Friday, February 25, 2011

what's in your body?

i found the above video on when looking for info about the great canadian hand cream swap that i mentioned yesterday. the video really prompts you to think about what you're putting in your body. after all, as their tag line states, "what goes on your body, goes in your body". we've been slowly making the change over to organic skincare products, but after looking up some of our old products on the cosmetic database, i feel the urge to get rid of the old even sooner than planned. lots of the standard baby products you see on the shelves are rated as high as 7 or 8 (on a scale of 10) on the hazard meter. 

i recently discovered a canadian line of natural and organic skincare products that i'll be carrying in my new shop (to be launched march 1st!). if you want to get a sneak preview of them, click on this link. the company is called lalabee bathworks and all of their products rate between a 0-2 on the hazard scale. in fact, their best-selling bottom balm is rated at a zero!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

freebie: great cdn hand cream swap

it's the first annual great canadian hand cream swap! from feb 24 to 26, you can go to one of the listed swap locations and receive a free full-size consonant intensive therapy hand cream (organic!) just by bringing in one of your old hand creams to swap. how cool is that?! i'm going to see if i can go to one of the toronto locations tomorrow morning.

if you can't make it to one of the swap locations, you can also go to their website: at exactly 9AM on the 24th, 25th and 26th, they'll have their hand cream available for $0! you just have to pay the shipping. you gotta go early though because quantities are limited.

for all the details on the great canadian hand cream swap, go to:

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


at the top of the john hancock tower in downtown chicago
this past weekend was a long weekend, so we drove down to visit family in chicago. being on the road for 12-13 hours with a two-year-old is just too long. for the most part, the kiddo was pretty good in the car. five hours (or shorter) would probably be the perfect length. we borrowed a portable DVD player from friends just as a last resort, but didn't end up having to use it. our lil kiddo was content enough to just listen to his "yo gabba gabba" and "bobs & lolo" music.

they say that travel by car is much more environmentally-friendly than air travel, but it just takes so long to get anywhere from toronto. however, now that we would have to pay airfare for the kiddo, road trips do seem much more economical, but i guess it's at the expense of your own sanity.  :o)

Monday, February 14, 2011

mama earth organics review

i meant to post this review ages ago, but of course, life got busy, kiddo got sick, and i neglected to do this. okay so after the fab find certificate went up for mama earth organics, i quickly put in my first order for the following week. the way their ordering system works is that the latest you can put in an order is before 10 a.m. the day before delivery. the day they deliver depends on where you live in the GTA.

so with my $55 fab find certificate in hand, i had to decide what i would get for my first basket. since you have to use the full amount at one time, i had to sort of mix and match between the fresh produce and their other grocery staples. i didn't think that the three of us could eat that many fruits and veggies before they'd go bad. i ended up deciding on the regular/couple basket, which was $35. the produce each week changes depending on what is in season and what they are able to get. here is what we got in our basket:
  • 3 fuji apples
  • 3 anjou pears
  • 4 cara cara oranges
  • 1.5 lb fair-trade bananas
  • 1 avocado
  • 2 lbs. yellow potatoes
  • 1 pt. grape tomatoes
  • 1 boston lettuce hydro (came with roots and soil! neat-o!)
  • 1 broccoli
  • 1 lb. baby bok choy
quite a lot of stuff for the money and comparably priced with organic produce at loblaws. in order to make up the extra $20, we also got:
  • nigari tofu
  • fair-trade dark hot chocolate mix
  • 2 minneola tangerines
  • 2 lbs. red potatoes
  • 2 lbs. yams
  • 1 pt. white button mushrooms
everything was either organic or fair-trade. the order arrived in a sturdy rubbermaid container and was placed inside my garage as i had requested. everything was packed nicely and they even wrapped up the tofu with a bottle of frozen water so that it would be kept cool. nice touch! one of the things i liked best was that they include some recipes using the ingredients in your basket. we didn't get a chance to try any that week, but i definitely will in the future.

i was really impressed with their selection of stuff and also with the quality of the produce. this is the first time that i've ordered groceries online and my concern was always that i might end up with produce that is not so fresh or that it would get damaged in transit. the produce we got from mama earth was all good with the exception of the avocado. after just a few days, the skin got all spotty and it was *very* soft. they emailed a few days after delivery to ask how i liked my first order. i mentioned what had happened with the avocado and they emailed back immediately saying that they had gotten a mediocre batch, but hadn't realized it when they were filling orders. as a result, they credited my account in the amount of $3. i am a very satisfied customer and will definitely be ordering from them again.  

Thursday, February 10, 2011

the vegan challenge

last night i finally sat down to watch an oprah show that i pvr'd last week about "the vegan challenge". i forced the hubby to watch it with me and it was informative. since last year i'd been thinking about adding more vegetarian/vegan meals to our menu in an effort to be healthier and environmentally-friendly. there was one particular segment in the show that really affected me. lisa ling went to visit a cattle slaughterhouse and you essentially see the whole process of how a cow goes from farm to grocery store. call me a softie, but i really couldn't help but cry through the whole part. if i had to hunt my own food, i would most definitely be a vegetarian. food expert michael pollen was on the show as well and made a comment along the lines of "if you're not willing to know how your food gets to your plate, maybe you shouldn't be eating it." i don't know that i agree with it entirely, but i guess it holds a kernel of truth to it. with the exception of when we eat out, we now buy only antibiotic-free/hormone-free meat. i'd say the drive to make this change was for our son. i would love to be able to find a local farm to buy meat from, but being that we're in toronto, it might be a trek to get to one. if anyone knows of any, please let me know.

i'd really like to try this 7-day vegan challenge (or even possibly the 21-day challenge), but i think it would be really hard if the hubby wasn't on board with it. i tend to throw myself into things full-throttle and then quickly burn out. i guess the trick will be to slowly introduce things and see what works for our family. if eating more vegan meals would give me a ton more energy, i'd be all for that! but it's also been a particularly rough week with the kiddo being sick.  :o) 

here's a link to a list of vegan substitutes as recommended by "The Veganist" Kathy Freston:
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