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AUTUMN HOLIDAYS Entertain in Style, with the Earth in Mind, on Less.

Green Your Turkey Day Page 61

Backyard Fish Farming Save with Aquaponics Page 87 OCT / NOV 2011

Thrifty Halloween How-To


10% off Energy

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Star Appliances

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FEATURES

A Country Cider Mill Fall means its time to get out, get some cider and cinnamon doughnuts in you and grab a pumpkin. See how its done in this tale of apples. Sustainable Food: Recipes + Restaurants We visit Chef Claire at her sustainable cafe in California. Serving up yummy local foods. Saving Serengeti Africa, home to the worlds largest cat and its dwindling population of lions. Learn more about this amazing place. A Modern Hippie’s Tale Follow Lori Winter and husband Drew to New Zealand! They have been there for 9 months traveling on a shoestring in this beautiful country. 4

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RECIPES 23 70 74 66 68 69 71

Persimmon Salad Salmon Salad Roasted Winter Squash Soup Vegan Pumpkin Pie Pumpkin Cake Bars Cranberry Apple Crisp Apple Date Muffins

5 Reasons to Eat Local What is all the fuss about eating local? What is a CSA? These answers and more await in this quick but informative guide.

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october / november

IN-SEASON

26 T&G Halloween

Green your holiday this year with tips +tricks for DIY costumes and more.

Your Turkey Day 61 Green Sustainable options for

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all your thanksgiving entertaining.

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LIVING TOP 10 Green MBAs Which schools have the best business programs? FOOD & HEALTH What’s Gluten Free What’s gluten anyway and why is everyone avoid it nowadays?

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Salmon: Wild vs. Farmed The difference between the two + which to eat.

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HOME & GARDEN Designed for Living An inspiring and award winning green condo design.

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SAVING MONEY Q&A w/ Dave Ramsey

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92 New Realities: Personal Financial Sustainability.

IN EVERY ISSUE

46 Heroines for the Planet,

meet eco minded women changing the world.

Green Path, a begin52 The ners guide to green. 5

The New Farm: Save Money + The Earth with Aquaponics learn about an emerging eco technique for growing fish and vegetables on pg. 87

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Green Your Turkey Day, Find sustainable options for your family this Thanksgiving holiday. Get tips, recipes + more.

75 Growing Up Green: Fall Family Gardening green values + activities for kids.

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editor’s letter

elcome to the Autumn issue of Thrifty & Green! I’m excited to present the Autumn edition of Thrifty and Green! And one of the best reasons to like fall is harvest time. You’re at the end of one season and starting another. Of course it serves to remind us that the Holidays are just around the corner.

Fresh is one of the biggest trends right now, to your benefit in every way. And you get no more fresh and green than going straight to a small, family farm that takes land stewardship and great-tasting produce seriously. There’s something refreshing about going back to the 1940’s way of thinking (minus the economics!) – big sky, black dirt, bushels for sale, family time, and no Blackberry in sight. In this issue, capturing a current throw back is Chris McGrath’s A Visit to a Cider Mill on page 11, reminding you how it’s supposed to be done. Making the best cider by tasting it! If nothing else, your kids will see that apples really do grow on trees. Want to experience farm food all throughout the year? Try a CSA subscription. Check out 5 Reasons to Eat Local on page 17 – it gives you a great argument for caring. In my family, our CSA has put kale on the radar. And we eat more seasonally because of our farmer’s box. Fall is also a time to reflect – the changing leaves and weather. For inspiration, check out Tovah Paglaro’s Thrifty & Green Halloween on page 26. You’ll come away with seeing Halloween in a new light -- how you can do it for less, creative ideas to make it more fun and meaningful, and green. This year I’m looking forward to the 31st! Rethinking life’s priorities? Look no further than Lori Winter’s A Modern Hippie’s Tale page 36. It’s more than just a New Zealand adventure story. It’s about seeing a new part of the world, and realizing that being thrifty & green can be enriching — even thrilling. I’m elated to have Lori contribute to this issue. I am also delighted to include an interview with Green for All’s Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins page 46. Her optimism is contagious. May we all have the courage to express our voice and be leaders for positive change, even if it is within our own four walls. Enjoy our October issue with green turkey tips, scrumptious recipes (including vegan Pumpkin Pie!), personal financial tips, and overall thrifty advice. Thanks again for joining our Thrifty & Green family!

Till next time,

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October / November 2011

Terra Wellington Editor-in-Chief


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Thrifty & Green Founder & CEO

Chris McGrath

Editor-in-Chief

Terra Wellington

Design Director Design Lead Designer

Beth McGrath Chris McGrath Rachel McHollister

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 http:// www.thriftyandgreen.com/newsletter/subscriptions EDITORIAL OFFICES

SAVING MONEY Saving Money Editor Saving Money Writer Personal Finance Editor Personal Finance Writer

Terra Wellington Natalia Tudge Dario Piana Dave Ramsey

LIFESTYLE Lifestyle Editor Lifestyle Series Writer Lifestyle Writer

Rachel McHollister Christa Shelton Lori Winter

FASHION & BEAUTY Fashion & Beauty Writers

Adrian & Claudia Kiss

9834 Mariner Dr. NW Olympia, WA 98502 CUSTOMER SERVICE

Online: thriftyandgreen.com/contact Questions by phone: 360.339.5339 9-5 PST ADVERTISING

For advertising solutions that reach a Thrifty & Green minded audience contact us today. Our web site www.thriftyandgreen.com 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.

HOME & GARDEN Home & Garden Editor Home & Garden Writer

Terra Wellington Jenny Fretch

FOOD Food & Health Editor Food & Health Writer Food & Health Writer

Terra Wellington Lori Winter Nadine Todd

FAMILY Family Editor Family Writer

Tovah Paglaro Scarlet Paolicci

CAREERS Careers Writer

SUBSCRIPTION

Lindsay E. Brown

Founder & CEO Chris McGrath e: cmcgrath@thriftyandgreen.com p: 360.339.5339

PARTNERS Ogden Publications Matter Network Mother Earth Fairs Green Festival

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

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Syndication Partner Syndication Partner Event Partner Event Partner

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Jr.


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Time to Bake

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

Bakeware | Cookware | Cooking Tools | Cutlery | Dinnerware | Storage | Small Appliances

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fall A visit to a Cider Mill

Apple cider and fresh cinnamon doughnuts were some of my fondest memories as a child. Join me in visiting a family owned mill who makes and sells cider all year long. 11

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WRITER CHRIS McGRATH

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fall

A LOCAL TRADITION I grew up in New Jersey, some folks get down on it but after having traveled and seen many other places I know it offers some of the best food experiences our country has to offer. Nearby my childhood home was a place called Delicious Orchards. I know without checking it is still there as the parking lot was usually like a Wall Mart today, packed. If you happen to live the Monmouth County area and do not know of this place go immediately there as soon as it opens next, you will find a euphoric experience especially in fall. Now I moved away from New Jersey for better or worse to the great state of Washington many years ago. Now I live in the small city of Olympia Washington, in the Pacific Northwest — we got apples! It was the largest agricultural export of Washington State rivaling wheat. So when Fall comes around I am always up for a visit to the local cider mill, Lattin’s Country Cider. Since 1976, they have been perfecting their cider making process so it comes out as close to perfect as possible. They start with Washington apples purchased directly from the same high quality 12

HOW DOES IT WORK growers every year. They store them at 32 degree temperature so they are always kept as fresh as possible. Being only a small outfit they put out a lotta cider I must say. They go through about 17 to 25 TONS of apples a day during the slow time and up to 75 tons a day in the busier seasons. To ensure consistent cider flavor, they mix several varieties in just the right combination to produce over 4000 gallons of some of the best cider on earth every week. All the sorting, cutting and washing is done by hand. Yes, it’s time-consuming they admit but it virtually eliminates any chance of impurities in the cider.

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The apples are ground and pressed into cider, pasteurized and bottled immediately. No additives, preservatives or sweeteners, just apples. They even

October / November 2011

test each batch the oldfashioned way, by tasting it. For those who like a little variety in their cider. Lattin’s makes fresh strawberry, blackberry, raspberry Continued on page 14...


Marth Stewart Pets Pique Sleeveless Crab Polo

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Green the way You Read

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THE FARM continued from page 12.. and spiced ciders. The Lattin family also run a farm with animals and vegetables that they sell year round from the store located on the mill property. They are committed to providing area residents with garden fresh and delicious produce. While most of the vegetables are grown on the farm, they also use their grower contacts in Eastern Washington to offer the best seasonal selections and make up for what they cannot provide. They also offer the opportunity to buy in bulk which of course is great for canning, freezing, or drying needs. I feel this is a big asset to the community. And as if that was not enough — they also sell baby chicks, ducks, turkeys and other fowl. The farm has adorable baby goats looking for new homes in the spring if you happen to live in the area. The family also offers farm raised beef, pork, chicken, and turkeys that are hormone and antibiotic free, cage free and grass fed. In addition to all these great and yummy offerings, visiting the mill is capped off with a phenomenal pumpkin patch that my family loves visiting every year. They have a petting 15

zoo next door where kids can learn about animals and see vegetable fields so kids can understand whre the pumpkin on the front porch came from. We actually grow pumpkins in our community garden, but going to the mill is so much fun, we just go get a few more, some cider, and a few cinnamon doughnuts, and we are in serious fall family activity bliss. If you happen to visit Washington State, Lattins is about an hour south of Seattle and worth the trip. There are many things to do in between, but for an authentic farm and cider mill that offers just about everything anyone would want, especially at Harvest time , this is pretty tip-top. Be sure to visit their website and learn more about Lattin’s Country Cider Mill. www.lattinscider.com Chris McGrath is the Founder and CEO of Thrifty & Green. He is located in Olympia, WA - devoted to simple living, and creating media that helps make being green fun and easy for everyone. He is the father of 2, has a background in business, ecological design + organic food and writes about the last two. Connect with him on facebook. com/thriftyandgreen

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Books for Autumn The Winter Harvest Handbook: Year Round Vegetable Production Using Deep Organic Techniques and Unheated Greenhouses [Paperback]

Edible Landscaping [Paperback]

Rosalind Creasy (Author) 4.4 out of 5 stars List Price:

$39.95

Since Rosalind Creasy popularized the concept of landscaping with edibles a quarter-century ago, interest in eating healthy, fresh, locally grown foods has swept across the nation. More and more Americans are looking to grow clean, delicious produce at home, saving money and natural resources at the same time. And food plants have been freed from the backyard, gracing the finest landscapes—even the White House grounds! Journeys of a Lifetime: 500 of the World’s Greatest Trips [Hardcover]

Eliot Coleman (Author) 4.7 out of 5 stars List Price: $5.95 “Eliot Coleman is widely recognized as the ‘master’ of the master gardeners. His new book, The Winter Harvest Handbook--which tells us how to produce local food even in winter in cold climates like Maine, without a lot of energy--now joins his other delightful books as another lovely read, packed with powerful and practical ideas that every gardener will treasure.”--Frederick Kirschenmann, Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture In the Haunted House [Paperback]

National Geographic (Author) 4.6 out of 5 stars

Eve Bunting (Author), Susan Meddaugh (Illustrator)

List Price: $40.00 No one knows the world like National Geographic—and in this lavish volume, we reveal our picks for the world’s most fabulous journeys, along with helpful information for readers who want to try them out. 16

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List Price:

$5.95

Invitingly scary, this Halloween romp follows the sneaker-clad footsteps of two children as they make their way through a haunted house.

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loc-a-vore A person who makes an effort to eat food that is grown, raised, or produced locally, usually within 100 miles of thier home. - Dictionary.com

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Produce from Whipstone Valley Farm & CSA - Prescott, Arizona


local eat 5 reasons to

LOCAVORE The ‘locavore’ movement has been gaining attention over the last several years. Plenty of people have documented their challenge to eat only local, all the time and its even in the dictionary. Some may even call it a food trend (imagine that), but there are heaps of reasons why eating food that’s been grown in your area is definitely not a bad idea.

What is a CSA? One way to eat local and get a little taste of farm life is to join a program known as a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). We wanted to include a great example, pictured here, of a CSA - The Whipstone Farm CSA in Prescott, AZ. Whipstone is a subscription program where members pay their money up front for the season to help support the farm operations; they share the risks and rewards of the harvest with the farmers, and in return receive a weekly distribution of fresh, locally grown produce. A share includes 7-10 different vegetable varieties

Eat Local, Seasonal and Join a CSA

per week and flowers when in season. While you don’t get to pick and choose what produce or Flowers from Whipstone Farm quantities you will receive, you are provided with substantial quantity and variety and you receive the “cream of the crop” including special items that never make it to the farmers market. Weekly shares reflect the growing season and the variety of produce varies as

the season progresses. So your not only eating local but seasonal as well which is really how nature intended it and in most cases how our body responds and functions best! Spring shares contain lots of lettuces and other greens as well as asparagus, herbs, and early root crops like carrots, turnips, green onions and radishes. Late summer shares include many of the fruiting crops like tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, squash, and

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melons. The farm tries to keep greens growing all season, and even works hard to provide recipes for members so they can have a head start preparing unfamiliar produce. For more information about Whipstone visit their website at Whipstone Farm CSA. There are many amazing farms that run CSA’s around the country and the world for that matter. You can get a great list of CSA’s from our friend at Local Harvest a non-profit devoted to


food & health 5 reasons to

eat local

raising awareness around small-scale farming. Try it out, it is an amazing, holistic option that will also serve to educate your family at the same time where food comes from and what to do with different things you might otherwise not try! 5 REASONS TO EAT LOCAL

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Embodied En ergy - You might take it for granted that you are able to drive to the supermarket and do your grocery shopping. But trust me, these food chains don’t have gardens in the back. The produce and packaged food you see there have traveled hundreds, and often thousands, of miles just to get to you. And when you add up the impact all those ships, trucks, trains, and trolleys have on the environment, even a certified organic item doesn’t necessarily seem all that eco-friendly anymore.

