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Earth Day

Apr 22, 2016

It's Earth Day!  Events are happening all over the country this weekend to celebrate the earth and to help preserve her resources.  Whether you’re planning to attend a local event or not, make the day a success by pledging to do something good for the environment.  Will you start a recycling program at your school or business?  Perhaps you’ll plant a tree or garden this weekend.  


SC Earth Day Events

Apr 21, 2016

Tomorrow is Earth Day and there are plenty of events going on around the state where you can get involved!  Clemson is hosting an Earth Day Celebration tomorrow from 2-4pm on the North Green.  Many businesses and organizations will be represented with exhibits and activities related to green initiatives to heighten awareness ecological and environmental awareness.  On Saturday April 23 the city of Sumter is hosting a day of green at Swan Lake Iris Gardens off Garden Street from 8am to 12pm.  


It’s time to start enjoying your outdoor living space again.  Whether you enjoy the front porch or the backyard patio, here are some quick and easy DIY upgrades for your outdoor space.  Get crafty with some recycled aluminum cans by drilling small holes and painting them to create candle lanterns. 

  

Organic on a Budget

Apr 19, 2016

We all want the best foods for our families, but sometimes it’s hard to justify the cost when cheaper options are available.  So here are some tips for eating organic on a budget.  First, know which produce is counted among the dirty dozen- in other words the produce with the highest levels of pesticides, and which produce is ok not to buy organic.  


Sign of Stress

Apr 18, 2016

According to the American Psychological Association, Americans are more stressed than ever, and for many, stress can impact mental or physical health.  So if you have any of these symptoms, you may want to reassess your levels of stress.  Stress can cause people to overeat or undereat, so if your weight begins to fluctuate, take note.  


Your eco wedding is going to be beautiful, but where are you planning to go for the honeymoon?  While exotic locations sound wonderful, you could save money and energy by staying close to home.  South Carolina has beautiful beaches that offer a chance to get away from the stress of planning the wedding.  And our state offers gorgeous mountain getaways too.


After the vows have been said and the party is over, keep the green wedding spirit alive by recycling the trash.  Planning ahead helps too.  Go the traditional route and use glass place settings.  These can be rented or often come included if you rent out a venue for your reception and of course they’ll be used over and over again.


You’re planning an eco-friendly wedding; let’s talk about the flowers!  Not only will you most likely decorate the altar and the reception with beautiful arrangements, but you’ll want a bouquet to carry as well.  The best way to plan for a sustainable day when it comes to flowers it to make sure the buds are local, in season, and organic if at all possible.  


So, you’ve already found the dress and rented the tux for your eco-friendly wedding.  Have you considered what kind of invitations you’ll send?  You could go the traditional route and purchase invitations made from recycled papers and fibers.


We’re approaching the busy wedding season, and if you’re planning your own wedding then you know there are a lot of decisions to make!  From the dress to the flowers to the menu and on, try making green decisions along the way to make your day sustainable and eco-friendly.


Thrifting Tips

Apr 8, 2016

Creating a stylish home on a budget can be a tall order, but by keeping an open mind, finding great items at the thrift store, flea market, and even yard sales can be fun.  The trick is to think creatively!


Meal Planning

Apr 7, 2016

We’re all trying to get more done in less time, but being on the go all the time can negatively affect your eating habits.  The best defense is a good plan!  So take a few moments to plan your meals for the week.


Seeds 101

Apr 5, 2016

Are seeds and nuts a staple in your diet?  They should be!  Edible seeds are not only nutritious, but they can add texture and taste to a variety of foods.  The gluten free diet is gaining ground in America because many people discovering allergies to wheat, so seeds like Quinoa, Chia, Flax, and even Sunflower seeds are filling in the nutritional gaps.


April is National Garden Month and whether you’re an avid gardener, king of your landscape, or just thinking about a small vegetable garden, keep in mind that you don’t have to have a big backyard to enjoy the benefits of gardening!


Whether you’re new to homeownership, or you’ve been in your home for years, your house probably didn’t come with an owner’s manual.  So here are a few tips to keep in mind when things aren’t going as you planned!


DIY Summer Shorts

Mar 25, 2016

The warm weather is the perfect time for wearing shorts, but instead of buying new, try making your own trendy shorts at home.  With a few materials and some easy tips, you could be showing off your stems in style and save money at the same time.


