Ways to Get Prepared and Organised with only 30 days till Christmas

In just 1 weeks time, Lockdown 2.0 is scheduled to be finished. What that means to different areas of the UK remains to be seen but one things for sure… Christmas is on its way!

credit: belfast telegraph

The words “stampede” and “astronomical rise in number of people on the streets” were used to describe the scenes in Northern Ireland who are preparing for their two-week lockdown rushing to the shops and high streets to get their Christmas shopping.

Now to me, that sounds absolutely awful, and it got me thinking… Christmas – that most wonderful time of year filled with gifts, festivities, and a whole host of ads and promotions constantly bombarding you about it. It’s no doubt that Christmas has become commercialized.

credit: John Lewis

But in all of the commotion of promotions, sales, and Christmas shopping, maybe you forgot something important. You’ve been running around like mad – is there anything in for dinner tonight? Or maybe you need to buy some things for the house?

If you must go out, spend time at home beforehand making a nice list of what you need, gifts that you need to buy for people, all of the things for wrapping gifts at home, and all of the decorations to put up? Limit your journeys out by being ultra prepared and organised.

Now, before you get your coat, shoes and face mask, can any of these things be bought from small businesses online?

I know I’m missing out on Christmas events and markets this year, and for most other small businesses, Christmas is their most profitable time of year.

Crafters, bakers, movers and shakers can still be found in their thousands on sites such as Etsy or simply let everyone come to you. I’ve seen so many posts on social media of people putting up their Christmas lists and then people add in the comments if they can help or know someone who can.

Shop small and local if you can, then encourage friends to do the same. Share your purchases, like and follow a small businesses that you love, share their posts, tag friends who might be interested…so many things you can do at home without a queue or hand sanitiser in sight!

You’ll be able to sit at home and relax with a nice mug of mulled wine when everyone else is running around shopping (don’t forget to check your local bakers for a mince pie to go with it!)

Love, Light and Green Vibes

Jodie @ Between Green

Guest Blog: Rock Your Birthday

Greetings from @Rock Your Birthday – an eco-friendly alternative to a birthday card.

Hi, My name is Chris, creator of ‘Rock Your Birthday’.

RYB is a culmination of my life choices, skills and illnesses (yes, you read that right!). I’m an eco-conscious person. I’m a musician. I’m an SEN teacher. I have Crohns disease and I also have Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS).

Last year, due to my illnesses, I was forced to give up large parts of my working life in order to look after myself. It was at this point I decided to put my efforts into making a difference.

RYB allows you to record your recipients name, a personalised message, the name(s) of those that’s it’s from and to add your favourite 10 photo’s. This is all edited into your choice of one of our many different styles of ‘Happy Birthday’ and is returned to you via email or Facebook messenger as a birthday ‘song & video’ for you to share with your lucky recipient. In effect, it emulates a Birthday card, without the need for cutting down a tree or wrapping it in the dreaded ‘P’ word… yes, pl***ic. You can see examples of our work on our facebook page – facebook.com/rockyourbirthday or website – rockyourbirthday.com. They’re quick and easy to make and are returned to you the same day that you order.

RYB is fantastic for all ages. Anyone would love to receive one and everyone can make them. You can even have your child’s voice on a song from any age by simply asking them to repeat what you say (your voice would then be edited out of the song). My family members have received them from my daughter since she was two. To capture her voice like this is priceless and is something we’ll all treasure throughout our lives.

As the covid-19 outbreak hit, I wasn’t launched. I wasn’t ready. But the world was struggling and I felt it was time for people to dig in and do what they could to help. And so, with many people unjustly missing their loved ones birthdays, I opted to be a helper and to give them away for free throughout the first outbreak. We made hundreds! I’ve had to stop that now – with little work, I’m struggling financially, but they are available for the princely sum of just… £3! Instead, throughout this lockdown, I’m donating 50p from every song to an NHS charity.

To date we have saved over 600 cards from being created and 600 pointless plastic sleeves to wrap them in. It’s not much, but it’s a start!

Being eco-friendly doesn’t have to mean changing everything overnight, but it is about changing. The more we can change ourselves and each others habits, the more we achieve and preserve our beautiful world. Through RYB, I hope to be able to be a part of that change.

As Sir David Attenborough said “We need immediate action”.

