The Latest Buzz

The origin of Valentine’s Day – not as sweet as it sounds

Happy Valentine’s Day! We hope your heart is buzzing with love! Although today is known for its expressions of love and thoughtfulness, the history behind this holiday might not be as sweet and romantic as you were hoping – but it sure is a great history lesson!

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Sweet and Spicy Valentine's Day Cheese Board

Sometimes, Valentine's day is synonymous with last minute stops at the corner pharmacy for a box of chocolates and an oversized stuffed bear. With a little bit of planning though, the day can be full of thoughtfulness, gratitude and love. What better way to show your special someone you care than by spending quality time together, making something delicious, in the comfort of your own home.

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Wellness resolutions still going strong? 4 tips to keep you going.

The first month of 2019 is coming to a close and that means its time to do a check in. How are your new year resolutions going? Apparently, 80% of new year resolutions are abandoned by February (U.S. News). Check out these 4 simple tips that will keep you going strong and achieve your goals in 2019 on our blog!

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Recycling Your Christmas Tree

Have a greener Christmas this year and check out these tips on how to recycle your Christmas tree!

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Baked Salmon with Honey Mustard and Pecan-Panko Crust

This baked salmon dish takes a total of 20 minutes yet tastes like something you’d order at a fancy restaurant. It’s perfect for when you have company coming at the end of a long day (and you’re asking yourself, “What was I thinking?”) or on a busy weeknight when you have to hit the kitchen running.

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Green Stocking Stuffers

Each year, we have every intention of getting our friends and family the best gift possible. But sometimes, in pursuit of the perfect present, we end up stressing ourselves out. There are so many factors to consider: what do they like/dislike, what do they already have/don't have, and for the eco-conscious, is this gift good for our planet? Below is a curated gift list that will make your wallet, your loved one, and your planet, very merry. 

1. Bamboo toothbrush by MABLE

Mable Bamboo Toothbrush

Say goodbye to plastic toothbrushes and hello to this self-standing bamboo toothbrush by MABLE ($28 for a 4-pack). It’s biodegradable, so you can toss it in the compost bin after removing the bristles.

2. Upcycled wallet by Rareform

Billboard Wallet

Did you ever wonder how billboards are constructed, and what happens to them when they come down? Billboards are made of highly engineered vinyl, and it’s no surprise that they end up in landfills, if not repurposed. Rareform collects billboards from around the U.S. sews them into one-of-a-kind bags and accessories. They have tons of styles starting at just $36!

 

3. Glass straws by Simply Straws

Simply Straws

Simply Straws offers reusable glass straws as an alternative to disposable ones (an estimated 500 million drinking straws are discarded by Americans each day). They make awesome sets like their 16oz Simply Mug Wide Twin Set with two straws and a brush! You can even customize your mug. Or, as an alternative, you could always buy a 6-pack of glass straws ($45) and pop a straw or two in everyone’s stocking. 

4. Sunglasses by Sunski

Sunglasses

Sunski’s unisex shades (starting at $48) come in an array of flattering shapes and make a nice stocking stuffer. Aside from being a 1% For The Planet member (supporting several organizations), they commit to less waste by offering a lifetime warranty and lens replacement kits ($3) so you can easily switch out the lenses if you accidentally sit on your sunglasses. 

5. Cotton filters by CoffeeSock

Coffee Filter

Do you know somebody who loves coffee and tosses a filter out every morning? CoffeeSock offers an alternative that is 100% organic cotton, does not compromise flavor, and keeps all those disposable filters out of the landfills. A pack of two cotton drip cones is $13.00 and they also offer attractive gift packs.
 

6. Canteens by Klean Kanteen

Klean Kanteen

Klean Kanteen is committed to being a better business and wants to help us all kick our single-use habits by providing reusable solutions. What better way to instill good habits than by starting early? Klean Kanteen offers attractive and colorful kid kanteens made of BPA-free materials, plus a variety of spill-free caps that you can switch out as the kids grow up ($24.95 and under).

7. Reusable food wraps by Abeego

Abeego Wraps

Store food the way nature intended. Use Abeego Wraps to cover dishes and leftovers, or wrap up fruit, vegetables, cheese, bread and more! Get a variety pack with three different sized wraps for $18.

8. ECOlunchbox by Eartheasy

3 in 1 lunchbox

Ready to say goodbye to plastic baggies and leaky plastic food containers? Try out this 3-in-1 stainless steel lunch box from EarthEasy ($24.95)
 

9. Pepper garden-in-a-bag by Eartheasy

Chili Peppers

Grow colorful mini peppers ($11.95) right in this bag, perfect for a windowsill or any sunny spot in your recipient's home.
 

10. Honey trio box from Cloister Honey

Cloister Trio Honey Box

Honey Trio Boxes are a great way to share your love of honey with friends and family while doing something great for the environment. Bees are critical pollinators directly or indirectly responsible for a third of the food we eat, which includes blueberries, apples, and avocados. That alone is plenty of incentive for everyone to be concerned about colony collapse disorder. Support the bees!

DIY Deck the Halls

DIY Beeswax Ornament

Easy, beautiful, and fun - these DIY beeswax ornaments are the perfect family craft. They wax and molds might look elaborate, but they come together in just a few steps! Throw on some holiday music, heat up some hot cocoa, and make some memories, starting with a few homemade decorations. 

Beeswax Ornament Materials

DIY BEESWAX ORNAMENT MATERIALS

  • Beeswax (yellow or white)
  • Silicone mold (candy molds will work but not as well - use mold release spray with these)
  • Ribbon (1/8 inch wide)
  • Double boiler
  • Potholders

Step 1: Put your wax in your double boiler to melt it.

Step 2: While your wax is melting, prepare your mold and ribbon. Put your mold in a baking pan in the event you have any wax spill over the top. Then cut off a length of ribbon about 12″ long, knot the end, trim off the excess ribbon beneath the knot. Set the ribbon aside for now.

Step 3: Slowly pour your melted wax into the mold. Depending on your mold, you may need only to fill it up partway, or you may need to go all the way to the top for the full effect. If you need to fill it up all the way, avoid going over the edges.

ornament tray

Step 4: Place your prepared ribbon into the wax. Your goal is to get the knot covered by the wax, but not go all the way to the base of the mold to avoid having it show on the other side.

Step 5: If your ribbon doesn’t want to stay in place, set something near it that’s a little taller to keep it in place for you. (I used our giant 20-sided die.)

Step 6: Wait for it to cool and solidify before removing your beeswax ornament from the mold. Wax gets lighter and opaquer as it cools, so you can tell when it is solidified. You can tell when the wax is ready by how it pulls away from the mold. Gently pull the wax out of the mold, but do not pull on the ribbon yet (it needs more time to set in there).

And that's it!

 

 

 

*This cool craft idea comes from the talented, Jennifer of JenniferMaker.com. Check out her DIY Beeswax Ornaments for Gift-Giving and Sewing and her other crafty posts!