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Increased Nutri ents - The longer a piece of produce is in transit, the more nutrients it will lose. By the time that salad lands on your dinner plate, it may have less than half of the nutrients it should have! But when you buy locally, that

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apple may have just been picked off the tree that morning. Fresher is always better. And it’s not only the time traveling from farm to plate that will affect the nutrition of any given food. Industrial farming practices have literally raped the soil of it’s nutrients over time. Heaps of chemical fertilizers, pesticides, & herbicides are sprayed on the plants, which deteriorates the quality and health of the soil. Monocultures (the practice of growing the same crop on a piece of land year after year with no variety or time to let the soil replenish itself ) are also devastating to the land.

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Improve Local Economy -

Joining a CSA community supported agriculture) a food co-op, or shopping at local farmer’s markets are great ways to support small farms and local businesses, and is often far more thrifty than sticking solely with the supermarket. Buy in bulk (even order from the catalog at many food co-ops for the real price breaks). Also start that garden and learn how to can and preserve to stretch your dollar even further.

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Help Decrease Chemicals in Food - combat against the effects of chemical her bicides/pesticides on the environment (not to mention the health of the farmers). I mentioned above

October / November 2011

that chemical fertilizers, pesticides, & herbicides are wreaking havoc on the soil. But follow the logic one step further and you’ll find that those chemicals are absorbed into the land and end up in rivers, streams, and lakes, negatively impacting flora and fauna, and eventually finding their way into our public water supply. These chemicals are also extremely dangerous to the farmers and field workers who are directly exposed to them on a daily basis. Your dollar is the often the biggest weapon you have to truly voice your opinion and call for change. Vote with your wallet by buying local and make a difference. Continued on next page...


5 reasons to eat local

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Increased Knowl edge - When you are forced to research local farmers, CSA’s, farmers markets, and co-ops, your horizons are broadened to what is happening in your local area. You meet new people and make new and lasting connections. But eating local can even mean joining a community garden, like our founder Chris McGrath, wrote about in our last issue Celebrate Harvest, or starting one yourself! Find everything you need to know to start an organic garden in our Plan Your Organic Garden article by the very same. The skills you learn by growing your own food (even if it’s through trial and error!) are ones that will carry through the rest of your life. And your kids will love to be involved in the garden (cuz since when is playing in the dirt and finding worms not fun?!) You may not be interested in challenging yourself to eat strictly local food. I admit, it’s not something that’s considered easy! But I find the key is to do your best where you can. Make a real effort to grow your own food or buy local when possible.

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Lori Winter, is a T&G food and lifestyle writer located in Nashville, TN. She is the host of Sustainable Food - Recipes + Restaurants on thriftyandggreen.com — an original web series that features green restaurant reviews, and recipes as well as tips

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on eating healthy and whenever possible local. (See this issue Claires on Cedros next page). Lori also travels the world through barter and trade visiting some of the worlds most beautiful places for next to nothing.


feature series

food & health

Sustainable Food: recipes + restaurants

Claire’s on Cedros

Edible Landscaping, Recycled Blue Jean Insulation, and Solar Panels with a side of Multi-Grain Clairecakes

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hen Clair Alison decided to open an organic restaurant dishing up healthy salads, grassfed burgers, and her now famous ‘Clairecakes’ with an all-day breakfast menu, she knew she couldn’t stop at the food when it came

to sustainability. This San Diego area cafe is a prime example of sustainable building techniques implemented on a business level. The cafe’s mission statement is to provide well prepared, wholesome, healthy food prepared from scratch utilizing the freshest local

ingredients possible in a comfortable, familyfriendly, pet-friendly, environmentally conscious surrounding. They have certainly achieved their mission on all fronts, but most worthy to note are the unique green building techniques. Let’s take a tour of this

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LEED Platinum certified green building and see what we can find. Upon arrival, you’ll find priority parking for ecofriendly cars and carpoolers. As you look around, you’ll notice that 90% of the landscaping is edible, continued on the next page...


sustainable food

feature series ...continued from previous. made of fresh herbs and fruit trees for use in the kitchen. The vegetated roof doesn’t require excess watering, absorbing water from rainstorms and reducing any runoff water waste. A waitress whizzes past you on a bicycle on her way to the lunch shift, stopping off first for a shower--kindly provided by the restaurant for their cycling employees. The building itself is a picture of recycle, reduce, reuse (and save the earth -you know you were singing it with me). 75% of their demolition materials and construction byproduct was sent away for recycling or reuse. Their redwood siding is naturally resist-

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ant to mold and rot. Upon closer inspection you discover that a low-VOC stain and seal contributes to the efficiency and durability of the structure. Entering the restaurant, you’re greeted with a warm, airy vibe. Patrons are perched on stools at high tables or chat with friends over a homemade vanilla latte or chocolate ganache mocha. You might wander around a bit, admiring the interior bricks that were salvaged from the buildings of yesteryear on the grounds of Petco Park. The walls themselves have their own stories to tell. Over 50% of the framing, sheaths, posts, and beams were sourced from Forest Stewardship Council

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(FSC) certified forests and the insulation consists of recycled blue jeans. You know you can take a deep breath of fresh air when you learn that all paints used at Claire’s are low-VOC and all wood products are urea-formaldehyde free. Once you settle on a seat by the window, you realize just how many window seats there are. Ample natural light eliminates the need for artificial light sources and mechanical ventilation, conserving energy in the process. A look at the menu poses an entirely new dilemma. Do you go with the Oven Roasted Pear & Beet Salad or splurge on a stack of cinnamon spiced Clairecakes

October / November 2011

with bananas and chocolate chips? But then there’s the Duck Confit Salad with a Honey Cider Vinaigrette. Or the grass-fed beef or hormone-free turkey burger served on a housebaked bun. Finally deciding on a Spinach Persimmon Salad (recipe page 24) and a Chocolate Croissant for dessert, you ask if you can poke your head into the kitchen for a bit of tour behind the scenes. It’s no surprise that everything is running in tip top shape with low-flow faucets, a high efficiency dishwasher, and a programmable ice maker. Energy efficient appliance were chosen wherever possible.


food & health After enjoying your meal and wrapping up your leftovers in a recyclable container, you make a mental note to bring your own mug and bag next time, as Claire’s encourages their customers to do. On the way out, you decide to bring a treat home for Fido. After all, a portion of each dog biscuit sold from the baker benefits the nonprofit Helen Woodward Animal Center.

MADE in the USA

Claire’s on Cedros has certainly raised the bar for organic restaurants on a sustainability and ecofriendly front, ensuring a very light footprint left on the planet as they dish up delectable treats on a daily basis. Don’t miss Chef Claire’s recipe for on the next page. Lori Winter, is a T&G food and lifestyle writer located in Nashville, TN. She is the host of Sustainable Food: Recipes + Restaurants, an original T&G series on www.thriftyandgreen.com

shop collection

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RECIPE SPINACH PERSIMMON SALAD by Chef Claire Allison

Orange and Olive Oil Vinaigrette Yield: Approximately 1 cup 1/2 c. extra virgin olive oil 1/3 c. orange juice 1 T. honey 3/4 tsp. ground black pepper 3/4 tsp. smoked paprika 1/2 tsp. kosher salt Directions Put all ingredients into a bowl and whisk until emulsified. Spinach Persimmon Salad Yield: 4 servings 6 c. baby spinach leaves 2 fuyu persimmons, thinly sliced 1/4 c. thinly sliced red onions 1/2 c. pomegranate seeds 1/4 c. toasted pine nuts orange olive oil vinaigrette Directions Put spinach, persimmons, and red onions into a bowl and toss with 2-4 T. of salad dressing. Divide onto four plates and sprinkle each plate’s salad with pomegranate seeds and toasted pine nuts. Serve.

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Women’s Fine Gauge Cotton Cardigan Sweater

$13.55 - $29.50

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Avalilable at SEARS


Thrifty

&

Green HALLOWEEN 26

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T&G halloween

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Families are increas ingly re evaluating their holiday rituals in order to align their celebrations with their year round values. Halloween is a prime example. The rituals have increasingly come to mean consumerism, waste and sugar! Luckily for the eco-minded family, there are plenty of thrifty ways to minimize the waste and junk factors. As with any celebration, a quick analysis of the festivity’s roots can help to cut through the consumerism by focusing on what’s important. THE ROOTS OF HALLOWEEN Halloween began with the celtic Samhain festival, one of the four key pagan festivals, which marked the end of harvest on the first of November. It was a time when the fruits were enjoyed and when the herds were slaughtered for the winter. Families invited their ancestors to share in the feasting and symbolized their participation by decorating graves of the deceased and by telling ghost stories. In the mid-15th century, the Roman Catholic Church adopted this festival’s date

to move its All Saints Day to. The Celts started every day at sunset of the night before, so Samhain became the evening of All Hallows (“hallowed” = “holy” = “saint”), which was eventually contracted into “Hallow-e’en” or the modern Halloween. This explains the ghosts and ghouls, but what of the trick-or-treating. In pagan times, during festivities, peasants would don costumes and knock on the doors of lords and ladies. So why continue the tradition today? Experts like Richard Seltzer argue that trick-or-treating is an important custom that solidifies community. In particular, he states that the value of Halloween

comes from ritualized interaction between relative strangers of different generations, which reaffirms the social bonds of a neighborhood. HALLOWEEN TODAY Taking inspiration from its roots, the modern Halloween can be conceived of as: • A celebration of harvest & feast • A time to confront personal and cultural attitudes towards death • A time to connect with the cycles of the seasons • An opportunity to strengthen community • A playful festival to share fun with children and inner children alike

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The fun, unfortunately, can be lost on conscientious parents who worry about the candy binge, the pre-packaged and excessively packaged costumes or decorations and even the drain on natural resources from lights, cars and all the rest. DIY COSTUMES To minimize the waste, do it yourself. The best costumes are always homemade, and with a little time and forethought, making costumes with your children can be a frugal, fun activity that celebrates the playful nature in both of you. Sewing skills are helpful, but really not necessary. This astronaut costume, for example, Continued on next page...


in-season spent trying on costumes is sure to incite boisterous laughter and quality family time!

is made from a painter’s jumpsuit (purchased for a few dollars at any hardware store), two recycled 2 liter pop bottles, glowsticks & LED lights, an old pair of winter boots, tape and paint. BUY IT USED Thrift stores stock an awesome supply of preloved costumes during the Halloween season. Many combine aisles of used wears with an assortment of new accessories, face paints and other novelties to create a fun, thrifty and all-encompassing shopping experience, ideal for busy families. An afternoon 28

ATTEND A FESTIVAL Many a family is skipping the trick-or-treat tradition in favor of a community celebration in an effort to minimize candy consumption and waste creation. Check out the programming at your local zoo, aquarium – many of which have partnered with Green Halloween to deliver festivities that abound with healthier treats and recycled crafts. Community Centers and schools are also popular party planners, but if nothing’s happening in your neighborhood, consider organizing an event!

and piling up the loot. Even the greenest parents often have a nostalgic connection to this tradition because, well, it’s fun! Keeping it fun, however, means minimizing the waste and candy consumption. Here are a few suggestions: 1. Reusable bags. Make or buy a super-cool reusable trick-or-treat bag of a reasonable size. A smaller sac guarantees the joy of an overflowing bag, without too much loot. 2. Walk. The exercise is good for everyone, minimizes unnecessary emissions and adds to the community building aspect of the festivities.

CANDY ALTERNATIVES Trick-or-treating is about the treats. I get that. But let’s not kid ourselves – there is nothing okay about eating a pillowcase full of candy! What is that teaching our kids? Moderation is key, we tell them, so then how can we celebrate excessive indulgence?

3. Think outside the Candy Box. After the 15th Kit-Kat bar, trick-ortreaters are likely to not be disappointed by an alternative.

Alternatives to the candy abound. Pencils, stickers and bouncy balls are popular choices. Or if treats are a requisite, look for fruit leather, real fruit chews,

TRICK-OR-TREAT SOLUTIONS Most school-aged children would be hard pressed to give up trick-or-treating. There’s nothing else quite like racing through the neighborhood, heavy sac in tow, waving to friends, threatening the neighbors

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4. Trick-Or-Treat Treasure Hunt. Organize like-minded neighbors and community members who will hand out “betterchoice” loot, then create a map and challenge the kids to find the choice houses or businesses. Green Halloween has a decal that can be displayed in the window to notify trick-ortreaters on the search for green choices.

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T&G halloween

sugar free gum or organic candy. With the exception of the later, these options can be purchased in bulk from any large department store. That takes care of the neighbors’ kids, but what about yours? Consider a trade-up. Set a value on the candy, maybe $0.20/ piece, and allow them to use their loot towards the purchase of a quality toy of choice. Most kids seem to pick about 15 pieces of candy to keep, and are then happy to trade the remainder for something special. The traded in loot can be shared at a parent’s 29

workplace, once it’s been suitably perused by mom and dad. CELEBRATE THE DEAD There has been a move of late to take the dark out of Halloween. Consider instead infusing a little meaning into all the fun by paying respect and tribute to deceased loved ones. In the week leading up to Halloween, discuss your family’s beliefs about death and what comes next or visit the grave of a family member. Better yet, invite the dead to a harvest feast by preparing a special meal and bringing a picture of honored guest to the table.

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BAKE BETTER TREATS Fresh baking makes a welcome addition at any party and Halloween is no exception. Celebrate the season with appropriately ghoulish treats but skip the dyes, preservatives and packaging with ideas like Green Frankenstein Cupcakes, made using spinach puree and mint extract. It’s supposed to sound disgusting, it’s Halloween! MINIMIZE WASTE Two of the greatest waste creators over Halloween are individually packaged treats and the disposable decorations or accessories. To minimize

October / November 2011

the later, make your own decorations, ideally out of recyclables. Ideas will be posted on www.thriftyandgreen.com throughout the month of October. Creating for the celebration adds to the fun! When making purchases, choose the highest quality item that your budget permits and plan to reuse that item in future years. Often, these higher quality items are also created in a way that is better for you Continued on page 33...


