Posts Tagged ‘charity’

Green and Global Candles


I want to share with you about a wonderful company and product I recently learned about. Prosperity Candle offers beautiful handmade candles and other products manufactured by women entrepreneurs in and from distressed regions of the globe. They have been featured on Yahoo! Shine, The Huffington Post, in Ode and Forbes magazines and recently on The Today Show as part of “Bobbie’s Buzz” for International Women’s Day. More than candles, Prosperity Candle works to train women in candle production and empower them with entrepreneurial skills to build and manage their businesses. Their focus is on creating real and sustainable market opportunities for women in places like Haiti and Iraq.

Prosperity Candles make great gifts for any occasion and are available for sale through the website. The candles add a nice and unique touch to your home. They are made with a custom paraffin-soy blend which makes them a much more sustainable, environmentally-friendly and healthier alternative to traditional candles. Additionally, every purchase will grow the company’s impact by helping additional women participate in its growing success.








Green Up Your Move

How to Organize a Green Move

Moving requires fuel, packing materials and other things which have an impact on the local environment. The boxes used, as well as the packing paper and other materials, often end up in the trash. In the next month, several college students will be packing up their stuff and moving back home, to a place of their own, or a new dorm room. Many families purchase their first homes during Spring and Summer. Knowing how to move while at the same time finding ways to limit your waste footstep will require some planning, but is not difficult and well worth it. After all, you will be able to save a decent amount of money in the process with the added benefit of helping your local environment. Follow these easy tips to achieve just that:

How to Organize a Green Move

Use reusable containers

First of all, you should consider borrowing, renting or purchasing plastic containers for your belongings. Although they are made of petroleum products, they are far more reusable than the cardboard most often used. You can keep them around for much longer, allowing you to lower the amount of waste you produce during the moving process. Cardboard boxes usually require tape, which is made of materials that take a long time to completely decompose. Purchasing a set of plastic containers which stack into each other for storage purposes will allow you to keep them organized and under control with ease. This will reduce the boxes you’d need to buy otherwise. If you don’t feel like buying plastic boxes you can always find companies that rent them out for a small fee.

Use recycled moving supplies

As a way to save money and to lessen the impact on the environment, you can save cardboard boxes for your future needs. Whenever you go shopping you should safeguard as many boxes as you can, putting them in storage for later use. Some boxes are more useful than others, such as wine or liquor boxes. They already have compartments as part of their structure, serving as an excellent way of storing glasses and other smaller objects. Fragile items are easy to store within them because of their sturdy material. Check your local stores and ask the owners and supervisors if they can give you any boxes or if you may buy them if needed.

Use online sources to find materials

There are many sources online where you can find information regarding boxes and other packing materials at affordable prices. Classifieds websites (i.e. Craigslist) are a great way to contact people willing to sell or even donate boxes and other packing supplies. You may find listings in your area which fit your requirements, but if you’re not so lucky there are always many alternate ways of going about it.

Downsizing your possessions

When you move all your belongings you will have quite a lot on your hands. The more stuff you move, the more expensive it will be. It will also lead to higher expenditure of fuel and resources. The more resources used, the higher the impact on the natural world around you. It can lead to more pollution and a higher carbon footprint. If you want to lower that impact, one of the things you can do is downsize everything you own to a more manageable amount. Donating to charities and other organizations, even thrift stores, can bring many benefits, including a tax break. While helping protect the environment, you will be helping someone else along the way, letting them enjoy something they may have been looking for for a long time.

~This article was written on behalf of Removals Office.

Organic Snacks & Backyard Game Contest

CAM00403Convenient, healthy snacks are something I write about frequently. In today’s busy society it is sometimes difficult to have fresh and nutritious snacks on hand. That’s why when I first discovered CLIF Kid I knew I had struck gold. CLIF Kid is the maker of organic snacks for kids…Zbar, Zbar Crispy and Zfruit. 5 years later, my daughter still loves the Zbar energy snack bars…and so do I!

