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Thrifty & Green 5


Ways to Save when making

Fresh Juice Although limitlessly beneficial, juicing can also be very costly. Learn how to get the most out of juicing for your budget.

Spring Clean Detox

Spring Cleaning is not just for your home anymore get tons of detox ideas from vegan chef Marni Wasserman.

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Lemon Bites

Get delicious vegan and raw Lemon bites and other recipes from chef Dreena Burton. Page 42

APR / MAY 2012

10% off Energy


April / May 2012

Star Appliances


April / May 2012


RECIPES 19 French Toast Muffins 27 Super Cleanse Salad 35 Raw Nori Rolls 33 Spicolli Burgers 36 Sweet Potato Gnocchi with


Brown Butter Sauce

37 Lemon Kissed Blondie Bites


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Natural Make-Up Remover The many benefits of walking in nature. Dirt Lovers Diary Author and organic gardening expert Ken Druse shares with us tips to stay on point for Spring Gardening season. Green Spring Clean Clean your home with safe, frugal all-natural ingredients. Are your Mason Bees Ready for Spring? Learn simple tricks to bee keeping and harvesting honey.

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Detox with Lemon Juice, Maple Syrup + Cayenne Pepper This age old weight loss and internal cleansing method works wonders. 4

April / May 2012

5 Ways to Save when Making Fresh Juice Juicing is proven to be very beneficial to your health but can also be expensive learn how you can get the most bang for your buck.

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LIVING Holiday Breakfast Have your special holiday breakfast on the go this year somewhere breathtaking.


Urban Cycling App Read about a mobile App that reports streetlight outages.




april / may


Traditional Holiday Breakfast Anywhere For the holiday or anytime French Toast muffins, in bed or at the beach at sunrise.

FOOD & HEALTH The 3 Best Raw Vegetables your Not Eating Eating raw vegetables enables one to get the most vitamins and health benefits. HOME How to Clean + Season a Cast Iron Pan Learn the essentials of cleaning and maintaining one of the best kitchen essentials.


FAMILY Help Kids Sleep Alone Help kids transition to sleeping alone with these simple tips.

Natural Easter Egg Dye Recipes Tovah Paglaro and family of the Growing Up Green blog share their favorite recipes and experiences with dyeing eggs with natural pigments.


April / May 2012


editor’s letter

elcome to the Spring issue of Thrifty & Green!

My family and I, and everyone here at T&G are excited to present our late Spring edition of Thrifty & Green digital magazine! We have almost made it through our first year — and have so many wonderful contributors in this the fifth issue of our digital magazine. In this issue, we are celebrating Easter with Naturally Dyed Eggs by Family Editor Tovah Paglaro on page 61. Lori Winter our favorite world traveller and food writer offers up her version of holiday breakfast with French Toast Muffins to be enjoyed in bed or on the beach at sunset! on page 11. In Food we also have a feature on how to save with Fresh Juice, as well as the Lemon Juice Detox Diet Recipe by Darren Haynes on page 29. At Home and in the Garden we look at Spring Decorating ideas on page 57. We also hear from The Queen of Green on page 51 in Are your Mason Bees Ready for Spring? In Family learn how to Help Kids Sleep Alone on page 42. We truly hope you enjoy reading it as much as we did creating and enjoying all the wonderful contributors from blogs and writers around the world!

Chris McGrath Founder and Editor-in-Chief


April / May 2012

Thrifty & Green Founder & Editor

Chris McGrath

Design Director Design Lead

Beth McGrath Chris McGrath

SAVING MONEY Saving Money Writer

Natalia Tudge

Personal Finance Writer Personal Finance Writer

Dario Piana Dave Ramsey


Our publication is free in keeping with Thrifty standards, and digital only in an effort to adhere to our Green sustainable values and preserve trees. We publish 6 issues a year. Subscribe free at: CUSTOMER SERVICE

Online: LIFESTYLE Lifestyle Writer Lifestyle Writer

Lori Winter Stephanie Moram

FASHION & BEAUTY Fashion & Beauty Writers

Rachel McHollister

HOME & GARDEN Home & Garden Editor Home & Garden Writer

Stephanie Moram Pamela Pinto-Session

FOOD Food & Health Writer Food & Health Writer Food & Health Writer Food & Health Writer FAMILY Family Editor Family Writer

Marni Wasserman Lori Winter Dreena Burton Darren Haynes

Tovah Paglaro Scarlet Paolicci


For advertising solutions that reach a Thrifty & Green minded audience contact us today. Our web site and digital magazine as well as other upcoming projects, such as video webisodes and more feature many opportunities for you to build long-lasting relationships. See digital magazine rates on page 103.

Founder & CEO Chris McGrath e:

PARTNERS Ogden Publications Mother Earth Fairs Green Festivals

TECHNOLOGY SUPPORT Chris McGrath Director Technology Technology Consultant Thomas P. Scola


Syndication Partner Event Partner Event Partner

April / May 2012



April / May 2012


April / May 2012


Honey & Coconut The Natural Make-Up Removers Photo by: Lori Winter


oney is a great way to remove your make-up at the end of the day But don’t go smearing it onto your eyelids & eyelashes. I mean, I suppose you could do that, but I wouldn’t recommend it!

Instead take a very small amount of coconut oil on your fingers. And I do mean small, people. Start with a very light layer. Gently spread it on your eyelids and eyelashes. Be careful not to spread it in your eyeball. Common sense, I know, but I just wanted to cover all the bases.

Did you ever notice what a strange word ‘make-up’ is? A vague verb that’s evolved into a noun to reference artificial colors we smear on our face. Just thought I’d throw that out there...

I recently come across a great company called 100% Pure that uses fruit & vegetable pigments to color their products and I’ve been really impressed with their products. Check them out if you like. Or test the chemical content of your current make-up at the EWG’s SkinDeep Cosmetics Database.

Removing Eye Make-up

once you’ve applied your hopefully now natural eyeshadow, eyeliner, and mascara, I’ve found the best way to take it off at night is with coconut oil. Of course! The one thing I can’t live



April / May 2012

without in my kitchen OR my bathroom. Just take a very small amount of coconut oil on your fingers. And I do mean small, people. Start with a very light layer. Gently spread it on your eyelids and eyelashes. Be careful not to spread it in your eyeball. Common sense, I know, but I just wanted to cover all the bases. Next, take a small square of toilet paper, a cotton ball, a cotton pad, or a rag that you don’t mind getting dirty, and gently wipe away the coconut oil, and watch in amazement as it takes your makeup along with it.

“100% Pure

is an all-natural cosmetic company that uses fruit and vegetable pigments to color thier cosmetics.

