DIY Rose and Meyer Lemon Salt Scrub

DIY Rose and Meyer Lemon Salt Scrub

Turns out, I love some self-care. I not only love it, I’m now constantly looking for little ways to squeeze more into my daily routine… including trashing my Valentine’s Day bouquet to make a DIY rose and Meyer lemon salt scrub, much to my boyfriend’s confusion.

Ready to upcycle your Valentine’s Day bouquet into a relaxing DIY Rose and Meyer Lemon Salt Scrub? Ready to relax and enjoy softer, healthier skin without washing toxic chemicals down the drain? Let’s do this.

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How to Upcycle Your Christmas Tree into Non-toxic Vinegar-Based Cleaning Solution

How to Upcycle Your Christmas Tree into Non-toxic Vinegar-Based Cleaning Solution

All our arguments about which is more eco-friendly, an artificial or natural Christmas tree, are predicated on the idea that your Christmas tree is a single use, disposable item. Here’s the reality: there are a million ways to upcycle your Christmas tree. Today, we’re staring with DIY Christmas Tree Vinegar Cleaner

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4 Realistic Ways to Upcycle Your Zero Waste Dried Orange Garland (That Aren’t Food)

4 Realistic Ways to Upcycle Your Zero Waste Dried Orange Garland (That Aren’t Food)

Orange garlands are one of my favorite zero waste Christmas decorations. They’re beautiful, they smell amazing, and they’re compostable, assuming you use plant-based twine and thread. But isn’t it a shame to only use them as a decoration and then throw them out? Guess what, there are actually a number of ways to upcycle your dried orange garland! Waste not, want not, y’all!

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Osana Mosquito Repellent Soap: An Honest Review

Osana Mosquito Repellent Soap: An Honest Review

Do mosquitoes eat you alive?

Do you spend the summers dressed like Kenny from South Park?

Has anyone ever thought your mosquito bites were chicken pox?

You’re in good company. And guess what? There’s hope. Click on through for an honest review of 6 days using Osana Bar’s Mosquito Repellent Soap!

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Zero Waste Kitchen Sponges from Ecotopia

Zero Waste Kitchen Sponges from Ecotopia

Disposable sponges: they're disgusting. They breed bacteria - AND shed micro-plastics - until you toss them in the landfill, where they'll never biodegrade.

Several months ago, I switched to this adorable little zero waste Unsponge from the Ecotopia. It's cotton and terrycloth, it's washable... and unbelievably durable! 

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5 DIY Scented Vinegar Cleaners

5 DIY Scented Vinegar Cleaners

It's pollen season in Charleston, so LET THE SPRING CLEANING BEGIN! 

I've recently switched to DIY vinegar cleaners for my home, and have been playing around with various scent infusions. Plus, you can't even call yourself an eco-blogger unless you post about vinegar cleaner. It's a thing.

Click on through for the best and worst of my DIY Vinegar Cleaner Scents, y'all!

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100 Greener Choices: Choices 11-20

100 Greener Choices: Choices 11-20

Going green: it doesn't happen overnight.

If you try to change your entire lifestyle all at once, it's not likely to succeed.

My goal for myself was 100 greener lifestyle changes and choices, and at first, that felt daunting. Now, though, as I look at my life from a different perspective, and see infinite room for improvement... and that's pretty cool! 

Today we hash out 100 Greener Choices: 11-20, with a recap of 1-10, this time arranged easiest to most intensive. 

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DIY Home Scents for the Holidays: Part 2 of 3 Citrus Potpourri

Floridians know that Christmas means citrus, and while life took this girl out of her home state, oranges are still synonymous with holiday flare at Moore Manor! 

I was planning my follow up to the DIY Home Scents for the Holidays: Part 1 post and got sidetracked by a beautiful trip to Costa Rica, which actually was quite serendipitous. I arrived off the airplane in Florida to be welcomed by a HUGE basket of sour oranges, thanks to my parents' neighbor Valerie. 

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Look at this amazing bounty of backyard citrus! 

The sour orange (also known as the Seville orange) is a hybrid known for it's bitter taste (I find it similar to a Meyer lemon) and beautiful aroma. 

I was so excited, and I immediately decided to not let any go to waste, though several were already at the point they wouldn't be winning any beauty contests. What better use for them than some dried potpourri? (As a reminder, chemical air fresheners are basically air pollution, and they contain toxic hormone disrupting agents.)

It smells amazing, and it's beautiful. Every time I walk into my bedroom and catch a whiff or catch sight of it, I can't help but smile. It's so feminine and pretty... even if it's a little grandma chic. Whatever, get off me. I love grandma chic. 

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DIY Holiday Citrus Potpourri

Here's what you need:

  • Oranges (any sort will do)

  • Star anise

  • Cinnamon sticks

  • Cloves

  • Spray roses (if desired) and rose leaves (optional)

  • Orange essential oil

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*This gallery contains affiliate links. This means that if you click through and give the product a whirl, I get a tiny fee for spreading the news at no extra cost to you. This helps me offset the enormous amount of time that goes into Compost & Cava.

  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit.

  2. Wash oranges, scrubbing peels. Slice oranges as thin as you realistically can. Don't fret if they get a little irregular. 

