Five simple things

June 22, 2018


This week as been a week, that's for sure. All week we've been selling off a lot of our belongings to downsize and get rid of things we don't use. It's amazing how many things we purchased thinking that we need these things. So much money spent on things that weren't even worth the purchase in the end. Good news is, that we are able to get some of the money back on a lot of it, but not what we paid for them, which is unfortunate. We've spent close to $12,000 on these items and so far have made about $400 on them. At least we can say that we have changed the way we spend now.

Along with selling a lot of items this week we also spent last weekend and this week looking at four different school buses for our conversion. We looked first at a flat nose shorty in Eugene. The man selling it had done some modifications to the inside with a wood stove, two beds, and a sink. The man took us for a test drive and it was great! Unfortunately, this shorty wasn't large enough for all three of us. The man selling the bus gave us a lot of useful information, too. We moved on from Eugene and headed up to Clackmas and checked out another flat nose Blue Bird that was perfect, but needed a few dents removed and a few other flaws here and there. We all loved the flat nose Blue Bird, but there was a few red flags that did concern us in the end-personal preferences-nothing major. There was also a dog nose in Roseburg that we were interested in and another dog nose in Spray, Oregon. All in all what we came to the conclusion that we haven't found "the one" yet. So our search continues, but after taking this time to look at these buses it gave us a definite starting place and what we actually want and don't want, so that's a plus! With that here are "Five simple things" that made this week good.

1. These dental floss...

It's silk dental floss and comes in a reusable glass container. We've been looking for a more sustainable floss and one that helps with our goal of going more zero waste. 

2. This golf moment...


Last Sunday on Father's Day we headed out with The Mr. to the golf course to smack a few golf balls around. Needless to say, The Mr. and The Bean got pretty competitive and were really giving it their all. The Mr. had a great time and he said it was a Father's Day well spent!

3. This last box...

I tried out the Fab Fit Fun box for a year and this box was the last of my year subscription. I have to say, if we weren't on the uphill climb to being more minimal this is definitely a subscription box worth keeping. All of their products are amazing!

4. These lip scrubs...

Not too crazy about the plastic packaging, but these lip scrubs are amazing and make my lips feel great each time I use them. Best part is, they are certified organic from the Oregon Tilth and Fair Trade, which makes them even better! They are from Eco Lips and you can view all of their products here.

5. This compost bin...

We were in need of something more practical for keeping our compost in check in the kitchen. The paper bag filled and stuffed into our freezer wasn't working, mainly because we have a small refrigerator with limited freezer space. This compost bin is metal and the lid seals on top to keep everything secure inside without leaking any juice or smell out before we can dispose of it in our compost bin outside. The wooden handle makes it easy to carry in and out of the house, too. We keep it near our sink and it reminds us to toss in compostable items before tossing them in the trash. The one here is sold out, but here is one similar.

A few more things:

How to celebrate World Environment Day all year.

The Environmental Magazine.

Top 10 green apps.

Green tips.

• 19 Tips That Can Save Hundreds by Going Green.

Green Fuel Online.

• 11 Ways to Go Green Without Blowing Your Budget.

• 10 Ways to Go Green and Save Green.

Latest sustainability news and green living tips from The Oregonian.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Five simple things

June 15, 2018


Well, last week was a crazy week. I didn't post "Five simple things" last Friday because I was beat. Starting on Thursday of last week I helped with a large yard sale and had a few of our large items in the mix. By Sunday evening all of us were pretty beat. Monday morning rolled around quite quickly, but given a slower week we were able to catch up. This weekend we are planning to meet someone in Eugene this evening to sell him some of The Mr.'s Lego collections from the 80s. We have been slowly selling more and more things that we don't use on a regular basis, including The Beans and The Mr. 8x4 foot train layout. It feels great to be able to look around and a room and see a lot of things gone that were just taking up space. We have a lot more things to sell, but we are finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. It's sad to think, all of that stuff used to be money, at one time. We now buy with intention. We don't give into consumerism and "tricked" into items that are just money eaters or trends. It's unfortunate that we are made to feel guilty if we do not follow trends that others are following, or don't buy something someone else finds interesting/neat/cool/fun. Slowly we are coming out of the zombie-like state and not being afraid to say, "NO" to these pressures. With that thought we are headed up to Vancouver, Washington, on Saturday to check out a Thomas, flat nose, school bus. We are hoping it is what we are looking for and helps us get closer toward our three-year goals-(more on this later). For now, here are "Five simple things" that made this week good.

1. These green berries and these tiny sprouts...

Our garden is slowly showing signs of life under ground. These tiny plants are making their way into the world and we will soon be able to enjoy the bounty.

2. The "girls"...

Always together and always following Happy's lead.

3. These subscription boxes from Yogi Surprise...

Always giving props to Yogi Surprise. This month's boxes are so wonderful and I love everything about the Lifestyle box. Unfortunately, this is the last month for the Jewelry box for me. My subscription for it came to a close this month, but that's okay! I have received a ton of great products through the Jewelry box and I am so pleased with everything that I've been given. I will continue to receive the Lifestyle box and share here on my blog what's in each and every one of them. Although the Jewelry box ended for me, you can still grab one for yourself and get on July's mailing list here.
Get a $10 credit towards your first box with code: REFHH4J2K9RGY 

And I can't go without mentioning the new Yogi Surprise - (The First Ever) Men's Yoga Box. This thing is amazing and geared straight toward men. That singing bowl is the best! But the best part really with this box is the fact that right now, for Father's Day, you can grab this box and get 25% Off Your First Yogi Surprise Box With Code JUNE25. Hurry though, this 25% off ends on June 26!

4. These donated bicycles...

We donated two of our non-used bicycles and a bike frame this week as part of the First Alternative Co-op's partnership with Alaffia. 
Alaffia, a Washington-based fair trade body care company that uses indigenous African resources, will send the bikes to students in Togo. According to UNICEF, 90 percent of girls and 80 percent of boys in Togo drop out of school before secondary education. -source 
These bicycles will be restored, fixed, or refurbished to send to Togo, West Africa, and help students in their pursuit in a quality education and a promising future.


5. Recap of last week's "Five simple things"...

• The Strawberry Festival:

On Sunday, June 3, we headed out to the Strawberry Festival here in the Valley. It's always the first full weekend in June and it's entirely in celebration of the strawberry coming into season. The three of us have been enjoying the celebration as a family for over 10 years and this year was no different.


• These oyster shells...

We found a great addition to our duck's diet with these all natural oyster shells. We found these last week while at an organic garden store in Corvallis. We are hoping these will be a better alternative for them over the mass produced oyster shells on the market.

• Our house at night...

Last weekend The Bean happened to go outside and notice how pretty our house looked when it got dark. He took a picture of it and came in to tell us how wonderful it looked in the dark. And we agree!

A few more things:

Have a nice weekend!