Kroger - FREE Private Selection Organic Milk

If you are planning to take advantage of the Kroger deal this week that runs through today (2/28/10), you should check to see if your store carries Private Selection Organic Milk (Gallon).  I did my Kroger shopping for the week yesterday and purchased my usual gallon of Private Selection Organic 2% Milk.  When I checked out I noticed that instead of crediting the two gallons of regular milk I purchased as part of this deal, they created me the $5.29 price of the Organic gallon!

Here is the breakdown:

Buy 4 Kellogg’s Cereal (12-25 oz) or NutriGrain Bars (8 ct) and Keebler Cookies or Crackers (9-18 oz) at $2.88/ea, get 2 gallons FREE Private Selection Organic Milk!

4 items x $2.88 each =  $11.52
2 gallons Private Selection Organic Milk x $5.29 (Columbus, OH store price) = $10.58 
Total Price = $11.52 for 4 Kellogg's/ NutriGrain/ Keebler Products + 2 gallons Private Selection Organic Milk.  (If you have any coupons for cereal, NurtriGrain Bars or Keebler Cookies and Crackers this would make for any even better deal!)

Sustainable Saturday - What's in your reusable bag?

I have many reusable bags.  They vary from freebies, bags purchased at a store (Grocery, Target, etc.) or received as a gift (Envirosax).  I use them faithfully and constantly am moving them from the house to the car, making sure there are some in each of our vehicles.  For awhile I even carried one in my purse and diaper bag.  We use them at the grocery store, the drug store and even at the mall.

I was recently at a new store in my town that specializes in green products.  They had quite a selection of primarily Envirosax in their store and it made me wonder, how green are these bags really?  How much are people willing to pay for them?  Do people actually remember to use them faithfully to truly reduce their plastic bag consumption?  If you're not keeping them clean, choosing sustainable materials, or finding smaller sizes for produce, then you might not be making as much of an impact as you think.

Here are 6 Ways to Make Reusable Bags Work for You courtesy of  plant green:

1. Choose Your Materials Carefully

If you're on a mission to give up plastic bags, then shouldn't you make sure that your replacement totes are made from sustainable materials? Reusing the plastic bags you already have at home is one solution; also, look for bags made from recycled plastic, organic cotton, hemp, or even polyester or polypropylene (as Pablo pointed out on TreeHugger, the difference in the impacts of canvas, polyester, and polyproylene are minimal compared to the positive difference they make compared to plastic). And make sure you find a grocery tote that's durable enough to haul home all your food on trip after trip—so you don't wind up needing to replace them after just a few uses.

2. Make Your Own

Even better than buying new, try your hand at refashioning materials you already have at home into carryalls with a one-of-a-kind look. From ridiculously simple solutions, like using a pillowcase as a bag, to patterns that require a bit more sewing (like turning an old tank top into a tote), there are dozens of ways to DIY your own bags. Bonus: you'll be upcycling instead of recycling, saving carbon—and money—at the same time.

3. Keep them Safe

Make cleaning your bags part of your regular housekeeping routine to prevent mold, yeast, and bateria from building their own little homes in your foodspace with a few simple tips: bring bins or boxes to keep milk, frozen foods, and dairy from getting your bags wet; keep meat and fish apart from your fresh fruits and veggies to prevent cross-contamination; and wash or rinse your bags when you get home. It's also important to make sure the bags dry completely, since the dark, moist insides are a favorite spot for germs to breed.

If you want to read more about a study that was done by Sporometric's, "the foremost experts in many aspects of fungal and environmental bacterial testing in Canada", you can check out treehugger's Greenwash Watch: "Reusable Bags are a Health Threat"

The study concluded:

  • The moist, dark, warm interior of a folded used reusable bag that has acquired a small amount of water and trace food contamination is an ideal incubator for bacteria. 
  • The strong presence of yeasts in some bags indicates the presence of water and microbial growth substrate (food). The yeasts are thus a 'canary in the mine' confirming that microbes are growing in the bag.
  • There is a potential for cross-contamination of food if the same reusable bags are used on successive trips.
  • In cases of food poisoning, experts are now going to have to test reusable bags in addition to food products as the possible sources of contamination.

4. Remember the Produce

Bringing a canvas, hemp, cotton, or recycled plastic bag to the store and then filling it with fruits and veggies in their own individual plastic bags isn't exactly a perfect solution. The easiest alternative? Don't bag your fruits at all; unless you're buying huge quantities, it's not difficult to run them across the scanner one at a time. And if you really need to keep your apples, lemons, onions, and peppers separate, then use old sports jerseys to make produce bags; the mesh lets air circulate while protecting delicate produce.

