HAPPY NEW YEAR TO YOU ALL!
Grab Bag High Point Review:
If you’ve taken only a few things away from Grab Bag last year, I hope you have considered your skin care and cosmetics as potential sources of unfriendly, and quite possibly unhealthy, ingredients. And if you haven’t read the Cosmetics Issue page on this blog, please click the tab for it at the top of this page and spend a few minutes reading it. This topic is only just beginning to be looked at in mainstream media, but more is being disseminated every day.
Below are comments from Dr. Mercola’s newsletter just in the last few weeks on the topic:
When it comes to the beauty industry, anything goes…
And money reigns supreme. Which means that it’s caveat emptor – “buyer beware”. You need to be the captain of your own ship and know what’s in the products you use.
If you thought the FDA was watching out for you…
Well, let’s just let that idea blow off right now. They let the cosmetic industry, including skin care products, police itself (your tax dollars notwithstanding). The list of people trying to help you out is surprisingly small — almost non-existent.
Currently, there are estimated to be more than 10,500 cosmetic and personal care products on the North American market. Of those products, the Environmental Working Group estimates that 99% of the products contain one or more ingredients that have never been evaluated for safety.
Read the full article HERE, where it goes on to tell you how and what to avoid, as well as a whole host of GREAT skin care tips that don’t come in an expensive french glass jar, or any jar for that matter. Please make the effort… you are worth it.
And until I have my favorite products up and posted on a separate page here, email me or drop me a comment below to ask me what products I like… and I LOVE them… I have experienced NO compromise, no trade-off in going chem-free 🙂
Grab Bag Pilates Anytime:
I am absolutely thrilled to have all you Grab Bag readers be among the first to experience a new website called PilatesAnytime.com. A dear friend has been at the helm of this project for the last few months, and they just brought it online a few days ago. You can have access to top-notch Pilates instructors for an absolute FRACTION of what a session would cost. $18 a month gets you UNLIMITED ACCESS to all the classes, taught by master teachers of all different Pilates backgrounds. Stick with one teacher or sample them all. This is an incredible idea and a fantastic opportunity to learn, as well as improve your body, mind and spirit.
Check out the learning sections of the site, where plenty of clear, concise explanation takes place to answer all the questions everyone asks about Pilates. You will get more out of this than you could possibly imagine. And if you poke around the site long enough you might see someone you know:-)
Grab Bag Cool Stuff:
Google has quietly been fighting some lawsuits over the past few years regarding their Google Books project. A settlement has been reached. Are you yawning?? Hang on… this is amazing stuff here….
Google currently has scanned every page of over 7 million books as well as umpteen magazine issues, and posted them online for your viewing pleasure. But this is not just glorified microfilm. All the text in the billions of pages is searchable! Get out! That’s crazy.
Check it out:
They have every issue of Life magazine, so check in with what was happening in America the week you were born. The week I was born Sophia Loren was hot. Wait…. Sophia Loren is STILL hot… so I’m feeling pretty spunky, but back to GoogBooks… they even have issues of some magazines (including my favorite health magazine, Men’s Health) that are only a couple of months old… ALL SEARCHABLE! You can even search for an ad you might have seen and want to find again. Just type in “unwanted hair? Get Nair!” and you will be shown any and every page in just one issue or ALL issues that has anything to do with that phrase.
7 million books and counting at your fingertips…. I’m SO far behind on my reading now…
Grab Bag Resolution Tip:
Yes, we have global issues that seem daunting. But what can one person do? One person CAN solve these issues. One person, times many, is HOW WE GOT TO THIS POINT in the first place. So let’s throw the old Buick in reverse here, and back right up the road to destruction in the opposite direction. Here are just a few things we each need to do:
1. Stop buying bottled water; drink filtered tap water you keep in reusable glass bottles.
2. Conserve water wherever possible. Fair warning: It feels like there’s a lot of it… until there isn’t.
3. Use a stainless steel or similar bottle for carrying water when away from home.
4. Stop using disposable coffee cups; bring your own reusable mug into your local coffee house.
5. Reduce the amount of packaged foods of ALL types that you buy: fresh, package-free food is guaranteed to be more naturally healthy for you as well.
6. Bring your own reusable bags to the grocery store; this includes lightweight bags for produce, eliminating even more plastic.
7. Cancel as many magazine and newspaper subscriptions as possible, and read more on your computer or e-book readers.
8. Take they time to call and remove your name from unwanted catalog companies’ mailing lists.
9. Make your own cleaning products (“How To” here). Next best: buy products that have a small bottle of concentrate that you add to your own reusable container of water.
10. Compost your table scraps and garden cuttings for a rich fertilizer (lots of links and “How-Tos” here“)
11. Use washcloths for kitchen and household spills, hand drying, and cleaning rather than paper towels. (You can buy these by the dozen in kitchen supply places or Costco).
12. Give away, rather than throw away, your clothes.
13. As a matter of fact, nearly EVERYTHING can be given a new life through Freecycle.org
Grab Bag Low-Impact Holiday
Start now to make a HUGE difference in the waste that is generated next holiday season. Fabric gift bags, fabric gift wraps, cool leather, wood or decorative boxes all are preferable to wrapping paper. Gorgeous and inexpensive designer-looking wired ribbon (inexpensively purchased at Costco) gives these eco-gift containers a great flair, and the ribbon can be reused numerous times.
Greeting cards from this last holiday season make great, large, decorative gift tags. Just cut the front covers off the cards, punch a hole in the corner and use a bit of glittery elastic to tie them to the gift. They can usually be beautifully coordinated with the color of the bag, box or ribbon.
When my family gathers at Christmas we are almost 20 strong. Lots of gifts are exchanged, but we have been pretty diligent about this concept, and the bags of trash are fewer every year. Here are a few examples:
Square fabric gift wrap knotted in place, decorated with a tassel and greeting card gift tag
Square fabric wrap knotted in place, wired ribbon bow tied to knot, gift card cover as gift tag
Wood recycled candle box with wired ribbon
Fabric gift bag with permanently attached (sewn on) ribbon and greeting card gift tag ribbon
Heart shaped box with wired ribbon and greeting card gift tag
Leather designer watch box with wired ribbon and greeting card gift tag
Black satin candy box with wired ribbon and greeting card gift tag
House shaped soap box with wired ribbon and greeting card gift tag
Don’t have cool boxes the right size? Head to Ross for Less and pick some up on the cheap… you’ll be bale to use them again and again, as long as the recipient doesn’t want it 🙂
Beautiful large box for under $5
Add wired ribbon and a greeting card gift tag, and you’ve got a beautiful, reusable, eco-friendly gift
Grab Bag Brain Game:
Draw the solution to the puzzle
Grab Bag Funny Stuff:
This happens all the time where I live….
You’re driving along just minding your own business, when all of a sudden - without any warning, this dick in a truck pulls out right in front of you……