Cascadian Farm Organic Goodness

WELCOME TO OUR ALMANAC! READ ABOUT ALL THINGS ECO FROM ORGANIC VEGGIE
GARDEN TIPS TO GREEN FAMILY ACTIVITIES.

GOOD QUESTIONS

Why do you grow organic?

I go organic because I feel it is the best option for my family and the Earth. Eating and using organic products puts my mind at ease, I never have to worry about what I am putting into my body or the body of my family and I feel wonderful knowing that I am purchasing products that are best for our Earth.

What is your best organic tip?

My best organic tip is buy local organic foods from your farmer's market, CSA, food co-op or local grocery store or better yet, plant your own organic garden. Also, if you are unable to purchase all organic produce, avoid EWG's dirty dozen. I also think purchasing organic personal care products is essential for heathly living, since what you put on your body is just as important as what you put in it.

What is your favorite book on organics?

My favorite book on organics is The Omnivore's Dilemma.

What is your favorite quote?

My favorite quote is "The Earth is what we all have in common." Wendall Berry.

If you had to decide, what would you be: animal, plant, or mineral?

I would be an animal, because I would still be able to venture out to explore the world around me. Also, I think it would be a great experience to live in the wild and have to catch my own food.

Cascadian Farm Celebrates Earth Day with Blog Carnival

I took a pouch of my favorite frozen acai and mixed it with my favorite Cascadian Farm granola and a few other healthy ingredients to make a breakfast acai bowl that everyone in your family will gobble up – even the little ones!

How to Make Organic Pumpkin Ravioli

When it comes to eating local and sustainable foods, the farmers market is a great place to start.

Three Seasonal Salads

It’s always nice to freshen up your home right in time for summer. However, buying new things to brighten up your home isn't exactly eco-friendly. You can spruce up your home with very little impact on the environment and without breaking the bank. You have heard of the three Rs (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle); read on to learn my seven Rs for freshening up your home. Then lay back, relax, and enjoy the summer to come in your “new” space.

1. Rearrange: By simply rearranging your current furniture, you can get a whole new look without buying anything new. Consider moving pieces of furniture, accessories, and even pillows and artwork from one room to another.

2. Re-cover: Do you have a sofa or chair that has seen better days, but still has great bones? Consider re-covering it with a slipcover, or have the piece reupholstered. It is much more eco-friendly to reupholster a piece of existing furniture than purchasing new. For a quick update without the larger price tag, consider swapping out your existing living room pillows with brighter, fresher ones for an instant makeover.

3. Reorganize: The quickest and simplest way to freshen your home is by reorganizing and de-cluttering. By simply recycling old paperwork, and tidying up closets, cupboards, and dressers, you can clean up a space in a snap. Take this time to go through your closets and decide on items to sell or donate. Then, take a few minutes to walk through your home, removing any objects that are simply collecting dust.

4. Revamp: It’s amazing what a new coat of no-VOC, eco-friendly paint can do to a room. Painting is the fastest way to give a room a new look and instantly freshen up your home. Paint can give an added pop of color to older pieces of furniture, giving them new life. Another option is to replace doorknobs and the existing hardware on cabinets and dressers, which will give furniture a quick, modern makeover.

5. Refresh: Give your bathrooms a quick makeover by switching out your regular towels with plusher, softer, eco-friendly versions. New linens add a newness to your bedroom and make you feel pampered every time you use them. Another way to refresh your home is by adding several potted plants and scented soy candles.

6. Repurpose: If you have a dresser that isn't being used, consider repurposing it as a buffet in your dining room or use it as kitchen island. An armoire can be easily converted to a toy closet or gift-wrapping station. And a small table that isn't being utilized can be used as a desk in a child’s room or a plant-potting station on the patio.

7. Reconsider: Above all else, the next time you consider purchasing a new piece of furniture, appliance, or accessory for your home, ask yourself these questions: Is this item something that I really need? Do I already own something that could be used instead? Is this item something that I could borrow from a friend or rent from my local hardware store? By simply asking yourself a few questions, you can save yourself a lot of money and save the environment at the same time.

How do you freshen your home for summer?

 

Photo credits: Repurpose photo via NolaClutterBusters, Refresh photo via sfllaw

Recycling is a simple way for consumers to help the environment by taking a product that has reached the end of it’s useful life and transforming it into another product. Recycling helps to preserve valuable resources and is essential for the health of our environment and communities. Many of you probably are already utilizing curbside recycling bins for household paper, glass, aluminum and plastic recycling. However, recycling goes well beyond the curb -- there are recycling services available for an array of other common household products from electronics to prescriptions to automotive parts to hazardous waste. Read on to learn how to find recycling facilities in your area for products that have reached their end of life.

 

Editor’s Note: Our Change Flows initiative may have come to a close, but here at Cascadian Farm we aim to make Earth Day every day. Here is some great information about how you can set up a river cleanup in your area!

