Take It Smiling

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The Circus is Coming! The Circus is Coming!

Wow! I am excited! (Is four exclamation points in four sentences too much? Hmmm...) Well, it's just that I am REALLY excited because Over the Top by Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey is coming to Baltimore (March 26) and Fairfax (April 8) and I have four tickets to share with you! Seriously! (Two more in two more... Grrr...)

Here's what I want you to do by midnight March 23rd:
  1. Take a look at my paper crafting gallery and pick your favorite item
  2. Leave a comment under this post stating which item you like best
  3. Tell me which show date/location you would like to attend (Baltimore 3/26 or Fairfax 4/8)
Make sure I have way to contact you if you win. I'll use random.org to choose a winner and contact you Tuesday, March 24th. Your tickets will be at the Will Call window at the circus.

If you don't win, don't worry! You can purchase tickets at a total steal (4 tickets for just $44!) by using the code "MOM" at http://www.ticketmaster.com/. This offer is good on all performances though there is a minimum purchase of 4 tickets required; additional tickets above 4 can be purchased for $11 each (you must purchase at least 4 to get the $11/ticket price). This offer is not valid at Gold Circle Seating, Circus Celebrity Seating, Front Row and VIP seating or combinable with other offers. Other Restrictions may apply.

Check out http://www.ringling.com/ for more information on the show as well as more dates in the Baltimore/Washington area and across the country.

Friday, March 6, 2009

When is it Worth Buying Organic?

You know what? I have a secret admirer. Or a secret Santa. Or maybe just a thoughtful friend who knows me REALLY well. You see, out of the blue, I began receiving Everyday Food, a Martha Stewart magazine. Not one to look a gift horse in the mouth, I took a few minutes to peruse that first issue and that's all it took; I was hooked! I immediately earmarked recipe after recipe, thrilled to liven up my weekday menu. I couldn't believe there were so many EASY and QUICK recipes using ingredients I commonly have on hand. (Martha, I love you but you usually cook with stuff I just don't have and I'm not in the position to shop for each meal.)

In the latest issue (April 2009), I read something and wanted to share it with you. I've seen this information before, maybe in an email (?) but now that it's in print right in front of me and the source is named, I thought I'd share it... I'm quoting Jovana Ruzicic, a spokesperson for the Environmental Working Group, a nonprofit dedicated to protecting public health and the environment:

When is it worth buying organic?

If you're concerned about pesticides in conventionally grown produce, buying organic is a good option -- but it can be expensive. To get your money's worth, stick to organics for the 12 fruits and vegetables that contain the highest levels of pesticides when grown conventionally (based on data from the FDA and USDA):

  • apples
  • bell peppers
  • carrots
  • celery
  • cherries
  • grapes (imported)
  • kale
  • lettuce
  • nectarines
  • peaches
  • pears
  • strawberries

Regardless of what type of produce you buy, wash it thoroughly with water before eating or cooking.

I've also read that veggies that grow in the ground, such as potatoes and carrots, are also high on the Must Buy Organic list and that makes sense to me.

I purchased a product at my local Roots Market called Biokleen Produce Wash and I love it. It's made in the USA and it's not tested on animals (nor does it contain any animal ingredients). It simply contains lime extracts, grapefruit seed and pulp extracts, surfactants from coconut and/or corn, cold pressed orange oil and filtered water... that's it! You simply soak your produce, rinse and enjoy. I grew my own lettuce for the first time last year and it was comforting to soak my greens before consuming, knowing I was getting all that yuck off my yum.

Ug. I've got Spring on the brain. I've got my local farmer's market on the brain... I want fresh local produce and I WANT IT NOW. (I'm channeling my best Varuca Salt from Charlie and the Chocoalte Factory there.) Who's with me?

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Introducing Wonderwash from Laundry Alternatives

My friend Resourceful Mommy told me all about some new, innovative, cost-saving and environmentally friendly laundry products that work so I thought I'd pass along the information. Here's what she had to say:

Introducing the Wonderwash from Laundry Alternatives - the space saving, time saving, energy saving Green Clean solution for your laundry needs! As seen on The Rachael Ray Show, through a patented pressure system, the Wonderwash thoroughly cleans a five pound load in just minutes using less water and detergent than even hand washing!

What can you wash with the Wonderwash? How about a week’s worth of dress shirts, 10 t-shirts, 30 pairs of socks, bibs, cloth diapers, burp clothes….the list goes on and on.

How does the Wonderwash work? When you put warm or hot water into the drum, fit the lid in place and seal the machine,the air inside the drum will absorb the heat of the water and expand (i.e., just like a hot air balloon). When the air expands it creates pressure inside the drum. The pressure forces the detergent (which is diluted into the water) into & through the fabric (which is porous) about 100 times faster than you could by hand or machine.

Tell Us How It Could Work for You – And Win a Wonderwash PLUS a Mini Countertop Spin Dryer, which quietly spins the water out of your clothes in just minutes.

To participate follow these easy steps!

  1. Blog on your site about what YOU would use the Wonderwash and Mini Countertop Spin Dryer to clean.
  2. Post a photo or a video of your mess and be sure to link back to Laundry Alternatives.
  3. Fill out this secure participation form to be entered to win!

Then join us on Twitter Friday, March 13th from 9:00 to 10:00 p.m. (EST) to tweet with Green Cleaning experts and find out who won the grand prize! Five attendees will also win The TrueGreen Laundry Washing Ball, which cleans your clothes without bleach or detergents in cold water. It does not contain harmful synthetic detergents, perfumes, dyes, or oils!

Resourceful Mommy

Contest is open to all U.S. residents and runs from Friday, March 6th to Friday, March 13th at 8:00p.m. EST. All winners will be contacted within one week of closing to verify participation and obtain shipping information.

Good luck, friends!

Copyright ©2010 Andrea Diuguid. All content, including text, photographs and concept design elements featured in this blog are © Andrea Diuguid.