Easter has come and gone and marked what feels to be the real beginning of spring. Friday night gave us a thunderstorm, which allowed time for little hands to get busy painting eggs.

Saturday was dry with little bits of sun peaking out throughout the day. We sat on the deck, hunted for eggs, colored with chalk, tried to fly a kite, and ate antipasto. We ate our Easter dinner on Saturday and spent the evening huddled tightly around the dinner table until we instead huddled around the fire for s'mores, wine and laughs.

It was a wonderful weekend although it felt a little off kilter without Mike. He was home working and catching up on some sleep.  In the next few weeks, my weekend clinicals start up again and I won't be able to sneak away for the weekend between exams. I'm trying to soak up these spring weekends, because before I know it, it will be the heat of the summer and the return of fall, as I continue my journey through nursing school and starting to take the journey back home to Michigan.


Earth Day

Image by The Twitterpated Toad via Etsy
Earth day is here again, so I'm back with more earth friendly tips and ideas. Adding onto the list from last year, here are some more ways to green your everyday.

Switch to recycled toilet paper
Bring your own reusable mugs to coffee shops (you can even get 10 cents off at starbucks)

Bring your own glass container to the deli counter for meats and cheeses

Donate unwanted items to charity or use craiglists free section or freecycle.org

Buy music and movies digitally to cut down on packaging and waste

Get books and movies from the library, saves resources and it's free

Install faucet aerators on all taps

Install a dual flush toilet system (much cheaper than a new low flow toilet)

Build a rain barrel

Check out some more tips at One Millions Acts of Green

P.S. No, we don't do all of these things in our home, but we're working on doing as much as we can. 
Any other good ideas? I'd love to hear from you...


Cleaning House

Spring cleaning is in full effect around here and we have to keep up on it while the house is on the market. I figured I'd do a little round up of the (green) cleaning products we use to keep the house looking good.
White Vinegar

When cleaning the wood laminate floors, traditional cleaners can break down the finish on the wood. So an easy cheap alternative is using vinegar. Vinegar is naturally antibacterial and just a half cup in a bucket of water does the trick. The vinegar smell might be off putting, but it dissipates quickly, leaving no odor behind.

For washing the floors with vinegar we use a spin mop with bucket (above). Although a bit bulky, the dual bucket allows for dipping the mop on one side and spinning it dry on the other. Making mopping the floor faster and less messy.

Microfiber cloths
All surface cleaning, including glass, is done using a microfiber or cotton rag. It saves money on paper towels and swiffer dusters and just need to be thrown in the wash.

Method Wood for Good - Almond
For dusting, I like Method's Wood for Good. I hated the greasy aerosol dusting spray and was stoked to find this in the store. It polishes wood really well, doesn't leave an oily film, smells like almonds and is nontoxic.
Method Antibacterial Kitchen Cleaner - Lemon Verbena
The entire kitchen is cleaned with Method's Antibacterial Kitchen Cleaner. It works just as well on counters as it does on the stove, sink and small appliances. We keep the bottle under the sink with a cotton towel and spray down the counters and stove after cooking.
In the bathroom we use Method's Lil Bowl Blu and Antibac bathroom cleaner. The toilet cleaner smells good and really sticks to the toilet bowl for a better clean. The antibac spray, although it smells strongly of mouthwash, works well on the counters. I haven't really figured out what works well on the shower yet. We squeegee the walls after showering which maximizes time between deep cleanings. A baking soda water paste works well on the floor, but I have a difficult time keeping the shower doors streak free.

Lastly, we use Fresh Wave's odor neutralizing spray in place of Febreze. It's nontoxic and safe for pets and people. It does smell a bit earthy though, so it might not be for everyone.

P.S. No I'm not a paid spokesperson for method, I just like their environmental philosophy and prices. However, I'm not opposed to becoming a paid spokesperson (wink, wink).


Meal Plan

via Iowa Girl Eats
Homemade Burrito Bowls
French Toast
 Spinach Pesto Grilled Cheese with Sauteed Asparagus




This month marked 10 years with my love.



A decade with my best friend, my comic relief, my rock, my provider. My love.

Here's to many more.

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