OR try Buying 'Naked' in a Grocery Store with Zero Packaging courtesy of planet green.  Basically skip the produce bags and put the produce directly in your cart . . . you're going to wash it anyways!

You can read the rest of the article here.

Local Green Events - Columbus, Ohio

I am always reading something, learning and sharing.  Here are some local events of interest:
Composting Workshop:  Turn Yard Waste into Black Gold!
Wednesday, Februrary 24, 2010 @ 7-8 p.m.
Genoa Township, 5111 S. Old 3C Highway
Friends of Alum Creek and Tributaries (FACT) will present a composting workshop.
Cost is $10 per person for FACT members and $15 per person for others.
For more inforamtion, call 614.231.9134 or email compost

Participants* will receive a Presto “GeoBin” composter bin (1-cubic yard capacity) and a composting reference guide.  These items are valued over $40.00 and are provided to registered participants as part of discounted workshop fee, thanks to the Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio (SWACO) General Grant.

Thursday, March 18, 2010 @ 7-9 p.m.
Old Worthington Library, 820 High Street, Worthington
Franklin County Master Gardener Joanne Dole will share her secrets for growing your own food through container, victory and community gardens.

An expert on sustainable gardening, Joanne will also explain how and why growing green makes sense for you and our environment.

Presented in partnership with the Healthy Worthington Coalition as part of their Being Green=Being Healthy series.

Environmental Lobby Day 2010 is your chance to "green up" the Ohio Statehouse.
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
8:30 a.m. - 4 p.m. Lawmaker Meetings & Activities - YWCA & Ohio Statehouse

4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. Cocktails & Conversation Reception  - Hyatt on Capitol Square

Join the Ohio Environmental Council's environmental-conservation network to bring environmental concerns and priorities directly to state lawmakers and officials from environmental and regulatory agencies. The OEC will arrange appointments for you with lawmakers as well as give you tips and information to make your meetings as productive as possible.

The day includes lunch at the Statehouse Atrium with lawmakers and staff, and an evening "Cocktails & Conversation" reception from 4-6 pm to network and share the day’s experiences.

  • Non-refundable fee includes continental breakfast, lunch, evening reception, and materials. 
  • $25 each for OEC members (free for OEC Legacy Club and President’s Club members)
  • $30 each for non-members (includes 1-year OEC membership)
For group discounts, please call (614) 487-7506 to register.

Register by March 31! Details available here. 

Eating Green
Tuesday, May 4, 2010 @ 7 p.m.
Old Worthington Library, 820 High Street, Worthington

Representatives from Local Matters, a central Ohio non-profits group, will share their expertise and discuss how our food choices not only affect our own health, but also that of the planet.  Presented in partnership with the Healthy Worthington Coalition as part of their Being Green = Being Healthy series.

Green on the Green
Saturday, May 22, 2010 from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Worthington Green, Worthington 

Big Green Head is bringing Green on the Green to Worthington to educate and implement green ideas within our Community.  More info . . . stay tuned.

Menu Plan Monday - Gluten Free Recipes

The last few weeks I have taken a break from menu planning for multiple reasons.  We've had a rough plan of what our meals would be, but not as detailed as I usually do.

I did do some cooking ahead this week, but sent the meals off to friends, one of which happens to have Celiac Disease.  So, I ventured into the land of cooking Gluten Free.  Hopefully I did okay, but it sure was challenging to find ingredients.  The meals I prepared were gluten free and mostly organic.

Gluten Free Meals:

Mexican Casserole

Italian Casserole 

Some of the Ingredients:

 The Results:

For our friends who just had twins, I made a good ole standby casserole and homemade banana bread.

Baked Penne & Smoked Sausage Casserole

As for us, our Suppers will include:

Breakfast for dinner, fruit
Sweet & Sour Pork w/ Rice, fruit
Beef Tacos or some sort of Mexican Casserole, fruit
Homemade Pizza
Homemade macaroni & cheese, broccoli

I’m an Organizing Junkie is home to Menu Plan Monday.

Sustainable Saturday - Dishwasher Detergent Greenwashing!

I realized today that I have fallen victim to "Greenwashing".  As much as I may try to read labels and make sure that I am purchasing a product that is truly better for my family, Palmolive pulled a fast one on me or I never took the time to validate what I thought was a green product.

I have been using their Palmolive eco+ Dishwasher detergent periodically for the last year.  After Method discontinued their Dishwasher cubes (which they are now making again), I began looking for another product.  For awhile I used Seventh Generation Dishwasher Liquid, but became frustrated because my dishes where not clean and my glasses were spotted.  So, I was excited when I discovered Palmolive eco+ which promised to be phosphate free and a more green alternative to the average dishwasher detergent.