T&G Halloween guide

Snazarro 8-Color Rainbow Water Based Face Paint Kit $12.23

Simplicity Sewing Pattern 5512 Child Costumes, A (34-5-6-7-8) $13.95

Simplicity Sewing Pattern 4043 Child, Girl and Misses Costumes, A (ALL SizeS) $14.95

Reusable Halloween Trick-or-Treat Bags Set of 4 $10.95

Simplicity Sewing Pattern 5927 Child Costumes, A (S-M-L) $13.95

Martha Stewart Halloween Witch Wall Cling $17.38

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T&G Halloween guide

Wilton 12 Cavity Halloween Cookie Pan Ink, 12-Count (26300) $11.08

Vintage Pumpkin Carving Kit - Pumpkin Masters $6.95

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All Natural Animal Medley Makeup Kit by Luna Organics $14.95

Rainbow Playsilk by Sarah’s Silks $17.95

find it all on

October / November 2011

Indiana jones hat Child Rubies Costumes $17.57

It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (Peanuts) [Paperback] Charles M. Schulz $4.95


best

in class Smarter features, durable designs. Where every kid fits in. Guaranteed. Period. ™

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October / November 2011

Avalilable at SEARS


T&G halloween Continued from page 29. and for the environment.

a welcome addition to the compost bin.

Face paints, for example, are often full of toxins and intended for one time use. However quality face paints like those from Snazaroo featured in our T&G Halloween Guide (see page 30) are toxin free and will last for lots of fun.

Finally, replace Halloween lights with solar powered decorations or strings of LED’s and exchange battery powered flashlights for hand pumped alternatives.

Further minimize waste by eating your pumpkin. No fall feast is complete without pumpkin soup and pumpkin scones are a necessity at any fall brunch. The seeds are delicious roasted, but so is the rest of the fruit! Anything that can’t be eaten will be

3 in

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Tovah Paglaro is a mother of 3, and the T&G Family Editor based in Vancouver, BC. She writes about Sustainable Family values in her weekly oringial series Growing Up Green, and its weekly craft supplement Crafty Kids on thriftyandgreen.com

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last minute


A Modern

Hippie’s Tale

in wonderous

New Zealand

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THRIFTYANDGREEN.com / NovemberPHOTOGRAPHER 2011 WRITER LORIOctober WINTER DREW WINTER


A Modern Hippie’s Tale

I

It only took about four minutes of walking down the main road to Kawakawa with a sign on our backs to get picked up by a nice lady who worked at the fish & chips shop there. We climbed into the car and gratefully accepted a ride into town. Having just come from a hostel in Paihia (where we crossed off ‘swim with dolphins in open water’ from our bucket list), we wanted to see the famous Hundertwasser toilets before catching a bus to Whangarei. Hence the hitchhiking, which is rather common (and still quite safe) in New Zealand, though people will tell you it’s headed the way of the States (i.e. dangerous no matter where you are) and should be avoided. Thankfully, we had no such misfortune, and now that we are the proud owners of a previously well-loved 1992 Toyota Corolla, we’ve repaid the kindness by picking up other backpackers looking for a ride on the cheap. Our epic adventure in this island nation somewhere in the Pacific (most people have no clue where New Zealand is on the map) all began last year as my husband and I finally had enough of the 9-5, pay the bills, work until you drop lifestyle. Not that our life was all that bad, really. It was pretty darn great to be honest. But we knew we wanted more. There was a 36

Ice Hiking Franz Joseph Glacier New Zealand.

big, wide world out there to explore. If we didn’t hop on a plane now, when would we? When would these dreams actually become reality? After 3 years of paying off student loan debt and saving plenty of money (thank you Dave Ramsey!) we had nothing tying us down anymore. Except for the pesky details of our jobs, apartment, and all our earthly possessions. Minor details, we mused. Ok, so they weren’t so minor. But everything eventually fell into place for us. Our jobs we quit. Our apartment lease we didn’t renew. Our furniture and boxes full of pots & pans we moved into a friend’s house and/or our family’s attic. There were plenty of times, like when we pulled away from our apartment for the last time hauling a mas-

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sive trailer full of furniture, that I thought, “What in the world are we doing?!” But the day we boarded that plane for our 16 hour flight, everything was right with the world. “This is really happening,” I would say to Drew. “We’re actually doing it.” We were inspired to choose New Zealand for a number of reasons. Being an avid Lord of the Rings fan, my husband knew how stunningly beautiful the country was. (All three movies in the trilogy were filmed here). It’s a country filled with the most diverse landscapes--tropical beaches, lush green rolling hills, vast mountain ranges, glacial lakes, bustling city centers, and geothermal areas with bubbling mud smelling of sulphur. You’ll find natural hot springs, waterfalls, surf beaches, and paddocks full of sheep as far as the eye

October / November 2011

can see. It’s also a country that places a big emphasis on all things green, natural, and organic. Collections of eco-communities are scattered through certain areas where people with the same green values live intentionally together-most of them off the grid growing the majority of their own food. Cattle are allowed to graze in open paddocks, meaning the beef you buy in the supermarket is grassfed by default. But if you fly into the country and never leave the ‘supercity’ of Auckland, don’t expect to see much of that. Hop on the bus (or hitch a ride) outside of the city to really get a feel for true Kiwi life. New Zealand is a very ‘backpacker-friendly’ country with great public transport options. Continued on page 38...


For our lowest fairs visit alaskaair.com 37

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A Modern Hippie’s Tale

Church of the Good Shepard Lake Tekapo, New Zealand

...continued from page 36. We came to the ‘Land of the Long White Cloud’ looking not only for an adventure, but to learn a thing or two about gardening, farming, and off-grid living, hoping to become much more self-sustainable in the future. We learned of an online organization called Help Exchange (www.HelpX.net) that would give us access to a database of hosts in New Zealand and around the world who were looking to exchange accommodation and meals for some help around their property. Bingo. They get the help they need and we learn from their expertise. After our 38

half day’s work is finished, we head off to explore the area before coming home to a hot meal and cozy bed. Pretty sweet set-up, eh? Our journey began at a homestay in West Auckland where we mowed the lawn, cleaned out the fridge, swept up the porch, and weeded the garden. Then we had plenty of time to lay in the hammock with a book and take the train into the city for a walking tour on Valentine’s Day. This was the first and only host we had lined up before we left the States on a jet plane. After that, all our plans were up in the air. Spontaneity and flexibility

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quickly became virtues for us both as we traveled. I’m a planner by nature. I love calenders and maps and planning ahead. I would be lying if I said it was a smooth and painless change of mindset for me in the days leading up to our departure. I worried that we wouldn’t have enough money. I fretted over the thought of not having a cell phone. I debated the best packing methods for carrying all our possessions on our backs. But in the end, I realized there was no point expending all that energy worrying. You can’t learn everything from a book. You have to experience it. We did as much homework

October / November 2011

as we could, researching international bank fees and scouring REI’s website for clever packing tips, but in the end, you just have to take that first step. Just get there, then figure it out as you go along. We may not look like your typical “hippies.” Up until eight months ago we had normal jobs and hung out with (relatively) normal friends on a Friday night just like everyone else. But I suppose you could call us “modern day hippies” now. At least I like to think of it that way. We’ve left our culture’s traditional pattern of life, forsaking its guaranteed comfort and reliability. We don’t really have a


feature

Huntington Eco-Toilets Auckland, New Zealand

home right now, except for with each other, and we find ourselves in a nomadic season of life, soaking in whatever happens to cross our path along the way. And after eight months here we feel that we’ve seen and done more than some people experience in a lifetime. We’ve watched the sun set on 90 Mile Beach, swum with dolphins in open water, hiked through more forests and on more mountains that we can even count (including one hike on a glacier), kayaked alongside seals, soaked in hot pools, and visited countless LOTR filming locations. And that doesn’t even begin to put a dent in the memories we’ve made with the peo39

Lux Living with Mountains Lake Wanaka, New Zealand ple we’ve met along the way. The world truly does gets smaller as you travel. We know we’ll be returning home having made lifelong friends here in New Zealand. On the sustainability front, we’ve built a worm farm, visited community gardens, relied on wind & solar power, cared for chickens, attended a tree grafting workshop, baked our own bread, learned how to build an upside down fire, and used more than one composting toilet. We are so inspired to implement everything we’ve learned once we’re back home.

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We’ve been drawing up plans and taking notes (there’s the planner in me and the designer in Drew coming out) for our garden and orchard outside the ‘hobbit hole-esque’ underground house we want to build. They’re all still dreams at this stage, but now that we’ve picked up and moved to the other side of the globe for the better part of a year, there’s nothing we feel we can’t accomplish. Follow the travels of these ‘modern day hippies’ at www.thereandbackagain.me, where you can also purchase prints of

October / November 2011

their travel photography throughout New Zealand. Lori Winter, is a T&G Food and Lifestyle writer and photograher located in Nashville, TN. She is the host of Sustainable Food Recipes + Restaurants on thriftyandggreen.com — an original web series that features green restaurant reviews, and recipes as well as tips on eating healthy and whenever possible local. (See this issue Claire’s on Cedro page 21) Lori also travels the world through barter and trade for next to nothing.


Sustainable Careers :

Top 10 Green

MBA

PROGRAMS

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October / November 2011DREW DILENGER PHOTOGRAPHER


green careers

T

he hot recruiters on campus these days are the firms that promote values revolving around sustainability and the building of communities. These job opportunities are spurring green coursework, and many business school administrators say that “greener” curriculum changes are a necessity if graduates are preparing to search for jobs in a global economy where businesses are increasingly expected to solve the planet’s problems, or at least not make them any worse. In a world beset by environmental woes, it’s the business schools’ responsibility to educate and train a new generation of students pursuing MBAs to make wise business decisions. Based on my research, as well as asking experts, these appear to be the top choices for a green MBA. Note that they are not ranked in any specific order. Presidio Graduate School

1

Offering a dual MBA and MPA in Sustainable Man agement, the Presidio Graduate School in San Francisco has built a curriculum based around three central concepts: sustainable systems, leadership, and business foundations. 41

Stanford University

2

Its Graduate School of Business now offers a twist, in the form of it’s Business Strategies for Environmental Sustainability program. The program covers a range of issues related to sustainable business, and “explore[s] what it means to turn sustainable business practices into competitive advantage.” Bainbridge Graduate Institute

3

It’s motto “Chang ing Business for Good” says it all. The institute has taken a different approach by not merely “greenifying” a conventional MBA program, but constructing a specific MBA in Sustainable Business. The goal of the program is to “prepare graduates to create and

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manage successful, dynamic enterprises that build a better world.” Yale University School of Management

4

The more conven tional business school at Yale has been infusing its MBA program with a more sustainable agenda. It has incorporated partnerships between the Yale Center for Business and the Environment and the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, hoping to create opportunities for greater strides in both fields. Columbia Business School’s Social Enterprise Program

5

The Social Enter prise Program (SEP) at Columbia Business School provides a framework for

WRITER LINDSAY E. BROWN October / November 2011

students to think in broader terms about their role in business and society, and prepares them with the knowledge and experience to respond to the challenges of a rapidly changing world. Notre Dame MBA Program at the Mendoza College of Business

6

The school’s sus tainability courses focus on topics such as “greening” the supply chain and improving environmental accounting. The College also features lecture series, including Ten Years Hence, that bring speakers to campus to discuss how environmental concerns can be better incorporated into business practices.


University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Kenan-Flagler Business School

Cornell University’s Johnson School of Management

7

The center views solutions to environmental and social problems as business opportunities, not a cost of doing business. They frame the solutions to these complex issues as new business growth rooted in innovation and enterprise development.

The Center for Sus tainable Enteprise (CSE) at UNC Kenan-Flagler helps leaders learn how to bring profits to a triple bottom line. A triple bottom line blends doing the right thing for people and the planet with business goals in ways that are well suited to growing mature markets and to moving into emerging markets.

Portland State University

8

PSU’s Institute for Sustainable Solutions provides leadership, guidance and catalytic investment for students, faculty, and partnerships from a diverse array of academic disciplines. University of Michigan

9

The Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan is attempting to be green both within its core curriculum and the very architectural structure in which classes take place. It considers itself one of the world leaders in research and academic programming relating to sustainable enterprise, and uses its building as a demonstration of their commitment to the field.

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If you’re interested in pursuing a Green MBA but prefer learning on your laptop as opposed to classrooms, I’ll cover these virtual degrees in an upcoming post in my regular series on www.thriftyandgreen.com Lindsay E. Brown, is a T&G writer, prominent eco-activist, and author in New York. Her writing has appeared in numerous notable publications and pens the popular series “Heroines for the Planet”, where she interviews amazing women at work affecting green change. Lindsay was named in Ecover’s 30 Americans Under 30, in which young American leaders in environmentalism are recognized for their efforts. She also organized and led a rally at New York’s Central Park for 350.org’s Climate Change Day.

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October / November 2011

feature series


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food & health

What’s Gluten

Free?

What is Gluten anyway? And why is everyone avoiding it ?

T

hese days, the phrase “gluten free” seems to be everywhere. I feel like half of my friends stopped eating gluten overnight. We added a gluten-free option at group potlucks, I tried my first rice cracker, and I watched as people who had been fighting health issues started raving about how good they felt. Grocery stores (even in our not-sometropolitan Kansas town) now have gluten-free aisles. But what is gluten, and why does everyone suddenly want to be free of it?

Gluten is actually an important protein complex in bread and other foods. The Chinese call it “the muscle of flour.” Found in wheat and its close relatives, gluten is made up of glutenin and gliadin (in wheat), secalin (in rye) and hordein (in barley). It doesn’t dissolve in water, and comes from the endosperm – the starchy part of the seed that provides nutrition for the developing plant. Gluten plays a celebrated role in bread making. A “gluten network” gives bread its structure and makes the dough elastic enough to rise. Many of the steps in bread making are about creating this network.

