Saturday, August 27, 2011
Eco-friendly pencils, soy crayons, smencils, Forest Stewardship Council approved colored pencils, banana paper notebooks, washable markers, recycled paper sketchbooks andjournals…Stubby Pencil Studio has eco-back to school supplies for your little ones.
I love Stubby Pencil Studio because they have the cutest and most practical eco-art supplies for my kids.
Crayons, pencils, markers, notebooks…all necesary school supplies. Some years the teacher and school provide specifics other times we get a list of supplies needed for that class. I haven’t received a list or any school information yet. It would be nice to know what we need before hand. You wait until the week before school and suddenly everything that was on sale for pennies is now three times the amount it originally was.
As far as eco-supplies go Stubby Pencil Studiooften has reasonable prices no matter what time of year it is. Sure the items cost a little more than traditional ones but I am not purchasing for the whole school, just two school age kids that need a few things like pencils and markers. A big hit with my kids are Smencils and the Monkey pencils.
Monkey pencils are made from rubber wood and finished with non-toxic color.
I am waiting for my official school list to see exactly what I need to buy, plus I need to take stock of what the kids have. If they have markers and colored pencils that are in good shape they won’t need new ones. I know pencils, pens, and notebooks are always a must so those are on my list.
What’s on your back to school shopping list and do you know where to find budget friendly eco-alternatives?
Friday, August 26, 2011
Are you considering adding a little eco to your last bit of summer fun but you’re worried it will be too difficult or time consuming?
You forget about those worries because going eco can be easier than you ever imagined.
Here are some easy eco summer tips that anyone can do:
Support local farmers. If you don’t have a green thumb or if you want a larger selection than what you can grow visit local Farmer’s Markets and roadside veggie stands. Even if the produce isn’t organic, shopping local is far greener than buying produce that’s been grown and shipped from hundreds and thousands of miles away. Plus you are supporting the local economy.
Visit LocalHarvest.org to find markets near you.
Shop Green. One of the things I love most about summer is all of the garage sales, flea markets, and yard sales. I love “treasure hunting” for amazing steals, deals and unique finds. Not only can you find toys and clothes for the kids you can even find some amazing items to decorate your home, yard and garden- especially if you know how to refinish furniture or craftily upcycle items that may need a little TLC.
Why is shopping this way green? Because it’s all used and pre-owned items- no new materials are used to make them and once again it’s a great way to support the local economy.
Party Green. Summer is filled with backyard BBQs, cookouts, picnics, and parties – and the last thing you want to deal with is a sink full of dishes after a big get together. But filling the garage bin with plastic cups, plates and silverware isn’t very eco.
Good thing there are many eco options now when it comes to eco friendly yet disposable tableware. The key thing for maximum eco-effectiveness though is that the eco-tableware should be composted so it biodegrades faster- the way it was meant to. If it isn’t possible to compost the disposables- it is still greener to have used eco-versions instead of plastic and Styrofoam- neither is very eco.
There’s a wealth of places online where you can stock up on eco-goods. BambuHome.com, Verterra.com, EcoWareProducts.com, EarthenTrading.ca, Birchaware.com, GreenPartyGoods.com, and GreenPlanetParties.com all offer different types of eco-party and tableware supplies: plates, bowls, napkins, eco “silverware”, cups, and tablecloths made from eco-friendly, sustainable, recycled or recyclable materials.
Have a local green vacation- or even better a staycation. By staying local you support the local economy and save on travel expenses and carbon emissions- both very green things to do.
Another great green option is having a “staycation”. You can pitch a tent in your own backyard and have a campout with the kids without ever going anywhere. You can also explore local attractions that you may not have visited before- or at least haven’t visited in awhile.
And don’t forget there’s always a festival or carnival going on throughout the summer- be sure to include a few of those in your local summer fun.
1. Lunch Money Locket
3. Book Blanket
4. Owl Backpack
5. Decorated Pencils
6. Ipod/Cellphone case
7. Decorate Three-Ring Binders
Once upon a time, a along time ago, I had a clothesline, but alas it is gone and all that remains is a bucket full of clothespins.
So what’s a girl to do with all these wooden clothespins?
Craft with them of course!
There are many simple clothespin crafts you can do. Remember the reindeer made with clothepins from elementary school? Or how about the crazy bat clothespins?
Here are a five more clothespin crafts that can be updated for adults.
1. Gift Tags
The creature comforts blog has a of couple nice tutorials for making clothespins into pretty gift tag holders or even a fancy photo holder.
2. Recipe Card Holder
3. Wishing Well
My oldest son actually made me one when he was in elementary school .
This wishing well could easily be used as a pretty centerpiece at a wedding or party. Simply fill the inside with candies or small flowers to dress it right up.
4. Photo Holder
5. Memo Rack
What do you make with clothespins?