I discovered my unfortune tonight when my almost two year old son was helping put the soap in the dishwasher after supper.  He got some on the floor (he does a pretty good job for a two year old) which I wiped up.  A little while later I noticed his socks were bleached, then his pants, then a spot on my husband's sweater and my shirt.  My husband went and grabbed the bottle and was reading the ingredients including chlorine bleach and do not come into contact with mouth, eyes, clothing etc!  But wait, this is the same detergent that is currently cleaning my dishes most likely leaving some sort of film and then in turn we will place our food and drink in these dishes. So much for being environmentally friendly!  I haven't used chlorine bleach (We use Seventh Generation chlorine free bleach) in my laundry washing machine and here I unknowingly placed chlorine bleach in my DISHWASHER!   In addition, I now have one ruined pair of socks, one ruined pair of jeans, one ruined sweater and one ruined shirt.

Do NOT buy this product!  ALWAYS read your labels! 

Partial Damage:

On to some great Green alternatives:

Method smarty dish go naked ™ available at Target, Bed, Bath & Beyond, Babies R Us, Toys R Us, Whole Foods, The Andersons (Columbus) and Big Lots (depending on availability).

powerful cleaning punch, earth friendly pouch.

just when you thought smarty couldn’t get any smarter, it does. still a super powerful detergent that cleans dirty dishes without resorting to dirty chemicals like phosphates and bleach, but now in a lightweight pouch that uses 87% less plastic than the original. same clean, smaller footprint. 

Seventh Generation available at Target, Babies R Us, Toys R Us and Whole Foods.

Automatic Dishwasher Detergent Pacs

These concentrated automatic dishwasher pacs deliver our phosphate and chlorine free formula in a convenient single-use pac.

Free & Clear Automatic Dishwasher Powder

Our Phosphate- and Chlorine-Free Automatic Dishwasher Powder gets your dishes sparkling clean. Free & clear of perfumes and dyes.
Citrasolv - Available at Whole Foods, Raisin Rack (Columbus), Clintonville Community Market (Columbus) and

Citra Dish Automatic Dishwasher Gel & Powder
• Chlorine bleach-free
• Contains no synthetic perfumes or dyes
• Safe for septic systems
• Contains no phosphates, EDTA or NTA

Sun & Earth Products

Sun & Earth Automatic Dishwasher Detergent Pacs

Our Automatic Dishwasher Detergent is tough on grease and baked-on foods yet safe to use for baby bottles, utensils, and dishes.  Use (1) pre-portioned pac per load.  No measuring, unwrapping or mess.  Safe to use around kids - no danger of splashing or airborne powder.  If you are looking for a 100% biodegradable, phosphate-free dishwasher detergent that works and is gentle on the environment, Sun & Earth Automatic Dishwasher Detergent is the one you want!  Safe for septic systems.  It will leave dishes streak-free and squeaky-clean.

No animal testing.  Vegan.  Gluten-free.  Soy-free.  Casein-free.  No tree nuts.  No peanuts.
Ingredients: Sodium citrate, sodium percarbonate, disodium silicate, natural enzymes, orange oil.

Ecover available at Whole Foods and Bexley Co-Op (Columbus).

Dishwasher Tablets, Automatic Dishwashing Powder, Rinse Aid

  • plant based ingredients
  • quick and complete biodegradability
    (OECD-test 301F, full product)
  • minimum impact on aquatic life
    (OECD-test 201 & 202, full product)
  • no animal testing
Mrs. Meyer's Clean Day available at The Andersons (Columbus), Giant Eagle, Whole Foods and Raisin Rack (Columbus).

Automatic Dish Packs and Automatic Dishwashing Liquid

Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day Automatic Dish Packs help your dishwasher create sparkling dishes, glasses and flatware. Each pack of oxygen bleach formula loads easily in the dishwasher's soap cup. Removes stains like coffee and tea without phosphates or chlorine.

Wave available at The Hills Market (Columbus), Giant Eagle, Raisin Rack (Columbus) and Beechwold Natural Foods (Columbus).

Wave Gel Auto Dishwasher HP and Wave Gel Free and Clear.

High Performance Wave Gel has been rated as the most effective natural auto dish product. Now with Lavender oil for fragrance. Wave is free of phosphates, chlorine and caustics. This plant-based product has a neutral pH and is fully biodegradeable.

OR you could make your own if you are concerned about the cost of the cleaners listed above.   It cost less than a penny a load to make, or 50 loads of dishes for just 50 cents. Now, that's frugal!