Food expert Alton Brown compares the structure of proteins to old-fashioned coiled phone cords. At the beginning of bread making, a gluten molecule is much like a phone cord that’s been well-used. It’s twisted back on itself, and you’re having trouble getting it to stretch at all. Weak bonds have even formed between different areas of the coils to keep it in a folded mass. One way to untangle these phone cords is to add water; this starts the process and allows the cords to unfold. Imagine that the ends of these no-longer-tangled phone cords can attach to one another to form long chains. The stretching and

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October / November 2011

folding of kneading allows these now-linear phone cords to align and join together. Once they are side by side, parts of the coils can then connect with each other. You have now created a kind of mesh structure made with chains of coiled gluten proteins in the dough. During the

on


food & health

rising phase, yeast adds carbon dioxide bubbles to the dough, which also assists in the lining up and stretching out of the gluten strands. When you put your bubble-filled gluten mesh into the oven, the heat solidifies the gluten and starch, and the structure of bread is formed. Gluten is also what makes gravy thick and pasta able to soak up sauce. It’s used in some meat substitutes (like seitan), primarily because of its texture and absorbent qualities.

These qualities also make it a good culprit for being added to foods that need structure or absorbency – like popsicles and ice cream. For most of us, gluten is nothing but a regular part of our diet. However, a growing number of people’s bodies see gluten as an enemy invader and react accordingly. A genetic, autoimmune disorder known as celiac disease afflicts about one in 133 Americans (or around 3 million people), and an

additional 17 million are “gluten-sensitive.” In autoimmune disorders, your immune system malfunctions (or functions too well). In this case, a gluten protein triggers the immune system, creating havoc in the small intestine. Once rarely considered, these life-changing diagnoses have become more common as information and testing have become more available. The treatment for both of these disorders involves removing gluten from your diet. This is not easy, because gluten is found in many common foods. As the number of people avoiding gluten has increased, a world of gluten-free foods have hit the shelves. Excerpted from GRIT Magazine, Celebrating Rural America Since 1882. To read more articles from GRIT, please visit www. Grit.com. Copyright 2011 Ogden Publications Inc.

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feature series

Heroines

Phaedra

Ellis-Lamkins

for the 46

Planet

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October / November 2011


P

haedra Ellis-Lam kins, CEO of Green For All, is leading a movement to bring about the change our country so desperately needs. She has a bold yet simple vision for the future — one in which everyone gets to prosper while not destroying our planet. Phaedra’s mission to build an economy that offers opportunity for all people is somewhat of a personal fight. She knows first-hand what poverty feels like. Phaedra, 34, was raised by her single mother in a home near four oil refineries in California. Consequently, she suffered from asthma and allergies as a young girl. A defining moment in Phaedra’s life came during a trip to the doctor’s office, when her physician told her Mother that she was sick simply because of where they lived — in close proximity to the refineries. Moving wasn’t an option for her hard-working mother, though, and Phaedra’s mom left the doctor’s office ashamed that she couldn’t help her child. This moment in Phaedra’s past has fueled her to work tirelessly to lift other struggling American families out of poverty and spark a green revolution. She wants to ensure an inclusive economy is intact that doesn’t put parents in the sort of predicament her

feature series mother was faced with. Under her leadership, Green For All has become one of the country’s leading advocates for a cleanenergy economy, and one of its most important voices on the intersection of economics and environment. Phaedra has led Green For All to several groundbreaking policy victories at the federal, state, and local levels. At the federal level, she led a successful effort to include two key provisions in the House’s climate and energy bill: Securing funding for job training, and guaranteeing broad access to clean-energy jobs. Phaedra has also led Green For All to help states like Washington and New Mexico pioneer state-level green jobs and energy-efficiency programs. And the organization is helping cities like Portland and Seattle craft energy-efficient homeretrofit programs that use innovative financing mechanisms and community agreements over job standards to cut energy bills, create green jobs, reduce pollution, and expand business opportunities. Despite her demanding schedule, Phaedra carved out time with me to reflect on her past and discuss the benefits of a green collar economy, America’s energy policy and how she’s built credibility and trust in all facets of her life.

Lindsay E. Brown: How has your past shaped you to become one of America’s preeminent leaders on green jobs and green pathways out of poverty at Green For All? Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins: I was raised in a workingclass neighborhood in California. Growing up, I saw how poverty and pollution devastated families and communities, and I always told myself that, one day, I was going to work to give people a fair chance at a better life — I wanted to replace all the despair I saw every day with new hope for the future. I began my career in the labor movement in the San Jose area. Eventually, I became CEO of the

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South Bay AFL-CIO Labor Council, where, among other things, I successfully fought for better wages and improved job quality for working families. Then in 2009, I had this wonderful opportunity to become CEO of Green For All, which aims to build a diverse green economy — one that both puts people to work and protects the public health. We particularly focus on those who have been denied opportunities, those most affected by pollution and joblessness: people of color and low-income communities. So, although my stations in life have changed, my heart is where it’s always been — focused on bringing opportunities to places


feature series

where they don’t exist. Lindsay: How will transitioning to a Green Collar Economy offer opportunity for Americans who are struggling? Phaedra: If one looks around the nation, there are a lot of exciting developments in the green economy. The fact is that clean energy is one of the few sectors actually growing today. People are out there repairing water infrastructure, improving the waste and recycling industries, and working in renewable energy. Unlike other booms, which have historically locked 48

out poor people, we have this unique moment of opportunity to ensure that everyone gets in early with the green revolution. That’s why we work with government leaders and policymakers to develop inclusive policies. We want all those who fill green jobs — from construction to energy auditors to maintenance — to reflect the diversity of America. Lindsay: Green For All does quite a bit of grassroots organizing. How have the individuals you’ve met inspired you? Phaedra: I’m inspired every day by the people I work with and meet. Too often, when people talk about

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leadership, they focus on the politicians or CEOs. But, it’s so much more. The woman in Buffalo who identifies food security as a problem, and develops an organization to increase access to affordable, quality food is a leader. The homeowner who retrofits his home to better his community is a leader. The music artist in Oakland, who uses her talents to raise awareness about green issues is a leader. The green movement is made up of heroes — both quiet and well-known. Their selfless service inspires me every day.

October / November 2011

Lindsay: Green For All is redefining the face of environmentalism. What are some exciting, new initiatives you have going on? Phaedra: We always have things going on, but I want to mention two specific initiatives. Clean Energy Works Portland, which Green For All is a part of, just completed its pilot phase. We led the effort to ensure that this home weatherization project provides opportunities for quality jobs and training to all communities. The results were spectacular. 500 homes retrofitted. 381 construction workers were employed on the


heroines for the planet projects. 49% of the hours were worked by people of color. 23% of the pilot dollars went to minority- and women-owned firms. Now, this effort is expanding statewide to retrofit 6,000 homes by 2014. Also, on World Water Day, we launched the Keep It Fresh campaign which is a part of the Campus Consciousness Tour featuring hip-hop superstar Wiz Khalifa — it begins on March 31st at Emory University in Atlanta. Our campaign’s goal is to raise awareness about the need to give every community access to safe drinking water. This is just some of the work we are doing — as you can see, we are very busy because the fight for a green future never stops. Lindsay: What are your thoughts on the current U.S. energy policy? Has it impeded Green For All’s progress? Phaedra: We applauded President Obama’s State of the Union Address, when he announced he wanted to keep America competitive by investing in clean energy. Unfortunately, there are some Congressional Members, who are aligned with oil interests, and are attacking the green economy, the Environmental Protection 49

Photo by Steven Lowinsohn

Agency, and so many of the causes we care about. It was inevitable. There are many people out there who make money off the status quo and are afraid of change. Change is never easy, but Green For All is ready … ready to fight for a better, cleaner future for America. Lindsay: You’re a role model to thousands of young women across America. Who has been a mentor to you? Phaedra: Fred Hirsch is a well-known labor leader from California. He has made a tremendous difference on my life with his advice, with his guidance and with his example. During the civil rights movement, he worked in Mississippi to register

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voters. He helped Cesar Chavez and the National Farmworkers Association. And, throughout his life, he has always demonstrated uncommon courage and conviction. For that and more, he will always be a guiding light in my life. Lindsay: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received? Phaedra: My family always told me to be the kind of person who talks the same way about a person when they are in the room as I would when they are not. You may not like what I’m going to say, but being honest has helped me build credibility and trust — both of which have served me well.

October / November 2011

Lindsay: Is anything possible? Phaedra: I’m a hopeful and optimistic person. But, it’s also important to be realistic, which is why, whenever I take on causes or campaigns, I always identify goals and benchmarks that are achievable, that are real. One has to be grounded in reality before they can truly take off and make a difference. Lindsay E. Brown, is a T&G writer, prominent ecoactivist, and author in New York. Her writing has appeared in numerous notable publications. She pens the popular series “Heroines for the Planet” interviews with amazing women at work affecting green change. Lindsay was named in Ecover’s 30 Americans Under 30, in which young leaders in environmentalism are recognized for their efforts.


Green Path

THE

A beginners guide to green

The Green Path is an original web series with updates each week that explore green topics for newbies. Get tips for living a greener life, see places and meet people that are changing the world. The best part is you can too!

TUESDAYS

with Christa Shelton 50

THRIFTYANDGREEN.com / November Follow the greenOctober path on 2011 www.thriftyandgreen.com


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feature series THE

Green Path

A beginners guide to green with Christa Shelton

Do you know where your water comes from?

T

here is so much information out there to learn and absorb, so it’s good that we have each other to navigate this course together right? Now let’s move into some more green basics and examine something that is an integral part of all our lives- water. How can we make eco-friendly choices pertaining to what we bathe in and drink? How Water Works Water circulates around, over, and through the Earth and is driven by the sun. It evaporates water

from the oceans and rises through the atmosphere and condenses as pure water or snow. We draw on lakes and rivers (surface water), groundwater through pumping (subsurface) and a small and very costly amount is made through desalination.

stored in reservoirs or water towers to be gravity-fed through the system.

As far as treating our water, some municipalities put their water through a three-stage system treatment. It consists of, collecting and screening, removal of solids and contaminants by using filters and coagulation and carbon filtering and disinfection. Then it is

Conserving Water Water that goes down the drain ends up mixing with raw sewage.

So now that we know a little more about the science and “life cycle” of water, where can we start to conserve more and make smart choices in this area?

One way to conserve is to turn off the water while shaving or brushing your teeth.

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Don’t use the toilet as a trash can. Each time you flush small trash in the toilet, five to seven gallons of water is wasted.

Do your best to not run the washing machine or dishwasher until they are both loaded. If you wash dishes by hand, fill up the sink and turn off the water.

Another way to conserve water is to say goodbye to long showers and take a quick one instead.


Photo by Poor Planet To be exact, 63.4 billion plastic bottles end up in landfills and the ocean each year.

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The Green Path •

Be sure to mind your leaks, a dripping faucet can waste 20 gallons of water a day and a leaking toilet can use 90,000 gallons of water in a month. You can circumvent this by changing the washers on your sinks and showers.

Keeping your equipment well maintained is the easiest and cheapest way to start saving water. Look closely at your water bill. The average household uses multiple thousands of gallons each month, but we can do our part to help decrease that number by implementing even these small changes! I was very surprised to read that 89 percent of tap wa-

ter meets or exceeds federal health and safety regulations, consistently wins in blind taste tests against name-brand waters, and costs 240 to 10,000 times less than bottled water. The thought of drinking tap water is largely unheard of in today’s society. So, if you are one of the many (admittedly like myself unless filtered) that shy away from drinking tap, re-think that and buy a water filter! If you need a bottle of water on the go, make ecofriendly water choices. Basically do your best not to support the habit of buying bottled water. Make use of refillable bottles instead of single-use bottles your wallet and the earth will thank you and it helps keep plastic away from

landfills and oceans. Instead look for refillable stainless steel, bio-plastic or aluminum bottles for your organic beverages and filtered tap water, which is much more environmentally friendly. Eliminating the use of disposable water bottles will also lessen how much toxic greenhouse gases and fossil fuels you use. I personally make it a concerted effort to shy away from using plastic bottles. I buy alkaline water and keep it stored in glass bottles at home and fill up my environmentally friendly bottles for on the go use. Incorporating these small and easy changes in your daily routine will help preserve our most valuable resource. Always remember:

Waste not, want not! Be sure to join us next Tuesday for another update on the Green Path. The Green Path is a great place to learn if I do say so myself! Sometimes it’s good to go back to the basics and make sure you are not forgetting things that can help alot. I’m so excited to continue learning and hope you will join me on www.thriftyandgreen. com Tuesdays! Christa Shelton, is a T&G writer in Los Angeles, CA. She writes about veganism + health, and is interested in expanding her knowldege of green topics though her experiences with this series.

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Saving

Serengeti

WRITER TERRA WELLINGTON 56

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feature

saving serengeti

T

he famed Serengeti ecosys tem, located in East Africa consists of almost 10,000 square miles of unique land and animals found no where else on the planet – the area is greater than the size of New Hampshire. Of the total bionetwork, 5,700 square miles are protected as the Serengeti National Park. But just like most wild places on our planet, this rich, wildlife center is increasingly under pressure to survive. Renowned Wildlife Photographer Boyd Norton has captured the beauty of Serengeti and discusses why we would want to care about this mysterious and inspirational place in his new book Serengeti: The Eternal Beginning. A majestically storied and visually splendid read, Serengeti is full of fantastic photography, page after page, coupled by visceral, companion text – sometimes sad, other times humorous, begging the larger question of our stewardship role in preserving planet Earth. Sitting down with the unassuming but deeply passionate Norton, I talked with him about his love for Serengeti.

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What compelled you to put together this book? Jim Fowler [former host of Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom] and I became good friends. He used to be on the Johnny Carson show with his animals. When Johnny retired, Jim said to Johnny ‘I want to take you on a trip that I think you’ll enjoy.’ And he took him to Serengeti for two or three weeks. At the end of that trip, according to Jim, Johnny came up to him with tears in his eyes and said ‘This has changed my whole life.’ I’ve been traveling each year for almost 30 years, sometimes more than once a year, to the Serengeti ecosystem. And it’s one of those places that really grabs you.

number of bison alone are in the tens of millions. That was our Serengeti, and we destroyed it. And the first thing that happened was we built a railroad that opened up all of that land, and then there was mass slaughter that took place. Later, the early Europeans and Americans who discovered Serengeti were hunters. And they slaughtered animals there indiscriminately, much like what happened to our bison in North America. It would be such a shame to have that kind of thing happen to Serengeti. Starting over a year ago I got involved in a battle to stop the Tanzanian government from building a

major commercial highway, slicing like a knife wound, across the northern part of Serengeti National Park. If this highway is built, it would essentially wipe out the migration. And if the animals can’t migrate, they die – simply because they have to follow the rains and the fresh grasses. I loved your story of the dung beetle! A small little creature that most people would ignore but it has immense importance in the ecosystem. How did you become so knowledgeable about how ecosystems are threaded together? It came about just through my natural curiosity. I have continued on next page...

