Showing posts with label Honda Loves Mom Sweepstakes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Honda Loves Mom Sweepstakes. Show all posts

Four Simple Ways to Go Green at Home

Monday, July 30, 2012

I have a love, hate relationship with going green. I like knowing that we're using less resources and putting less chemicals into our bodies and the earth. It feels good to be less wasteful. But, let's face it being more responsible is often a choice between convenience, price and effort.

I started feeling so guilty about so many of the things we were buying, I knew we'd need to make changes. We are not the greenest household out there, but we're making progress and steadily adopting new habits with results I can actually measure. Here are a four environmentally products we've been using that have a made a difference in our house.

Vapur water bottles
I can't remember when I first saw someone using these bottles. They stuck with me and I bought two about mid way through the last school year. Since I bought them, I've almost completely cut out juice boxes and pouches. I fill these the night before school and add single serve flavored drink powder. In the morning, I put them in the freezer while we get ready for school.

Vapur water bottle eco friendly
They hold more liquid than a juice pouch so I know our son is staying hydrated and they double as an ice pack. This school year, I'm going to try cutting back even more. My plan is to not buy as many drink powder sticks and instead make pitchers of juice and refill. The Vapur bottles aren't super expensive but you will get mad if one doesn't make it home from school. I'm spending less on lunchbox items and drastically reducing our waste. We took them on our last trip Disney World and it was so nice to be able to refill cold water all day.

Reusable hemp coffee filters
We drink a lot of coffee. No really, a lot. Even though I was buying the brown, non-bleached filters, I felt bad about how many we go through. We were throwing away two filters a day at least six days a week. I looked for another solution and settled on a hemp filter. I bought one to start with to make sure we like it and will use it.
Re-usable hemp coffee filter
I was worried about mildew since it's cloth but buying additional filters and caring for them according to the directions should keep them mildew free. With more than one filter, we'll always have one clean, dry and ready to use. For heavy coffee drinking households like ours, I think 5-6 filters would be perfect. The coffee tastes the same as a paper filter. I bought ours from BonaFide Green Goods.

Copco reusable travel drink cups
I've talked about these before, but since I love them so, so much I'll talk about them again. I adore my Copco cups. They're permanent fixtures in my car. My husband uses one hot cup every day and we each have them when we know we're going to be at the ice rink for more than an hour. Last week, our family was in town camping at the beach. I took an iced coffee with me every day.

Copco re-usable cups eco friendly
These cups last forever, they save at the coffee shop since sometimes they're considered a refill, they maintain the temperature better than the disposable cups, they make an affordable gift and since I always have Starbucks Via in my purse, I can make a drink whenever I want to.
Reusable produce bags
I had some credit on a daily deal site and bought these Essie produce bags about a year ago. They were another purchase born out of guilt. I hated bringing home the plastic bags since there's nothing else they can be used for. These bags are great. People stop me to ask where I got them.

An added bonus is buying more produce. I like using them so much I bring home more fruit and vegetables than I ever have before.

Those are just a few of the ways we've been greening up our lives. I'm always on the lookout for more small changes we can make. Being green is definitely a lifestyle choice and takes commitment. But, it's something we all need to do and sets a great example for our kids.

What are your favorite green products? 

This is post five in a series of sponsored posts and sweepstakes for the San Diego Honda Dealers Association. Visit and comment weekly for a chance to win Amazon gift cards! Some affiliate links used.

Pamper Me: How I Make Time for Me and What Makes Me Feel Special

Monday, July 9, 2012

Since I've been a work at home mom, I've had to redefine a lot things to fit our lifestyle and budget. When I had my office job, I would meet people for lunch, now I meet for coffee. I used to keep regular appointments to get my brows waxed, now I only go when I travel for blog related events. Manicures and pedicures are reserved for special occasions. Trips to the spa? Pretty much a thing of the past. I definitely had to re-think the way I defined 'me time' and being pampered. I know taking time for myself is important. I get really grouchy when I don't and then I make my family miserable.

Most women of color will tell you that getting their hair done is less a matter of vanity and more necessity because our hair can be pretty hard to take care of. In fact, before we married I told my husband that getting my hair done is and always will be a line item in our budget. He's never complained. I've learned the hard way what can happen when I don't visit a professional. There's a reason I will gladly drive 38 miles one way to see my stylist every 9 weeks. Because she's a miracle worker.

Even though I consider going to the salon a necessity, I still manage to turn the trip into a nice day out for myself. Before I get there, I usually stop for a smoothie or coffee. I bring a book, some magazines, snacks and my iPad. When I'm finished, me and my bouncy hair will try to meet up with a friend at My Happy Place for dessert at The Cheesecake Factory.

If no one is available to hang out, I spend some time window shopping at the mall and then popping into stores we don't have in my part of town. DSW, Loehmann's and Saks Off Fifth are some of my 'must visit' places. A few hours alone in the stores looking at new trends and scouting clearance racks is a great way for me to recharge my batteries.

As for being pampered, I'm lucky I get to feel that way all the time. I feel pampered when my husband opens doors for me, pulls out my chair or holds my coat open so I can slip it on. I feel pampered when my son opens the car door for me and kisses me good morning every day. Spa trips are great, but I will take these little endearments from my boys over a mud wrap any day. By adjusting my thinking a little bit, I realize I don't have to spend a lot of money or make a lot of effort to feel special.

Honda Likes Moms Sweepstakes
This is post two in a series of sponsored posts and sweepstakes for the San Diego Honda Dealers Association. Visit and comment weekly for a chance to win Amazon gift cards!
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