If I had used more brightly colored eyeshadow (and more of it) you would see an even more dramatic change. Added bonus? The coconut oil is phenomenal for your skin. Using it around your eyes will help firm up the skin in this area and prevent wrinkles in the long run. And while you’re at it, spread it over the rest of your face once you’ve washed with honey (or another natural face cleanser) to reduce red spots and balance your skin’s natural oil production. No more flaky dry skin OR greasy oily skin!


The Challenge, Should You Choose to Accept It The challenge is if you don’t already have a big tub of coconut oil in your house, buy one today. Just do it. There are about 94,758,494,858 uses for the stuff. So don’t put it off a day longer.

it’s never happened to me. But removing your daily eye make-up is hunky dory too.) Then take a picture of the evidence. Yep, I want to see it in all its smeared-off glory. Take a before & after snapshot of how well the coconut oil removes your

Next, use it to remove your eye make-up after all your wild parties this weekend. You know the ones. Where you show up with 14 layers of color on your eyelids and reapply mascara constantly through the night. (Oh, you don’t do that either? Well, I can’t say

April / May 2012

eye make-up and tag me in a tweet (@LaurelofLeaves) Lori WInter is a T&G contributor and writer in Nashville, TN. She is known as the Thrifty world traveler and is publisher of laurelofleaves. com an award winning food and green lifestyle blog.

Marth Stewart Pets Pique Sleeveless Crab Polo


April / May 2012



April / May 2012

Books for Spring Peaceful Piggy Meditation (Albert Whitman Prairie Books) [Paperback] Kerry Lee Maclean (Author), Kerry Maclean (Illustrator) List Price:


Editorial Reviews This is an excellent introductory book on meditation that we recently used with great success to teach children to meditate at a Buddhist summer camp. The theme of the book was just about right for kids aged 4-9. I did not find the material “dumbed down” for this age group as a previous reviewer suggested, but perhaps older children might find it to be so. The piggies are cute and kind of cool (I liked them!). Buddha at Bedtime: Tales of Love and Wisdom for You to Read with Your Child to Enchant, Enlighten and Inspire [Paperback] Dharmachari Nagaraja (Author) 4.9 out of 5 stars See all reviews (30 customer reviews) | Like (63) List Price:


Many of today’s children face challenges and obstacles far beyond what their parents ever imagined. These 20 thoroughly modern retellings of ancient Buddhist tales give parents a fun, low-pressure way to impart wisdom and moral guidance without preaching. Each story highlights a moral or ethical dilemma that echoes those that children face in their own lives, providing insight and enlightenment that they can use to defuse trying situations. At the conclusion of each story, applicable Buddhist principles are discussed. Featuring engaging characters, enthralling adventures, and modern language that speaks to today’s kids, these beautifully illustrated stories can help children relieve stress, attain greater academic and social achievement, and enjoy a more positive outlook on life. 14

April / May 2012

books for spring Making More Plants: The Science, Art, and Joy of Propagation [Paperback] Ken Druse (Author) 4.7 out of 5 stars List Price:


This title has not yet been released. You may pre-order it now and we will deliver it to you when it arrives.

For people who love gardens, propagation—the practice of growing whatever you want, whenever you want—is gardening itself. In this paperback reissue of the successful book Making More Plants, Druse, one of America’s foremost gardening authorities, presents innovative, practical techniques for expanding any plant collection, along with more than 500 photographs. Based on years of personal research, this is a practical manual as well as a beautiful garden book, presenting procedures Ken Druse has tested and adapted, as well as photographed step by step.

National Geographic Guide to the National Parks of the United States, 6th Edition [Paperback] National Geographic (Author) List Price:


Featuring 375 color photos and 80 full-color detailed maps—more than any other park guidebook—this is the most comprehensive, up-to-the-minute book of its kind on the market today. A perennial favorite with more than a million copies sold in previous editions, it reflects National Geographic’s century-long association with America’s national parks system and its peerless reputation for travel expertise and cartographic excellence.


April / May 2012

books for spring Student’s Vegetarian Cookbook, Revised: Quick, Easy, Cheap, and Tasty Vegetarian Recipes [Paperback] Carole Raymond (Author) 4.5 out of 5 stars List Price:


Some people are vegetarians because they think a meat-free diet is good for you. Some believe it’s good for the planet. Others just want tasty food; they want it cheap, they want it easy, and they want it now. Whatever your reasons, check out this book’s 135 great-tasting vegetarian recipes, including: Gingered Chinese Greens Stir-Fry • Banana Bread • Moroccan Stew and many, many more.

Quick Vegetarian Pleasures: More than 175 Fast, Delicious, and Healthy Meatless Recipes [Paperback] Jeanne Lemlin (Author) 4.7 out of 5 stars List Price:


Jeanne Lemlin has been writing about great vegetarian food for more than a decade. Her many books include MainCourse Vegetarian Pleasures, Simple Vegetarian Pleasures, and Quick Vegetarian Pleasures, for which she won a prestigious James Beard Cookbook Award. A cooking instructor and food writer, she is a columnist for Cooking Ligbt and a contributor to Gourmet and Country Journal. Jeanne lives in Great Barrington, Massachusetts.


April / May 2012

food & health

The three Best Raw Vegetables

your not



e all know that to be healthy you must eat your vegetables, and almost without exception the healthiest way to do so is to eat them raw. This is because cooking vegetables – whether baking, boiling, grilling, or frying – lowers their nutritional content. Because of this it is important to keep tabs on including fresh vegetables in our diet. Try including any or 3 three of the vegetables listed below in your diet on a regular basis and not only will you find it to be a tasty addition to your palate, but a healthy one, too.


1 Cabbage is another delicious vegetable that many only associate as a food to boil. At best, people eat it technically raw when made into cole slaw, but at that point it’s dripping with mayonaise and other unhealthy ingredients, so we can strike that from the list! One thing that’s also nice about cabbage as how cheap it is when it replaces more expensive salad staples, such as spinach and romaine lettuce. Beets are first on the list. They areso easy to eat raw yet often get overlooked. Maybe it’s because they’re somewhat of a pain to chop up and prepare due to the fact that you get everything purple in the process. Either way, they are a powerhouse of vitamins and minerals and are very easy to eat raw.

Suggestions Finely chopped cabbage salad with 1 TBSP olive oil. Add salt, sweet corn, beans, and other ingredients as desired. Serve cold or at room temperature.

Suggestions Make a raw beet salad by slicing beets and adding a pinch of salt or drink beetroot juice for breakfast to start your day with a good boost of energy.