It triggers some memory deep in our beings. When you see the migration taking place -- there are over two million animals on the move, zebras, wildebeests, gazelles -- it’s just truly one of the greatest wildlife spectacles on earth. How can the Western world relate to Serengeti? If you stop to think about the history of our country, we once had our own Serengeti. The Great Plains of North America was home to the most incredible population of animals. The estimates of the

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A leopard in the Tanzania’s Lerai Forest in Ngorongoro Crater. Leopards protect themselves from predators by climbing trees, even bringing food into the trees.

October / November 2011


saving serengeti you have witnessed it in the Serengeti. What changes and consequences have you witnessed there? I’ve talked with other people who have spent a lot of time in the Serengeti ecosystem over the years, and they used to joke about the fact that you could almost set your watch by the onset of the short rains beginning in November and December and the long rains which began in February and March. And that does not seem to be happening anymore.

A giraffe weaves its long, leathery tongue in and out of acacia tree thorns to eat the leaves.

. continued from page 61. a whole library of books on Africa, East Africa, and Serengeti. One of my favourite books is from a researcher and scientist by the name of George Schaller who wrote The Serengeti Lion. He actually talks about not just the lions but also the whole ecosystem and inter connectivity of all the things there. Some of the research I

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found about dung beetles was fascinating. I don’t know how many different species of dung beetles there are but each of them specializes in certain kinds of dung [Norton chuckles] from different animals. When they take that stuff and roll it around and bury it in the soil, it’s nourishing the amazing grasslands there that feed millions of animals. Climate change is becoming an increasingly everyday topic, and you say that

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Sometimes the short rains don’t come at all, the long rains may be delayed by a month or two, and this has impact on the animal life because the major driving force behind the migration is food and water. Food being in the form of the grasses, and the grasses being nourished by the rains. You used to have this ‘ribbon’ that used to take place that now seems to becoming irregular. I think we’ve realized there isn’t any place in the world anymore that isn’t being affected by global warming and climate change. And Serengeti is certainly one of them. With 65,000 black rhinos in 1970 and now likely less than 2,500 in all of Africa today, do you have any opinions on what some of the solutions would be to this constant diminishing

October / November 2011

of animal populations, and in particular the large predators? One of the things that needs to be done is to toughen the anti-poaching laws in Tanzania and Kenya. When I started travelling to Serengeti in the early to mid 1980’s, it was estimated that the population of lions in Africa was in the hundreds of thousands. And in a recent study by some researchers of Oxford University the end of last year puts the current estimates of lions across Africa is 20,000. So this makes places like Serengeti become even more valuable. Some of the reduction of the big predators across the continent is coming from human interaction. You can’t blame people for wanting to live in a safe environment, and especially to keep your kids safe. And so there is this conflict as the population grows. More people spread out over more land. Land that was formally wild country becomes cleared, and crops are planted, and the animals that were there are impacted. So, it’s a real dilemma. Again, it goes back to the fact that all of these reserves become so much more important. Of course the animals don’t know boundaries, so some of them will go outside the


boundaries of the park. And as the population pressure increases on the edges of these parks and reserves then there is bound to be more conflict.

a storehouse of knowledge in places like Serengeti, if we can keep it relatively unaffected by what we are doing with the rest of the world.

At the end of your book, you say “If we can’t save Serengeti, what can we save?” Why do you mean by that?

If you would like to find out more about how to support Serengeti’s preservation, go to www. savetheserengeti.org.

If you ask any school child ‘where is Serengeti?’, the child could probably answer that question accurately and tell you about it more than most adults. And I know among my friends and acquaintances, when I’m heading back to Serengeti, they get this glassy look and say ‘Oh, wow, that’s a place I’ve always wanted to go to.’ And Serengeti is on many people’s bucket list. So, if we can’t save places like this, then what can we save?

Terra Wellington, is Editorin-Chief of T&G, she is an actress, the author of The Mom’s Guide to Growing Your Family Green: Saving the Earth Begins at Home (St. Martin’s Press) , and has been a popular television guest due to her advocacy of healthy living and environmental topics.

Boyd Norton, Wildlife Photographer, Author. of Serenegti, The Eternal Beginning

It’s so important to realize that there are so few of these places left on Earth now. 17 percent of the Earth’s land area can truly be called wild. There are only isolated pockets left, here and there, and these become much more precious. A friend and mentor of mine, David Brower, had a great quote. He said ‘Wilderness may hold answers to questions we have not yet learned how to ask.’ It’s really true that there is Serenegti Sun by Boyd Norton

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New: Video Series

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LIFESTYLE

ENTERTAINING

Join Adriane and Claudia Kiss, The Kiss sisters in their exclusive monthly webisodes dedicated to being young, Thrifty and Green. New in our Saving Money section. Upcoming Shows Oct. 15 T&G Halloween

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Watch the Kissters on www.thriftyandgreen.com


Green

Your

Turkey 61

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Thanksgiving

October / November 2011


green your turkey

H

istorical trivia says that the first 1621 harvest feast, the precursor to today’s Thanksgiving, surprisingly may not have included a tasty turkey. But if the momentous meal did present a gobbler, it was most certainly a wild one. For the early settlers there was an abundance of these fine-feathered birds in North America. However, they looked quite different than the vast majority of turkeys we consume today – principally in body proportion. They were sleeker and less overly stuffed at the “top.” Fast forward to present day. Thanksgiving is most likely to include a commercially bred fowl as the center of attention – the Broad Breasted White Turkey. This turkey is just as the name suggests – birds bred to have large breasts for what is culturally considered by most to be the best meat and pictureperfect presentation for the annual special meal. However this trend may be changing.

For reasons of the locavore movement, biodiversity conservation, small-scale farming, and concerns about food safety and humane animal treatment, other options besides the Broad Breasted are making a comeback. TODAY’S TURKEY OPTIONS Your Thanksgiving Tom now comes from diverse sources with options in what it was fed, how it was raised, and its breed. Local and regionally raised turkeys. These birds travel less miles to the store, contrib-

uting potentially less greenhouse gases to the planet and also supporting local economies. Pastured and free range turkeys. Mostly raised on small-scale farms, these gobblers are allowed to go in and out of their housing building and experience fresh air and pasture. Mary Pitman of Mary’s Free Range Turkeys says that uncrowded birds are less stressed and produce a moister meat. Heritage/Heirloom turkeys. These are turkeys that originate from wild species, such as Narragansetts, Jersey Buffs,

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Slate, and Black Spanish. Organic. Birds are fed an all-organic diet containing no animal byproducts, have not been treated with antibiotics or growth hormones, and are able to roam freely with access to pasture. Kosher. This refers to Jewish laws of hygienic processing, healthy animal standards, and humane animal treatment. Some people feel this method provides an added level of food safety as well as peace of mind that the animal died as peacefully as possible.


feature Broad Breasted White. is the most common, commercial turkey variety found in all supermarkets. PLANNING AHEAD COUNTS Pitman, who has her farms in California’s Central Valley area, says “The Thanksgiving meal is the most important dinner of the year to most people. They are willing to pay extra for a turkey because they want the most flavorful, moist turkey they can buy. The price is higher for the heritage turkeys because they take twice as long to grow out. They take seven-to-eight months to grow out. The Broad Breasted turkeys take only three to three and a half months to grow out due to their cross breeding that was done in the 1950’s.”   So, word to the wise: if you want to purchase any other turkey than a Broad Breasted White, plan ahead – for reasons of price and availability. Turkeys from smaller farms, along with heritage/heirloom turkeys, may cost substantially more than your standard commercial bird. If you save a bit each month

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toward this purchase, it makes buying your special poultry friend much easier. You may also consider a smaller bird. One way to reduce the price of your non-commercial turkey is by buying less poundage. You will have less meat leftovers, but at least you won’t be sick of turkey by day seven. Mary Jolley, author of The Green Diet, says “One solution might be to roast a small turkey breast instead of a whole turkey.” This might also be an excellent solution for smaller get-togethers. Most family farms require turkey preorders, starting in October or earlier. Some grocery stores that carry non-commercial varieties also recommend preorders.

You can find local farms at localharvest.org. Some grocery stores like Whole Foods Market source locally, and you pre-order and pick up the bird at the supermarket. Farmers markets may also have pre-orders and pickups. No matter who you buy from, ask questions. Know what you’re getting. How was the animal raised? What was it fed? Is it a heritage breed? For example, Whole Foods’ standards for all birds include no antibiotics, vegetarian diet, no added hormones, no added solutions or injec-

If you are sourcing a bird on the Internet, local pickup at a nearby family farm is much cheaper than shipping a bird to you.

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October / November 2011

tions except for pure sea salt solution brining, and a complete traceability to the originating farm. Of note, federal regulations prohibit the use of hormones in raising turkeys. COOKING THE UNCONVENTIONAL When it comes to food preparation, be aware that not all birds cook the same. If you are purchasing a non-commercial bird, make sure you follow the labeled instructions or ask the store for cooking advice. Continued on page 65...


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green your turkey

...Continued from page 67. Many of today’s noncommercial varieties are not injected with liquids, so you will likely need to include chicken broth in the bottom of the pan and periodically baste the bird as it is roasting. Theo Weening, Whole Foods’ global meat buyer, adds “Since our birds are fresh, lean, and contain no additives, your turkey may cook faster than a conventional turkey. Fresh turkeys cook a little faster than frozen, and heritage birds take much less time to cook. Begin to check for done65

ness approximately 30 minutes before the end of suggested cooking time.” A thermometer will give you the most accurately cooked bird. Pitman advises to pull the “turkey out of the oven when the thermometer reaches 165° F in the thickest part of the thigh.” SUPER-DELICIOUS SEASONAL SIDES Also gaining emphasis is the eating-less-meat lifestyle, which means you might take more joy in creating delicious sides this Thanksgiving holiday.

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Buying seasonal and organic produce for your sides’ preparation is a terrific way to not only keep traditions but also eat more in tune with the planet.

include turkey, sweet potatoes or squash, rolls, snap peas, mashed potatoes, gravy made from the bird’s drippings, orange slices, and homemade pumpkin pie.

Lynn Colwell, author of Celebrate Green! Creating Eco-Savvy Holidays, Celebrations and Traditions for the Whole Family, gives this moneysaving tip “Consider limiting the number of dishes you serve. We’ve cut back to three or four instead of a dozen and everyone has just as good a time!”

Terra Wellington, is Editorin-Chief of T&G, she is an actress, the author of The Mom’s Guide to Growing Your Family Green: Saving the Earth Begins at Home (St. Martin’s Press) , and has been a popular television guest due to her advocacy of healthy living and environmental topics.

A simple, cost-conscious yet seasonal menu could

October / November 2011


recipes

s u o u t n a p g u e l V Vo Recipe By: Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero Prep Time: 15 minutes Total Time: 90 minutes

Yield: One 9-inch pie From Vegan Pie in the Sky by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero. Reprinted courtesy of Da Capo Lifelong Books.

Ingredients: PIE CRUST: 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 2 tablespoons sugar 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup cold nonhydrogenated shortening 4 tablespoons or more ice water 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar Directions: 1. Sift together the flour, sugar, and salt. Cut in the shortening (using forks; pastry cutter; fingers; food processor; or robot slaves) to form a crumbly dough. 66

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Pumpkin Pie 2. Stir together 4 tablespoons of the ice water and vinegar, then drizzle a third of it over the flour. Gently mix to moisten, drizzle in another third of the liquid, and mix to moisten. Repeat with the remaining mixture until the dough forms a soft ball when pressed together. If it hasn’t come together yet, sprinkle it with another tablespoon (or more) of ice water until the dough can be gathered into a ball. Wrap it in plastic wrap or sandwich between waxed paper and refrigerate for an hour.

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seasonal baking

Pumpkin Pie 3. When you’re ready to roll out the crust, tear off a 14-inch piece of waxed paper or baking parchment and lightly sprinkle it with flour. Flatten the dough into a disk and place it in the center of the paper. Using a lightly floured rolling pin in long, even strokes, roll out the dough into a circle about 12 inches in diameter. Occasionally rotate the dough while you’re rolling to help form an even circle. FILLING: 3 cups pumpkin puree (canned or fresh) or other sweet winter squash 1/2 cup pure maple syrup 1/2 cup plain unsweetened soy milk 4 teaspoons canola oil 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon ground ginger 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg Pinch of ground cloves 1/2 teaspoon salt 2 tablespoons cornstarch 1 teaspoon agar powder 1. Preheat the oven to 350° F. In a blender, pulse together the pumpkin, maple syrup, soy milk, canola oil, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, salt, cornstarch, and agar powder until very smooth. Pour the filling into the pie shell. 2. Bake the pie for 60 to 65 minutes, until the center looks semi-firm, not liquidy. Check the edges of the crust after baking for 40 minutes; if the edges appear to be browning too rapidly, carefully remove the pie and apply crust protectors to the edges to keep the crust from getting too dark. 3. Remove the pie from the oven and transfer

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it onto a cooling rack for 30 minutes, then chill for at least 4 hours before slicing. Serve with vegan whipped topping or your favorite vegan vanilla ice cream. Roasting Fresh Pumpkin Preparing fresh pumpkins for pies is as easy as turning on your oven. For best flavor, save the really big pumpkins for jack-o’-lanterns and use small sugar pumpkins that have firmly attached stems and feel heavy for their size. A small, 2- to 2 1/2-pound pumpkin will provide plenty of cooked pumpkin for one 9-inch pie. 1. Preheat the oven to 425° F and have ready a large, rimmed baking sheet. 2. Slice the pumpkin in half, crosswise, scoop out the seeds and stringy bits, and wrap each cut half tightly with foil. Place foil sides down on sheet; make sure to use only a rimmed sheet as the baking pumpkin will produce plenty of juice as it bakes. 3. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes until a sharp knife can be easily inserted through the pumpkin and the flesh is very soft. Let cool long enough to scoop out the flesh and roughly mash in a mixing bowl. To measure, firmly pack the pumpkin flesh into a measuring cup. 4. If the pumpkin flesh seems watery, you may want to drain it before measuring. Scoop the flesh into a fine mesh metal strainer and let it sit over a bowl for an hour or so until the desired consistency is reached. Or, if you want to get it done faster and have some cheesecloth lying around, you can wrap the pumpkin flesh tightly in the cloth and squeeze.