I’d be delighted if you had a look at our service at either:

https://www.facebook.com/rockyourbirthday
or
http://www.rockyourbirthday.com

And, if you want to give us a go, you’d be treading on that ‘helping’ path too.

Thanks for reading,

Chris
Rock Your Birthday

HelloFresh #2

Hello and Welcome to another Blog Post Thursday.

I hope this blog reaches you safe and well! Unfortunately, we are self-isolating as my daughter has tested positive for Covid-19. She is over the worst of the symptoms, but she’s exhausted while her little body fights off this awful virus. In a way I’m so happy we’ve continued with food subscription boxes now we are unable to go out it’s become a life saver!

So, let’s round off our HelloFresh Trial Period Blog with what we’ve had for the last few weeks!

Recipes we’ve had recently include Chicken Chow Mein, Mexican Chilli on Wedges, Speedy Sausage Pasta and a Lamb Linguine, which I went Live in on my Facebook Page as a little demo and cook along! (Catch on replay here: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=756607124888573 )

The last box we received had a very welcome freebie – Costa Coffee grounds! Thanks HelloFresh!

Once again, the recipes have been a hit all round with empty plates. The Mexican Chilli made so much we probably could have fed 6 of us!

I think my favourite has to be the Pork and Oregano Sausages with Spring Onion Mash and a gorgeous Apple Sauce.

A few more points from the last few deliveries, I have to admire the way Hello Fresh have reduced plastic packaging of their meats especially compared to what you’d get in a supermarket.

All our ingredients have been fresh and had plenty of days left on Best Before/ Use By Dates, however in my Facebook Group one of our members has said her ingredients haven’t been great. It’s not my experience but I’d be careful to check dates when the box arrives.

What I also forgot to mention last week is that we received a few promotional booklets called HelloPerks. There’s a few discounts 10%/20% off other companies’ products. We’ve taken advantage of the free Graze box so maybe I’ll share our treats at a later date!

Thanks for tuning in today! We received our first Gousto Box yesterday and we will be having our first meal from it tonight. My son has chosen Chipotle Beef Burgers and Wedges!

I shared the unboxing live in my Facebook Group yesterday so you can catch it here: https://www.facebook.com/744235153/videos/10164463235450154/

Love, Light and Green Vibes

(Please Stay Safe)

Jodie 😊

Our Between Green Home & Hello Fresh Food Delivery Boxes

*Disclaimer – this blog is in no way affiliated with HelloFresh

Hello and Welcome to Blog Post Thursday! For the next few Thursdays I’m going to be talking about our experience the last few weeks with Hello Fresh Food Delivery Service.

For those that don’t know, Hello Fresh is a meal plan that delivers boxes of food and recipes to your doorstep as often as you need each week. Choose your meals from a selection of curated, easy-to-follow recipes every week. Suit your lifestyle with a choice of extras, including desserts, wine and sides.

I’ll be honest I was approached with a deal I couldn’t turn down, 50% off my first box and 35% off the following 4 boxes. 4 meals for 4 people 4 days a week… bargain…!

(Quick disclaimer, we are not Vegan or Vegetarian in Our Between Green Home, however We try to reduce our meat consumption as much as possible)

So, week one, I went on the Hello Fresh Website and made my 4 choices. There’s a long list of options as well as some ‘premium’ options where you pay a small additional amount per person, such as the HFC, Hello Fresh Chicken that we had in week 3.

I chose Herby Chicken with Red Onion Mash and Garlicky Beans, Hoisin Sticky Baked Chicken Thighs, Bacon Penne all’Arrabiata and Cheese Burger with Wedges and Slaw.

The box was delivered to my house, luckily my husband is still on furlough so he was in to take the parcel. If you’re not in you can add instructions to be left somewhere else. The good news is the bag is sealed with insulation and ice blocks to keep food cool and fresh.

credit: themealkitcomparison

Each meals’ ingredients are separated into paper bags with numbers on relating to which meal they are for. All ingredients are pre-measured so there’s no weighing or measuring, and most importantly no waste! There is also a recipe card for each meal showing ingredients with images and step by step instructions.

Seeing how simple it would be with pre-measured ingredients and the step by step instructions card I thought this would make a great opportunity to get the kids (12 and 14 year old) in the kitchen.