April / May 2012


Cauliflower is something I seen to have an instrinic connection to. My parents tell me as a toddler I would ask for it by name. I always assumed everyone loved raw cauliflower, right? Wrong. Many people don’t even think of it as something you can eat raw, and if they do, they always want to combine it with a huge whallop of ranch dip. But cauliflower is super good in its own right and is the perfect addition to any salad – even a cauliflower salad! Suggestions: Add one cup chopped raw cauliflower to any salad. What are some of your favorite vegetables to eat raw and what creative ways do you include them in your meals? Darren and Veronica Haynes are avid juicing fans and have created many tasty juicer recipes through much trial and error. They share many of their recipes and lots of advice and guidance for juicing through their popular blog


April / May 2012

healthy breakfast

photo by: Lori Winter

French Toast Muffins Recipe by: Lori Winter




few slices of sourdough bread, cut into strips 2 eggs 1 tsp. cinnamon stevia powder, sprinkled to taste 1/4 c. raw milk, almond milk, rice milk, or coconut milk a couple glugs of pure maple syrup

1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. 2. Combine eggs, stevia, milk, and maple syrup in a medium size bowl and whisk lightly. 3. Taking a few strips of bread at a time, soak them in the mixture, then arrange them inside a muffin tin hole. Repeat with the remaining slices of bread until your muffin tin is full. Add more milk, egg, syrup, etc. as needed to the bowl as you go. 4. Drizzle the tops of the muffins with a bit more maple syrup, then pop them in the oven for 20 minutes.

April / May 2012

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April / May 2012

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April / May 2012

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living green

One App

Every Urban Cyclist Should Have


ighttime is my alltime favorite time to bike, hands down. Everything seems to slow down a bit and the longer periods of darkness that come with colder weather can throw any city’s lights into even deeper relief. Of course, visibility is one of the biggest safety concerns cyclist have at night. To be sure I’m as visible as possible, I have a blazing bright taillight and a knog headlight ($15 on Amazon) that packs a pretty mean punch for being so small. Streetlights also play a huge role in guiding me home each night, and

Mandi Woodruff is the Bike Writer

I’ve come to rely on them to see any approaching obstacles—human and nonhuman, alike. A couple months ago, I started to notice several dead lights along a very important bridge I cross to get home in the evening. It’s a narrow lane and pedestrians and cyclists rarely stick to their designated paths, so lights are crucial to spot any walkers and joggers along the way. I came thisclose ​to flattening at least two people over the course of a week due to poor visibility and, still, there was no sign the Department of Transportation was going to repair

the lights. But I remembered hearing from a cyclist friend that NYC’s 311 iPhone app had a form for reporting unsafe road conditions. I figured it’d be worth a shot, so I pulled over right on the bridge one night to give it a try. And guess what: It actually worked. Two weeks later, the lights were repaired. Not every city has a 311 app available for smartphones (Here’s one for Boston, for example), but a quick Google search for “your city + 311 + app” should turn it up.


April / May 2012

I never heard anything after that confirmation message, but actions speak louder than words right? I’m happy the best part of my commute home each night is a disaster zone no longer. Safe riding to you all! See the following pages for a step-by-step of how to report a street light that is not working in your city. Mandi Woodruff is a T&G contributor, and a reporter based in New York City. She blogs about cycling at www. Find her on Twitter: @thebikewriter

the bike writer STEP









April / May 2012

living green STEP






Be sure to visit Mandi at her blog blogs/the-bike-writer for more great articles like The 4 S’s of Safe Cycling...

Syndicate your blog on Thrifty & Green and Join us in building an online resource of frugal + green expert and personal advice. 24

April / May 2012

Spring Cleaning

Is not just for your home anymore


leansing your body is one of the great natural “makeovers” you can do to feel good both inside and out. Approaching a cleanse in a healthy way can help you reestablish a baseline and allow your cells and organs to function at their optimum potential. Cleansing also allows you introduce “healthy”, organic and fresh foods in your diet – giving your digestive system a break and purifying your blood.

Contrary to mainstream belief, cleansing isn’t about depriving your body of food. Instead, it’s a chance to re-train your tongue to acquire the delicious taste for whole foods in their natural state. It’s safe to do a one or two-day juice fast (if you feel up to it) but it’s not necessary. Focus more on eating fresh whole foods as the basis of all your meals. Eating more salads, drinking more smoothies and drinking lots of fresh water throughout the day will leave you feeling pure and energized. At the very least start your day with a glass of warm water with lemon juice to get the process going – this is the easiest and best thing you can do to start your cleanse.

Why Should You Cleanse?

To help the body as it neutralizes and eliminates toxins though the major organs such as our colon, liver, kidney, lungs, lymph and skin – our bodies do it everyday! But if our self-cleansing system is overloaded by our unhealthy lifestyles and exposure to environmental toxins, it becomes difficult to do it’s own.


April / May 2012

food & health

health feature

There are many factors that contribute to toxicity in the body – (processed, packaged foods, the environment/ pollution/ chemicals in the home –shampoo, makeup, kitchen and bathroom cleaners, detergent etc…). If you give your body a little break from these “toxins”, I can attest to the feeling of feeling much better than not cleansing. We are over chemicalized, through our diet (animal protein, saturated fat, caffeine, alcohol and sugar) and through the environment. Even if your diet is good, a cleanse can restore your immune system and protect against environmental toxins that pave the way for disease bearing bacteria, viruses and parasites.

What you can do (for maximum results): 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Eliminate: bleached and refined flours Choose: whole grains or gluten free grains Eliminate: Refined sugars (high fructose corn syrup) Choose: natural sweeteners like honey or maple syrup Eliminate: Table salt Choose sea salt instead Eliminate: Trans fats and refined oils (processed corn, canola, sunflower) 7. Choose: olive oil, flax oil, hemp oil and coconut oil 8. Eliminate or Reduce: Meats treated with hormones or antibiotics, farmed fish 9. Choose: organic and wild varieties and keep to a minimum 10. Eliminate: Foods sprayed with pesticides and herbicides 11. Choose: local and organic varieties 12. Eliminate: Conventional Dairy products 13. Choose: organic varieties, goats and sheep’s milk or eliminate and use alternatives like hemp, rice and almond milk 14. Avoid: Genetically modified foods and oils (make sure it is labeled, such as “non- GMO”) 15. Avoid: Additives and preservatives (nitrates, sulfites, flavorings and colourings) Read your food labels! 16. Avoid: Fast foods, fried food 17. Avoid: Sodas, juices with added sugars 18. Avoid: Coffee, cigarettes and alcohol

The bottom line is to eat whole foods, fresh foods, lots of green leafy vegetables, salads, smoothies, whole and sprouted grains, nuts seeds and other healthy oils. These foods should make up the bulk of your diet. Fill in the gaps with herbal tea, fresh lemon water and you’re on your way to superior health! To find out more about how to transition your diet and learn how to eat whole foods join my Raw Rejuvenation Retreat in Collingwood Ontario this May 2012. There are a few spots left for some lucky participants and early bird rates are currently available! You can also see me on my last Rejuvenation retreat to get a taste.