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recipes

n i k p Pum Recipe By: Lori Winter

cake bars

Prep Time: 10 minutes Total Time: 90 minutes

pumpkin cake bars From Lori Winter’s esteemed blog Laurel of Leaves. She shares her version of a Thanksgiving treat. Ingredients: 1/2 c. canned pumpkin 1/2 c. maple syrup 2 eggs 1 c. almond flour 1/4 tsp. sea salt 1/2 tsp. baking soda

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Yield: 8 servings

1/4 tsp. cinnamon 1/4 tsp. nutmeg Directions: Combine wet ingredients in a food processor or Vitamix. Add dry ingredients and blend for at least a minute or so more. Pour batter into a greased 8Ă—8 baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes.

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seasonal recipes

Salmon

salad

Recipe By: Lori Winter

Salmon Salad

Yield: 1 serving

Adapted from T&G Food Writer Lori Winter’s favorite dishes and past times this recipe can be made quite quickly. Ingredients: 6 oz. mixed green lettuce 1 salmon filet or 1 can salmon, chunked handful of dried cranberries 1 pear, sliced 1/4 c. walnuts or pecans sunflower or pumpkin seeds to taste 1/4 – 1/2 c. goat cheese, crumbled oil & vinegar for dressing

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Prep Time: 10 minutes Total Time: 15 minutes Directions: For the salmon salad, you can choose to use a cooked salmon filet or canned salmon. Just make sure you choose wild caught Alaskan or Pacific fish to avoid the toxins, diseases, antibiotics, and hormones involved in fish farms. The original recipe calls for Gorgonzola cheese, but can be switched in for your favourite variety of cheese.

October / November 2011


recipes

e t e a l p Ap D

muffins

Recipe + Photo By: Lori Winter

Directions:

Prep Time: 10 minutes Bake Time: 15-20 minutes

Grease 12 muffin tins with butter and preheat oven to 375 F.

Yield: 1 Dozen Ingredients: 1/2 c. butter, melted 1/4 c. maple syrup 1 egg 1 c. rice milk 1 c. apple, peeled, cored, & thinly sliced 1 tsp. cinnamon 2 c. spelt flour or buckwheat flour 4 Tbsp. baking powder 1/2 c. dates 1 additional apple, chopped

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seasonal baking

Place first 4 ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Add 1 c. apple and stir, then add cinnamon, flour, and baking powder and mix until just blended. Place dates and additional apple in a food processor or Vitamix and process to a chunky paste. Fill muffin cups 1/3 full with batter, then place a dollop of the date mixture into the center of each cup. Fill muffin cups with remaining batter. Bake for 15-20 minutes. Let sit in tins for 5 minutes before turning out onto a cooling rack.

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y r r e b n a r C

Recipe By: Lori Winter Prep Time: 10 minutes Total Time: 45 minutes

p s i r c e l app

Cranberry Apple Crisp One of the easiest dessert recipes, it can be thrown together in a matter of minutes. Ingredients: 2 c. sliced apples (or peaches, or a combination of both) 1/2 c. – 2/3 c. frozen cranberries (slightly thawed) A couple glugs of maple syrup sprinkle of cinnamon 1/4 tsp. stevia Toss above ingredients together in a pie plate. For the Crisp: 1/2 c. – 2/3 c. gluten-free pancake mix 1/2 c. – 2/3 c. oats 72

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seasonal baking

Yeild: One 9-inch Crisp 1/2 c. maple syrup 1 tsp. cinnamon 1/2 tsp. stevia dash of nutmeg Directions Combine above ingredients in a bowl and rub between your fingers to create a soft crumbly mixture. Sprinkle the topping over the fruit in the pie plate. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until it’s bubbly and hot.

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seasonal recipes

Roasted Winter Squash Soup Recipe By: Chris McGrath Some years ago I co-founded an organic soup company that fed a lot of people of all ages with yummy goodness. Here is one of customers and my family’s fall favourites. It is also one of the most simple soups you will ever make. Yield: 4 Quarts Ingredients 2 Acorn Squash (organic and of avg. size) 1 Butternut Squash (same as above) 1 1/2 Qt. of Vegetable Stock 1 1/2 C organic yellow onion chopped 2 cloves garlic chopped fine or crushed 1 cup olive oil 1/2 teaspoon thyme fresh if possible 2 bay leaves 2 tablespoon fresh parsley (reserve some for garnish) 1/2 cup dry white wine 4 cups vetable stock Salt & Fresh ground pepper add to taste

9. Add the garlic and cook for one minute. 10. Add the wine and cook, stirring frequently, until reduced to nearly dry (about 10 min also known as deglazing). 11. Combine the herbs and spices (thyme through fresh parsley) in a cheesecloth bundle/ bouquet garni, add it to the pot. 12. Add the squash pulp to the pot. 13. Gradually add the vegetable stock to desired thickness (you may not need all 4 cups), and bring to a boil. 14. Reduce heat to simmer, season with salt and pepper to taste.

1. Heat oven to 400.

15. Simmer soup for 20 minutes.

2. Cut the squash in half, seed it, and quarter it.

16. Remove cheesecloth bundle/bouquet garni, and puree soup with hand blender or food processor until it is the desired consistency. You are looking for hot apple sauce here, thick.

3. Brush well with olive oil and season liberally with salt and pepper. 4. Place cut side up in a baking dish and roast until squash is soft and browned at the edges, 45 minutes to an hour. 5. When squash is tender throughout, scoop flesh from skin and set aside. 6. These steps can be done ahead of time and frozen for later use. 7. Cook onion in olive oil over medium low heat until soft. 74

8. Onion should be sweated, not cooked till brown or caramelized.

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17. Serve hot. Garnish with fresh parsley. Freezes incredibly well. To make vegetable stock: 1. Fill pot with a few carrot, celery tops are ok, a bit of fennel is ideal. Add a couple pinches of oregano, salt and pepper. 2. Fill pot to within 1 1/2 of top with water you would drink. Add 1/2 cup white wine. And bring to a simmer for approx. 20 min. Let cool, use or freeze.

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Fall Gardening

Growing Up Green 75

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An original series only on thriftyandgreen.com

October / November 2011


Growing Up Green

feature series

Fall Gardening: Harvest, Preserving & Planting Again

S

ummer days are shortening and while the days are hot, the nights are getting cold. Fall is creeping in on us. I’m never really ready to say goodbye to summer, but I do love this time of year. Mostly, for the food. This is when all the preparation, the effort, the care, the hope pay off. It’s harvest time. FALL HARVEST + FAMILY FEAST For families who try to eat as “locavores,” this is feast time. For the kids in those families, this is where the lesson in patience really hits home. Our kids have been waiting. They’ve been nibbling. Picking. Trying. But they’ve mostly been waiting. Waiting for the carrots, cucumbers and peppers to be big enough. Waiting for the corn to be juicy. Waiting for the berries to be plump. Waiting for the tomatoes to be red. And now that all those things have come to be, the waiting is over and the feasting has begun in earnest.

Sometimes we feast in the garden; to eager to wait until we are inside, the kids wash the carrots with the hose and bite into the crunchy goodness. Often we feast around the table, enjoying the mix of flavors and company. We pick and purchase, cook, bake and eat. And it’s good. PRESERVE, PREPARE + PLANT It’s also busy. The fall is a time for preparation as much as the spring. The key to eating locally, especially with a large family, is preparation. 1. Preserve Seasonal foods. 2. Bake with seasonal ingredients. 3. Plant a winter garden 4. Plant cover crops 5. Preserve beauty – press flowers, dry lavender or rose petals 6. Save Seeds 7. Dry herbs

8. Prune, transplant and prep for the coming year.

freezing is fast and easy, and with 3 little ones that is good.

PRESERVE SEASONAL FOODS Buying in-season fruit by the case and putting it up for the winter saves an incredible amount of money, eliminates the carbon associated with shipping produce and ensures truly delicious produce is available year round. We’re big fans of freezing foods for the winter as opposed to canning for a couple of reasons. First when food is frozen soon after harvest, the nutrients are preserved and second

That said, nothing beats canned peaches or pickled beets, so I hope to find the time to do a few jars of each! Also if you do have time to can, and you are not running your freezer on alternative energy of some kind, the more you can, the less freezer space you will need - which makes the earth happy. It also saves money by unplugging that extra freezer in the garage.

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Continued on page 78...


Crafty Kids

crafts & activities

Build a Scarecrow Craft and Create with Your Family A Step-by-Step Guide A tree swing adds infinite amusement to any outdoor space, it is easy to build and almost free. And the trees usually don’t mind a little bit of company from the kiddos. Get your kids involved in building things today!

1 2 3

Find your Seat - scrounge around the garage or someone else’s to find a great seat for your new swing.

Cut to Size - Using a jig saw, cut a piece of wood into a circle.

Drill a Hole - Drill a hole through the center of the circle.

4 5 6

Find Rope - You can find rope usually at a home store, garage sale, or Habitat Re-Store, string the rope through the hole and knot to secure the swing.

Decorate - Invite the kids to decorate the swing if they like.

Install - Find a good branch and let the fun begin! Crafty Kids is an original weekly supplement to Growing Up Green that appears in the Family section of our website visit us at www.thriftyandgreen.com/family

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Growing Up Green continued from 76.. BAKE WITH SEASONAL INGREDIENTS With school aged children in the house, fresh baking is a staple. We parents who deny (or significantly limit) our children’s Oreo intake have to provide a reasonable alternative. Bulk baking when fruits and berries are in season makes healthy treats easy and simplifies waste-free lunches. PLANT A WINTER GARDEN A winter garden is a possibility for many and if it isn’t, an indoor herb garden or sprouter can still provide a bit of green goodness during the winter months. We’re planning carrots, garlic, brussell sprouts, another round of peas and leafy

greens in the garden and we’ll start sprouting inside soon. PLANT COVER CROPS Organic gardening is really about organic soil care. Planting a cover crop like White Mustard or Fall Rye to cut down and turn back into the soil is a great way to build nutrient rich soil that can sustain a garden without chemical assistance. It’s also pretty, keeps the weeds at bay and easy! For added fun, when it’s time to till, cut a maze or path into the crop before cutting it entirely and tilling it in. The kids love this! PRESERVE BEAUTY Pressing flowers is a simple, free outdoor activity that allows you and the kids to enjoy the beauty

of the garden later in the year. We’ve pressed a selection of flowers and will use them for card making and crafts during the winter months. Lavender and rose petals can also be collected and dried in the early fall to be used in soaps or scrubs – a fun rainy day activity that makes great gifts for Christmas. SAVE SEEDS Heirloom seeds preserve genetic diversity in our food system and saving those seeds at home from the strongest plants in your garden ensures a good growing season next year and saves you the cost of buying seeds again! It’s simpler than I thought, and the kids love to explore all the different shapes and sizes of seeds.

DRY HERBS Herbs in the garden are extremely beneficial for pest management and companion growing. They’re also easy and plentiful – the sort of thing that guarantees the success that delights small children. I grow lots of herbs and then let the kids pick them for anything they want, which often ends up being dirt soup or rock pie. Despite this, we’ve still got lots of parsley, chives, anise, dill, sage and mint left. We’ll hang these to dry and fill the spice rack. PRUNE, TRANSPLANT + PREP FOR NEXT YEAR Strawberry runners need clipping. Herbs, like Sage that become woody after a few years benefit from clipping and starting anew. Many perennials and fruit trees need mulching and/or fertilizing. Enjoy the cooling weather and stick with the garden! 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 thriftyandgreen.com/family

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An Original Series Thursdays on thriftyandgreen.com in Family. Each week the Paglaro family share with us the joys + challenges of raising a family with sustainable values. Get ideas, advice, lots of fun green activities and more. 79

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stylistic速 q550 slate pc FREE SHIPPING 80

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What’s

your

eco Vertical Farm

81

IQ ?

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WRITER TOVAH PAGLARO


THE QUIZ

1

If we swapped in stead of disposing of ½ the costumes kids wear at Halloween, that would reduce annual landfill space by:

C. Reaps the nutritional benefits of truly fresh fruits and vegeta bles D. All of the above

4

C. 6,250 tons

In the United States, what percentage of tap water meets or exceeds federal safety regulations:

D. 8,400 tons

A.12%

2

B. 38%

A. 3,750 tons B. 4,125 tons

Which of these is not a strategy for mini mizing resource wastefulness at Halloween: A. Trick-or-treating in your own neighbourhood B. Trading costumes, buying used or making your own

C. 56% D. 89%

5

In the USA, approxi mately how many tons of disposable diapers end up in the landfills as waste annually? A. It doesn’t

D. Having healthier trick-or-treat alternatives

B. Being green is really expensive, so we need lots of money to do that

3

A locavore is some one who?

A. Eats foods produced close to home B. Makes every effort to select foods that are in season 82

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Saving Seeds is a good way to:

A. Feed the birds B. Make ammunition for a pea shooter C. Save $$, increase food diversity and grown healthier plants D. None of the above

7

What is the current estimated lion population in Africa?