  3. Cover baking sheet with parchment paper. Layer orange slices and other fresh ingredients (I threw in some rosemary). You can also arrange items directly on oven grill rack to reduce cooking time.

  4. Place baking sheet on middle rack of oven, and check occasionally. Flowers, leaves, and herbs will dehydrate much more quickly, orange slices should take about 2 hours. Remove oranges before browning occurs. (Don't worry if they're still a little tacky. I burned the crap out of one batch trying to get them all the way dry.)

  5. Allow oranges and flowers to cool. Combine with spices in bowl, spritz with essential oils if stronger scent is desired or as scent begins to fade. Enjoy until potpourri loses color or texture, then compost!

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And there you have it! Easy, fun, and pretty. Best of all, it won't release toxins into your home! 

I packaged up several in glass jars for fellow hippie friends, and played around with creating an orange lavender version, and loved it.

I've left mine out in bowls around the house, and I refresh them with the occasional spritz of essential oils. They brighten my mood each day! Living greener often means slow living, and so far I love it. It's a richer, and more fulfilling experience.

Short on time?

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I got you!

Don't underestimate the beauty and incredible scent of clove studded citrus. (This is lifestyle blogger code for "shoving whole cloves into an orange".) 

It's colorful, nostalgic, and the scent lasts for days and days! 

Grab several oranges and a handful of whole cloves. Push cloves (pointy end first) into the peel of the orange. Aaaaaand you're done. 

So simple, right?! And you can get fancy with patterns if you want, but it's definitely not necessary. 

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Remember to take a moment to breathe and relax this holiday season, and remember that these little details are where the joy is found in life.

Even if you're on a tight budget, these little sensory experiences are a great way to treat yourself while taking a break from wrapping presents and food prep! 

Shoot me a note and let me know what potpourri combinations y'all come up with!

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Goals: 100 Greener Choices

It's important to have goals, right?! All the inspirational internet memes say so, and they can't put it on the internet unless it's true. 

Shortly after I started this blog and before I even published it to you great folk of the interwebs, I made a goal for myself: 100 Greener Choices. 

I have no idea if this is possible. But it's been an interesting journey, nonetheless. So, periodically I will be updating you on my count (thus holding myself accountable!). 

Here's what we've got so far! 

photo by Nick Milak

photo by Nick Milak

1. This Blog. Every journey starts with a first step, and this one is mine! The choice to start a new lifestyle and hold myself publicly accountable through this not always graceful and certainly not perfect process is for sure my first big lifestyle change. 

2. Litter. It started with my morning walks with Gatz, but once you get in the habit, it's hard to break and easy to do. Usually I end up picking up between 1-5 pieces of additional litter just going about my daily business. Smashed water bottle in the parking lot? Cool! Throw it in the car and recycle it when you get home. It's seriously not rocket science.

3. Meals Without Plastic. Because I'm regularly trying out and/or proofing recipes for the blog, I've been eating between 1-3 plastic packaging free meals a week! And there's a snowball effect to it. Once you invest in plastic-free basics, like salt, eggs, and olive oil, it becomes remarkably easier.

4. Shampoo Redo! Switching to bar shampoo and conditioner has probably been the most fun change I've made so far, I won't lie. I'm a sucker for bright colors and exotic scents, so this one has been a lot of fun.

5. Shower Power. The bar soap change is what caused me to explore bar shampoos, and I'm still super happy with the shift. I have so much room on my shower shelf, I actually got a shower fern. Named Francois. Because I'm bougie as hail, y'all. 

6. Line drying. This shift takes a little more effort than some of the other changes, but I'm addicted to both that fresh air scent vs. cloying chemicals, and saving money on my electric bill means I can afford that schmancy glass of wine instead of Two Buck Chuck! 

7. Farmer's Markets. I now get virtually all my groceries for the week from the various farmer's markets around town. I love it, I look forward to it, and how often can you actually say that about going to a grocery store? I love the selection, the human interaction, shopping the various vendors, and making seasonal choices. It's relaxing and delightful, and the food is ON POINT.

8. Bailin' on Snail Mail. Reducing my junk mail has given me SO much satisfaction. It's been quietly irritating me for years, and now I have an environmental reason to tell these spammers to bug off. 

9. Goin' Green for Halloween! Saying goodbye to my cheesy blinking orange lights and plastic paraphernalia was a really easy choice, especially since this barely cost me a dime (just a couple gourds). Plus, how can you go wrong with an apothecary theme?!

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10. MY PLANTALONES! This VOC fighting team of superheroes are my favorites! I mean, my shower fern is cool. But these little guys are just so spunky and adorable. Remember to make sure your air plants are ethically sourced, or just get a bunch of shower ferns. The point is this: the air inside your home is disgusting and filled with chemicals. You are literally filtering that shit through your lungs (unless you have many plantalones, like myself), so think about that next time you plug in a Glade air freshner. Gross.

Like I said, I have no idea if this is possible or practical! But this has been an amazing journey so far. I'm looking at life differently, feeling healthier and happier, and it's brought some of the most incredible and interesting people across my path. So let's keep going, shall we?!