Here is a recipe courtesy of planet green:

Recipe for Homemade Dishwasher Detergent
  • 1 cup Washing soda
  • 1 cup Borax
  • ½ cup salt
  • ½ cup citric acid
Mix together and store tightly covered in a Mason Jar. Use one tablespoon per load. Add vinegar to the rinse dispenser for the best results.


Green Giant® Fresh Potatoes - Buy 2 Get 1 FREE!

Coupon for Buy Two 5 lb. Bags of Green Giant® Fresh Potatoes and Get One 5 lb. Bag of Green Giant® Fresh Potatoes Free available here.

Green Giant Potatoes are available at Whole Foods (Columbus, OH).

Don't buy Organic Potatoes?  Potatoes are listed as one of the top foods to buy Organic. 

The Dirty Dozen: Top 12 Foods to Eat Organic (according to thedailygreen):
  1. Peaches
  2. Apples
  3. Sweet Bell Peppers
  4. Celery
  5. Nectarines
  6. Strawberries
  7. Cherries
  8. Kale
  9. Leafy Greens
  10. Grapes
  11. Carrots
  12. Pears
Special Mention:
  1. Potatoes
  2. Tomatoes
You can check out thedailygreen - the consumer guide to the green revolution - The Dirty Dozen: Top 12 Foods to Eat Organic here. Also, check out The Clean 15: Foods You Don't Have to Buy Organic here.

EcoWatch Journal

You can view online the latest EcoWatch Journal here or pick one up at the Old Worthington Library (Columbus, OH).     EcoWatch is local to Cleveland, OH but contains information relevant to Ohio in general.  In this issue you can read about:
  • Wind Turbines in Bowling Green. Ohio
  • Baldwin Wallace College - Emphasis on Sustainability
  • Why Eat Organic?
  • Top Five Foods to Buy Organic
    • Milk
    • Potatoes
    • Peanut Butter
    • Ketchup
    • Apples

Sprout Soup - Sprout Swap February 19-21, 2010

Sprout Soup is a natural family store located in Clintonville (Columbus, OH).  They are committed to providing our customers with products that are sustainable, safe, high quality and out of the ordinary. Their selection of cloth diapers is unmatched in Central Ohio. They also have a large selection of baby carriers, more than half of which are made in the USA.

They are having an event next weekend called Sprout Swap!

According to their website:

Bring in your gently used diapers, covers, slings and nursing gear.  If your item sells, you will receive 100% of the selling price in store credit, or you may choose 80% in cash.  The previous two swaps that we have hosted have been so popular, with moms lining up outside on the first day to get the first look at what’s available!

Registration to sell items took place online and yesterday (February 13th) was the last day to drop off items to sell.  However the sale doesn't happen until next weekend (February 19th-21st) and I'm sure there will be plenty of  great sustainable, organic, earth-friendly items to BUY!  Not to mention that reuse is a big part of being earth-friendly, sustainable or however you'd like to categorize it!

You can read more about Sprout Soup and the Swap here and here!

You can sign up here to receive the Sprout Soup newsletter about upcoming events!

Earth's Best Sesame Street Snacks $1 each!

This President's Day weekend, Babies R Us and Toys R Us have Earth's Best Organic Sesame Street Snacks on sale 2 for $3.  There is a coupon available here for $1/2 off Sesame Street products.  This is a great deal on Organic Snacks for your toddlers!

Sustainable Saturday - Cloth Diapers

Now we use reusable shopping bags, recycle faithfully and even have our own compost pile which is 35 some years old thanks to the previous owner of our house. But, I am ashamed to say I have never put either of my children in a cloth diaper. That’s right, green as we may try to be, we use disposable diapers. Three years ago when my daughter was born, I searched everywhere for a cloth diaper service and found none. They had all apparently gone out of business in our area at one time or another. At that time I wasn’t really interested in purchasing my own cloth diapers and washing them myself as I was planning on returning to work full time. The child care center we had chosen had a pretty strict policy about not allowing cloth diapers. I explored the other viable options, Seventh Generation diapers and g-diapers both of which are more environmentally friendly, but both still disposable. I tried the Seventh Generation diapers, but quite honestly found them not to be very absorbent, etc. I priced out the g-diapers , but just couldn't bring myself to spend that much money on diapers.
Originally published September 2008 by symhomemom.
If you are thinking of using cloth diapers here are a few resources: 
Currently there a great deal at and why not try some cloth diapers or environmentally friendly diapers such as Seventh Generation or gdiapers using the deal outlined below:
  • Set up a new account with (this offer is only valid on new accounts).
  • Add any number of diaper products to your cart which total $50.
  • Use the promo code SAVEMOM at checkout to get $10 off your order.
  • Print and submit this mail-in rebate within four weeks and you’ll get $14.97 back! (The rebate link looks like it’s only a free magazine subscription at first, but scroll down nd you’ll read how you can actually just mail it in for a $14.97 check!)
  • Total approximately $25 for $50 worth of products!
For Example you could buy Kushies Ultra All-in-One Toddler Diaper - 5 Pack for $55.95.
  • Set up a new account as outlined above and apply for the mail-in rebate.  
  • Total price $30.98, which is $6.19 per diaper! 