Marni Wasserman is a Culinary Nutrtionist and Chef providing well rounded “delicious knowledge” to all those in need of healthy food information. Marni’s focus is stemmed around whole foods, and she is dedicated to providing individuals with a balanced lifestyle through natural plant based foods. Marni hosts cooking classes, workshops, demonstrations, and private consultations for people who believe eating consciously is one of the many great things in life. For more information, visit 26

April / May 2012


Super Cleanse Salad Recipe + Photo By: Marni Wasserman

INGREDIENTS 1 bunch if kale (any variety), chopped into bite size piece with rib removed

¼ cup apple cider vinegar

DIRECTIONS 1. Shred the cabbage, carrots, beets and fennel in a food processor with shredding blade or 2. use a mandolin or hand slice into thin strips. 3. In a mixing bowl, toss in all the raw vegetable ingredients (except the hemp seeds). 4. In a separate bowl mix together the vinaigrette. 5. Combine vinaigrette with raw veggies and toss together until the cabbage and kale are well coated. 6. Allow salad to marinate in fridge for a few minutes – or up to an hour, mixing in the hemp seeds just before serving.

1 lemon, juiced


1 fennel 1 head red cabbage, shredded2 carrots, shredded 1 beet shredded 2 tbsp hemp seeds ½ cup olive oil or hemp oil

2-4 tablespoons raw unpasteurized honey 1 tsp sea salt


1 lb. sweet potatoes 2 c. whole wheat or spelt flour (preferably sprouted & freshly ground) 1 egg, lightly beaten 1/4 c. parmesan cheese

April / May 2012

Time to Bake

Le Creuset Tart Dish Durable stoneware will not wear out and is the choice of chefs the world over. shop collection

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April / May 2012

Secrets of Lemons

food & health

Detoxify with lemon + cayenne pepper


he popularity of various cleansing systems has made the lemon detox diet recipe one of the most searched for and desired recipes. People are attracted to this detox system due to its health properties and its inadvertent side effect of substantial weight loss. With the number of junk food and questionable ingredients that are out there, people are looking for ways to rid their bodies of unhealthy toxins. The lemon detox diet is one of the best ways to do so due to its nourishing and refreshing ingredients.

Natural Tree Syrup

The main ingredient in the lemon detox diet recipe is natural tree syrup. This syrup is derived from trees that originate in Asia and parts of upper Canada. The Asian syrup comes from palm tree sap while the liquid from Canada

comes from maple trees. The benefit associated with natural tree syrup is the fact that the liquid is filled with essentially minerals. This helps the body to remove impurities which in turn helps the digestive and immune systems. This ingredient is what makes the lemon detox diet so potent and effective.

Lemon Juice, Cayenne Pepper

These two parts of the lemon detox diet recipe provide the remaining nutritional ingredients that the body needs. They are also effective at awakening the senses and purifying the body of pollutants. Lemon juice is essential to the lemon detox diet recipe because it provides vitamin C benefits and it works to improve the immune system. Although the reasons for the inclusion of cayenne pepper are unclear, what is known is the awakening properties that it

provides. This makes it a very important part of the lemon detox diet recipe. People who wish to feel better about their lives and bodies should consider the lemon detox regimen. The ingredients in the lemon detox diet recipe are all natural and good for the body. There is no other routine that can provide the same detoxing properties as this lemon detox process. Darren and Veronic


April / May 2012

Haynes are T&G contributors, bloggers and the founder of ‘Juicer Recipes Now� a juice blog featured on the Thrifty & Green Blogger Network. Darren has studied at the Institute for Optimal Health & Nutrition in the UK. Veronica has a journalism background, and has also worked at a Juice Bar! Be sure to visit juicerrecipesnow for more great recipes.



Ways to Save when Juicing

April / May 2012


Ways to Save when Juicing

by: Ben Jacobs Last year I bought an Omega Juicer and quickly learned that as much as I loved juicing, it was an expensive habit. I could easily spend $100 alone on just making wheat grass shots, never mind the other drinks I was making every day – sometimes more than once! With a budget firmly in mind, I started concentrating on making the best tasting yet cheapest drinks I could make. I circled in on using organic carrots as the main ingredient, since they are the most economical option for drinks, and then experimented with ways to liven up the flavor. In this guest post I want to share with you some of the tips I’ve learned for making carrot juice tastier!

4. Apple for Sweetness

1. Cilantro for Refreshment

I’m a cilantro lover, liberally adding it to just about any dish or salad I’m making. But why stop with solid food? Hence, I began to add it to my carrot juice and discovered it compliments the taste very, very well. I know you might be thinking that cilantro is a very strange thing to add, but please try it before you knock it! I’ve converted skeptical friends by having them taste it and they agree, it works. It gives it a nice refreshing, satisfying kick that rounds out the flavor.

2. Crushed Ice for Texture

Crushed ice is another trick I learned early on that makes my drinks tastier. Mainly what I’m going for here is obviously not flavor but something else – texture. I find that adding a small but thick layer of crushed ice to my juice after it’s fully blended improves both the texture and the aesthetic appeal, as the appearance of the ice makes it look more complete.

3. Ginger for Zest

Adding an apple to your carrot juice will make the drink taste lighter and much sweeter. If you have fancy yourself as having a sweet tooth, you will probably find it necessary to sweeten your carrot juice, as it is naturally not very sweet at all. I prefer the tart sweetness of a green Golden Delicious apple for my drinks.

5. Banana for Increased Thickness

One day I added a banana on a whim, without really any idea of how my Omega would treat it. I wasn’t sure if it would really juice or just gunk those up. Turns out it adds a nice thickening to the entire drink, making it a bit more like a carrot smoothie than normal carrot juice. This is a good way to dramatically change the texture, giving the drink more bulk, and add a bit more calories to the drink to make it more suitable as a breakfast replacement. What other ways do you enjoy making carrot juice? Visit us at and let us know your favourite juice recipes.

