone in your family is not a fan of nuts …you can substitute raisins or just go with the apple.

Now in another bowl combine …1 1/2cups all purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp each nutmeg and allspice

Mix well

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ..fold together gently.

Fill muffin tins 3/4 full…You may get up to 16 muffins depending on the size of your pans !

Bake at 350ยฐ for 20 to 25 minutes.

Test for doneness by sticking a toothpick in the center of a muffin..if it comes out clean with no batter stuck on it they are done!

Can’t find your toothpicks?Press a finger gently in the center of a muffin ..if it springs back when you remove your finger they are done !

Over baking will dry them out so always bake for less time ..20 min .

Then if you think they need more go for another 3to 5 minutes then test again.

Cool in pan 5 min. Then remove from tins and cool on a rack.

Enjoy !

As far as I’m concerned there is nothing better than home baking …the smell that fills your home and of course enjoying healthier food, no preservatives or artificial this and that !

Your friends and family will appreciate the effort you put in ….and you can take all the credit for those happy smiles !

I hope you give this a try …any questions ? Fire away!Happy fermenting!

This and that !

Good morning!

What are you appreciating today ?

Me….I’m healthy , breathing, surrounded by people I love..and they love me back . I’ve spent time with all my children and Grandchildren in the last few days ! My 5 Granchldren are a HUGE blessing …can’t get enough of their smiles and hugs…joy just eminates from them!

My garden , my sanctuary , is bursting with life . My Peonies are finally blooming …. My Grandaughter Mabel asked what is my favorite flower ? I told her I have too many favorites to list but our Spring blooms are at the top!

Gardening is something I’ve done since….well my earliest memory is at 2 ,helping my Dad in our garden . He was raised on a farm and could build or fix anything but his gardens were legendary ! He won 3 Trillium Awards here in London Ontario and recieved 2 awards from the city of Richmond BC when he and my Mum moved there in the mid ’70’s and he had to start his garden again from scratch . His Rose’s were legendary ! As a child he had endless patience teaching me not only about growing plants but about nature and the importance of insects etc.

When I was about 9 he gave me a small plot in the veggie garden and told me I could plant whatever I wanted ! Well, I dont remember much about what I planted except I wanted poppies so I planted a bunch of mixed colour seeds , now I think about it they must have been Icelandic poppies …. I remember a riot of colour and poppies being in vases on the supper table every night…I loved to “arrange ” flowers way back then !

He cursed me though for a few years after as he had poppies coming up everywhere he didn’t want them ! Mom just smiled as she new how happy they had made me ! He kept letting me plant though ..gourds were a favorite and morning glories !

Cool weather is making my Peonies slow to open….sigh….patience!

Back to my Blessings ..I’ve met new friends ,connected with old ones . Looking forward to dinner out with a special lady I used to work with later this week. Planning to get away to the family cottage with my Hubby for a few days of just doing nothing !

I’ve nurtured my talents and interests…make time for what you love to do and if you need to find people to help you…. do that .

I’ve always been an artist but 11 years ago when I reached out to learn watercolour painting it changed my life ! My teacher/mentor Helen and all the ladies and once in awhile a gent, who I paint with weekly are true Blessings ! We have so much fun !

I could go on ! We all need to put our worries aside once in awhile and think of all the good that we have in our lives…there is ALWAYS something to be thankful for !

Ahhh…my daily cup(s) of tea …made in my favorite pot …

Well I have a few favorite pots !

Can’t do without my tea…or the first cup of coffee my husband hands me in the morning ….ambrosia !

I have made my life one that is full of blessings…said goodbye to people who didn’t serve my happiness …who stressed me out …everyone comes into our lives for a reason but not all are meant to stay ….learn from them ,the good and the bad and wish them well on their journey.

This quote resonated with me …sometimes I feel , like most of us I’m sure, that I’m not doing terribly important stuff. But all the things I do add up to BIG things ! I’m happy which reflects onto the people around me and my family and friends, I know, appreciate what I do for them .

Give more than you receive…give, out of love not obligation….and the Universe will smile down at you! You recieve back what you put out so keep positive!

Have a beautiful day , make a list on paper or in your head , and realize how blessed you are !

๐Ÿ’Ÿ Jaye

A Little More Green !

Another rainy day….wish I had a covered patio …its warm and there is nothing I like more then sitting out listening to the rain…..one day !

Today’s post is short as I got bonked on the head yesterday and I’m feeling a little off ….a nap is in order when this is done !!

We have talked of some of the ways I am living my life “green”…forgoing chemical filled cleaning products….laundry detergents etc. in favor of good old fashioned ones made with vinegar ,borax, baking soda and essential oils . I put some recipes on a previous post ! Also I talked about my collection of cloths that clean beautifully just using water! Your local Health foods store will carry a selection of these but of course to save money just mix up a bottle of my all purpose spray and cut up some old t-shirts or towels !

In the kitchen I am really trying hard to get rid of single use plastics such as zip lock bags…sandwich bags and plastic wrap or cling film .

