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Get the Hormones Out of School Milk!

Recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone (rBGH) is used to force cows to make more milk. It is, in essence, a genetically-engineered synthetic hormone. Most of the industrialized countries in the world have banned rBGH but here in the United States, we’re giving it to our most vulnerable citizens—our children! It is estimated that at least 84 million gallons of milk from artificial hormone-treated cows were distributed through the school nutrition programs in fiscal year 2005-2006. That’s about 20% of the milk offered in school cafeterias nationwide. I don’t give my kids rBGH-derived milk at home—why would I be okay with them having it at school??? The good news is that we have a great chance to bring milk free from artificial, genetically engineered hormones into our schools as Congress takes up legislation on the National School Lunch Program. Make your voice heard on this important issue by signing the True Food Network’s petition to ask Congress to state that schools can specifically seek out and purchase artificial hormone-free milk and organic milk.

Local, Organic and Conventional

veggies_2.jpgMy husband just sent me this link to a short article on Current about how there is no “local vs. organic.” I was glad to read it because when I hear people say that buying local is better than organic and vice versa, it made no sense to me. They’re two completely separate things. Buy organic AND local, if you can, or choose the one that’s most important to you but don’t feel like you’re choosing between two equal options. One is specifically better for Read the rest of this entry »

Hook, Line and Sinker

logo.pngWhile I don’t really fish anymore, I used to go fishing ALL the time as a kid. I’d frequently fish in the lake by my house with my friends and my family fished down in the Florida Keys at least once a month for years and years. So now that I’ve proven that I know a thing or two about fishing, let me show you how ignorant I am by admitting that since I no longer fish, I’ve never once thought about the possibility of earth-friendly fishing gear. Well, as it happens, green fishing gear DOES exist and it’s a good thing because a lot of fishing tackle still contains toxic lead or is made from non-biodegradable materials such as plastic. Obviously, lead is a danger because, well, it’s LEAD and all the non-biodegradeable junk being left behind in the oceans and waterways is not just pollution—it’s also deadly to wildlife. Fortunately, companies like Green Tackle are tackling the problem—they carry, among other things, lead free weights, all sorts of biodegradable bait and lures and most awesomely awesome, fishing line that will biodegrade instead of hanging around for the next eleventeen hundred years further damaging our fragile ecosystem. Pssst…keep Green Tackle in mind at Christmas time when shopping for your favorite fishing fanatic.

Find It Here: Green Tackle

Tempting Tiny Taste Buds

tinytastebudsjpg.jpgWe’ve featured amazing blenders that help you puree homemade baby food. We’ve featured little BPA-free containers in which to freeze your homemade baby food. And now? We’re featuring an e-book series to help you really kick ass at making that homemade baby food. You may not need help with the basics because cooking and pureeing squash? Not so hard—but how about advice on when and how to start your baby on solids? How about nutrition information? How about advice for dealing with feeding problems? Tips for spotting and avoiding allergies and/or digestive problems? Feeding your baby while traveling? Recipes for homemade finger foods? Recipes for special occasions? And of course, tons of recipes for baby food that doesn’t taste like the flavorless, vacuum-sealed, months old gunk from a jar? Christine Albury, mother of five and the author of Tempting Tiny Tastebuds pretty much covers it all and because we know a lot of our readers are DIY types who like to make their own baby food, we’ve partnered with Christine Albury to give away FIVE sets of her three e-books—Tempting Tiny Tastebuds, The Homemade Baby Food Recipes Annual – 2009 (More In Depth Nutrition Information, Tips and Recipes) and Best of Blog (The best articles and recipes from Christine Albury’s blog).

Find It Here: Homemade Baby Food Recipes

Win It: We’re giving away five sets of Christine Albury’s three e-books. Click here to fill out our simple entry form. Just enter BF6 as the giveaway name and provide the answer to this question: What are three types of recipes found on Christine’s web site? Enter by 6/30/09. $17 value for each set of e-books. Open to residents worldwide. Winner will be notified by email. Contest closed. Congrats to all five winners!

Organic Sweet Treats

yummy earth vitamin C lollipopsTry as I might to control it, I have a terrible sweet tooth that frankly makes me wonder why haven’t developed Type 2 diabetes yet. In hopes of sparing my children from this curse, I’ve always tried to steer them away from junky, sugar-laden sweets in favor of healthier stuff. Yes, I’m a total hypocrite. Unfortunately, it’s gotten a lot harder since they’ve started school. Every birthday party and holiday is an excuse to sugar the kids up with cupcakes (covered with that nasty bakery icing) and then send them home with a buttload of candy. Suddenly the healthy stuff I’d always given them was more like a punishment than a treat *sigh* Since they’re now fully aware of the appeal of candy, I’ve tried not to make it out to be some forbidden fruit because I know that will backfire. Instead, I let them have it in moderation and only after they’ve eaten something healthy. Searching for not-totally-unhealthy candy, however, has been a bit of a challenge (particularly because it has to peanut-free) but I recently picked up a bag of YummyEarth organic lollipops and it’s the smartest thing I ever did. They taste awesome because they’re sweetened with organic fruit extracts, they’re colored with cool things like organic carrots and pumpkin instead of chemicals, they’re peanut-safe (also gluten, wheat, soy and tree nut-free) and the ones I got have 75% of the daily recommendation of vitamin C. So to recap…I can bribe my kids with give my kids these little YummyEarth lollipops and they’re totally psyched, getting a lot of vitamin C and best of all, NO high fructose corn syrup. Oh, and as a total bonus? They satisfy mommy’s sweet tooth, as well. WIN.

