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The Greenest Thing to Do with a Pumpkin

1389024256_8efeb824e6_m.jpgAfter all the trick-or-treating is done this year and Halloween is over, you just might have an uncarved pumpkin or two hanging around the house. And what’s the greenest thing to do with an uncarved pumpkin after it’s done gracing your porch? Well, eat it of course!

With that in that in mind, we scoured around for some of the tastiest looking pumpkin recipes on the web. Please enjoy these links to a few of the best we found!

Oh, and don’t forget to toast the seeds!

Happy Halloween from the moms of Green Mom Finds!

[photo via Jiffy Cat]

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The Thermos is Back, Baby

yhst-83333507685311_2024_22889588.gifRemember when bringing a thermos to school was dorky, nerdy, so… not cool? Well, times have changed and the thermos is now all the rage. And why not? Thermoses are one of the best inventions EVER in my estimation. I mean, anything that can keep hot liquids hot and cold liquids cold for hours…well, what’s not to love? And so it was with great anticipation and a wee bit of excitement that I was able to recently try out the Foogo stainless steel “food jar”. In pink or blue, at 10 oz. it’s the perfect size for a lunch-size soup. Perhaps Foogo is still too scared to call it what it really is—a thermos—but whatever, I like it!

Find It Here: The Soft Landing

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8 Ways to Green Your Bathroom

Over the past few months, I’ve posted little things here and there that I’ve done to be cheap and green. So I thought I’d put all of those hints in one list. Most of these things cost little or nothing.

1. SOAP
Using plain old bar soap over liquid soap has a couple benefits. Bars are cheaper than the liquid soap, it lasts longer than liquid does and it reduces waste (no plastic bottles to recycle). I’ll be honest, this was a little bit of a difficult transition for me…the liquid pump bottles are just so easy, but after a month or so I’ve grown used to it and so has my family.

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2. SHAMPOO
My husband uses shampoo more quickly than anyone I know. He can easily polish off a whole bottle in a week. My solution to save money? Pour the shampoo in one of the old liquid soap bottles! Instead of squeezing a big handful of shampoo out, we pump the dispenser twice. That seems to be enough to get a good lather and uses less shampoo. That saves money AND reduces the number of shampoo bottles we need to buy. Eventually, I’d like to move on to bar shampoo, but I’ve yet to find one that I like.

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.3. SOAP IN THE SHOWER
You know how your soap ends up as tiny shards and chunks? I bought this little soap bag on eBay that you put those soap bits into. They lather up even better than soap alone and the bag is like a loofah. The husband loves this! Read the rest of this entry »

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$50 Giveaway – Lunch & Go

yhst-83333507685311_2024_22961134.gifIs melamine safe? What did the FDA say about BPA safety? Which are the bad plastics again? If these kinds of questions have ever kept you up at night, then you will love The Soft Landing Blog, one of my favorite places to get the latest information about safer plastics and feeding products for kids. I love their informative articles, as well as their great (and free!) Guide to Feeding Baby Safely.

Now to the fun stuff – The Soft Landing is holding a special giveaway just for Green Mom Finds’ readers in honor of the launch of their newly designed website. We’re giving away $50 of Aladdin lunch gear – everything you’ll need to make a waste-free lunch, including a Lunch & Go Lunchbox, a Lunch & Go Mini Lunchbox, a Lunch & Go Salad Set,  and a Clean & Clever Water Bottle. All products are free of PVC, phthalates and BPA!

Win It! To enter, simply click here to fill out our simple entry form. Just enter “SL58” as the giveaway name and provide the answer to this question: What is the name of one of the articles on The Soft Landing’s home page? U.S. and Canadian residents eligible. Enter by 11/3/08. Contest closed. Congrats, Marilyn W.!

Deal! Receive 10% off purchases at The Soft Landing’s store with code gmf1008. Expires 11/15/08. Plus, free FedEx shipping for orders over $100 (continental 48 states).