So day 1, meal 1, Cheese Burgers with Wedges and Slaw. My son, accompanied by my husband cooked this meal. My son, Bradley, said

And I have to agree they were delicious! So far, so good…. 5/5

Day 2 we had the Bacon Penne all’Arrabiata with chives and garlic ciabatta. This time it was my daughter, Jaime-Rae, in the kitchen. She says

Empty plates all round, the high point being the garlic ciabatta…. Another success! 5/5

Day 3 was my turn, Hoisin Sticky Baked Chicken Thighs with roasted broccoli and red onion. I’ve never roasted broccoli before and WOW this was amazing! When it was plated up with plenty of Jasmine Rice and scattered toasted sesame seeds it was restaurant presentation worthy! 5/5

Day 4, me and my daughter in the kitchen, ready to make Herby Chicken with Red Onion Mash and Garlicky Beans.

I’m not a huge fan of green beans but these were delicious cooked in garlic, salt, balsamic vinegar and olive oil. 5/5

So, as you can see it was perfect marks across the whole week!

Apart from the delicious food what else I liked about Hello Fresh is just the total convenience. Its on your doorstep so no running to the supermarket, finding that supermarket doesn’t sell the ingredient you need or its out of stock, we know it happens!

Every single ingredient is used so there is no food waste at all. And with big appetites in our home there wasn’t any not eaten.

I love that the outer packaging, the cardboard box is recyclable and the PET liner that insulates to keep the contents cool is made from old plastic bottles.

However, there is still quite a lot of plastic packaging for the food items. Looking on the Hello Fresh website they are conscious of reducing their plastic waste and have already made some changes such as replacing larger plastic trays for certain vegetables and meat with ‘skin packs’ that use less material.  

Come back for week 2 of Hello Fresh in our Between Green Home next Thursday…

Love, Light and Green Vibes

Breaking News For 2021

So, you know you should be more eco-friendly and live a little more green but don’t know where to start?

Let’s Go GREEN in 2021

From January 2021 we will be launching our BETWEEN GREEN SUBSCRIPTION BOXES!

Unlike most subscriptions we are LETTERBOX FRIENDLY and FREE UK DELIVERY is included!

A little more about how it works:

  • You will receive a brand new selection of eco-friendly items every month – i’m so excited to share the new products and they wont be available any where else just through subscription!
  • Specially selected items will come straight through your letterbox – no one wants to go to the post office and wait in a queue!
  • The Monthly Cost is just £20! And each box contents is worth MORE if you bought them all separately – who said eco-friendly living is more expensive??

Special Early Bird Offer:

To get a FREE GIFT all you need to do is express interest BEFORE 1st December 2020.

And all that means is popping your email address in this box –

https://between-green.com/subscription-boxes/

So get signed up for updates

NO SPAM – every email has a carbon footprint so you’ll recieve as little as possible!)

Sign Up For Updates: https://between-green.com/subscription-boxes/

Thanks again my Green Betweeners have an AWESOME WEEK and this weeks TOP TIP is….

The Eco Dog Poo Fairy Part Two

Q: What have you found the main issues have been along the journey to get where you are today?

A:Hmmm, that’s a great question! I’m not the best researcher in the world so I don’t think I have got as far as someone with better research skills to be perfectly honest. I have ADHD and Autism so my brain flits a lot and I get easily distracted so it takes a lot of effort to complete tasks and keep on track. I forget to do so much! Having said that, my efforts so far have led to me being on Radio Scotland, in all the Perthshire papers, I’ve done a podcast for Sustainable Scotland At Work, I’ve written to SMP’s, had endless zoom mtgs and hundreds of email correspondances and phone calls with the likes of Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), Zero Waste Scotland, Councils, Scottish Enterprise, Circular Tayside, Developments Trusts, Laboratories and of course, Brian Harper, to name but a few! My “behind the scenes” work just to get this far has taken me 11 months and I’m still nowhere near finding a biomass farm to take the dog waste in Scotland, so it’s disheartening and frustrating. Oh, and then throw Covid in to the mix JUST as I was getting somewhere with Perth and Kinross Council. So to answer your question in a convoluted fashion, the main issues have been getting companies and the council to listen to me and take me seriously, getting straight answers from environmental companies and making the right connections. It’s very time consuming but hopefully should stand me in good stead as I now need to do it all over again in Derbyshire whilst also keeping up the pressure on Scotland. Fear not Scotland, after such a hard slog I’m not about to abandon you just because I’m moving away, on the contrary, I’m looking for a Scottish business partner.