One bar contains around 10 grams of whole grains, 12 vitamins and minerals, 120 calories, 3 grams of fat, 11 grams of sugar and 3 grams of fiber. What I love most is that 95% of the ingredients are Certified USDA Organic. No high fructose corn syrup. No hydrogenated oils. No preservatives. No trans fats. No artificial flavors or colors.

IMG_20130409_111439These snack bars are a great way to provide some nutritious energy for young active kids (and adults!) when you’re on the go. They are the perfect treat and can even pass for a nutritious dessert. We get them for only $1.69 at TJs or WholeFoods. They are vegan too!

The Zbars are soft and chewy and come in a variety of flavors. My daughter’s favorites are the Iced Oatmeal Cookie and the Honey Graham. I love the Chocolate Brownie. They also come in Smore’s. Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip. CLIF Kid recently added a Zbar Crispy Rice variety. It’s like having a special rice krispy treat only it contains plenty of good for you stuff.  So far we’ve tried the Cookies ‘n Cream. They also come in Chocolate, Chocolate Chip and Peanut Butter.

CLIF Kid recently announced that they are bringing back their CLIF Kid Backyard Game of the Year contest. It is designed to encourage kids ages 6-12 to explore outdoor play by inventing their very own backyard game. Individual category entrants could win a $10,000 scholarship, a bike from Specialized Bicycles and a Bell helmet. This year a group category has been added and entrants have the opportunity to win a $15,000 donation to the non-profit of their choice. In addition, select finalists will win a trip to San Diego to showcase their games at the 2013 CLIF Kid Backyard Game of the Year Playoffs.

The contest is running now and ends on June 17, 2013. Backyard game ideas can be submitted at  For all contest submissions, kids ages 6-12 are asked to invent original backyard games that bring kids together to play outside. The games can utilize common household items such as balls, hula hoops, beanbags and, most importantly, kids’ imaginations for hours of fun.

Co-authors and outdoor play advocates, Stacy Tornio and Ken Keffer, are sharing fun outdoor activity tips for families on the CLIF Kid Facebook page ( during the contest phase and will also serve as judges at the CLIF Kid Backyard Game of the Year Playoffs. Tornio and Keffer’s book, “The Kids’ Outdoor Adventure Book: 448 Great Things to Do in Nature Before You Grow Up,” launched on April 2 and is a year-round how-to activity guidebook for outdoor exploration.


“All of us here at CLIF Kid remember what a blast it was being kids, exploring the outdoors and creating wacky games to amuse ourselves and friends,” said Jennifer Yun, brand director for CLIF Kid. “With Backyard Game of the Year, we’re providing a spotlight for kids to share their creativity and build the confidence that starts from playing outside.”

For more details and information on the contest visit:
For more info on Clif Bar & Company visit:, check out their Facebook page at and follow them on Twitter at:  

Eco-friendly Body Care for People Who Care


I am so excited to share with you all about the following line of products.  Not only did I discover a body wash that I absolutely love, but I found a company that I truly respect for its philosophies on health, safety practices and giving back to the community.  Beecology was started by a family of beekeepers who wanted to come up with a creative way to use all their excess beeswax.  They definitely did not want it to go waste and they wanted it to benefit the entire family.  After different attempts, they finally came up with a lip balm that family and friends approved of…Beecology was born.

Beecology is based in Ohio and now offers a variety of eco-friendly products that are handcrafted from natural and renewable ingredients for the body, both inside and out. Their products include raw natural honey, beeswax lip balm, sulfate and preservative-free shampoo, conditioner and body wash, paraben-free honey hand & body creams, essential oil moisturizing soaps, and more. Their products can be found in about 150 stores across the U.S., Canada and online.