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Swooning Over Squishy Sushi

il_430xn33270025.jpgWhen I was in Italy many years ago, I fell in love with Venetian glass pendants. I had to buy one for everyone I knew! The same thing happened to me recently when I stumbled upon these recycled scrabble pendants from Squishy Sushi. I met the San Francisco-based owner and jewelry designer herself at a local craft fair in California where I promptly purchased the most beautiful pendant which I plan to give away (reluctantly!) as a Christmas gift to my sister-in-law. The pendants remind me of the Venetian glass pendants I loved so much, yet they have a decidedly oriental, rather than Italian, flair. Also, the fact that they are designed and hand-made right here in the U.S.A out of old scrabble pieces and recycled papers and magazines makes them totally eco-friendly and fun too – flip ‘em over and you’ll find the scrabble letter! At only six dollars each, including the coordinated gift box, I’d say these are one of my best finds of the year.

Find It Here: Squishy Sushi

Deal! Receive free shipping on any purchase until 10/31/08. Plus, just for GMF readers, receive a free necklace with purchase – simply mention that you were referred by GMF in the notes to the seller.







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New Native

80.jpgHave you heard of New Native? They make the most awesome organic cotton baby pouches — in addition to practicing the environmental and social responsibility that we adore at The Green Mom Review! And because we think their products rock, we’re giving away one medium-sized organic cotton baby pouch which will fit a woman who measures 34-39″ above the chest (it can be exchanged if the fit isn’t right), valued at $65. If you can’t take our word for it, check out all the celebs who also love the New Native pouches, which, by the way, are constructed right here in the good old USA by working moms.

Find It Here: New Native

Win It:  Click here to fill out our simple entry form. Just enter “NN2008” as the giveaway name and provide the answer to this question: What else does the New Native online store carry besides their fab baby pouches? U.S. residents eligible. Enter by 11/3/08. Contest closed. Congrats, Heather B.!

PS:  Have you checked out our new blog? Every week, we’ll be bringing you new and informative posts on the topics you care about so be sure to drop by!

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Whole World Gift Set Giveaway!

2295-07_21_08-large_cover.jpgWe love Barefoot Books. Their children’s titles are beautifully illustrated, unique and educational. Even more, we love giving away their children’s books to our wonderful readers! If you want a chance to win THREE of their eco children’s books, then you’re in luck because we are giving away…

Win It:  Click here to fill out our simple entry form. Just enter “BB33” as the giveaway name and provide the answer to this question: name one other title available from Barefoot Books that looks interesting to you! One winner will be chosen to win all three books. U.S. and Canadian residents eligible. Enter by 10/29/08. Contest closed. Congrats Heather B.!

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Kids Healthwatch: Pesticide Exposure

Spending for organic food is worth it when it comes to our children. Their developing bodies are especially vulnerable to toxins found in our food and environment and switching to organic food has an immediate effect on the body. Within 36 hours, pesticides may no longer be detected in a child’s urine. On my website Project Green Girl, I have an article titled “Go Organic” which lists the produce with the highest levels of pesticides. This is a great list to start with and the cost is minimal.

Recent Studies:

  • A study published in the British Journal of Nutrition tested 815 2-year olds, and found those with an organic dairy diet experienced less eczema and wheezing than those consuming non-organic dairy.
  • The BBC reported in 2006 that pesticide exposure from food can cause depression and memory problems.
  • An organic plant-based nutrition program is believed to help ADD sufferers.
  • Pesticide levels in children raise in the winter when more food is imported.
  • Amniotic fluid and breast milk can pass pesticides to the fetus and infant, so the mother should also follow an organic diet.

For more information:

Author Patricia Wooster is the founder of the Project Organic Eating blog, where healthy eating meets affordability! 

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The Power of Better World Shopping

bwsgcover.jpgWho knew something as simple as a list of companies could be so inspiring?  Can a list make that big of difference?  According to Ellis Jones’ incredibly compact, but informative book, The Better World Shopping Guide, a grocery list is not complete without this companion.  Jones’ has combined his 15 years of research and social responsibility to develop a book filled with an easy-to-understand ranking system for common products.  Everything from baby care, beer, and electronics to toys, seafood, and desserts, Jones has assigned a letter grade from A to F.  The letter grade ranks a company’s contribution, good or bad, to five issues: human rights, the environment, animal protection, community involvement, and social justice.  Wow!  That is lot of difference-making happening with our dollars. In the short time I have owned the book, already I find myself becoming a more issue-orientated shopper. For example, Kraft (as in macaroni and cheese) didn’t rank so well and I consider that fact when I’m shopping. Know what else is a good idea?  Voting—every day—with your dollar.  Now THAT is power!