Buying a little bit of ginger root and keeping it on hand goes a long way for altering the taste of your drinks. A small amount of ginger – about the size of a dime – will give it a zesty burst of flavor. Additionally, ginger has many digestive health properties and this is a good way to incorporate those benefits into your diet. 31

April / May 2012


April / May 2012

“Spicoli” Burgers photo credit: Dreena Burton

recipes recipes

“Spicoli” Burgers w/ potato squashers

Recipe + Photo By: Dreena Burton

These wholesome patties made with brown rice and hemp seeds are a little crisp on the outside, and soft and moist on the inside. Serve on their own with a slurry of balsamic vinegar and flax oil, or inside pita bread with veggies and condiments. INGREDIENTS splash of water or 2 tsp olive oil 1 1/4 - 1 1/2 cups onion, diced 1/8 tsp sea salt freshly ground black pepper, to taste 3/4 cup red bell pepper, diced 2 cups cooked short-grain brown rice (see note) 1 cup shelled hemp seed nuts 2 medium cloves, garlic, quartered 2 tbsp ketchup 1 tbsp tamari 1 tsp Dijon mustard 1 tsp dried oregano 1/2 tsp dried thyme 1/2 tsp dried sage leaves 1/4 tsp sea salt 1 cup cooked short-grain brown rice (see note) 1/4 cup millet flour or other whole-grain flour (to lightly dust patties) smidgen olive oil (for pan-frying, or can bake in oven, see note) DIRECTIONS In a non-stick pan on medium heat, add water/oil, onions, salt, and black pepper and sauté for 3–4 minutes 33

until onions start to soften. Add bell peppers, and sauté for another 5–6 minutes, until onions are fully softened. In a food processor, combine 2 cups rice, hemp seeds, garlic, ketchup, tamari, mustard, oregano, thyme, sage, and salt and purée until fairly smooth, scraping down sides of bowl if needed. Transfer to a bowl and stir in remaining rice. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to firm up. Remove from fridge and form patties with your hands. Place flour evenly on a plate and lightly dust both sides of each patty, shaking off excess. Wipe out same non-stick pan to lightly clean, then add a smidgen of oil over medium-high heat (see note for oven-baking). Add patties, 3 or 4 at a time, and lightly flatten with a spatula. Cook for 6–9 minutes on each side, until golden and a crust has formed. Makes 8-10 patties. NOTES You need 3 cups total cooked brown rice for this recipe. I like these patties tender, but you can make them firmer adding oats (regular or gluten-free) or breadcrumbs after chilling if you prefer. I use very little oil to pan-fry these, just a wipe of oil on a non-stick skillet. If you prefer to oven-bake, place patties on a baking sheet lined with parchment. Bake at 400 degrees for about 8-10 minutes on each side. To brown a little more on the outside, set oven to broil for just a minute. Don’t know what to do with left- over cooked patties? Refrigerate for a sandwich filling; mash and stir in chopped fresh veggies and condiments to taste.

April / May 2012


Raw Nori Rolls Recipe + Photo By: Marni Wasserman


DIRECTIONS 1. Place all the spread ingredients in a food processor or high speed blender until uniform. You can leave it chunky or smooth it out by adding a touch of water or blending it for longer.

Nori Rolls

4-6 sheets of raw nori 1 carrot shredded 2 small beets, shredded ½ cucumber, cut into slices 1 avocado, sliced Handful of sprouts (mung, sunflower or pea shoots)

2. Lay one nori sheet flat on a surface. 3. Spread about 1⁄4 cup of seed spread on the nori sheet (you can fill it in to the edges if you want).

Seed Spread 1 cup sunflower seeds soaked 10-12 hours 1 cup almonds soaked 10-12 hours 1-2 tablespoons fresh dill 1 tablespoon fresh oregano 1 teaspoon fresh sage, chopped 2 tablespoon lemon juice 1 tablespoon tamari 1 teaspoon fresh ginger 1 tablespoon kelp or dulse granules ½ teaspoon sea salt


4. Place your veggies down in a relatively thin row, horizontally towards the bottom of the sheet. 5. Begin to roll - lift the bottom edge closest to you, wrap over all the veggies, hold tight, continue to roll it all the way up - seal it with some water or extra seed spread. 6. Cut the rolls - start in the center of the roll and then keep cutting down the center of each half until you have 6-8 pieces.

April / May 2012


Sweet Beef Pot Pie Potato Gnocchi

with Sage & Browned Butter Recipe + Photo by: Lori Winter

INGREDIENTS 1 tsp. sea salt 8 Tbsp. (1 stick) butter 1/3 c. fresh sage, thinly sliced freshly grated parmesan for topping sea salt & pepper to taste

Divide your dough into four parts and roll out each until they are long and skinny. With a knife, slice off 1-inch pieces. You can gently press each piece with the tines of fork for a traditional gnocchi decoration. Now bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Working in batches, drop in the gnocchi pieces with a slotted spoon and boil until they float to the top. Remove from the water and set aside on a pan or plate.

DIRECTIONS Preheat your oven to 450 F. Poke holes in your sweet potatoes with a fork, place on a baking tray and roast for 40 minutes. When they are cool enough to handle, scoop out the flesh, place Next melt the butter in a large stainless steel or cast iron skillet. Continue cooking the butit in a bowl, and mash until smooth. ter over a medium-low heat until it begins to Add to the bowl 1 egg, 1 tsp. salt, 1/4 c. Parme- brown. Add the gnocchi and fresh sage and cook san cheese, and about 1 1/2 c. flour. Mix togeth- for about 3-4 minutes. Toss gently to evenly coat the gnocchi in the pan. Season with salt and er, then knead until a dough forms. Add more pepper and garnish with freshly grated Parmesan flour as needed until your mixture is no longer cheese. sticky.


April / May 2012

Lemon Kissed Blondie Bites photo credit: Dreena Burton 36

April / May 2012


Lemon Kissed Blondie Bites Recipe + Photo By: Dreena Burton

1/2 cup raw cashews 3/4 cup rolled oats (use certified gluten-free for that option) 1 cup pitted dates (I use honey dates) 1 1/2 - 2 tsp lemon zest (can reserve some for coating, if using) 1 1/2 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice seeds scraped from one vanilla bean (see note; or 1/4 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract) couple pinches sea salt (about 1/8 tsp, wee scant) 2 - 3 tbsp unsweetened shredded coconut (as desired) Optional coating: Extra lemon zest (about 1/2 tsp; optional) few teaspoons (each) coconut and oats In a food processor, add the cashews, oats, dates, zest, lemon juice, vanilla seeds, and salt and process. At first it will appear as if nothing is happening, and the mixture is just whirring around crumbly, but soon it will start to become sticky (patience my pretties)! When you see it start to become a little sticky, add the coconut and process again. Continue to process until it forms a ball on the blade. Stop, and then remove the dough. Take 37

small scoops of the dough (about 1 - 1 1/2 tbsp in size) and roll in your hand. Repeat until you have used all of the dough. If using coating, mix ingredients in a small bowl. Toss or roll the balls in the coating if using, and refrigerate. Eat and repeat often. :) Makes 14-16 dough balls. Notes: 1) To remove the vanilla seeds from the bean pod, slice the bean down the outer side using a sharp tip knife, to open up lengthwise. Press open the sides, and using a blunt (butter) knife, scrape out all the tiny seeds from the bean on both sides, and then add seeds to processor. The pod can be discarded or kept to infuse flavor in other dishes. 2) The texture of these bites is somewhat soft, but firms with chilling. For a firmer texture, add another 2 tbsp of rolled oats. 3) These are excellent to pack in school lunches (where nuts are permitted). (sugar-free, soy-free, gluten-free option)

