Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Mean, Green Halloween

It's too tempting to shop for costumes these days. With retailers such as Pottery Barn offering a huge range of the cutest get-ups, it feels easy to lay down the Amex (the one that pays 1.5% back to a 529 college savings plan through Fidelity, of course) and buy up a little ghoul ensemble for your little gobblin(s).

But let me share fun, cheap and easy alternatives. Go home grown and green in the process. Even if your kiddos are obsessed with the current Sprout hero/heroine, there are ways to create excellent, one of a kind costumes that will scare the neighbors and your kids when they think back - boo!

Here are a few:

Cowgirl/boy - what you'll need: rope and hanger for a lasso (no 6 shooters here), traditional hat (make one of out of construction paper or brown felt if you don't have one), bandana or red/blue scarf, blue jeans, checked or other shirt. And if you like to sew or glue gun things consider an easy vest or chaps. Yeehaw!!

Ghost - white pillow case - standard, queen or king size (for tall gobblins) - cut head and arm holes, if you like.

Jack o lantern - orange fabric for a hat/hood, black clothing - top and bottom, drama wax to black out top and bottom front teeth, a smiling gobblin

Working woman - dress her up in an old suit and don't forget the attache for candy handling. You could really rock the neighbors world with some rimless glasses and an updo - a la you know who Ms. Palin.

Get the picture? Fun, fun-ee, cheap, easy, gives you a few extra hours back from planning, driving, buying, etc. And it's all green.

Just watch for sugar shock.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

You know you're a parent when...

I'm easy to please in general (not really, but I can dream) and find myself chuckling (yes, chuckling) now and again (mostly again) when I realize how different life is with kids. This cliche opening litteraly runs through my mind when I'm struck by an example - you know you're a parent when...So I've decided to make it a bit of running commentary, mostly for me and if you enjoy it - I want to hear about your 'you know you're a parent when...' I'll post and we can chuckle together. fun!

Here goes. The curtain rises.

You know you're a parent when...

You discover a breast/nipple leakage pad (oh, and I'm sure they're green) attached to the back of your favorite black hoodie as you pull it from the drawer. When faced with the mystery of 'how the h***?' you realize it's the crack organizing and laundry sorting of your two year old. (btw, nothing is folded in that drawer either).

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Shop Til You Drop for a Great Cause - Magnolia Moms

Next Tuesday (10/28), Magnolia Moms is hosting their annual event and winter coat drive. Satsuma Designs will be there to support the cause! It’s a great time to get in a little affordable holiday shopping and support local companies who make up the backbone of our NW economy.

Shop Til You Drop for a Great Cause
Location: Our Lady of Fatima Parish Hall
3301 West Dravus Street, Seattle, WA 98199 US
When: Tuesday, October 28, 6PM-9PM

The Magnolia Mom's Trunk Show & Coat Drive has grown! The 6th Annual event will feature over 30 local vendors & artists, fashions from Vixen, a raffle & silent auction--all in a new location with plenty of parking (Our Lady of Fatima Parish Hall).

Admission: one new or gently used child's warm winter coat or a recommended donation of $15

All are welcome!

An Apple A Day...

Keeps my toddler happy. It's nice when the kids acutally like fruits and veg. It also doesn't hurt that our favorite apple varieties tend toward the sweet - Gala is the best!

But with the fall harvest and all the gorgeous apple displays at our local grocery, we're still given pause when comparing the prices of conventially grown versus organically grown apples. In our area there's about a 100% difference in price $2.99/lb. for organics and around $1.49 or even less for conventially grown. Oh, and we live in Washington, the nation's largest apple producer. Hmmm.

We still opt for the organics and spend a little more time picking out those that don't have any slashes or noticable bruising to ensure a bit longer fridge shelf life. It's worth it to know we're avoiding the chemicals and supporting the growers to keep our lands green. And if you're looking to lower the apple bill, try mixing in other organically grown fruit and getting your kids excited about a fruit salad. You cut and/or peel and they mix. Add some orange juice, fizzy water and/or other fruit juice to give it some zip.

So next trip to the grocery, pick up a few apples and keep your little ones happy and out of the clinic this cold season.

Stay healthy and enjoy!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Home Grown Green Carpet Cleaner

Doesn't this picture make you want to go green?

Me too!

One easy way is to tackle stubborn carpet spots and all over cleaning with a home made solution of laundry detergent and water.

For spot removal, mix a tablespoon of eco-friendly detergent with a cup of warm water. Use a fingernail brush or stiff sponge to first dab in your cleaning solution then scrub, scrub.

Mop up excess moisture with your sponge or dishtowel. Comb your fingers through the carpet to get the fibers back up and into shape. Let dry for a few hours et voila! Feel free to comb fingers through at any point in the drying process to give yourself piece of mind that the carpet will come out looking like new.

As always, when trying something for the first time, do a little spot test to confirm it's the best solution for your carpet.

Good luck!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The paradigm shift - BYOSB - Bring your own shopping bag

Just a friendly Sunday shout out to all the thoughtful Safeway shoppers who bring their own bags. It's clear to me that the green consciousness level is rising and everyone seems to be along for the good ride.