Q:  Is there anything else that The ECO DPF does?

A:​Actually, yes there is.   Apart from coming to your home or business and physically clearing the dog waste and sanitising afterwards on a regular schedule or as a one off, I also advise on how to best eco home dispose of your dog waste.  I come to your home and assess your outside space, meet your lovely dogs and glean an insight of your lifestyle to then determine which method would suit your needs the best.  I then install the system we agree on at our next meeting.  

I will be adding a lawn cutting service as well because the lawns need to be kept under a certain length in order for me to be able to do my poo picking job to the high standard I like to maintain. I think we all know what it’s like when the grass is long to try and grab the offending blob – it can leave behind a yukky, streaky mess on the grass which is pretty gross.(Another good reason to feed a raw diet, no more smelly, slimy poos!) So a poo pick followed by a freshly mown lawn finishes off the job perfectly and your garden looks pristine again.

Q: What can we do to help The ECO Dog Poo Fairy?

A:​ I need exposure, LOTS OF EXPOSURE!  So many people don’t realise a dog poo picking service exists so don’t think to look for one.  It’s such a new concept in the UK soplease, please, please, keep sharing my fb page so I can help people who struggle with this aspect of dog ownership.  With the nights drawing in now, a lot of people won’t see their gardens in the daylight until the weekends, by which time, the dog will have been in and out of the garden umpteen times in the week and probably trodden in a previous mess thenwalked it in the house. Or YOU have!  

This service is for ANYONE who can’t do it themselves for whatever reason; work, heavily pregnant, mental/physical health, it really doesn’t matter there is absolutely no judgement I’m just happy to lighten the load for you.  Let’s face it, it’s not a job anyone really relishes doing is it, so let The ECO Dog Poo Fairy sprinkle her fairy dust and get it Dung & Dusted for you.  ; )

Also, if you know anyone in Derbyshire with eco contacts: biomass plants, councils, small business support/guidance etc I’d love to hear from you to get the ball rolling before I land.

Q: Where can we find you?

A:​Currently I’m in Perthshire, Scotland, but in November/December I’ll be moving to Matlock, Derbyshire. I’ll let you know nearer the time when I have a move date.

You can also find me:

On FaceBook: The ECO Dog Poo Fairy – Dung & Dusted

Website: thedogpoofairy.com  (It’s still a work in progressso please bear with me on that). 

Mobile:  07368 59 23 59

Email: lucythedpf@gmail.com

The ECO Dog Poo Fairy – Dung & Dusted

For the next 2 weeks I will share my interview with Lucy otherwise known as The Eco Dog Poo Fairy.

Find out all about using poop for power!

Part One

Q:  Who is The ECO Dog Poo Fairy and how did shematerialise?

A: ​Well hello Jodie! I am Lucy, formally a dog walker from Hertfordshire, England, I’m also a holistic canine behaviourist with a strong passion in nutrition too.  My background working with dogs spans 18 years now so when I arrived in Scotland 2 years ago from having a well earned break for a few months in the South of France, I naturally wanted to continue working with dogs.  Returning to dog walking was not an option though as I feel that the market is over saturated as it is and you really need local knowledge tomake a success of it and be able to create a sustainable business, so that wasn’t an option.

Because diet affects behaviour I started thinking of other ways to create an income whilst looking for behavioural clients and it struck me that if I skipped the dog altogether and went straight to what comes out the rear end, the poo will tell me what diet a dog is on and I can maybe influence dog owners to think about changing their dogs diet to help with not only behaviour, but with general health too which can drastically cut down on vet visits.

Q: How did you find out about the issue?

A:​Once I started looking in to other dog waste clearance companies and dog waste in general it also struck me that every single ounce of dog waste was ending up in landfill! Something I wanted to change, so I started looking into ways of eco friendly ways of disposal, and anaerobic digestion kept coming up top of the list for not only stopping it going to landfill but for being the most eco friendly method of disposal PLUS giving the poo a purpose by turning it into power and a fertiliser!  WIN, WIN, WIN!  

