Great Cookie Debacle Part 4

We finally gave in. Ari and I walked around to all of our neighbors who bought from us and asked what they had ordered. Everybody was very nice about it and the consensus is that we will find it any day now. We are still waiting on one order – our neighbor had a friend house-sitting and he ordered two boxes. I think it is was Samoa and a Thin Mint, but I’m not 100% sure.

That does leave another problem though. I spent the last week looking for the darn order form so the other house chores didn’t really get done. Ari and Abby’s room is clean, but basically he rest of the house is a wreck (don’t believe me? Ask my Dad – he visited Thursday). So today I began to fix it. I worked on the guest bedroom, having Ari go through the stuff in there and we recycled and threw away a lot, and we have a bag of giveaways too. I have worked a bit on the rest of the house, but it is overwhelmingly disorganized and I am not so great at getting it back in order.

And it brings another problem to light. My “desk” is the dining room table. You can probably guess the problem with this now that you know I am not well organized. On good days, I occupy the far end of the table on one side, with my laptop and a pile of papers that I need to use or go through to file. On a bad day… it takes me 15 or more minutes to clear off enough room for four people to eat dinner at the table.

My “desk” today

A few weeks back I decided I needed a bookcase so I could clear off my bedside table (I had 50-60+ books on it). I scored a really nice bookcase on Freecycle and took care of that problem and now it is evident I need a desk too. It will be a place I can make various piles (my organization method of choice) and they will be left alone, rather than have to be consolidated into one pile every night for dinner. Hopefully someone can send me “desk vibes” and I can score something awesome one Freecycle in the coming weeks!

My dream desk – I can close it to hide the mess!

And yes, the “final” part of this debacle will be when I find the order form!

Are Your Candles Safe?

Candles are found in many households across the United states and all over the world! The candle industry estimates sales at $2 million annually, exclusive of candle accessories.  Picking up a candle at your local big box store is something you may take for granted, but it is not usually a very green or healthy decision.

Candles have been used for light for thousands of years. Beeswax was utilized to make candles in Egypt and Crete as early as 3000 BCE. Early candles were also made of natural fat, tallow and wax. In the 18th century, oil from the sperm whale, spermaceti, was used to make excellent candles and later that century certain plant oils were found to work well and were much cheaper than spermaceti. Continue reading “Are Your Candles Safe?”

Did You Know?

Antiperspirants are used to inhibit sweating, but when you stop to think about it the practice seems counterintuitive. One of the purposes of sweating is to remove toxins from the body. Using antiperspirants impedes this natural cleansing method. In addition, many antiperspirants contain ingredients such as aluminum chlorohydrate or aluminum zirconium. Aluminum is easily absorbed into the body and has been linked to Alzheimer’s disease and breast cancer. Once in the body, it can be absorbed into your brain, kidneys, liver, and bone marrow. Before you buy your next invisible solid scented clear dry antiperspirant stick, think about what you are putting on your skin and in your body, and what is not being let out. There are deodorants that work to keep you from offending others with BO. I have been trying different products for several years and I plan to review everything I have used, good and bad. Stay tuned or check out the “deodorant” category on this website.

Spreading the Word

I often link my post to my personal Facebook page and since a lot of my co-workers are my “friends” on Facebook, we end up with some interesting lunch time conversations about going green or my newest post on natural living. I  also frequently bring a container to bring compost home to my worms and admittedly I have asked others for their banana peels and fruit scraps, which sparks some friendly teasing of my dedication to my worms.

I was surprised the other morning when a co-worker handed me a bag marked “Worm Food” to me. She had some over-ripe bananas at her house  so she bagged them up for my worms, who love bananas!

I was so touched I took a picture for your enjoyment:

Worm-Food

Name removed to protect the innocent helper

Thank you to all of my friends and family who support me in my green endeavors!

Keep Your Dog Happy!

Recently I decided my dogs needed to get out  more without driving miles and wasting gas and time. I was sure I could find them something new right in our backyard. I used a search engine to look for local parks and paths that allowed dogs. During my search I came across a group called Columbia Dogs-on-the-Go. This local meetup group is for dog owners and their dogs to socialize and exercise together. I loved the idea and joined up.

Rory-in-the-water

Rory in the water at a Columbia Dogs-on-the-Go meetup spot

Going green includes family pets, and it isn’t all about the right food and shampoo. Most dogs need to stay active, and taking them on walks is key. A green dog walk is nearby, requiring little to no driving. It means picking up after your dog and if possible, composting the waste. Keeping your dog walk green also includes not littering, recycling your waste, and bringing reusable water bottles to keep you hydrated.

Dogs are naturally pack animals and most are ecstatic in a group with other dogs. Although many dogs include their humans in their pack, spending time with other dogs is fun for most of our pet dogs. Even though Canis lupus familiaris has been domesticated for about 15,000 years, dogs still retain some of their wild behaviors and social hierarchy.  Bored dogs tend to be behavior problems, so keeping a dogs happy and engaged is a boon for both the dog and the owner.

Dog-walk

A picture from our walk by a fellow Columbia Dogs-on-the-Go member Amy Pickwick

The group I joined has frequent walks and events; right now they seem to average once per week. There are events at dog-friendly businesses and after work and weekend walks. On our first walk we met at a local lake and used the path around it to walk for nearly an hour. Abby brought her tricycle and Chuck walked Rory and I took Blue while pushing Abby. It was the first time Rory and Blue had walked with other dogs. Both dogs got along with all of the other dogs, and Rory actually calmed down a little bit and stopped pulling hard near the end; Blue is only a year old but is much better on the leash than Rory and rarely pulls unless we are running.

The walk was great! There were small dogs and big dogs, young dogs and old dogs. Almost 18 people attended and just about as many dogs. We had a number of people on the path ask about such a large group walking with dogs, and the organizers of Columbia Dogs-on-the-Go are looking into bandannas and t-shirts to advertise the group to encourage more people to join.

Rory-and-a-new-friend

Rory and a new friend at a Columbia Dogs-on-the-Go meetup. Picture also by Amy Pickwick

If you are a dog owner, I encourage you to look for similar groups in your area. If you don’t find one, start one! The exercise and socializing is good for both humans and adults and it is a great chance to meet new people. Still unsure? Show your dog his leash and his tail wagging will convince you!