Nothing beats the taste of a vine ripened tomato, except the taste of a vine ripened tomato harvested from your own garden. Growing great tomatoes is relatively easy and a small garden can produce a lot of tomatoes.
The tomato originates from South America and Mexico. The Spanish explorer Cortez took the seeds to Europe after discovering the tomato being grown in Mexico in Aztec gardens. Italians were the first to eat the golden apple (early tomatoes were yellow not red) in the 1500’s but it still took more than 100 years for Italians to fully accept tomatoes and integrate them into their food. Can you imagine Italian cuisine without tomatoes?
The tomato is classified as a vegetable thanks to a Supreme Court ruling in 1893 that subjected vegetables to import taxes, however technically a tomato is a fruit and part of the berry family. This vegetable/fruit is actually a perennial if left to continuously grow in a warm climate, however most areas do not stay warm enough so it is treated as an annual that has to be replanted every year. (continue reading…)
In life, as in a garden, you reap what you sow.
~Nancilee Wydra- Feng Shui in the Garden
Nothing makes me feel better than being outside on a warm, sunny day working in my garden. I relax and have time to think. The stress melts away as I pull weeds and dig my hands into the soil. I feel a great sense of accomplishment when the flowers bloom and the fruits and vegetables bear fruit.
When harvest time comes I enjoy sharing my bounty with friends and family.
Gardening is a wonderful way to relax, enjoy nature, live green and save money. Growing your own fruit or vegetables can dramatically slash your grocery bill.
Just a few plants can keep you stocked for months. (continue reading…)
Art supplies are wonderful and versatile. What other items offer fun play, creative expression, and learning all in one…for very inexpensive prices?
With art supplies children have the world at their fingertips. There is so much that can be done, be made, be transformed…but with toxic ingredients like lead showing up in kids’ products you want to be sure that the creative supplies are not only fun but safe for the little ones.
Stubby Pencil Studio offers the biggest selection around that I have found, of eco-friendly, non-toxic art supplies and old fashioned games and toys.
Perfect items to stuff in Easter baskets. I have a crafty family. All of us are DIY handmade type people, so craft supplies are always on hand; however because we are so crafty we tend to go through them pretty fast. Or they mysteriously disappear.
That is either thanks to my budding magician toddler whose disappearing sippy cup act beats anything Copperfield could offer, or it could be the invisible troll that also loves socks, not sure.
Anyway, we always need new crayons, paints and sketchbooks that rapidly get filled with wonderful ideas and beautiful works of art. (continue reading…)
The biggest thing right now is being green, everybody’s doing it from celebrities to your neighbor on the corner. You may be wondering though, what can you really do to live a greener life that doesn’t cost a fortune or have you munching on granola.
Trying to wade through all the green information floating around out there can be difficult. Everyone’s popping up with green tag lines and green products, but is throwing out all your old stuff and buying new eco-friendly products going to solve anything? No, it just leads more stuff in the landfill which defeats the purpose of going green.
Here are simple ways you can go green without going broke or changing your lifestyle very much. These simple things can even save you money. (continue reading…)
Fall is a season of transition. It’s the time when, between work projects, I get ready to hunker down for the winter. Being stuck more or less inside for months presents challenges, most notably in maintaining good indoor air quality when temperatures in the mid-20s make opening a window for some fresh air an unattractive option. Spring cleaning gets most of the love, but a good autumn cleaning is just as important around my house. The fresher things are to start with, the less gamey they get through the winter.
Fall is also the time to start gearing my body up for winter’s challenges like less sunlight and rampant viruses. Here’s a peek into my autumn indoor To-Do List: (continue reading…)
Over the past couple of years a lot of eco-friendly cleaning products have hit the market. I’ve had the chance to try some of them. Some of them are okay, some are alright and others don’t work at all.
Here’s a list of some of the products that did work and worked really well. Products that I absolutely love and feel safe using. They are eco and they work. As an added bonus, some of them even smell good. (continue reading…)
When we go out to eat at a restaurant, those inspection placards or letter grades remind us that the kitchens where our meals out are prepared have been inspected and held to standards of food safety. Sure, there are lapses, and local news stations get plenty of mileage from uncovering health lapses at local restaurants, but if those news cameras came into your kitchen, how would you look?
Even factoring in lunch at the office and an occasional family night at the restaurant, more than half of your meals are probably prepared in your home kitchen, unless you’re stopping for takeout every night. If you are eating that much takeout, stay tuned for the easiest ways to start cooking from scratch, coming next week. Foodborne illnesses caught in the home don’t attract attention since usually only the immediate family is affected, but that doesn’t mean foodborne illness and food safety aren’t a concern in the home kitchen. (continue reading…)