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April / May 2012

Natural Easter

Dye Eggs with Natural Pigments from Fruits + Vegetables


atural Easter egg dying is all the rage this year. It?s easy, fun and infinitely more sustainable than the artificial dyes we?ve become accustomed to. As the pillar of Easter festivities, egg decorating is the natural focus for a greener celebration. Creating a rainbow of colors is as simple as making the primaries, then mixing them together until desired shades are achieved. This lesson in color spectrum is half the fun for kids!

Recipes for Natural Dyes for Easter Eggs For each color, combine the ingredients and boil for 15 minutes. The vinegar acts as a fixative - it?s the magic that makes the color take! Once the dye has cooled, submerge the egg and let it sit for 15 minutes, or longer for deeper color. Once dry, rub eggs with vegetable oil for a shiny finish, or leave for a matte finish. Continue on to the next page for recipes and ideas for great naturally dyed eggs...

photo courtesy of:


April / May 2012

RED/PINK 2 cups beets, grated 1 tbsp white vinegar 2 cups water Other Options: strong Red Zinger tea, or chopped fresh or frozen cranberries

GREEN 3 handfuls chopped spinach 1 tbsp white vinegar 2 cups water Other Options: mix yellow and blue Patterns & Texture

YELLOW/GOLD 3 large handfuls of yellow/brown onionskins 1 tbsp white vinegar 3 cups water Other Options: strong chamomile tea, or 3 tbsp ground turmeric

For even color, strain the ingredients before submerging the eggs. If a more textured color is desired, leave all ingredients in the pot.

BLUE/PURPLE 1 pound frozen blueberries, crushed 1 tbsp white vinegar 2 cups water Other Options: coarsely chopped red cabbage leaves (this makes a lavender color)


Making patterns, pictures or designs on eggs increases the opportunity for creative fun. Wax prevents the dye from taking. It is the simplest tool for pattern making and consistently delivers great results. Young children will enjoy drawing on cold hard-boiled eggs with a crayon ? for best results use a white beeswax crayon. Older kids and grown ups can increase the level of detail by painting onto the egg with melted beeswax. Wax can be left on the egg as a decorative choice, or to melt if off after dyeing, submerge the egg in hot water for 1 minute.

photo by: Sara + Dulcie of 43

April / May 2012

holiday projects

Stripes are easily created by wrapping hard-boiled eggs with a rubber band before submerging in dye. Nature eggs are a favorite! Affix small leaves or blades of grass to the egg using tightly tied pantyhose. Dye the eggs. When the hose is removed, the imprint will remain. Tattoo eggs can be fun, put the collection of temporary tattoos amassed from endless goodie bags to good use by tattooing Easter eggs. The tattoos will stick to clean, dry, dyed eggs ? but not to wax. This is a big hit with the kids. Tovah Paglaro is a mother of 3, Family Editor + Columnist for T&G in Vancouver, BC. She writes about Sustainable Family values and eco inspired crafts in her two weekly oringial columns Growing Up Green, and Crafty Kids on

photo by: Sara + Dulcie of 44

April / May 2012

home & garden

Dirt Lovers’ Diary with Ken Druse Get Ready for Spring Gardening Fertilizing and Potting Make your own potting mix for outdoors containers with one part rich productive garden soil, 1 part leaf mold or compost, and 1 part builder’s sand or perlite. Add 1 tablespoon dry, 5-10-5 fertilizer and 1-tablespoon dolomitic lime per gallon of mixture. Tree spikes for fertilizer are not as effective as broadcasting food over the area of the root zone of trees. The root zone can be larger than the drip-line – the width of the canopy of the tree. If a tree is in the lawn and the lawn is fertilized, chances are the tree will not need to be. Try to use organic fertilizers for all these tasks. Bigger is cheaper, but do not buy more garden products than you can

use. Some chemicals lose their effectiveness over time. Fertilizers can degrade – natural gas derived plant foods that are like salt will attract moisture – like table salt does. Also, pesticides and fungicides are impossible to through away. Wait for yearly hazardous material pick-ups by your

trash collection service or take them to the local county or town dump. Never pour chemicals down the drain or onto the ground. The chemicals can find their way to the ground water and cause a pollution hazard, but they will be dangerous for you, pets and children right on the


April / May 2012

ground Daffodils are poisonous, and that is one reason we’re happy to have them in the garden – they don’t get dug up or eaten by critters. But as cut flowers, daffodils make the water slimy and can clog the stems of other flower stems.

Dirt Lover’s Diary Change water frequently or arrange them in a vase of their own. Prepping New Beds One way that I make new beds in lawn areas is by laying down a layer of cardboard or newspaper (four sheets thick) watering that and covering it with mulch or compost. You can punch holes through the mulch to plant in spring or better, wait until the following year and turn this material over for a new bed. The process can also be done in the fall for spring planting. If you have a lot of weed seeds in your soil or compost, or aged rotted manure, such as horse bedding from a stable, spread the material, water well, and cover with black plastic to cook the weeds as they germinate. Put bluebird houses and other houses up early so that birds returning from their migration will seethe houses early. Blue birds like their houses in an open area, about six feet above the ground. The birds like houses in open fields because they want to be able to see all the way around the houses. Snakes are one of the predators for these


birds, and the little house on the prairie gives them better views of potential predators that will also be less inclined to attack in the open. Warm Up It is hard to remember, but some stretching is always a good idea in the early days as the season gets going. Try and warm up your muscles. I always remind myself to take a shower before going out to the garden, even though I might want to take one after I’ve gotten sweaty or dirty. Ken Druse may be the best-known garden writer in America. He’s written seventeen garden books, and two have won best book of the year awards from the American Horticultural Society. Ken has also written hundreds of magazine and newspaper articles on gardening and been a popular television guest on programs such as Martha Stewart and the Liberty Garden as well as hosting hist weekly podcast Real Dirt.

Be sure to visit Ken at his blog for more great articles.