Q: Have you heard of any other eco friendly methods we may not be aware of?

A:​Funny you should ask that Jodie.  Whilst on this journey of discovery, I also found out about a genius man called Brian Harper whom I’m now working with.  He has invented a dog poo powered lamppost! Ha! It’s called the K9 Lantern and he has one in his front garden with street access to it, it’s proved a roaring success and after almost 3 years of constant use has now cleared a 10 mile radius of previously poo littered streets.  The very gimmick of the idea is encouraging even the “less inclined” to pick up after their dogs, and not just the locals, but all the tourists use it too. (Brian lives in the Malvern Hills on a very popular tourist route).  I am in charge of getting these rolled out across the whole of Scotland and I also bagged Derbyshire as my patch as well since I’ll be moving there this year, so I aim to get them rolled out across the whole of Derbyshire too.  Woohoo!

Q:  What made you decide to go ahead down this path?

A:​So, I have the bit between my teeth now and start looking for a biomass farm to take the dog waste…. only to discover that NO WHERE in Scotland takes it! Devastated at my discovery, I think to myself, well, something HAS to be done about this.  Apart from anything else, how do I become an eco friendly company without the resources to help me?  It made absolutely no sense to me as to why this wasn’t already available.  I discovered there was a dog waste company in St Albans, Herts (my home town funnily enough) which takes their dog waste to a biomass farm, so I knew I wasn’t asking the impossible, so why was Scotland not already on board especially seeing as they are one of the world leaders in innovative environmental matters?  I have no answer for this as yet.  Watch this space.

Q: What are the benefits to us and the environment?

A:​Well firstly, it stops it all going to landfill and all that methane being sent up into the ozone so it’s good for the environment. Secondly, the methane actually gets put to good use – POWER. And thirdly, it also kicks out a mean fertisliserto use on our plants.  The benefit to us is education and cleaner streets.   I want to change people’s perception of dog poo.  If we start looking at every dog poo lying in the park or street as a pound coin or a free cup of tea, then we might be a bit more proactive about clearing up after our dogs. If each dog poo was a pound coin, there wouldn’t be any on our streets or left on the grass in parks but at the moment, it’sviewed as waste – just a smelly, gross nuisance that gets stuck on your shoe.

What would YOU like to see happen to dog waste?

The Dog Poo Fairy is committed to changing the way we dispose of dog waste in Scotland and throughout the UK. We are passionate and determined to stop it being sent to landfill altogether and instead turn it into the valuable energy source it is. Please support us by spreading the word – Go to our website or Facebook Page, The Dog Poo Fairy – Dung & Dustedand read our mission and SHARE it far and wide. TOGETHER we can make this happen!

Find out more about Lucy here:

https://m.facebook.com/thedogpoofairy/

http://thedogpoofairy.com/

Email Lucy: lucythedpf@gmail.com

#soaptember Shampoo Bars

💚Have you ordered your Soap Bars for Soaptember??

🌈They are Hand – Crafted, with Amazing Fragrances and Beautiful Colours. SLS FREE!

The solid base is made from high-quality argan vegetable oils it creates a wonderfully dense creamy lather, which is naturally conditioning to the hair. They are also environmentally friendly as you are not wasting bottles and packaging and paying for water to be shipped around the country.

There’s a range of scents and uses to choose from:

🧡Sage and Juniper 115g

💙Tea Tree and Peppermint 115g

🌱Thyme and Mint 115g

🍋Chamomile and Lemon 115g

💜Lavender & Rosemary 115g

❤️Jasmine 115g

🥥Coconut and Lime 115g

Soaptember OFFER: Any 2 for £10 with FREE DELIVERY

Any 2 Shampoo Bars

Add your chosen scents in MESSAGE TO SELLER through paypal 🙂

£10.00

#soaptember

BetweenGreen are so proud to be taking part in Soaptember 2020.

I think you’ll agree this year more than any other year the impact of plastic, single use and disposables has completely derailed the war on plastic pollution.

Did you know that liquid soap has 10x the carbon footprint of bar soap. This is due to the chemicals that are in liquid soap and the packaging it comes in.

In a 30 second hand wash it takes 6x more liquid to do the same job than with a soap bar.