A. Hundreds of Thousands B. 50,000

C. Cooking or composting the jack-o-lantern

6

C. An artificial expansion of money enables agriculture and industry to grow at an unsus tainable rate, leading to dis equilibrium and potentially, environmental crisis

C. 20,000 D. less than 1,000

8

The most sustain able choice of Tur key for your Thanksgiving meal is: A. Organic B. Big brand frozen and buy early to get the sales C. Kosher birds D. Regionally raised Free Range

D. Governments with popular monetary policies often hold power, so their environmental platforms are also advanced October / November 2011

Answers on page 85...


the quiz

9

What is aquaponics? A. Aquaman’s home planet B. A system used by astronauts to purify water C. An off shoot of hydroponics used to grow plants for fish food D. A sustainable technique used for farming fish and vegetables

10

What does the term “Green Washing” mean? A. When a company washes uniforms with an eco-detergent B. Using a phosphate free biodegradable detergent at home for laundry so as not to harm our waterways C. PR tactics used by corporations to gain public empathy without actually doing anything D. When a green magic marker explodes in your pocket and you have to wash your shirt

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Eliminate Your Cable or Satellite Bill and Save $500 a year!* * Based on approximate savings of Roku customers

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THE ANSWERS

1

B. Costume swaps are

becoming a popular option for Halloween costumes. Neighbours arrange a time and place to exchange costumes for the coming season. Swapping diverts waste from the landfill and saves participants the cost of purchasing a new costume. In addition, it diverts 6,250 waste from the landfill, the weight of 2500 midsize cars. Connect with www. greenhalloween.com to find a swap in your area or to organize a swap.

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D. Healthier trick-or-treat alternatives aren’t necessar ily better for the earth, but they are definitely better for the kids! Mini play dough or other toys have become a popular option. Play dough, fruit chews or organic candies are also available. Using a reasonably sized, reusable, trick-ortreat bag helps keep the candy situation under control, while allowing kids the fun of filling it to the brim. 85

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D. A locavore is someone who makes efforts to reduce their diet’s carbon footprint by choosing to eat foods that are produced close-to-home. In addition to being good for the earth, it’s good for the body. Fruits and vegetables are highest in nutritional value soon after harvest.

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D. In the United States, 89% of tap water meets or exceeds federal safety regulations. Tap water can be further purified with a home filter system, making it the best health and environmental choice.


5

C. A functioning free market can be com-

pared to a healthy, well-balanced ecosystem. Populations are naturally limited by the availability of natural resources. Creating money out of thin air is like having a hole suddenly open up in the middle of a forest, spouting water uncontrollably. The resulting flash flood could potentially throw the whole ecosystem out of balance and even destroy it. For a comprehensive explanation, read New Realities on www. thriftyandgreen.com/saving-money a weekly column with Dario Piana.

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ed that the population of lions in Africa was in the hundreds of thousands. In a recent study by some researchers of Oxford University the end of last year puts the current estimates of lions across Africa is 20,000.

8

C. Saving seeds from healthy plants not only saves money by avoiding having to purchase them but insures a vigorous crop next year due to that plant being happy in its environment. It also helps preserve food diversity which is very important in our day and age of GMO and dwindling varieties being marketed by large food conglomerates.

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C. In the 1980’s, it was estimat-

October / November 2011

D. Regionally Raised Free Range - these

birds travel less miles to the store, contributing potentially less greenhouse gases to the planet and also supporting local economies. Pastured and free range turkeys. Mostly raised on small-scale farms, these gobblers are allowed to go in and out of their housing building and experience fresh air and pasture.

Answers continued on page 101...


the

New

Farm

Save

money + the earth

with

87

Aquaponics

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home & garden

Feeding a Family on a Budget is not Easy. Save by Growing your own Protein.

T

The importance of a healthy diet, rich in fruits and vegetables, is well established. But trying to feed a family on a budget is no simple task. As many a Thrifty parent can tell you, food prices are on the rise. This is particularly true if you’re looking for organic, pesticide-free products, fresh fruits and vegetables or locally grown produce. Eating healthy comes at a premium.

ingly precious resource, fresh water. Irrigation is the single largest use of fresh water and accounts for about a third of all water used in the US.

URBAN FARMING Whether as a result of high food prices, increased awareness or both, urban farming is gaining ground. The idea of producing fresh, healthy food for their family is inspiring a new generation of city dwellers to become small-scale farmers. Garden plots, raised beds and composting are increasingly popular. A growing number of protein-craving urban farmers are also raising chickens for both eggs and meat.

SOIL TO FOOD Soil quality is variable, so farmers often use chemical fertilizers to increase their yields. Pests and parasites are a constant concern, making it difficult for farmers to completely eschew the use of pesticides.

But as farmers all over the world can tell you, traditional agriculture is hard work and involves many risks. It requires large amounts of an increas-

Traditional agriculture is also highly dependant on good weather conditions. Large crops are routinely lost to drought, floods, heat waves and frost. Changing weather patterns and rising sea levels complicate things even further.

ground in an attempt to satisfy the ever-increasing demand for farmland. High fuel prices make it expensive to transport food from farms to cities that are often thousands of miles away, so what land is available is now expected to produce not only our food, but fuel for our cars as well. Meanwhile, the world’s population continues to grow at unprecedented rates that current modes of living can’t support. URBAN INNOVATIONS Reality is a powerful motivator. These and other factors are incentives to

Food prices reflect the fact that food production is growing less rapidly than consumption. Forests continue being burned to the

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Hydroponics is an example of such innovation. Hydroponic systems are used to grow plants without soil. Plants are instead placed in growth media, such as gravel, and fed by nutrientrich water. Whether it is used in greenhouse systems, green

Photo by: Joreg Lehman / Getty Images

WRITER DARIO PIANA 88

innovation and have led to the development of new techniques, as well as to the adaptation of existing technologies to food production. Fish farms, greenhouses and small farms in many countries have become testing grounds for these advances.

October / November 2011


the new farm roofs or vertical growing systems, hydroponics have gradually become important suppliers of lettuce, spinach, tomatoes and berries of all kinds — as well as other fruits and vegetables. Green roofs are sprouting up on top of office buildings, family homes and businesses and green walls are now visible in malls, hotels and office buildings around the world. Hydroponic techniques undoubtedly represent a valuable tool for present and future food producers. Hydroponic systems can accommodate a much greater population density, or number of plants per square foot, than traditional agriculture. That, combined with the fact that they don’t use soil to grow plants, could help reduce the demand for additional farmland. PROS + CONS However, there are a few significant drawbacks to hydroponics when it comes to sustainability. Most nutrients used to feed the plants in a hydroponic system are not organically produced, but rather products of the petrochemical and mining industries. They must be purchased and periodically added to the system. Additionally, if the nutrient mix is not adequate,

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Photo by Lisa Hammershaimb

water must sometimes be dumped out of the system and replaced with fresh water, then more nutrients added to the new water. Water use is also a major challenge in aquaculture, or fish farming. AQUAPONICS Fish farms supply a growing share of the world’s fish, which is an important source of protein. However, fish produce waste. Fish waste includes ammonia, which is toxic to the fish. This means that large fish farms must periodically filter or dump large amounts of ammonia rich water and replace it with fresh water. But one developing technology could offer significant advantages and a higher degree of sustainability to food producers.

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Often described as a combination of hydroponics and aquaculture, aquaponics actually offers distinct advantages over both and is more sustainable than either. Naturally occurring aquaponic environments were observed, used and replicated by cultures as diverse as ancient Egypt, Babylon and the Aztecs, who noticed that fresh water in which fish lived was good for irrigation. Aquaponic systems house both fish and plants. Simply put, water from the fish tanks is circulated through the system, feeding the plants and being filtered in the process, before returning to the fish tank. Fish waste is turned into plant food. Rather than being dumped, as it would be in a

October / November 2011

fish farm. In the aquaponic system it is used to provide the nutrients that would have to be purchased and added to feed plants in a hydroponic system. Aquaponic systems typically consume 90% less water than would be required in traditional agriculture and use no fertilizers or chemical pesticides. Aquaponics could make it possible to produce fish, as well as fresh fruits and vegetables, in a more sustainable way than any other available technology. Aquaponics could contribute to reducing food and water shortages, while becoming an important, sustainable source of protein and locally grown, organic, pesticide-free, fresh fruits and vegetables.


home & garden It could significantly reduce the amount of energy used to produce food and save most of the energy used to transport it. Efficiently integrated aquaponics could begin to erase the line that separates country and urban life, redefining the architectural landscape.

fish tank to plant media, some ammonia will be converted to nutrients and some plants will grow. But unless properly designed, built, operated and maintained, aquaponic systems malfunction or fail in the long run. Many systems are abandoned within 2 years.

However, while aquaponics may be a simple concept, designing, building and operating an aquaponic system is no simple task. Aquaponic systems require monitoring and periodic maintenance. Fish are very sensitive to water conditions, stress, parasites and a wide range of bacterial infections and diseases, so water purity, temperature, pH levels and other parameters must be periodically monitored by trained operators. In some ways, aquaponics is less forgiving than traditional agriculture; system failures can easily cause all the fish and plants in a system to die.

There are also a few commercially available aquaponic systems that people can assemble at home. They typically cost anywhere between a few hundred and a few thousand dollars. Productivity is variable, since these systems are not designed specifically for each location and cannot adapt to the varying conditions in which they operate.

A few enterprising urban farmers have put together experimental aquaponic systems that, at least for a while, successfully produce vegetables. Even poorly designed systems can be effective for a limited period of time and will typically produce at least one or two crops. As long as ammoniarich water circulates from

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necessary fish feed in sustainable ways is one of the challenges currently facing system designers. Although it has ancient roots, modern aquaponics is still in its infancy. As was the case with early air planes or cars, today no two systems are alike and each new system is considered, at least to a certain degree, an experiment. Many questions remain unanswered. Design principles and standards must continue to evolve; systems must become even more efficient and sustainable. It will take continued commitment from courageous,

Another drawback with most systems is the need to periodically wash the growth media, usually gravel or expanded clay, in order to remove built up solid waste. This is not only time consuming, but reduces the system’s productivity and increases water consumption. Aquaponic systems also require a steady supply of electricity to power air and water pumps. Power outages can result in system stops, which can lead to system failures. Producing that energy as well as the

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October / November 2011

pioneering investors, builders and operators to develop aquaponics to its full potential. But when that is done, aquaponics will likely change not only the way we produce food, but also the way we live. Dario Piana is the managing editor of the T&G Personal Finance section. Dario is interested in educating others about the adjustments needed to cope with the changing global economic climate for the average individual and family. He is also mountain climber, backyard fish farmer and aquaponic systems designer.


SANTIAGO TOWNHOUSE

Designed for

Living

WRITER ARCHITECT ALEX KING 91

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home & garden

I

t has been a busy week at our little architecture firm. The Santiago Town house, won the British Homes Awards 2011 (BHA) category for the Future Homes design and I have been swept along on all the razzmatazz that goes with that. The building will be unveiled as a showcase design at the Ideal Home Exhibition (London) in March 2012 and will present the latest green technology in an affordable home as part of a desirable lifestyle. The aim is to make ‘sustainable’ standard, so you would not expect anything less. Modern architecture often alienates people and yet the start of the modern movement was defined by a new type of building that addressed the social concerns of the day. This was our starting point on the Santiago Townhouse design: we looked at how modern times affected our lives and those of the wider community and how a family home might adapt to accommodate the change in lifestyles that occur over time. The family home is probably the largest single investment that a family will make and it is a sad fact that the changes that we

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might require of a home are most likely to occur when we are in difficult circumstances, so the building needed to be flexible enough to be able to adapt without the need for extensive building work. The Santiago design was created in collaboration with my retired father and this brought issues of accessibility and housing of aged family members to the forefront. This was coupled to the fact that my sister recently returned to live in my parents home, an event that made us acutely aware of how family circumstances change and why we needed to create something that could be sub-divided into independent spaces with the minimum of fuss.

that solar energy would be an integral part of the design and that the whole development would act as a huge solar collector. In recent months solar energy has had a hard time, especially in the US. However I have been a fan of photo-voltaic energy since attending a lecture by someone from the Rocky Mountain Institute in the 1990s. At that time I researched PV panels with the idea of using them on a project and visited the research institute in Oxford, which was owned by BP. I was told that my proposal was “about fifteen years ahead of its time”, but

It takes a lot of hard work to make things simple and good design evolves as you explore different possibilities, looking for the best options. Our solution was to design a large family home that could change into a self-contained maisonette and garden flat by simply locking doors. The loss of the garden for the upper floors is counter-balanced by the roof terrace which also acts as a rainwater collector. There is also a solar roof at this level. Usually, you see solar panels propped up on modern buildings as if they are an after-thought, but we decided from the start

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October / November 2011

have since become concerned that the institute for efficiency in solar power is owned by an oil company. It makes no sense to pollute the earth if we can avoid it and to use energy from sunlight as plants do is a bit of a ‘no-brainer’, so on Santiago we made the solar roof a very visible statement of intent. Green building is not a fad, it makes good economic sense. The rainwater collecting roof on the Santiago design is filtered and combined with the water you used to wash your hands which is re-used to flush the toilets. This is water that you would not


designed for living be paying for. Besides, why would anyone want to pay to flush drinking quality water down a toilet? The rain water storage is also used as water for the garden and roof garden. The super insulated construction means that the building requires less cooling in Summer and less heating in Winter, and the ceramic shell that forms the external surface of the building is low maintenance. All too often we see ‘Green’ as an image or sales ploy or ‘Green Washing’ is involved claiming a company is green when it is truly not. Many sustainable technologies have been in use for centuries by cultures that did not have money to burn. The Georgians in England created Ice Houses, insulated buildings in which they could store the snow in Winter to make ice for their drinks in Summer. The ‘Rose coloured city’ of Petra in Jordan only existed because of an ingenious water collection and storage system. The article about the Santiago Townhouse that appeared in the Daily Telegraph (September 24, 2011) was called ‘moving into the space age’ and yet in reality many of the ideas within the design are rooted in history.