Syndicate your blog on Thrifty & Green and Join us in building an online resource of frugal + green expert and personal advice. April / May 2012

home & garden

How To Clean + Season

a cast iron pan Article + Photos by: Pamela Pinto-Sessions


love cast iron and use my pan almost daily! I also have a cast iron dutch oven and will slowly replace other pans with cast iron as the need and budget allows. My cast iron pan lives on the stove, I use it that often – there is no need for me to put it in the cabinet with the other pot and pans! I wash it with soap and hot water, once a week, after I make the pancakes for the upcoming week and then season it – the rest of the time after using I just rinse the pan in hot water and wipe dry with a cotton cloth.

• • •

Cotton rags Patience Elbow grease


I was recently visiting a relative and found a cast iron pan in their cabinet. The pan was covered in rust and that had to be fixed. If you read on the web it states to take a pan that has rust and wash in hot soapy water with steel wool, but I did not have steel wool, so I had to find another way. This is how I did it and it turned out great! Disclaimer – I had some technical difficulties with my computer and I lost most of the before pictures and some of the after, but felt I still needed to share the process – sorry! Items needed • Olive oil or coconut oil • Very course salt • Paper towel


April / May 2012

Heat the pan, take off the burner fill with oil and allow the oil to be absorbed by the pan. I let the oil sit in the pan for about an hour and then wiped with a paper towel.

home & garden Since the bottom and sides of the pan were also rusted – I started cleaning the bottom first. I place the pan upside down on newspaper and then sprinkled a very course salt all over the bottom and then poured oil on top. I let the salt absorbed some of the oil and taking a cotton rag I rub the pan with the salt and oil. The salt absorbed the rust and the oiled seasoned. I did this about 3 times before all the rust was gone – beautiful!

Now that the bottom was done it was time to work on the cooking part of the pan. I followed the same steps as for the bottom.


2 Salt and oil in pan

Salt added to the bottom


3 The pan is done and seasoned Salt and oil added to the bottom


Now when you see a rusted cast iron pan at the thrift store or yard sale, buy it and clean it yourself. These pans will last for generations if properly cared for. If you buy a new one – it comes with a coating on it – you need to get the coating off. To get the coating off either wash in hot soapy water with steal wool and then season or use salt and oil. Some basic tips on keeping your pan in good condition: •

Every once in awhile you will need to wash with

After the first heat and oil 48

April / May 2012

home & garden

hot soapy water to get the oil build up off – oil does go rancid and then season. •

If you are using frequently, like me, you can rinse with hot water in between uses and thoroughly wash once a week or every other week.

NEVER put a cast iron pan in the dishwasher.

NEVER let it air dry with the rest of the dishes – dry with a cotton towel and make sure it is really dry or rust will form.

NEVER pour cold water into a hot pan – the cast iron can break. If your pan is well seasoned food will not stick, if food is sticking you need to season/cure your pan.

If you have been afraid to use a cast iron pan, don’t be and go out and get one – cast iron heats evenly, doesn’t add any harmful chemicals to your food that you are lovingly preparing and it will last your entire life time – great return on the investment. Cheers to your good cooking! Pamela Pinto-Sessions is a T&G contributor in New York who has been living the “green” lifestyle for over 20 years and loves to garden, great friends, great conversation sharing her knowledge and to listen and learn from others


April / May 2012

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April / May 2012

Are your Mason Bees Ready for Spring? Release your mason bees on a calm day with a minimum 11˚C noon-hour temperature (14˚C is ideal when your garden is 25 per cent in bloom). I have 100 sleepy mason bees, but that’s about to change. I anxiously wait for 14º C days and blooming heather! Brian Campbell of Blessed Bee Farm shares tips to help your mason bees spring into action:

Where to Mount a Mason Bee House •

• • • •

Mount it on the south or east side of your house, shed, or directly on a fence. Nest height can be eye level--bees will ignore you so put it where you can watch them! Do not mount mason bee homes: On trees or clothesline posts: Tiny bee brains can’t process colour and detail at high speeds! (The side of your house is highly visible) In the shade: Full sun is best. Shade later in the day is fine. On a third floor balcony: too high and windy.

When to Release your Mason Bees Climate change is making weather patterns unpredictable. Aim for a calm day with a minimum 11˚C noon-hour temperature (14˚C is ideal when your garden is 25 per cent in bloom).

Will the mason bees I release use my house?

instead of a real nesting cavity. If you buy bees and they take off to your neighbor’s yard, it doesn’t mean you’ve planted a bee un-friendly garden. Try again next spring! Increase the odds of “your” bees adopting your bee house--put half of them out now (mid-March), and release the rest when temperatures are 14˚C (and no wind). Still have bees in their tubes? Place them outside to emerge naturally. Bees that you cleaned in the fall can be placed on top of the soil near your nest.

What types of bee plants are needed?

Hungry males emerge first. Flowers in bloom will encourage them to establish. If males stay, females are more likely to stick around.

Some plants attract and support Blue Orchard Mason Bees better than others: open cup-shaped blossoms like apple, plum, cherry, pear, and crocus,

Even under excellent conditions 50 per cent of your bees may leave due to emerging from a container

or small tubular-shaped blossoms like species in the Ericaea family (heathers and heaths, blueberry, skim-


April / May 2012

home & garden mia, pieris, rhododendron) and currents. And don’t forget to provide a clay source near your mason bee house. It takes approximately 50 trips for them to gather enough to make one cell wall!

Where can I buy mason bees? Try these mason bee sellers: •

Derry’s Orchard and Nursery (in B.C.’s Lower Mainland)

West Coast Seeds sells bee cocoons, condos, books, and more

Beediverse is a major supplier of bees and bee houses I sell cocoons too! Learn more at Blessed Bee

Look for local “Seedy Saturday” events

Will you raise mason bees this year? Be sure to visit Thrifty & Green’s facebook page and share your experiences.

photo by: Ben Cox

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Helping Your Child Sleep Alone


iblings often share bedrooms in early childhood or until their parents can afford a larger house. Children of different sexes may want to have their own rooms as they grow older, but separating siblings can be challenging. Children who are accustomed to sleeping with someone else are used to having a built-in playmate and companion. Many children are also afraid to sleep by themselves. Nightmares, fear of the dark and the monster under the bed are all very real obstacles for young children transitioning to their own rooms. Moving your child into his or her own room is typically a process that must occur over several weeks, so avoid rushing into it and be patient. running into your room or her sibling’s room for comfort.

Talk About the Transition

Give your children some advanced warning about the transition to the new room. Simply announcing one night, “It’s time to sleep in your own room!” can make your child feel insecure, which increases her likelihood of being afraid to sleep alone. If you talk about the transition well in advance, you’ll have an opportunity to gauge potential problems and listen to any concerns your child might have.