Find It Here: The Better World Shopping Guide

Win It! We’re giving away a copy of The Better World Shopping Guide! Click here to fill out our simple entry form. Just enter “BW10” as the giveaway name and provide the answer to this question: what is one of the product categories in the book? North American residents eligible. Enter by 10/29/08. Contest closed. Congrats, Cathy!

Editor’s Note:  You’ll see in our left sidebar a promotional ad for a special on PBS’ Frontline called Heat: A Global Investigation that will begin airing on October 21. Global warming is an unparalleled threat to all life on planet Earth. We urge you to watch this show if you can!

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Being Green in the Bad Economy

Wow, lots going on in the financial world. At this point I am glad I did not have my bathroom remodeled or buy that new digital camera. Looks like things are going to get tougher and tougher.

A lot of “green” products come with a higher price tag than cheap, made in China products. So how is one supposed to do their best to take care of the environment and be healthy when money holds you back?

1) Remember that there are many things you can do to be green that don’t cost anything…and may even save you money. Things like keeping your heat turned low, using low-flow shower heads and washing laundry with cold water will help the environment and you.

2) Consider alternatives to pricey products. I really like Method and Seventh Generation products…but there are plenty of recipes online for homemade cleaners that are VERY inexpensive. National Geographic’s Green Guide has some here.

3) Keep an eye out for sales and clearances on natural/green products. I have never paid full price for Tom’s of Maine toothpaste or any natural deodorant. Lesser known products such as these tend to be clearanced more often. I bought Tom’s toothpaste at CVS for 75% off and Kiss My Face roll-on deodorant for $2 at Target…which leads me to: Read the rest of this entry »

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Baby Purity Conference

untitled.jpgCalling all Canadian mamas who love their babies and don’t want them exposed to toxins in our environment—Baby Purity is hosting an exciting conference on October 25, 2008 in Vancouver, British Columbia. Tickets are still available but they’re going fast. Don’t miss out on this fabulous opportunity to hear from experts such as Christopher Gavigan, Executive Director of Healthy Child Healthy World; Dr. Chantelle Mitchell, naturopathic physician; and Lisa Frack, parent activist with the Environmental Working Group. Learn about first foods for your baby, safe household products and good nutrition. Plus, have lunch, meet other like-minded mamas, learn about new products and get some cool (and green, of course) swag to take home. This isn’t the first time I’ve wished I lived in Canada. Heh! Joking. Kinda.

Find It Here: Baby Purity Mother’s Conference

Win It! We’re giving away two tickets to the Baby Purity Mother’s Conference! Click here to fill out our simple entry form. Just enter “BP60” as the giveaway name and tell us why you want to go! Enter by 10/22/08.

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Does Your Vacuum Cleaner Suck?

vacuum_cleaner.jpgIf you’re like me, an undomestic goddess of a kingdom comprised mostly of pet hair and assorted baby stuff, any help in biting back the dust is welcome. National Geographic’s Green Guide recently published an article on vacuum cleaners, including product comparisons and buying pointers. I dug that they say vacuums are super-easy to repair but that seldom happens. It could, however, probably save you some money, not to mention please Mother Earth (and who doesn’t like to keep on HER good side?) to try having the vacuum repaired or parts replaced (or do it yourself!) before you donate it to a thrift store, charity, or even “freecycle” it.  But if it’s time for a better vacuum or your household includes an asthma-and-allergies sufferer (like mine), take heart because today’s vacuum cleaning market lends credence to the idea that there’s a sucker born every minute—but this time, it’s in a good way! Some models with HEPA filters (sometimes pricier, sometimes not) even help whisk away and imprison the brain cell-killing chemicals in flame retardants, the hormone-tampering phthalates as well as the carcinogens and pesticides that sneak in from the outside world. I take safeguarding the environment seriously but I can’t resist one final pun—peruse The Green Guide and, for a more comprehensive list of vacuums’ green ratings, Consumer Reports. With these helpers, it’s sure to be a wind-wind situation when you choose your next vacuum cleaner!

Find it Here: The Green Guide

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