Happy New Year!

Like all good resolutions, I’m going to admit I’ve outgrown mine from 2017. No need to laugh and jump and shout, “I told you so!” just yet. I’m not retiring my resolutions. But rather, the act of embarking upon them has brought me farther than any other resolution has ever carried me before. They need a tune up, because I know how to get more milage out of them. Continue reading

Where to Start….

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Paper straw on a kid friendly cup at Sotola

We just returned home from a 10 day vacation in my old stomping grounds. It was great to be “home” amongst friends and family and to drag along some “new” friends for the ride. How I just love the weather, the ocean, and being surrounded by the familiar. It is my fantasy to get back there, but the logistics are a bit challenging right now. During a park playdate with one of my nearest and dearest we got on the subject of this new lifestyle I have been exploring. I try not to be too excited or overbearing when the topic approaches so I often take the quiet road in hopes not to scare people off. She had wonderful words of praise to say, and warmed my heart when she said “I think about you all the time”, like “how do buy toilet paper?” I love it, one of the first things my mom said was “I am not visiting if you give up toilet paper”. Later I got a text saying she would like to get started but wasn’t sure how and requested this post. Its true that my list of goals can seem intimidating, and with a new baby like she has, the thought of turning your routine upside down can be more than overwhelming. So here is my go T, I know you can do it! Continue reading

Three Things You Can Do Today – In the Garden!

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My pollinator garden is taking off this year with all the rain!

Spring has sprung! In between this rainy winter and spring I find myself itching to get my hands dirty. Even enjoying a good weed pull every now and then, which if you saw my front yard you’d think I’d need to do more of. With all this time spent amongst the buzzing bees and lush plants it has me reflecting how not so green the garden is, well how not so green some gardens can be. Here I thought I would direct three things you can do today over to your garden for a a very appropriate change.  Continue reading

Proud to Be a Californian

IMG_6325Our family recently spent a week visiting my sister and her family in North Western Washington State. They live in Anacortes on Fidalgo Island off the Puget Sound. They have a beautiful home, a beautiful family and they are surrounded by beautiful nature, but I came back feeling so happy that I was still a Californian. The first time I went to visit her I was ready to pack my bags and buy a huge lot where I could plant my “Martha Stewart Inspired Garden”. However this challenge to lessen my carbon footprint has got me considering my surroundings in a whole new way. Continue reading

Three Things You Can do Today

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I honestly don’t believe we are in the small steps stage anymore as far as global warming is concerned, however achieving small goals makes way for larger ones so I have compiled a list of a few things you can do today with very little effort that will make a large impact in the future.

Compost

After conversing with the girls in my office I was horrified how few of them compost. We live in Marin County isn’t it illegal not to compost???? I mean the green police in their prius’s will find you and shame you, so watch out! Well apparently not as I was def in the minority. I think they all could feel my WTF glares because I got texts and questions later asking how to start. Composting is seriously so so so easy! And so important for a closed system to function! If you are one of those non-composting types shape up and find a system that works for you. Some people keep a bowl next to the sink and put all of their green waste in it and dump it when it gets full. I do this a lot. I find I have a good amount of compostable materials accumulating that they never sit there and get stinky or bug infested. Another option is to purchase one of those compost tins that sits on your counter or under your sink. This works for a lot of people but I am not one of them. One I am frugal I’d rather spend my money on something that is pretty and two I don’t like the idea of using the same vessel over and over. This is strange and probably comes from my freakishly clean upbringing (today I do not live the way I was raised, ask my mom). I want to be able to toss the bin in the dishwasher and those vessels are meant to sit there, out in the open, for a long period of time. This just doesn’t appeal to me, which is why I utilize my freezer. I admit I buy my bread in a bag….a paper bag. Once or twice a week I buy a loaf of bread from Della Fattoria and save the bags for my long term compost. I keep the bags in the freezer and toss little things here and there that aren’t enough to fill a bowl or have the potential to go south real quick. When the bag is full I toss (or lets be real the hubby tosses) the whole thing in the green bin. So easy and it takes up very little freezer space. If you don’t have a green bin add that to your list to do today!

Use A Water Pitcher

How many times does your child leave a half full water bottle laying about? How many times have you overfilled your pot and poured the excess water down the sink? I know that in Northern California we are overwhelmed with water and rain right now, but it won’t be long before we will be rationing it again. Drought habits are good habits. Some people have no access to clean water, but here we just let it go down the drain. My simple easy solution is an antique iron stone pitcher that belonged to my Great Grandparents. It lives in the corner of my kitchen and when I have water left over from boiling eggs, water bottles, etc. I pour the water in the pitcher. When it gets full I use this water to water inside plants, pots on the porch, or for fresh cut flowers like I did on Sunday with some peach branches from the garden. You don’t have to use a family heirloom or even a pitcher, your kitchen may be modern or eclectic, but choose something that is easy to fill and easy to pour. Not just because I am a designer but I firmly believe that going green will never work if we cannot make it beautiful. Everyone is happier when their surroundings are pleasing to the eye, so take that into consideration and choose something that you love to look at. It sounds superficial, maybe it is, but bottom line its true and it works.


Ditch the Plastic Produce Bags

Doesn’t it feel a little wrong to put your beautiful organic produce all fresh and colorful into a plastic bag that’s laced with harmful chemicals? When the state of California banned plastic bags and retailers starting charging for paper bags we saw a huge change in the way people thought about reusable grocery bags. Now you hang your head in shame when you forget them and have to pay the fee for a bag. What if we took that same concept to produce bags? You could make some reusable bags or buy some, there are so many great ones out there and they sell them at the grocery store so there is no extra trip involved! Imagine if 100 people stopped using bags today? That would save a lot of sea turtles from harm and put a lot less chemicals into our air and our babies. After I unload my groceries I put them inside my shopping bags for the next trip so they are ready to go. Now that I am planning my shopping trips down to the second I don’t forget my bags, but my Mother-in-law puts hers in her car after she unloads the groceries so she can’t forget them. That might be a good solution for you too.

Remember a small step today can lead to a greater leap tomorrow.

Do you have any great ideas for simple ways to make your imprint smaller? Please share!!