Earn FREE green loot from Annie's Homegrown

Annie's Homegrown believes giving away free stuff is the best way to spread the word about the organic foods movement and inspire others to think and learn about a better, more sustainable way of life.  They invite you to write to them to receive one of their Free Loot items! 

You can check out the free loot items here.

Be Green Bumper Sticker
BE GREEN, Help the Earth Live is a campaign we started in 1989. It's not about any particular organization or corporation or trying to get anyone elected. Be Green simply lets people know that you’re an Earth advocate, and that you care about what happens to our wondrous, blue and green planet. Get your BE GREEN bumper (or skateboard or bike or notebook) sticker today!

Sustainable Saturday - A Frugal Family is a Greener Family: Easy Everyday Tips

At our house, we are definitely green and frugal. A frugal family is a greener family and a green family is a frugal family.  A few easy frugal (and green) ideas that we have implemented in our home:
  • Cloth Napkins
  • Cloth Dish Towels
  • Compost - we use this in our garden in the Spring/ Summer months.
  • Faucet Aerators
  • Grow a garden

You can read more of this article from the Simple Mom - A Frugal Family is a Greener Family:  Easy Everyday Tips here.

A Frugal Family is a Greener Family: Easy Everyday Tips


I completely admit that I am not a green expert. Our family does what we can, but we’ve got plenty more to learn. I’m slightly more qualified to call myself a Frugal Mama than a Green Mama, but the cool thing is, those tendencies tend to go hand-in-hand.

Who wouldn’t want to make everyday life less expensive?

Here are a few ways we make everyday home life a bit more frugal, inevitably coloring our home a slightly greener hue.

February Organic Coupons - NEW!

It's Friday and the beginning of a new month.  Here are a few of my favorite coupons that are now available to print online.  I also list the store that they are locally (Columbus, OH) available! 

$1/1 Good Earth Tea available here

Multiple Stonyfield Organic Yogurt available here.
A few of my favorites:
  • $0.55/1 Oikos Greek Yogurt (5.3 oz) - On Sale at Whole Foods & Kroger for $1
  • $0.50/1 YoBaby Organic Yogurt Multipack - Regular price as little as $2.99 at Whole Foods!  They seriously have the BEST price on YoBaby!

FREE Picnic Guide & Money Saving Coupons!

Annie’s is offering a FREE Picnic Guide and a bunch of organic coupons to print straight from your computer. All you need is the UPC code of an Annie’s product you recently bought.  Sign up for your freebie and organic coupons HEREOnly product purchased between 2/1/2010 and 4/30/2010 is eligible.

Once you sign up these are the coupons that are available to print:

$1.00 off any (1) Earthbound Farms Packaged Salad
$1.00 off any (2) Kettle Chips
$1.00 off Rudi’s Organic Bakery Items!
.50 off any (1) Eco Lips
.75 off any (1) Santa Cruz Organic Product
$1.00 off any (1) Organic Valley Cheese
$1.00 off any (1) RW Knudsen Organic Product
.75 off any (1) Honest Kids Pack
.50 off any (1) Honest Tea

Thanks Organic Deals and Coupons!

Earthbound Farm Coupons - NEW!

Earthbound Farm $0.55/1 Coupon is available on the Delicious Living Site!

Earthbound Farm products are available locally (Columbus, OH) at Meijer. 

Menu Plan Monday

January 31st thru February 6th Menu:

Sunday, Jan. 31 - Sweet & Sour Drumettes, salad, bread, pineapple
Monday, Feb. 1 - Spinach stuffed shells, salad, bread
Tuesday, Feb. 2 - Ham & Potato Soup, bread
Wednesday, Feb. 3 - Mexican Casserole, fruit
Thursday, Feb. 4 - Homemade Macaroni & Cheese, broccoli, fruit
Friday, Feb. 5 - Homemade Whole Wheat Pizza with pepperoni and green peppers . . . I really want to try this recipe sometime as well . . . Almost like Papa John's Pizza Crust
Saturday, Feb. 6 - Swedish turkey meatballs, egg noodles, salad, fruit

I’m an Organizing Junkie is home to Menu Plan Monday.