Find It Here: YummyEarth

A Greener Apple

green_apple-w150-h2000.jpgA Greener Apple (NYC) is the project of  New York City mom and producer/director Pamela French. She takes her camera to a variety of locales in New York City area for man/woman-on-the-street interviews asking people what they would do to make New York greener (A Greener Apple!) It’s actually very interesting to see where people’s heads are at in terms of greener living and what sorts of things they feel would make a difference. The responses range from highly aware and educated to flip and somewhat ignorant. Fortunately, Read the rest of this entry »

Favorite Things: Pop!CornWare Utensils

PopCornWareEvery day I pack my kids’ lunches (yep…even in the summer) and every day they need a spoon. Well, I learned a long time ago that sending them with silverware was a bit of a crap shoot. It might make it home. It might not. And that right there? Is why I love Pop!CornWare utensils. It’s like the plastic stuff in that it’s disposable but it’s NOT plastic. Nope. It’s actually made from corn and it’s totally biodegradable, non-toxic and petroleum free. You can just use it and pitch it (or lose it) and not feel one iota of plastic guilt. But this is where Pop!CornWare gets even better. We DON’T just use it and pitch it. We use it, wash it in the dishwasher, and use it again. And again. And again. It’s true. I got my package of Pop!CornWare probably 4-6 months ago and I took 4 spoons out to use and have been using them ever since in my kids lunchboxes. Now how they can lose silverware but manage to hang onto a Pop!CornWare spoon is one of life’s great mysteries but whatever… They’re green. They last. They rule!

Find It Here: 3 Green Moms

Better Than a Singing Fish

MiEssence logoWe don’t feature a lot of green stuff for the men here on The Green Mom Review. I’m not really sure why that is but I suppose it’s because we’re not men and what the heck do we know about guy stuff like power tools and beer and remote controls and cars? Do they even make green power tools and remote controls? Hell if I know… But Father’s Day is coming up yet again and we figure most men shave and most shaving stuff is toxic crap (no, really—it is) so why don’t we feature some yummy, non-toxic, organic, pamper-him-with-the-good-stuff shaving products. Hey, it’s better than neckties AGAIN or heaven forbid, a Billy Bass singing fish plaque. So anyway, I got my own husband to try  MiEssence shaving gel and after shave balm and while he’s not one of those metrosexual types that’s all IN to his  personal care and hygiene regimen, he really liked the MiEssence and I like it because I know he’s not introducing all kinds of toxic junk straight into his freshly shaven skin. Father’s Day is settled! He’s getting more MiEssence!  And just so you know, because only the best for my man—MiEssence products are pretty much the gold standard in USDA certified organic personal care products and are also guaranteed to be of organic food grade standard—meaning they are safe enough to go IN to your body, as well as go ON your body—not that you should eat them. But you could. Just sayin 🙂

Find It Here: Grand Strand Organics

Win It: We’re giving away a bottle of MiEssence Shaving Gel and a bottle of MiEssence After Shave Balm. Click here to fill out our simple entry form. Just enter MI6 as the giveaway name and provide the answer to this question: What are three other MiEssence products you’d like to try? Enter by 6/24/09. $48 value. Open to residents of US and Canada. Winner will be notified by email.

Imagine Childhood

summerhome.jpgWhen I got an email from the peeps at Imagine Childhood asking that I take a look at their site, I clicked over and instantly fell in love—like “WHERE have you been all my life”? love. Why? Because their site reminds me of my childhood, of being outdoors, of exploring and learning and playing and life’s simpler pleasures. If you haven’t yet heard about nature deficit disorder, you soon will. It’s a hot topic and one that plagues my mind when I think about my own children’s distinct lack of free time spent outdoors (mostly for reasons beyond my control). Imagine Childhood may not be able to fix nature deficit disorder but damn if it isn’t a great place to start trying because they carry so many things that are geared toward free, imaginative, explorational and outdoor play. And the books they carry? Pure awesomeness. I urge anyone with kids to hop over there and take a gander and also note that Imagine Childhood is not just a storefront. It’s also an inspiring blog totally worth bookmarking.

Find It Here: Imagine Childhood

Win It: We’ve partnered with Imagine Childhood to give away a super cool Nature Study Kit and the amazing book I Love Dirt. Click here to fill out our simple entry form. Just enter IC6 as the giveaway name and provide the answer to this question: What are one of the five questions the folks at Imagine Childhood ask themselves when choosing new products? Enter by 6/22/09. $50 value. Open to residents of US. Winner will be notified by email. Contest closed. Congrats to Steven!

Roast!

vegetables.jpgSometimes the ugliest* fruit is the sweetest. Sometimes the simplest preparation of meals are the most delicious.

Like roasting, for example… It is the easiest, simplest, quickest (and quite tasty) way to prepare vegetables. The method can be used on almost anything and it’s pretty much the same:

  • Cut up veggie into equal sizes.
  • Drizzle on oil and toss to coat.
  • Sprinkle on grey salt or sea salt.
  • Lay it flat on a cookie sheet so they are not crowded.
  • Roast at 375F for 10 – 30 minutes until done, usually until they begin to brown.

Variations have to do with what vegetable, oil, and temperature.

  • You can roast at a higher heat, 425F, for less time. I usually choose that method.
  • You can toss in olive, coconut , walnut, macadamia nut, or sunflower oils. Don’t use corn or soybean oil or another GMO oil.
  • The big secret is not to overcrowd the pan, otherwise they will steam instead of roast.
  • Choice of vegetable or mix of vegetables is the biggest change.

Roasting enriches the flavor and deepens the color. It offers variety into our weekly menu and can be done for any seasonal vegetable. It is quick and easy, nutritious and delicious, and comprises of 3 ingredients and some heat.

Read the rest of this entry »

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