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From the start we viewed a house as part of a wider community and set out to recreate the layout of a successful London square. This would include a communal garden at it’s heart and it is known that the trees and other planting in these gardens creates a microclimate that not only looks attractive, but can help to reduce energy costs by combating the heat island effect. Communal spaces encourage communal activities and this interaction helps build a sustainable community, lowering car dependency by providing facilities within walking distance. When people talk about sustainability they tend to think of technology, but the heart of sustainability is social, it’s about people and how they live their lives. When we first stood back and looked at what we had created in the Santiago Townhouse it became clear that we had touched on many topical issues and the simple act of creating a simple sub-divided space could be used to solve many problems. For example, in the UK at the moment

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many people are concerned about building on the countryside and statistics say the UK needs more homes. The adaptability of the Santiago house poses the idea that we would need less new homes if we considered the houses we do build more carefully. This is based on an observation of where I live. In this community many of the occupants are elderly and their children have moved on. Sometimes their partner has died and they continue living in a four bedroom house. One elderly man told me that the houses are not so valuable that if they down-size they will get any financial gain. Proportionally flats are more expensive. The moving will create trauma, possibly distancing them from old friends and downsizing will require throwing out of things that may have belonged to

October / November 2011

lost loved ones and who can say they will be happy elsewhere? The flexible layout of the Santiago Townhouse would mean that they could downsize without moving. The side effect of this would help by bringing more accommodation onto the market without the need to build on the countryside. Buildings are a product of the time in which they were created and in tough times buildings need to be designed to help people live with all the adaptability to changing circumstances that are possible. They also need to be low cost and using the FutureForm modular system not only ensures energy efficiency but also limits site time, reducing the cost of construction and so the cost of the home. Linked to the flexible yet functional liv Continued on next page...


home & garden

The building will showcase at the Ideal Homes Exhibition in 2012. A video of the proposals can be seen on Youtube. Alex King studied architecture at the Architectural Association in London, Architectural History at Oxford University and Historic Building Conservation at Oxford Brookes University. Some of his work can be seen at Designalexable.blogspot.com. ...continued from previous. ing spaces, this could help first-time buyers. We hope to work closely with home builders to make these reductions meaningful and are very lucky that Mike Gazzard, who directs the British Homes Awards, works hard to forge these relationships and ensure that the award winning buildings stand the test of time.

problems facing our family and we found that many of our concerns were just a microcosm of what was happening in the wider community. All too often modern architecture is seen as something impractical and far removed from those early buildings that set out to

solve social problems. With the Santiago Townhouse we have tried to return to those early roots and produce a building that is the best that it can be for the people that live there. The ‘Santiago Townhouse’ was the the winner of the Future Homes Award in the British Homes Awards 2011.

Housing is a very particular building type and magazines tend to focus of the homes of the fabulously wealthy. In the Santiago Townhouse we set out to create homes using an affordable modular system for the volume house building market, creating a mass producible green building design. We started with ourselves and how a building could be designed to solve

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All images copyright Alex King - 2011


new realities

New

TOOLS FOR THE NEW ECONOMY

Realities

Where does money come from anyway?

T

he so called Keynes and Hayek, you’re not alone. Most people Austrian couldn’t care less about school of monetary policy and econom- have no inkling as to how ics, best money is created or what it represented by Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich A. represents. We are told that Hayek, is currently considthese are complicated matters best left to experts and ered obsolete and disregarded with some measure specialists; a knowledge as of contempt by most mod- mysterious and unattainaern economists. But it may ble as that of witch doctors, mediums and psychics. But well be making a comeit’s really not that compliback as the only economic cated. theory that is both financially and environmentally sustainable. In short, Keynes was an English economist born in the 1800’s who believed If you don’t know the that, if the problem was difference between

poverty and poverty was the lack of money, the solution was simply to create more money. Of course, back then only gold and silver circulated as money, and it isn’t easy to create those. So Keynes suggested States should mandate that people use paper money, not backed by anything at all, and create as much of it as necessary. However, the memory of government-issued paper money “going bad” was still too fresh in many people’s minds, so a “central bank” would be chartered and

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given the exclusive authority to issue the money. Then, it would be lent to other banks that would lend it to people looking to start businesses, or it would be exchanged for IOU’s, or bonds, printed by the government. When an economy “slows down” more than deemed convenient by the experts, Keynesians believe the State should, through its central bank, intervene and provide the necessary liquidity, “stimulating the economy”. continued on page 98 ....


personal finance continued from previous page... This means creating more money, lowering interest rates and injecting the new money into the economy by either lending it or spending it. Conversely, when an economy “overheats” and prices start to rise, Keynesians believe the State should intervene and reign in the growth, or “take away the punch bowl”, by raising interest rates and reducing available credit. On the other hand, the Austrian school holds that the State should not create money at all or have much of a role in regulating the economy. Instead, it should protect private property rights, enforce contracts and prevent fraud. Money, according to the Austrians, is not the same as wealth, but rather simply an instru-

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ment of exchange. Poverty, they suggest, is not the lack of money, but the lack of wealth; that is, the lack of production. Investments should be based on existing savings rather than debt. Creating money through artificial means distorts prices and markets, causes mal investment and creates financial bubbles. Free markets, or markets free of government regulation and intervention, are the most efficient means to allocate savings to the most productive investment options. Understandably, the ability to create money out of thin air must have been very attractive proposition to many governments of the early 20th Century, especially those facing the prospect of war. Rather than spending their limited gold

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reserves, they would be able to pay for the domestic costs of war and social welfare programs by printing unbacked currency. By the early 1920’s, the U.S. and most other industrialized countries had adopted Keynesian monetary policies. Since then, supporters of the ideas of Mises and Hayek, which are directly opposite, have been outsiders looking in. However, over the last 3 years, the ongoing financial crisis has motivated many to ask certain basic questions for the first time. Far from ending the boom and bust cycle, as it was supposed to, Keynesian monetary policy has produced some of the most violent boom and bust cycles ever seen, including the current one. Perhaps it shouldn’t

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be surprising that a growing number of people are now willing to consider Austrian principles rather than dismiss them offhand. The results of the Keynesian model are a persuasive argument. As country after country is rocked by debt crisis after debt crisis, it becomes evident that something is fundamentally wrong. The Keynesian model has reached its limit. Everywhere the problem seems to be that there isn’t enough money. Yet everywhere, governments continue to create and spend more and more money. But instead of economic conditions improving, jobs are lost, prices rise and it becomes harder for more people to pay their bills. Continued on page 98....


Visit B&N today to find The Mom’s Guide to Growing Your Family Green by T&G Editor Terra Wellington.

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personal finance ....Continued from page 96. This is because the real problem isn’t that there isn’t enough money. The real problem is that there isn’t enough production. Keynesian policies destroy productive capacity because they destroy savings and because they are redistributive. By creating new money, central banks dilute the value of the money people have saved. Savers see the value of their savings lost to inflation. Keynesian policies destroy the natural source of investment capital, which is savings, leaving central banks and government planners to take the place of savers and investors. Savers and investors tend to be more cautious than banks and governments about where they invest money, simply because it is their own money they risk. Forcefully transferring wealth from savers to borrowers or to recipients

of newly created money disrupts the free-market mechanism that would naturally allocate money to the most productive and efficient investment projects. Money is thus allocated to less productive and less efficient investments as a result of political considerations or ineptitude. The most efficient producers are forced to subsidize less productive competitors, as well as whatever other groups banks and government planners choose to finance. The fact that businesses cannot predict how much money central banks will create and therefore how much prices will rise or what interest rates will be also makes it more difficult for investors to make financial projections. Sooner or later, all this drives the most efficient producers out of business and investors out of the country that adopted those poli-

cies, while eliminating any incentives for new, more efficient competitors to enter the field. The result is lost productive capacity. So it is that one unintended consequence of applying Keynesian principles is the destruction of both people’s savings and of the mechanisms that enable the efficient production of resources, which results in product scarcity. But there may be yet another unintended consequence of inflating the money supply without limit: the destruction of our environment. By the time the world, after about 7,000 years, first went off the gold standard just before World War I, the advance of science and technology had already made it possible for people to produce resources more efficiently and live longer than ever before. But over the ensuing 100 years or so, the world witnessed a period of industrial and economic change that is without precedent. The rate at which the world’s population has grown and continues to grow, the rate at which we’re consuming resources and the rate at which we’re polluting the planet all seem to be growing ever faster; growing almost exponentially, we might say. That kind of change in the rate of growth is rare. Interestingly, when graphed on a chart, the

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exponential growth in the world’s population is reminiscent of a few other charts depicting other, apparently unrelated, rates of seemingly unsustainable growth. For example, the charts that depict the total money supply and public debt (left) would both look very similar. Coincidence? Perhaps. Then again, perhaps not. Could the total money supply and available credit be artificially inflated without causing a corresponding artificial expansion of industrial activity? Could any such additional expansion of industrial activity be achieved without any impact on the environment? Remember that, under an Austrian model, the money supply cannot be increased without the considerable effort of mining metals out of the ground. Investments are based on savings, so the amount of money available to finance new projects is limited to what savers are willing to invest. This provides a natural limit to the rate at which new projects can be funded and thus to the rate at which industry can grow. A Keynesian system, where money is based on public debt, enables governments to spend money they don’t really have, and entrepreneurs to borrow money no one has really saved. The only limit to the amount of money that can be created,


Newlywed Home Buyers and What Do the DOW Numbers Mean? Newlywed Home Buyers Dear Dave, My husband and I have been married for three months, and we’re debt-free. Right now, we’re trying to save up a 20 percent down payment for a house. I work for a real estate company, and they’re really pushing us to take advantage of a first-time homebuyer deal. The program offers 100 percent financing, no money down and no private mortgage insurance. They say it’s a great deal. What do you think? —Stacy

Dear Stacy, You guys are off to a great start! Don’t blow it now. Those people are wrong. I grew up in the real estate world, and this is a bad idea.

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personal finance Slow down. It’s great that you guys are young and debt-free, but you need to do things that are smart for you. And for you, smart includes a couple of things. First, make sure you have an emergency fund of three to six months of expenses in place. Then, keep saving up for a big down payment. You know, when I hear the advice you were given I just want to smack somebody. Haven’t the mortgage lenders learned anything from the last few years? Nothing down, interest-only and sub-prime loans are a big part of the reason for the financial debacle in this country. A house is not a blessing when you’re broke, and a bargain is only a bargain when you’re ready to buy! I always recommend waiting at least a year after you’re married to buy a house. It takes that long to decide how close you want to live to your in-laws! Plus, you want to spend some time getting used to each other, and knowing each other even better, before making what will be your largest asset purchase. —Dave

What Do the DOW Numbers Mean? Dear Dave, My husband and I are both spenders. We want to get on a plan and handle our money better, but is there anything that will help us learn to give up stuff now so that we’ll have more in the future? —Ken

Dear Ken, The Dow is an index of the stocks of 30 selected companies. We’re talking about outfits like Wal-Mart, Coca-Cola and Nike – some of the big boys. The percentage that the stock prices of these companies rise or fall as a group, on any given day, is the Dow Jones Industrial Average for that day. Technically, this index is not a good representative of what the stock market is doing because it only takes into account 30 companies. The S&P is a much better measure of what the market is doing, because it represents the stockprice activity of 500 companies. Let’s say you’re watching the news, and a reporter tells you the market just went down 300 points and it was at 10,000. That represents only a three percent change, and that’s not big news – regardless of what some of the “experts” say. Great question, Ken! —Dave About the Author Dave Ramsey is a best-selling author, speaker, and nationally syndicated radio talk-show host. He is the author of Total Money Makeover and Financial Peace. 100

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the quiz answers

...Continued from page 86.

9

10

D. A sustainable technique used for farming fish and vegetables Often described as a combination of hydroponics and aquaculture, aquaponics systems typically consume 90% less water than would be required in traditional agriculture and use no fertilizers or chemical pesticides.

C. PR tactics

used by corporations to gain public empathy without actually doing anything. Wikipedia defines “green washing” as a form of spin in which green PR or marketing is deceptively used to promote the perception that a company’s policies or products are environmentally friendly.

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new realities and thus to the rate at which new invest Continued on page 105... ...Continued from page 98. ments can be funded and at which industry can grow, is the willingness of politicians to take on more debt. Politicians need votes and voters want jobs. When industrial activity grows, new jobs are created, and trees don’t vote. A functioning free market could be compared to a healthy, well-balanced ecosystem. Populations are naturally limited by the availability of natural resources and natural resources don’t naturally appear out of nowhere. Creating money out of thin

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personal finance air, as central banks have been doing for the past 100 years, would be similar to having a hole suddenly open up in the middle of a forest, spouting water uncontrollably, day and night. What would normally be a precious resource could, in such circumstances, quickly become a threat. The resulting flash flood on continued on page 106.. could drown most of the animals and trees in that forest, potentially throwing the whole ecosystem out of balance, even destroying it. Monetary policy has both financial and environmental effects. The unlimited, artificial expansion of the money supply brought about by the adoption

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of Keynesian monetary policies enabled agriculture, mining and many other industries to grow at unsustainable rates. These explosive rates of growth would clearly have been difficult or impossible to achieve if available credit had been naturally limited by the availability of existing savings, as it would be, in an Austrian system. The disastrous environmental effects of this unprecedented growth, from the loss of certain species to the destruction of rainforests and wetlands, may not be simply an inevitable result of technological advance and economic development, but rather, at least in part, the result of bad monetary policy.

October / November 2011

As we attempt to deal with the financial consequences of having adopted a Keynesian monetary system, we might also be forced to understand and deal with its effects on the environment. Doing so might in turn enable us to find alternatives that are more sustainable, both financially and environmentally. This article is provided as informative opinion only and is not to be construed as investment advice, nor does it or any part of its content represent a recommendation to buy, hold or sell any security, contract or commodity. Dario Piana is the managing editor of the T&G Personal Finance section. Dario is interested in educating others about the adjustments needed to cope with the changing global economic climate for the average individual and family. He is also mountain climber, backyard fish farmer and aquaponic systems designer.


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Thrifty & Green - Issue 2 - Oct / Nov 2011  

Our Autumn Holidays issue brings you fabulous thrifty tips on how to save on entertaining, costumes and lot more.

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