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Eco-Shaving

triple_side.jpgReplacing blades for my husband’s razor was as expensive as filling the tank — well, until *that* started costing as much as our monthly grocery bill. I decided to nip it in the bud the other day when I discovered this super new recycled-materials razor by Preserve (they also make those awesome recycled toothbrushes). It’s far less expensive for the replacement blades, and you can use the packaging to return the razor handle for recycling (postage prepaid!) when it’s time to send it to razor handle heaven. The husband is pretty pleased — he’s loving it en tandem with this shaving oil — and I’m pretty pleased because hair removal and eco-cool and wallet-friendly all in one shot? What’s not to love?

Find It Here: Preserve Everyday

All Green, All the Time!

planet-green-logo.jpgOn June 4th at 6pm eastern, Discovery debuts the Planet Green channel. While Planet Green is new to cable, it will be replacing Discovery Home so just go to whatever channel that is on your system and you will find yourself watching what I believe will be the most awesometastically amazing thing to happen to cable TV in a really REALLY! long time because hello? Green television! Planet Green, which is aligned with the ultra-fab Treehugger.com in this endeavor, will feature 100% original programming that will include environmental news, humor, lifestyle and much more. And? I have it on good authority, straight from the head honchette of Planet Green, Eileen O’Neill, that there will be some programming relevant to parents and families, too. If this is a dream? Don’t wake me.

Night Night Moon

sleeping_moon-medium.jpgTeaching young kids how to power down the computer is a great way to help them understand the importance of saving energy. Now there is a fun and easy way to do that – the turnOFFtool. Created by a team of Stanford students for a school project, the turnOFFtool was inspired by discussions with parents who expressed how difficult it is for a young child to remember all the steps involved in shutting a computer down. The turnOFFtool, which is free and can be downloaded to your computer in a matter of minutes, bypasses all of the steps it usually takes for you to turn off your computer. Instead, all you have to do is click on a little moon icon which is always available on the screen (or minimized at the bottom of your screen). When you click on the moon, your computer will automatically shut down – or you can easily set it to sleep, if you prefer. Currently, the tool only runs on Windows, but future versions will work with Macs, too, and will allow users to add text or sound effects and select their own picture. For the record, though, we think the moon image with the zzzz’s couldn’t be cuter more appropriate for kids to get the “sleep” metaphor. Bravo, Stanford guys — we likey!

Find It Here: turnOFFtool

Eco Fact: According to the Harvard Green Campus Initiative, leaving a computer on all day for a year could result in more than 1500 pounds of CO2 being released into the atmosphere. To put that into context, it would take 100-500 trees to offset that amount of extra CO2!

Copping an Attitude

category_image.jpgGot a teenager with an attitude? Got a tween who loves collecting? Then check out these ATTITUDEsters Monster Pets. Handmade in Thailand, these little cat, dog and bear creatures are made from scraps of material that would otherwise be thrown away. Each one is made with one-of-a-kind fabrics and embellishments and comes with a tag and personalized quotation. They make cool party favors for elementary school kids, while teens can use them as key chains to express their attitude(s) — because teens don’t do that nearly enough 🙂

Note: These are not suitable for children under the age of six.

Find It Here: Green Party Goods

Congratulations to Ann G., winner of a set of 12 fabric monsters (4 of each character)!

Deal: Receive 20% your purchase at Green Party Goods with code “GREENMOM”. Valid for 90 days.

Get Your Fair-Trade Fix

gmffairtrade.jpgSince 1988 Global Exchange, has taken a stand against exploitive, corporate-based retail and raised awareness about fair-trade activism, as well as environmental, political and social justice. Through their brick and mortar stores, Global Exchange has proven that purchasing from companies that produce fairly traded food and crafts items can be profitable. These same products are now available through their fair-trade online store. By remaining steadfast to their pledge of operating according to socially conscious fair-trade criteria, Global Exchange offers a wide selection of sweatshop free products and staples such as coffee, tea and chocolate can be delivered to your door, as well as various gift baskets, jewelry, books, crafts and clothing. Chocolate? Fair trade? Delivered? YES!!!

