Who’s heard of Greenwashing? If you haven’t here’s a quick definition;
Now, for people who want to do their bit for the environment this is very frustrating as finding and using alternatives already has its barriers without multi billion pound companies use these eco ‘buzzwords’ without much legislation.
With those misleading buzzwords such as ‘recyclable’ and the vague use of ‘eco’ and read the label.
It’s easy to be swayed by the little green leaves and happy little Earth images but do your research.
Get familiar with spotting those words that don’t really mean anything until proven that their values helps them to make sure that they are doing all that they can to operate sustainably.
Here’s a shocking example:
Now you’d be led to think when you walk into a Lush store that it’s a vegan cruelty-free paradise. Now only part of that is true. LUSH are very dedicated to not testing on animals but 33% of their products are not suitable for vegans. That means some products are not free from any kind of animal extract.
I’m sorry to say but its due to the use of potent parfums and parabens so their products have a longer shelf life.
Let’s talk about McDonalds – In June 2018 the multi billion dollar fast food chain made the switch from plastic straws to paper straws. However, eagle-eyed milkshake slurpers called them out as not actually being recyclable.
McDonald’s has since stressed the straws are made from recyclable materials, but current recycling infrastructure does not allow for them to be processed by recycling plants.
So what can you do next time you swoop in for a happy meal? Say no to straws and use your own reusable one. As well as metal straws you can get handy foldable silicone ones for out and about.
Not all L’Oreal products are 100% vegan meaning some of their products contain animal-derived ingredients or animal by-products such as egg white, mink oil, beeswax, honey, and other animal by-products.
“in 1989, L’Oréal was able to end all testing of its products on animals, without making our products any less safe. Since March 2013, the Group has taken another decisive step: The Group no longer tests on animals, anywhere in the world, and does not delegate this task to others. An exception could be made if regulatory authorities required it for safety or regulatory purposes.”
The L’Oreal animal testing policy states they test their products on animals where required by law.
Required by law animal testing means that the brand is allowing animal testing to occur on their products due to various laws and regulations around the globe. These laws may apply to ingredients, formulations, or finished products. They could also happen pre-market (before the products are available to consumers) or post-market (after the products are available to consumers).
The truth is there are so many alternatives to all these wonder creams, lotions and potions!
Hands up if you’re working from home…. yep, me too!
I’ve put together some really simple ways you can save the world from your dining table, bedroom, living room, wherever you are staying home and safe!
Make it a habit to unplug your computer every night. Not only is this a real energy saver, but it also can protect your computer from serious damage. It’s not an old wives’ tale — a power surge caused by lightning can completely fry your computer.
A computer, modem, and monitor, TV, phone charger, or cable box all consume a considerable amount of electricity even when not in use.
2. Disable Screensavers
Yes, they are very pretty however, a PC with a screensaver going can use well over 100 watts of power, compared with only about 10 watts in sleep mode.
Most screen savers use the same amount of energy as when the screen is in normal use. Some more sophisticated screen savers actually use more energy. You can set most screens to automatically power down after a pre-set time of user inactivity, e.g. 1 minute. By clicking the mouse or pressing a key the image is quickly restored. Remember to fully switch off at the end of the working day.
3. Use a paper bin
YES – obviously its way more eco-friendly to reduce your paper waste in the first place but when paper waste is inevitable make sure you are recycling correctly.
If you haven’t got a spare bin you could use a strong shopper bag or even an empty cardboard box which makes it all the more easier to recycle!
Now lets see if we can reduce the amount of paper….
4. Print on both sides
If I need to print anything I make sure I can fit at least 2 pages to one sheet and most printers have an option to print on both sides.
You’ve saved paper, saved ink and saved electricity! Well done you!
5. Lower your Screen Brightness
This green tip comes to us from Harvard Law School’s energy manager Eric Potkin who found that reducing your computer monitor brightness from 100% to 70% can save up to 20% of the energy the monitor uses.
Most people won’t notice much difference in their monitor between 100% and 70% brightness, so reducing brightness to the minimum comfortable level is a great opportunity to save up to 20% of your monitor’s energy consumption.
6. Make your own snacks!
So we’re at home and we’re not using coffee cups or plastic bottles, we get to use our favourite mug all day…WIN!
Making your own snacks means less, or even, no packaging.
Nuts left over from Christmas make awesome seeded bars and flapjacks, or try your hand at the lockdown favourite of banana bread to reduce food waste.
Being at home is the perfect time to get creative – make sure you share your home recipes!
7. Change your search engine
Bye Bye Bing…
Ecosia uses the ad revenue from your searches to plant trees where they are needed the most. By searching with Ecosia, you’re not only reforesting our planet, but you’re also empowering the communities around our planting projects to build a better future for themselves.
Give it a try!
Stay Safe Everyone
Let me know if you use any of these tips by connecting with me on Facebook and/or Instagram
Love, Light and Green Vibes….
A Gift that’s handmade,
Is a gift not replaced,
Entrapping sweet memories,
That can’t be erased.Amanda Evanson
There’s just something amazing about unwrapping a gift, wondering what’s inside. Underneath the wrapping paper could be anything, a CD from your favourite band, a new headset, any one of a million things from a million stores. But what’s really special is when you open up that paper and what’s found inside is a tangible representation of the love and adoration the person giving the gift felt you. Nothing says that like a hand-made gift, you get to be the one to share that love with the people you care about.
There was time, not all that long ago, when a hand-made gift was the only sort of gift you could give. There were no major manufacturing facilities churning out the latest trend that you and every one of your friends has, instead when a gift was made, you knew that it was hand-made. Even more common was that a gift would be hand-made by those presenting it, with time and care spent crafting it with you specifically in mind. Can you imagine how important that made every item you received? Whether it was a simple as a Christmas card, a photo in a frame, chocolate truffles… each of them were hand made with attention and love.
Try your hand at producing a gift, no matter what it is. We all have skills we can turn to producing something made with personal care and attention. Whether you’re creating a card with the little emblems and symbols you know the recipient adores, or creating an entire gift box of goodies. Really express yourself and your view of the recipient through arts and crafts.
The kinds of gifts you can make is limitless, and if you don’t possess the skill to create a gift you can certainly use this as your excuse to learn! Start by making cupcakes for your family and friends, get some coloured icing and get a little creative, who knows what you can come up with! Your recipient will know how much you love them and how much you value your relationship, all wrapped up in one hand made bundle.
Baking enjoyed another moment in the spotlight this year as we were all at home making banana bread… why not create a box of baking ingredients and equipment so they can enjoy special time together making brownies, cupcakes, or another banana bread! Baking is a great way to reduce food waste and there’s no plastic packaging on cakes fresh from the oven!
The recipient could bring it out every year so the handy work is enjoyed year after year with no waste.
Selection boxes of chocolate are filled with plastic and there’s always one bar in there that you don’t like. Homemade truffles and other chocolate treats aren’t as hard as you think. Add dried fruits and nuts or mix in peanut butter for those nutty fans!
Or why not leave out the lemon and use a few drops of essential oils? We have an extensive list HERE
Have a very Merry Christmas from
Jodie at Between Green
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!
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.
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
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:
And, if you want to give us a go, you’d be treading on that ‘helping’ path too.
Thanks for reading,
Rock Your Birthday
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)
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.
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,
Thanks again my Green Betweeners have an AWESOME WEEK and this weeks TOP TIP is….
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
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!
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:
Email Lucy: email@example.com