Every year, huge quantities of trash find their way into our rivers. This garbage takes away from the natural beauty of the river and pollutes the water, wildlife, nature, and communities that it sustains. America's rivers provide our drinking water, fish and wildlife habitat, and recreation areas—making the health of our rivers everyone's priority. Clean rivers supply a healthy, vital source of water that is essential for a thriving community and environment.

You can make a difference in the health of our rivers by helping to restore a river in your local area, either through participation or organization of a river cleanup. In just a few hours of your time, tons of trash can be removed from our rivers. You can find a national river cleanup to participate in through American Rivers here. You can also learn more about organizing your own local river cleanup by watching this fantastic video from American Rivers. It gives you an outline of all the steps you need to take to make your river cleanup a success.

 

 

Sources:
American Rivers: www.americanrivers.org
Howcast: http://www.howcast.com/videos/265972-How-To-Organize-a-River-Cleanup

Photo Source: 
“MN- Mason Neck River Cleanup” by vastateparkstaff

We know that you understand how precious water is to life, vitality, and growth—for our communities, families, and farms. Keeping our waterways clean is only part of the battle; we also need to focus on conserving water. Every drop is precious, and wasting water is something that we cannot afford to do. Wondering how you can conserve water in your own home? Read on to learn how you can start today.

1. Turn It Off

When washing the dishes, consider filling each side of the sink—one with soapy water to clean the dishes, the other with fresh water to rinse. This is always a better option than simply letting the water run. It is also a great idea to turn off the water while brushing your teeth and soaping up in the shower. Don't leave the hose running outside while gardening or washing your car—the less water you use to perform these daily tasks, the better. And if you have leaky faucets or toilets, you’ll want to fix them immediately!

2. Reuse It

Consider purchasing or making your own graywater system. A graywater system can range from a simple, low-cost system to a highly complex, very expensive one. A graywater system collects water from sinks, washers, and dishwashers that can be recycled on-site for use in landscape irrigation. You’ll want to check with your state’s guidelines as to whether they allow use of a graywater system, and remember that graywater is not suitable for drinking.

3. Capture It

In the past, we’ve talked about the benefits—both ecological and economic—of harvesting rainwater. Harvesting rainwater is an ecologically beneficial way to irrigate your gardens and flower beds, wash your car, flush your toilets, or to purify and use as a source of drinking water. The 600 gallons of water for every 1 inch of rain that fall on your 1,000-square foot roof equal a significant amount of water that you can reuse each year, thus saving you a lot of money.

4.  Xeriscape and Xerogarden It

This spring, when you start planning the gardens and landscaping for your yard, consider xeriscaping and xerogardening. Xeriscaping and xerogardening reduce and/or eliminate the need for irrigation watering by incorporating plants that grow well in your climate region. Choose plants based on the amount of water and light they require. For further conservation, use mulch and eliminate plants that require large amounts of water.

5. Don't Bottle It

If you are still purchasing water in plastic bottles, now is the time to consider an alternative. Although drinking bottled water isn't necessarily wasting water, it is wasting the resources used in its production, manufacturing, and transportation. Today, there are many fantastic stainless steel and glass water bottles available on the market that make staying hydrated quick, easy, and fashionable. Leave these refillable bottles in your car, gym bag, office desk, or any other convenient place and eliminate the need to buy bottled water.

Photo credits: “Clear Water” by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service – Northeast Region, “Leaky Faucet” by VanDammeMaarten.be, “Urban Harvest Tour – Rain Water Barrels” by jbolles“Retention Area” by dpatricklewis

We all know the important role that fruits and vegetables play in our overall health. But is your family consuming the recommended daily amounts of fruits and vegetables? Are you unsure of how many cups you should be consuming? If so, you can find out how many you need based on your age, sex, and level of physical activity here. Fruits and vegetables provide vitamins, minerals, and fiber. However, remembering to include them in our busy schedules can sometimes be a challenge. This is where superfoods can come to the rescue.

Superfoods are real, unprocessed foods that are packed with nutrients our bodies need. Pomegranates, for instance, are low in fat and sodium, and cholesterol free. They are also a good source of dietary fiber and folate, and an excellent source of vitamin C and potassium. Quinoa is cholesterol free, very low in sodium, and is a good source of magnesium and phosphorus. It is also a great source of manganese.

Superfoods can be consumed in their whole form; as a juice, shot, or shake.

Although there are many more than 10 superfoods, here are my top 10 favorite superfoods to get you started:

1. Pomegranate
2. Blueberries
3. Quinoa
4. Sprouts
5. Hemp Seeds
6. Acai
7. Leafy Greens
8. Yogurt
9. Nuts and Seeds
10. Beans and Lentils

What is your favorite superfood?
How do you incorporate them into your daily lifestyle?

Sources: MyPyramid.gov, FruitandVeggiesMatter.gov, CBS news, Center for Disease Control, SELF Nutrition Data

Photo Credits: Blueberries, Pomegranate

* You should always consult with your health care provider before starting any type of program.

Previous