Find It Here: Global Exchange

Sand Toys for Tikes – Green Edition

sand-thumb.jpgSandcastle-building is one of my my kids’ top 10 favorite summertime activities. But I am filled with a small twinge of guilt at the thought of buying those made-in-China plastic beach toys. Luckily, a better option is now available — the Sand Play Set by Green Toys. Made of recycled milk containers, Green Toys are made of plastic that you can actually feel good about! Green Toys, Inc. takes environmental consciousness to a whole new level. Not only are their toys made locally in California, but they also obtain the raw materials locally. By eliminating oversees or cross-country transportation costs, they are also reducing pollution. They also use recycled, non-plastic materials for their packaging and (hooray!) no twist-ties! And finally, because I know you want to know, these toys have no traceable amounts of phthalates or BPA and have no external coatings that could contain lead paint. Yep, we think we’ve found a winner here! So skip the dollar store next time you are looking for sand and beach toys and check out Green Toys instead. Your planet thanks you.

Find It Here: Green Toys

Congratulations to Rachael W., winner of a sand play set by Green Toys! 

Natural Cleaning with Tea Tree Oil

68type.jpgTea tree oil comes from the leaves of the plant Melaleuca Alternifolia and is native to Australia. With it’s antibacterial, antiviral, anti-fungal and antiseptic properties, tea tree oil makes a great all-natural household cleaner.

All-Purpose Cleaner: Use 15 drops of tea tree oil to 1 quart of water in a spray bottle. Use on counter tops or for general cleaning.

Mold Killer: Combine 2 teaspoons of tea tree oil in 2 cups of water in a spray bottle. Shake to blend. Spray on mold and don’t rinse.

Laundry Disinfectant: Add one teaspoon of tea tree oil per load to disinfect laundry such as diapers or to prevent transmission of fungal infections.

Happy green cleaning!

Find It Here: Healthy and Green Living

Do you have a great green cleaning recipe that really works? Share it with us in our brand-spankin’ new GMF Forum!

Want Not, Print Not

greenprint_logo.jpgSince joining The Green Mom Review, I have made a concerted effort to better my family’s recycling habits. Cutting back on unnecessary printing and paper waste? Not so much. Luckily, I’ve found GreenPrint, which was created as a tool to help households and businesses reduce the amount of paper waste. Why? According to their ecofacts, “In 2004 the United States used 8 million tons of office paper (3.2 billion reams). That’s the equivalent of 178 million trees!” How does it work? GreenView displays and highlights wasteful pages and page elements (like pages with just a URL, banner ad, logo, or legal jargon) and allows you choose to print only what you want. The software then removes images or text, creates a PDF file and has a reporting feature which keeps track of the number of pages and the amount of money you have saved. Once you know how much paper and money you’re saving, it’s kind of hard to imagine NOT using GreenPrint.

Find It Here: GreenPrint

The All-Natural Paci

yhst-83333507685311_2001_5605349.gifLucky for us, the first pacifier we ever tried with my son (the Natursutten Pacifier) was the best pacifier we ever purchased. Now granted, he only used it a few times before he opted for the good old thumb, but despite that, I totally fell in love with it. I know what you’re thinking. I fell in love with a pacifier? Really? Really. Just hear me out.

Made in Europe from natural rubber, Natursutten Pacifiers are CE certified to meet European health, safety, and environmental directives. You won’t find any BPA, phthalates, or PVC in these babies. Plus, unlike most pacifiers that have a plastic shield and a nipple joined together, this pacifier is molded into one piece. That means you won’t have to worry about yucky, germy stuff accumulating between the shield and nipple. It’s easy to clean, really (you guessed it!) rubbery, and naturally softer than silicone – perfect for baby and for mamas looking for a BPA-free paci for their child.

Find It Here: The Soft Landing

Congratulations to Mommie and Charline, winners of two Natursutten Pacifers each! 

Money Talks, Co-op America Rocks

Co op americaWhile buying less is always preferable, we’re not completely immune to the joys of shopping. But remember, when you shop, your dollar speaks for you — whether you want it to or not. Enter Co-op America, a program that has tackled the noble task of teaching consumers how to shop responsibly with their Responsible Shopper program. By alerting consumers to a company’s practices you will become better informed and learn which companies are truly environmentally friendly and socially responsible. Take a stroll through the alphabetized list of companies on their site and get the scoop on the good and bad and the ugly of corporate America. If you’re struck with the urge to do something positive, check out the Actions page where you can join different campaigns like the Adopt-A-Supermarket Campaign, the Green Supermarket Pledge or Six Degrees of Exploitation, to name just a few — because as long as your dollars are speaking for you, they ought to be saying something worthwhile, yes?

Find It Here: Responsible Shopper

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