Give Your Child Control

Allow your child plenty of freedom to determine how his room will be set up. Many children, for example, feel afraid if their backs are to the door or window, so ask your child where he’d like to place his bed. When children have control over their environments, they’re less likely to feel afraid, so it stands to reason that it’s important to give your child some say in the structure of his room, especially if you’re worried he might have trouble sleeping alone.

Avoid Sources of Fear

If there are several rooms in your house that could serve as your child’s new room, choose the room that is least likely to cause fear. Select a room that is close to your bedroom, that has little noise from outside traffic and that has few creaks and bumps in the night. This decreases your child’s likelihood of having nightmares and

It’s also important to think about how your child’s room will look at night. Are there creepy shadows? Weird shapes that look like faces? Sleep in your child’s room by yourself before he does it, and if you notice any potential sources of fear, move lighting or cover walls if necessary. You should also ensure that your child has ready access to a light from a flashlight or night light from his bed. This can be a helpful tool if your child has nightmares or wakes up afraid.

Avoid Unnecessary Rules

Many parents think that their children need to be able to sleep without night lights, radios or stuffed animals. The truth is that it’s much more important to get your child accustomed to sleeping in her own room. Especially if she’s used to sleeping with a sibling, allow her to sleep in a way that feels most comfortable to her. If this means leaving all the lights on, surrounding her bed in stuffed animals or leaving the radio on, let her do it. You can always help her transition away from these security blankets later.

Plan for an Adjustment Period

In the first few weeks after your child moves to her new room, she might run into your room or her sibling’s room in the middle of the night. This is perfectly normal. Rather


April / May 2012

than expecting her to sleep through the night by herself immediately, work on slowly transitioning her to independent sleeping. Beds with trundles can be especially useful in this regard. If your child has a nightmare, you can pull out the trundle bed and sleep with her for an hour or two. This keeps her in her own room but gives her a substantial sense of security that you can slowly wean her off of as she becomes more comfortable. I hope you found these tips for separating siblings into their own rooms and helping your children to sleep alone helpful. Did you kids share a room? Did you have any problems separating them and helping them sleep alone? Keeping quiet is difficult for writer Christobel who has been in sales and marketing all her life. She’s learning that being a grandmother, however, often means keeping her mouth shut! She loves buying things for her grandchild and recently bought her a trundle bunk bed.

3 in



Guest Post courtesy of Family Focus Blog with host Scarlet Paolicchi. Scarlet is a T&G contributor and notable family blogger. She is the founder of as well as the Social Media Marketing and Business Directory



Robot Kit

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Growing Up Green A weekly eco-family blog Thursdays on in the Family pages.


April / May 2012

Make your own Laundry Soap


ou’ll love my Great Grandma’s Laundry Soap- a simple “green” laundry soap that still works as well today as it did back then. With just four simple ingredients, you too, can make your own laundry soap and keep your family clean and healthy. I hope you enjoy these simple steps to making your own laundry soap that will keep your family and pets safe from hidden toxins and health risks. INGREDIENTS 2 cups soap flakes 1 cup baking soda 1 cup washing soda ( available from Arm and Hammer) 1 cup Borax 15 drops of any essential oil for scent I get my soap flakes imported from London- they are vegetable based and very gentle on clothing. You can also make your own by using an Ivory soap bar – just let it dry out and then grate it. DIRECTIONS Making this laundry soap is very easy! Just mix together thoroughly the ingredients and place in an air tight container! If you have a front loading washing machine you only need to use 1-2 tablespoons per load. If you have a top loading washing machine you can use 1/4 cup per load. If you like to use a liquid soap you can add this mixture to very hot water and place in the washing machine. This laundry soap is very gentle on clothing and is great for people who have sensitive skin! Leslie Reichert is a contributor to publications such as Woman’s World Magazine and Woman’s Day, a frequent homekeeping expert on Martha Stewart Living Radio and author of the book: The Joy Of Green Cleaning.


April / May 2012

home & garden


Home Decorating Ideas 57

April / May 2012

photo by: Heather from

home & garden


t is that time of year again, time to pack away all your winter decorations and liven up your living spaces with spring decor. In my many years of doing interior design and remodeling work in New York City, I have seen many spring decorating trends that are used year after year. One of my favorite spring decorating trends is to take inspiration from nature and bring it indoors. There are many ways that you can bring the outdoors inside. Floral Home Decorating One simple idea is to always make sure that you have a fresh bouquet of flowers to display as your centerpiece on your dining room table. You can also swap out your throw pillows with fun springtime pattern throw pillows. Floral prints are also very popular in the springtime. I personally think it is easier to switch out throw pillows and/ or artwork than it is to switch out furniture. This is easily done if you make sure to purchase a neutral-colored sofa when you are furniture shopping. It is also a good idea to switch out your curtains with beautiful floral prints to help liven up your room. Multi-Purpose Furniture I have done a lot of work in New York City apartments, and one thing that all New York City apartment owners have in common is that they need to make the most out of their living

space. The easiest way to do this is to only buy pieces of furniture that have more than one purpose. For instance, sleeper sofas are very popular in New York City apartments, and trust me, there are some very comfortable sleeper sofas out there. Coffee tables with storage is another great piece of multi-purpose furniture. The other key to deco-

rating small spaces, such as apartments, is to not over decorate them. It is also important to have splashes of color throughout the room to make the room look lively.

Tangerine Is A Hot Color For The Spring

Speaking of color, one of the top spring decorating trends for 2012 is the


April / May 2012

color tangerine. The tangerine color can be seen in every high-end furniture store in the country. Many designers are pairing tangerine with earth tones for a subtle effect. People that are looking to make a bolder statement can pair tangerine with other bright colors such as turquoise, lime

green, and even purple. By pairing tangerine with one of these other bright colors, you are sure to be in a good mood any time you enter your home. Mix and Match Another very popular trend this year is to mix and match different textures and styles. The combination of different materials makes a room feel much cozier. It is important that when you are choosing different items to mix and match, you stay in a consistent color scheme. You should choose three colors that appear in every item that you use.

Now that you know all about the latest spring decorating trends, it is time to get out there and spruce up your own home. Whether you live in a four-bedroom house or a loft apartment in New York City, you can make these spring decorating trends work for you! Sam Marquit is an active member of the interior design/home improvement blogosphere, and shares his experiences, thoughts and plans with folks in similar industries. With years of experience in general contracting, Sam is the chief writer for http://

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April / May 2012 issue of Thrifty & Green Magazine - All About Saving Money and How to Go Green

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