Not an easy transition…we are so used to ripping off plastic film to cover EVERYTHING !!!

Did you know that every piece of plastic ever created is still on Earth in it’s original form !!! Unless it was incinerated as with medical waste it’s still lying in a landfill somewhere or …so upsetting ….in our rivers lakes and oceans …forests …parks etc …harming and killing millions of animals !

The madness must stop !!!

Sorry off my soap box for now !๐Ÿ˜

Here are some of the ways I’m trying to go plastic free …the scrubs are amazing scrubbers that clean pots pans and surfaces without scratching…made in Poland with cotton fiber. My little brushes scrub veggies or stuck on stuff off my dishes ….gentle but get the job done ! The silicone baking matt( its rolled up) is a non stick mat for use in the oven. I have 2 sizes….replaces parchment paper or foil and no greasing necessary!

Steel straws …a must for every household and keep one in your car or purse for when your out and about ! Always refuse a straw when you buy takeout drinks …unless they are paper! Thank heavens many fast food places and restaurants have stopped handing out plastic straws!!

I try to use glass to store or freeze food but my plastic ones are in good shape so i will keep using them as well …just don’t EVER microwave food in plastic …chemicals from the plastic can leach out into your food !

Some of my containers that I take to the bulk store have their weight on them so the staff don’t have to weigh my containers every time ! Shopping at your local bulk store is probably the most important switch you can make…take any container you have …Mason jars are great ,fabric bags can hold dry goods …pasta …tea …small jars for spices …they even have jam, nut butter, and honey! I keep a large tote bag in my car with a few jars in it for those spur of the moment shopping trips .

I have also invested in a couple of silicone freezer bags …I wasnt convinced that silicone was a good choice over plastic but I’ve done some research and it’s not too bad !

My beeswax wraps are my favorite!!! The yellow ones are Abeego and available in lots of stores …the grey one I made from cotton quilting fabric. I made alot and they worked great but I find I need to recoat them with beeswax every few months !

They are easy to clean with eco dish soap and COLD water…it is wax folks so you don’t want to melt the precious wax off in hot water !! That tomatoe had been in a wrap in the fridge for 3 or 4 days and is beautiful and fresh! No slime or softening !

Beeswax wraps protect what they cover while allowing the food to breathe ! Think I’ll have it for lunch today !

The blue cloths are 100% cellulose…I just found them as a substitute for paper towel! They can be machine washed 300 times …put in dishwasher …boiled to sterilize..and then put in your composter!! I love them …so absorbent! For $9 for 10 cloths …3000 washes ….umpteen uses…..way cheaper then paper towels! I found them at Homesense.

Win win say !!!๐Ÿ˜

The yogurt I found at my regular grocery store in glass jars with a foil and paper top .

Love the jars …I have rooted cuttings in them …use in the bathroom to store hair pins or elastics …makeup brushes ..paper clips or pens in your office …m.the sky is the limit ! They are more expensive but I don’t eat it that often and have learned how to make my own …later post !

The kitchen is the one room that generates the most plastic waste I think ….try not to buy pasta in plastic…opt for the brand in cardboard ..pic up spices at a bulk store or if you can find them in little tins or glass …but those always have plastic lids !

What about garbage bags ??? So many plastic bags that were marketed as “biodegradable ” just broke up into smaller pieces but didn’t biodegrade…I don’t get plastic bags from the grocery store as I carry lots of fabric totes in my car so what to line your bins with ??.

I’ve started buying degradable bags made of cornstarch or cellulose ….for my kitchen but I’m still using the large black bags to put those degradable ones in….wrong …wrong ! My plan is to buy an aluminum garbage can …my daughter uses one …and get rid of the plastic bags !

Like I’ve said …we are all on this journey and perfection is not important, one step at a time .!!๐Ÿ˜ณ

Ahhh the bathroom ! Well I’m just getting started there! I by handmade soap from a few different places where they make their own products …no packaging at all and so many scents ! I love their pumpkin seed body butter…the container can be returned to be reused! The cute soap dish is silicone .

The cotton face clothes are great for makeup removal or face washing with my yummy soaps …cotton Terry and machine washable.

I am finishing up some eco friendly shampoo and conditioner from Liveclean …their containers are recyclable but I am going to switch to bulk shampoo.

Cotton swabs are also something I won’t replace once my supply is gone….you may find an eco friendly version out there but I really don’t find that I need them.

When you buy sheets ,towels make sure your buying 100% cotton or bamboo…stay away from anything with polyester in it!

If we can slowly start raising our awareness to how much plastic we are bringing into our homes and vow to make a change..one step at a time …we can change the world !

Remember …plastics have only really been around for maybe 60 to 70 years …before that our Parents and Grandparents did quite well without it ! We need to go back to old ways ….and get our planet back !

What do you find that works for you? Any hints you would like to share …leave a comment.

Have a fantastic day wherever you are !!

Cheers ..Jaye