Loving having fresh local greens!
Since November, we have donated 40 boxes of items to The Salvation Army. I was happy to find out, everything we have donated, stays in that charity location. This means we are helping local families! Love it! Most of these items include baby toys and clothes Thomas (our youngest) out grew. Other items are clothes that do not fit the other children, shoes as well and snow gear. I have donated some kitchen items that are doubles (not necessarily needed).
There are still a number of places in the house that need a clean out! Working slowly towards those places. Master closets, broom closet, Attic, the big kids room and basement. The Garage needs help too, but that is more so Chris’ place. He knows more about what is in there than I do!
The rubber bands are being reused, and will again, to keep my fingers off the hot jar. But, like I said, it does not stay hot too long.
Not fancy, but it works!
I was talking with some friends in a trip coming up with alternatives to Freezies. I mentioned about snow cones and was advised I should uses the blender! I did and it was awesome!!
1 tray of ice at a time is plenty. Less works best in my blender. I scoop the crushed ice into cups and poured some grenadine on top. Add a spoon, and there you go!
Next, is to find syrup alternatives. Homemade or bought in bottles, not plastic bottles, like our grenadine. Years ago, I remember grenadine was in glass but they switch to plastic at some point.
Jack says he can’t wait until Julia gets home from school to try it!! I’m getting more feedback from friends to use frozen water melon, frozen banana with milk for an ice cream like treat! More to come I’m sure!
I had come to realize, with help from friends on other groups, that the diapers had formed a mineral buildup (from hard water) and the laundry detergents were not getting that off the inserts. If I put water on the insert, it would not soak into the pad. It actually just stayed on top, beaded water that would slide off when the pad was tipped. I will note, he has had no rashes, the inserts and everything else have been cleaned, no problems in that area.
I really did not want to switch back to using Tide. We have eliminated it and I did not want those chemicals back, or the scent that came with it! Blah!! I visited the Fluff University site online, and read the directions for stripping. Tide was the best option. But, determined, I tried what I already had.
I soaked the cloth diapers for 7 hours in hot, oxygen bleach water with Nature Clean Powdered detergent as well as Borax. Agitated the load every hour or more. I rinsed the load and let it sit in a cold load with oxygen bleach for 30 minutes, then put them on 3 wash cycles with detergent and Borax.
Sure enough . . . they were still repelling the water. What a waste! I was disappointed! So, Chris bought some Tide for me to use, Unscented though. No way could I deal with the scents! (I was in the attic the other day going through stored clothing and I could smell the Tide off them . . . so gross when one has been away from those smells).
So I did another strip wash like the above steps, but this time with the Tide unscented. The inserts came out mostly improved. Tonight I will try one on Thomas as a test, maybe they need to soak again, but there is definitely improvement, very little repelling.
Update. Thomas was dry this morning!! Yay!!!!!
Something I want to work towards is buying only local and in season foods. I buy as much local as I can already and package free, but there is a large carbon foot print to get some of these fruits here. Sure they could be bought as a treat once in a while, but not weekly. A change of attitude and habits!
I buy Hamburg from the Summerside Butcher Shop plastic free, as well as salami and pepperoni from Pleasant Pork at the Summerside Farmer’s Market, plastic free. Cheese is the only thing not plastic free, still working on that.
Chris found an amazing recipe for garlic butter! This is round #2 with it. I found an amazing recipe for the dough! I was making one large garlic fingers and one large pizza, but there was too much food waste. This time round, #4, I made one large pan half pizza and half garlic fingers. I like this better, less prep and faster cooking time as I can only fit one pan in the oven at a time (to bake properly).
To be honest, the kids were not liking the garlic fingers, tweaking the cook time, temperature and amount of ingredients for them. Looking for the right pizza sauce as well. I want to make my own sauce come tomato season!
Packed in the lunches (Varies everyday): homemade granola bars, Breton and soda crackers (bulk packaging), pretzels, apple slices, strawberries (clam shell), grapes, carrot slices, banana, orange pepper slices, cheese (bulk packaging), cereal (bulk packaging), juice ((2/3 full) cans), and either sandwich meat like beef or leftovers such as chicken (from our Sunday roast chickens), occasional hotdog (bulk packaging). Alaina wants water everyday instead of juice except on Wednesdays! They each have a water bottle as well.
Mostly whole foods. Juice come from aluminum cans as those are more readily recycled compared to the plastic jugs. (We have switched juice intake to once a day). Water and milk are available always. I myself just eat an apple or orange if I want juice. Best ever!!!
With much feedback from friends online, the kids will have 9 oz steel bottles for school instead of the plastic ones I am reusing. I will look for second hand in the coming months, and my eyes are set on a brand online if I can not find second ones.
School is almost out. I would love to make some cloth snack bags for the dried goods over the Summer. That would result in less dish washing. To be honest, I get annoyed by all the plastic dishes everyday! Normally I reuse the cracker dish for the week, so 4 containers times 3 kids is 12 containers and 12 lids everyday. These are best to air dry as well, taking up space for that time. I could wash them before bed everyday, but I’m not that organized!! Most of my energy is used for the morning and afternoon. I’m out by the time supper is over! Lol!
This is what it takes stay away from prepackaged foods. A little extra work (or a lot if you don’t like washing dishes, lol) to be plastic package free and healthy lunches.
Last year, if I can remember, the lunches contained: left over chicken (which was packaged), apple (bulk packaged), berries (clam shell), fruit cup (individually packaged), granola bar (individually packaged), fruit gummies (individually packaged), fishy crackers (bulk packaging), yogurt tube or drink (individually packaged), juice box (individually packaged), occasionally Bear Paw cookie or pudding (individually packaged), Rice Cake (bulk packaging).
Wow, comparing this before list to today’s list for lunches, another great reason to switch to package free foods! I know my children are eating way more healthier now!! All that processed foods there, blah!
I wanted to recycle the old molasses container I had, but I could not. Reuse was embedded in my brain so much I felt guilty not to use it. Perfect squeeze bottle made for suspencing molasses. No reason I can not reuse it again.
Slowly but surly, I poured the molasses into the container without a mess. Next time round I will probably use a jar as I’m still learning about the nasty plastic leaching problems. One step at a time. (Reviewing the article again, I think I will just put the molasses in a jar, in the morning).