Month: May 2012

thank you, mother nature

Every spring, I prune and prod and weed and water.  I spray my roses to ward of thrips. I do my best to fight grubs and move plants around to fill areas out.  I spend a lot of time plucking new maple seedlings from the ground and fertilizing, fertilizing, and fertilizing with worm poop and Neptune’s Harvest (though eek – just realized Neptune’s Harvest is fish-derived, so I guess I may need to find a new one).  Very time consuming, but oh how I love looking at the fruits of my hard labor every year. This year, mother nature realized that I just had bigger priorities, so she helped me out. Everything simply exploded this year. I am not talking about vegetables or annuals, but rather my perennials.  Bit by bit, I’ve accumulated lovely plants.  Many came from my childhood home in Upstate New York.  Rather than leave their beloved perennials when moving, my parents potted them up and I drove back to Boston one April day with a small SUV LOADED with our family’s favorite …

cruelty-free baby products

A good friend of mine said it best (in reference to Johnson and Johnson baby wash): “I couldn’t even use it.  How could I put it on my baby’s skin when it has been tested on animals?” I couldn’t agree more.  Our house is a “no animal testing” zone.  Our cleaning products–from laundry to the floors–are earth-friendly and animal-friendly, as are our health and beauty products.  Bonus, these two wonderful qualities tend to go hand-in-hand.  I’ve tried several of the mainstream brands of baby products (some gifted and some I purchased myself) and thought I’d share my faves for your future purchasing decisions. The must-haves You need three simple items when it comes to baby body care.  Soap, lotion, and diaper cream. Soap: Burt’s Bees Bubble Bath (or the combined shampoo/body wash) win.  It isn’t ridiculously sudsy and it smells great.  I do not at all love that Burt’s Bees was purchased by Clorox a few years ago (Clorox is a massive corporation that does test on animals), so I may search for a different …

Blackberries, Cancer, and Love

I never declared myself a good writer.  I can’t write witty fiction or profound essays. However, when I saw an essay contest in Real Simple about understanding the meaning of love, I felt compelled to write something just because I have so much to say about my mother and the love I have for her.  Naturally I didn’t win (the winners are always amazing and often actual writers in life…you can read the winner here), so I thought I’d paste the essay in as a celebration of my mom on Mother’s Day.  Not that any real-life words can describe the love and adoration I have for her. Blackberries, Cancer, and Love, written in August of 2011. Funny, I always thought love was just something I was really good at. Can you be “good” at love?  I could hug and send care packages and give pep talks and do good deeds for my  friends and family.  I said “I love you” a lot, so I had to rank higher than the average person when it came …