Biweekly Menu Planning Form (Free Downloadable)

Screen Shot 2013-10-29 at 6.32.01 PM

This year, with my son in preschool, mornings are spent shooing two kids along and getting everyone out the door on time. The AM has to be far more regimented, and fast breakfasts and easy, (often make-ahead) lunches are essential. We are also doing a lot more freezer-meal cooking to streamline dinner these days and [Continue Reading...]

How To Organize Your Spice Drawer With Mason Jars

IMG_9581 (1)

Like most pretty serious cooks, I have a pretty serious spice collection. I’ve been a fan of buying my spices in bulk at my local Yuppie-Hippie Co-op for years now. The spices you get in bulk, if you are in a place that rolls through their stock, tend to be fresher and of higher quality [Continue Reading...]

Dry Brushing: The Most Amazing Natural Skin Care Technique You Aren’t Using

photo_3

I recently joined the Church of Dry Skin Brushers and would like to convert you. So let’s talk about the best natural skin care technique you probably aren’t using. It’s called dry brushing and it’s…heavenly. You want reasons to dry brush? Mr. Google will give you plenty: Benefits to Dry Skin Brushing Removes dead skin [Continue Reading...]

Whole Life Integration: Tips To Simplify Nearly Everything In Your Productive Home

photo

A reader emailed me this past weekend and in a few sentences got right to the heart of why getting started with productive home- and garden-keeping can be so dang challenging. Hi Erica, I’ve been working on getting a garden going and redesigning my life, but the current life really gets in the way.  Lots [Continue Reading...]

All Natural DIY Facial Exfoliator with Coconut Oil and Baking Soda

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The Facial Years and years ago my husband treated me to a massage and spa facial for Mother’s Day. I had never had a facial before. I told the lady doing the facial, “I have really, really sensitive skin” and she said, “Good to know” and then proceeded to slather what I can only assume [Continue Reading...]

How To Use Pee In Your Garden

How To Use Pee In Your Garden

If you can get over the ewwww factor, pee-cycling your own urine into the garden makes good sense. Fresh urine is high in nitrogen, moderate in phosphorus and low in potassium and can act as an excellent high-nitrogen liquid fertilizer or as a compost accelerator. Components of Urine The exact breakdown of urine varies depending on the [Continue Reading...]

Can You Heat Your Home With Bricks and Twigs? Paul Wheaton Thinks So.

rocket-mass-heater-warm

Let’s say, just for argument’s sake, that you think the world would be a better place if the collective “we” used less coal, oil, natural gas, nuclear energy and other heat-generating resources. Or, maybe you don’t give a rip about the environment but you sure like saving money. Perhaps you just need a reliable DIY way to [Continue Reading...]

Thrift Shop – An Anthem for New Frugality?

Macklemore_The_Heist_Tour_1_cropped

Homebrew Husband came home after his commute the other day and told me that local Seattle rapper and my fake internet boyfriend, Macklemore, is overwhelming the Seattle radio scene with his hilarious ode to frugality, Thrift Shop. Thrift Shop has been making rounds through the money-saver forums for months and months, so I’ve been loving [Continue Reading...]

Is Growing Your Own Food Worth It?

Front Bed: August

“Is growing your own food worth it?” When I get asked that question, people are talking about cash-in-hand not harvest-in-hand. They aren’t saying, “Is it worth it to have the very freshest sugar snap peas?” or, “Is it worth it to see your child poke a bean seed in the ground?” because there is, clearly, [Continue Reading...]

A Brief History of Monsanto and Seed Houses Who Got Screwed

Territorial Seed Catalog

The following is adapted from a note I published on Facebook in February 2012. Since I’m still getting questions about Territorial Seed and Monsanto, I’m publishing it here to make it more widely available. It’s seed catalog time! The dripping seed lust of gardeners at this time of year, flipping through pages filled with new [Continue Reading...]

Affirmations for Crazy Crafters

Sewing Projects (1)

Last night, as I was pinning together the two halves of some toddler long johns I was sewing from the felted-wool sleeves an up-cycled Norwegian sweater I picked up at the thrift store, I thought three things. One: “If someone described to me the action I am currently engaged in and used the term ‘up-cycled’ [Continue Reading...]

No Spend Month: Final Numbers and Reader Feedback

Caveman Coffee Grinding

It’s time to come clean. It’s the big finale, the big reveal – did we make our No Spend budget or blow it? Did you make your budget? I’m happy to say that we did stay within $250, and we saved up a ton of money this month. In addition to the casual dollars we [Continue Reading...]