Wednesday, February 04, 2009

My Oldest

Yep, that's Hero. Climbing the palm trees with no shoes on. She is kind of a daredevil, so she surprised me today when we had the following conversation.
Hero: "When I grow up, I'm going to home school my kids."
Mommy: "Would you rather I home school you?"
Hero: "No, I like going to school."
Mommy: "Then why do you want to home school you're kids?"
Hero: "Because then I would have to drive them to school and I am too scared to drive."
This from the girl who has a lead foot on the 4-wheeler.
By the way, Hero made Student of the Month for January.

And You Wonder Why I'm Going Green

Check out this post here if you want to find out more about mercury in the stuff you are eating.
BTW...I just checked a package of bread I bought (I love sourdough, but I can't make the stuff) and it has corn syrup in it. This may be the motivation I need to keep making my own bread (and learn how to make sourdough!)

A friend of mine asked me to elaborate on ways that I am going green and trying to stay frugal. So, here are just a few steps we have taken so far.

1. I recently tried to wash my hair by using baking soda, and rinsing it with diluted vinegar. I lasted one month, but then my scalp got too gross. I ran out and bought some organic shampoo and conditioner. (It was on sale and I had $ on my Walgreens gift card. It was in January too.) I am determined to try this again. I have read of so many people that this worked for....maybe I just didn't give it enough time?

2. When I ran out of foundation, I ordered a free sample kit from Everyday Minerals
I don't where much make up, so this was perfect. It is fast to apply and my skin feels great till the end of the day.

3. My sister-in-law sent us a reusable grocery bag for Christmas. It is so cute and it keeps the food somewhat insulated. I leave it in the car, along with two others that we got for free, so that I can avoid more plastic bags.

4. We are in the process of buying stainless steel water bottles. We hope to get a filter on our faucet (when I can find a good deal) so that we don't have to taste the tap water (that has a chlorinated taste to it.) We buy so many water bottles, but this is costly and we are also exposing ourselves to BPA. Not too mention that we have to haul all of them to the recycling center.

5. I have switched to using a cast iron skillet. Not only do I get the benefit of extra iron in our food, I don't have to expose my family to the Teflon found in our non-stick skillets. Not to mention that cast iron retains heat so much better and can be used in the oven as well.

6. We are trying to buy more handmade goods. I have fallen in love with the Etsy site. I guess this isn't exactly green, but we are trying to support individuals as opposed to big companies. We are also hoping for better quality goods.

7. Re-using wherever possible. I used to toss plastic containers into the recycling container thinking that I was doing the best for the environment. Now I realize that I actually have some creativity in me. I have been finding interesting ways in which to reuse these container (and not just for leftovers.) On a side note, don't try pouring hot grease into a plastic container, even if you think it is cool enough. Really what was I thinking?!

8. Don't buy in the first place. The way to get around the excessive packaging problem, is to not buy in the first place. I have found that a lot of things can be made at home. Sometimes it is hard work, but I have been surprised at how easy most of this stuff can be to make. Convenience has a high cost.

Okay, so that's a few of the things we are doing as we try to be good stewards with what God has entrusted us with. I will try to keep you posted as we progress in this area.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

No Spend Challenge

It is so funny, how things happen. Last month we discussed the posibility of not spending any money in February. It sounded like a fun thing to do. (Yes, I know. We are weird.) The goal is to see how much money we can save in one month. This month seemed perfect, because it is a shorter month, with no major spending holidays. (Valentine's Day will be extra creative this year!)
Well, the funny part all this is that a lot of other people had the same idea. In the blogs that I normally read I came across this post. It is encouraging to know that others are trying out the same thing! So, if you are up to it, it is not to late to join the challenge. For some, this may be a daunting task. For others, it may be a piece of cake. I'm thinking we are somewhere in the middle, but we shall see when the month is over. We're off to a good start. Two days down, only 26 more to go!