We’ve been talking this week about ways to take your workout outdoors and enjoy the sunny weather of South Carolina.  Mountain or trail biking can be a nice break from that stationary bike at the gym, but before you buy expensive gear, borrow or rent until you know what your needs will be.


South Carolina offers abundant parks and public places for recreation, but for runners every surface is a possible personal record.  With mountain trails, miles of beaches, and sunny weather calling your name, it’s time to get off that treadmill and head outdoors for your next run.


 Now that the warmer weather is coming on strong, it’s a great time to get outdoors for your daily exercise.  South Carolina offers a number of lakes, rivers, and beaches for swimmers to strengthen that backstroke.  There are some things to consider before hitting the water, so keep these tips in mind.


The temperatures are perfect for getting outdoors for your daily workout routine.  And if you’re a yoga enthusiast, there are some studios that offer outdoor classes.  But you don’t need a class to grab your mat and head to one of the many beautiful locations in South Carolina.


Homemade Bath Salts

Feb 26, 2016

Taking a soothing bath can relax those achy muscles, but why buy bath salts when you can make your own at home?  Combine 1 cup of Epsom salt with half a cup of kosher salt in a large freezer grade resalable bag.  Then add food color one drop at a time and shake until you reach the desired color.  Adding more than one drop at a time can melt your salt and make it clump.  


Sticky notes are so handy in the office or at school, but they can be pricey!  So make your own with a few recycled items!  You’ll need a glue stick, preferably one that is washable, a stack of recycled printer paper, some scissors, some recycled card stock quality paper, and some all purpose glue.  


Reuse Milk Cartons

Feb 24, 2016

Most of us have juice and milk containers left over at the end of the week.  While recycling them is a good idea, think about ways to reuse them instead.  A cardboard milk carton could be cut down and used to create suet to feed the birds in your backyard.  Or cut the sides out of that cardboard juice jug and glue in rice paper to create luminaries.  


Reuse Aluminum Foil

Feb 23, 2016

Invented in 1825, Aluminum Foil has become a staple in many homes because it’s terribly useful.  And once used, can be recycled or re-used.  Here are a few ideas for ways to re-use your aluminum foil.  Cut it into strips and hang it in your vegetable garden to deter birds and wildlife from eating your plants.  


If you’ve got an old wooden spice rack you’re not using anymore don’t pitch it out with the trash!  Save it and re-purpose it.  You could use that spice rack to hold paper craft items, acrylic paints, buttons, beads, glitter, yarn or thread in your craft corner.  Use it in the bathroom or by your vanity to hold perfumes, nail polishes, colognes, face wash or make-up.  


We’ve been talking this week about healthy smoothies that will rev up your metabolism and boost your energy, and today’s vegan strawberry vanilla milkshake recipe is no exception.  The first step is to make the ice cream and to keep it dairy free, blend 2 frozen bananas with three teaspoons of vanilla extract.  You can use fresh vanilla bean if you prefer.  Set this mixture in the freezer while you one quarter cup of almond milk with half a cup of fresh strawberries. 

We’ve been talking about smoothies this week and not only are these cold treats a great way to energize your day, but they’re packed with all the great fiber, antioxidants and nutrients you need to keep your body fit and improve your mood!  Today’s recipe may be an unexpected combination, but this low calorie high fiber mixture is sure to please! 


Here’s a smoothie recipe that is a sweet, tropical treat!  Combine one apple, one frozen banana, half a cup of pineapple, half a cup of orange juice and a quarter cup of almond milk in your blender or food processor and puree until the mixture is smooth.  If you want a little more tropical flavor add mango or coconut to the mixture.  Smoothies are a great way to get fiber, vitamins, and a good start on your daily fruit and vegetable count. 


Today, it’s all about berries!  Try this Berry Bliss smoothie to give you a nice energy boost while satisfying that insatiable sweet tooth!  Start with one cup of blackberries, one cup of raspberries, a frozen banana, half a cup of almond milk, and a quarter cup of orange juice.  Combine ingredients in your food processor or blender until you reach the desired consistency and enjoy! 

A smoothie a day keeps the doctor away, so this week, we’ll be talking about fruit smoothie recipes and easy calorie burning tricks to help you stay on track and lose a few inches.  We’ll start with a mean green vegan smoothie packed with iron, fiber, potassium and antioxidants.  Get your blender or food processor ready and combine two cups of spinach, one cup of frozen pineapple, half an apple, one frozen banana, and one cup of orange juice.  Blend, and enjoy! 

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