Thats 6x more product

6x more raw materials

6x more transport/storage space

6x more shelf space and packaging

Luckily for you, we’ve done all the hard work! We stock a variety of Greenman Natural Soap Bars for every scent and need!

Pure, Natural & Aromatic.. these soaps are SLS and parabens free, made with botanicals and essential oils and each one made to be used for a different purpose. Eg Morning fresh, to wake you up, or Gardener scrub (with pumice) to shift that tough garden dirt.
Crafted in England, the land of Soap and Glory.. makes you proud to be British and extra clean.
Inspired by the ancient Celtic myth of the Greenman: natural, earthy and vibrant – thus was born from the mists of the forest this handcrafted range of cold-processed elemental soaps. Using only sustainable palm oil, age-old botanicals and pure aromatic oils these almost mythical soaps will transform your daily wash into a cleansing ritual to be savoured. And the Greenman will protect you and your family because as well as a wonderful wash they are certified free from SLS and Parabens.
Each Bar weighs approx. 100g

FOR SEPTEMBER ONLY (1ST-30TH)

Any 2 Greenman Soap Bars for £10 with FREE DELIVERY!

Choose from 9 amazing scents:

  • Night Time – Lavender & Geranium
  • Manly Man – Clove & Sage
  • Morning Fresh – Frankincense & Bergamot
  • Moroccan Argan – Argan & Rosemary
  • Gardeners Scrub – Lemon & Basil
  • Gentle And Kind – Carrot Seed & Shea Butter
  • Coconut Cool and Calm – Coconut & Lime
  • Antiseptic – Tea Tree & Peppermint
  • Bath Time Deluxe – Rosewood & Ylang

Any 2 Greenman Soaps

TYPE YOUR SCENTS OF CHOICE IN "MESSAGE TO SELLER"

£10.00

THANK YOU TO EMERALD GROVE STUDIO https://www.instagram.com/emeraldgrovestudio/

HANDMADE HOUR https://www.instagram.com/handmade_hour/

EWENIQUE WITH LOVE CRAFTS https://www.instagram.com/eweniquewithlovecrafts/

Guest Blog: Plenty Of Sunshine Sisters

In our EcoBox Pawsome the cute little reusable jute pouches for dog treats are made by Plenty Of Sunshine Sisters!

Here’s their story:

Hi there, I am Amy and I am one half of the Plenty of Sunshine Sisters. My sister, Lucy, makes up the other half. We both come from Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, and share similar interests in travel, animals and crafting. We wanted to find a way that we could combine these interests which is why we decided to start the Plenty of Sunshine Sisters. We share a lot of interests, but we also enjoy different things – for example, Lucy is a bit of a gin aficionado and I have a puppy and cats at home – so our interests complement each other so that we can reach a wider audience. On top of this, I have just bought a new home and Lucy is looking to buy one herself so we spend a lot of time on Pinterest and other shopping sites looking for things that can make a new house a home. Because of the current lockdown situation, since we had a lot more time on our hands, we thought we’d try our hand at making some of our own useful items and decorations. We use a cricut machine to make a range of different products, such as mugs, pouches, signs, t-shirts and bookmarks. We’ve also recently made a range of greetings cards including a father’s day card to come from a dog.

Our most popular product is a reusable drink pouch which is super handy and versatile and can be personalised with whatever image or phrase you want. They are great for those wanting to cut down on their single use plastic, can be flattened so they are lightweight and don’t take up much room in a bag and can even go in the freezer to create cool smoothies or slushies. Another product that we offer are dog treat pouches that can be personalised with your pooch’s name and come in burlap or natural mini drawstring bags. These are perfect for filling up with your dog’s favourite snacks to take out on a long walk or for dog training sessions.

Some of our designs we get through open sources but others we make ourselves and we offer personalisation of all our projects so that everyone can get exactly what they’re looking for. It’s a relatively new business but we are looking forward to creating amazing products for people for a long time to come. We are even starting to expand our range with celebration packs such as birthday packs including a card, confetti, badge and cake topper and more home décor items. These include a tiered tray display line which is a big decorating trend in the USA and starting to make its way over to the UK and involves assembling items such as wooden signs, mugs and bunting to represent a specific theme that is usually updated seasonally.

You can keep up to date with all our new products on our Instagram account @plentyofsunshinesisters or buy now from our facebook store @plentyofsunshinesisters