I was fortunate enough to try out their lavender set of body wash, hand & body cream and lip balm. Lavender has some great relaxing properties and I love the smell, but I have to say from past experience that these types of products have usually been on the heavily scented side, making it a bit unappealing. This was not the case with the Beecology products. The Original Honey Hand & Body Cream is lightly scented, thin and absorbs quickly into the skin. The Lemon & Lavender Beeswax Lip Balm is also lightly scented (more lemon than lavender), very smooth and has helped protect and soothe my lips (and my daughter’s) during this past cold winter month. My favorite though, by far, has been the Lavender with Bergamot Body Wash. It has a pleasant, light scent and when I put it on it feels like silk against my skin. I don’t doubt that this has something to do with it containing a blend of my 3 favorite oils: Coconut, Olive and Hemp. (Also contains Aloe and Honey.) I have sensitive skin and am prone to getting rashes from fragrances in bath products, but this stuff does no such thing. It has even made shaving so easy!  I truly love this stuff!

imageAside from high quality, ecologically friendly products, the greatest thing about Beecology is that they promote charitable giving. They will donate 10% of their net profits to the customer’s charity of choice! Each supported product contains a charity code on it. After purchasing, you simply visit the Beecology Charity website at, enter the code on the product and designate which charity you would like your percentage to be donated to. What an amazing way to give back! In light of this generous gesture, I am not running a giveaway, but asking that you please consider trying out one of these great products, and give to charity at the same time! It’s a win-win for everyone!

To learn more about the company and their products visit: BEECOLOGY


Protecting the Zebra and other Endangered Animals (guest post)

I was recently introduced to a wonderful website and app designed for families that helps bring awareness and protect endangered animals.

I would like to thank Udopt for the following informative article…



Is there a more fabulously distinctively colored animal than the zebra? Marty from Madagascar does not think so, and certainly the tricks its striped coat can play on the eyes is enough to send the visually challenged into dizzy spells.

The zebra is a unique creature so I wanted to offer some advice and information for mums and dads that would like to teach their children a little more about this creature.

Fact #1 Born to run wild

Even though they belong to the horse family, no human has ever managed to
tame a zebra. For over two centuries man has tried his best, but they are simply
not interested in being domesticated. With the passing trends for designer
pets, can you imagine going to the shops and seeing people tying up their zebra
outside the supermarket…imagine the fashion conscious struggling to colour
coordinate their outfit to their newly adopted pet! It does not bear thinking

Fact #2 Unique stripes for a unique individual
Although zebras may look identical, each set of stripes is totally unique. It really
is just like a human fingerprint with stripes that differ in pattern, width and
shading. The stripes help them because when they are being attacked they
become very difficult for predators to single out – they all look the same! The
zebra’s coat also means that it is able to successfully benefit from the technique
known as ‘dazzle camouflage’ (thought to have been first used by humans in
World War I as a form of disruptive camouflage). What’s more, for those animals
that are color-blind the zebra’s coat can mingle in with tall blades of grass
making it very difficult to see them clearly! When it’s not being preyed on by the
big cats, the stripes are also good at deterring the much smaller blood sucking
horse flies that can carry nasty infections.

Fact #3 Catch me if you can
As mentioned before, the zebra’s coat makes it difficult for predators to hone
in on a specific individual, but that’s not the only ace up its sleeve: despite being
much slower at running than horses, they have stacks of stamina and an uncanny
ability to ‘zig-zag’ (step from side to side) like a professional football player.
This ‘special move’ is not to the pleasure of would-be attackers and throws them
completely off-balance, allowing the zebra to make its escape. If despite this, a
zebra should find itself trapped, it’s still not curtains as they are able to unleash
some very powerful kicks indeed. Predators are therefore especially cautious
in these situations because they know that if they should become injured they
could end up being preyed on themselves.

So, next time you are watching a documentary and see a zebra being attacked
by a lion or tiger, remember that this is a creature that has a number of sneaky
defenses to-hand, and it is therefore more likely that, away from the television,
the zebra will make its escape and live to graze another day.

~This guest post was written by Ali McDermott, charity journalist for,
where the entire family can learn about the endangered animals of the world and
help to protect the animal kingdom.

Udopt is a gift chooser specially built for those people that want to help animals but don’t know which one to pick. By answering a few questions, the udopt’r will match three animals in need of your help, based on the answers you give. There’s even a special version just for children.