Fresh Produce Out Of Our Own Backyards

If you follow me on Instagram you may have seen my snap the other week of a box full of fresh fruit and veggies, exclaiming I had received my first Ooooby. You may have wondered what on earth is an Ooooby. And then you may have wondered last week where my blog post was that I had promised! While I try to write at least once a fortnight, sometimes I find myself too busy or unmotivated to blog. Last week saw me inspired in the kitchen making all of these lovely meals and out in the garden tending to my plants. Well this week you have been blessed with not one but two blog posts, as I was motivated to continue writing my toothpaste post I started a while ago. And as promised, my Ooooby post…. Ooooby stands for Out Of Our Own Backyards, it’s this cool initiative that brings […]

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Homemade Toothpaste

Toothpaste was the first thing I started making myself when I started Plastic Free July last year. It is ridiculously easy to make and you can make it to your preferences (without the nasty added chemicals). I’ve tried quite a few recipes and variations over the months,  so thought I ought to share them. Ingredients Used:  Coconut Oil- The ‘base’ this gives a paste nice consistency, it is also anti-bacterial & anti-fungal. It is commonly used in “oil pulling” which is essentially just sucking on oil for a while to whiten your teeth. Baking soda- a gentle abrasive that neutralizes bacteria that cause odors. This is a commonly used on just its own. Bentonite Clay- often called “healing clay” this works an even gentler abrasive that contains toxin removing minerals. Dr. Bronners Castile Soap– (peppermint flavour)- this makes the toothpaste foaming, it cleans teeth and removes plaque. Peppermint essential oil- […]

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Avocado Dye and the many uses of Avocado Pits

Me at the free avocado orchard in Mangere With avocado season I have been inundated with avocado pits lately. Normally they get composted, however they inevitably sprout and turn in to trees– I have a decent amount (all in pots) which have grown over the years, and have given many away. I have no idea if any fruit will grow on these trees but they still make nice trees. I’ve started saving the pits to to use in my homemade shampoo, as inspired by The Rogue Ginger (this shampoo is fantastic by the way).  Additionally, I discovered Avocado Stone Faces on Instagram– she carves avocado pits and turns them in to jewellery and pieces of art! I am not that talented or patient however. Homemade avocado seed shampoo As well as discovering uses for things I would usually compost or throw away (see also: Aquafaba) I have been researching natural […]

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Rubbish Update: December 2015

I have been avoiding writing this post, because I didn’t want to have to face my slip-ups. As expected, December was a difficult month to avoid rubbish! We went tramping, then there was Christmas, then we went camping, and then New Years! A lot of activities and events that usually produce rubbish. Christmas was the hardest, while I didn’t get many presents (which i am happy about) and most of my presents were edible, there was still some packaging involved, most notably the plastic wrap from my one non-edible gift and a box of Cadbury Favourites  I couldn’t say no to (I am a chocolate fiend after all).  New Years and camping actually went pretty well due to a lot of planning on my part. I decided I wouldn’t be too hard on myself over December as it was the holidays and all. I also bought some canned food items […]

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Waste Free Camping- Whananaki, Northland

Otamure Bay, Whananaki Firstly, happy New Year! I hope everyone had a safe and sustainable Christmas and New Year. As I mentioned in my last post the BF & I were planning on camping for a week after Christmas and over New Years. I planned for weeks as to how I was going to camp waste free, I knew this would be difficult as I was without my trusty kitchen and compost bin. Well, we did it, however… it took lots of aforementioned planning and a shortened trip to succeed… We went camping at Whananaki Campground in Northland, about 45 minutes north of Whangarei. This is a ‘scenic’ Department of Conservation campground, meaning there were some facilities but not heaps (“limited range” is how DOC like to describe it). Most of you know I love tramping and camping and have no problems with ‘going bush’ for extended periods of time. […]

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Waitawheta Tramway Tramp Review

One of the many swing bridges along the track   Waitawheta Tramway is a super easy and relaxed tramp, providing plenty of history and views. I would highly recommend it for families with young children or older hikers wanting an easy overnight trip. Which was what most of the demographic hiking over this weekend was made up of. We were a group of 10 Aucklanders just wanting a super relaxed and easy hike in a short driving distance and a bit of swimming on the side. The track was everything I wanted and expected. It was completely flat, an easy 2 hours drive from Auckland, and only 2-3 hours walk.     Heading in to the fields of wildflowers         The top waterfall Despite the track being easy, it still provided plenty of great sights. The track follows the Waitawheta river starting in a rural farm setting […]

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Grey Lynn Farmers’ Market (and other Waste Free Adventures)

‘Bring it Back Depot’ at Grey Lynn Farmers Market Grey Lynn is officially fruit fly free! I celebrated by going to the Grey Lynn Farmers Market for the first time. It is a quaint little market in the community hall, and has a real community feel to it,  because it is community owned and operated (have I said community enough?)! The first thing that caught my eye was the recycling/reuse swap table. You can bring in any unwanted plastics, glass jars, egg cartons and seedling trays, or you can take any from the pile. What an awesome idea, especially for someone like myself who is always after more glass jars. This is run by Grey Lynn 2030 Waste Away, who sell Ideal Cups and Rethink reusable bags. The other cool thing about this market is they are plastic bag free! This was implemented a few months ago, and seems to […]

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Rubbish Update: November 2015

It has been a while since I did my Plastic Free July rubbish update, so I thought I should check where things are at. I’ve been collecting all of our rubbish and recycling for the month of November. Not collected were our food scraps- which get composted, and paper waste, which is either composted or recycled. We did not have any metal waste for the month, except for bits of swarf which occasionally comes home in the BF’s clothes. Recycling: Hard Plastics: 1 milk bottle, 2 small sauce containers from our takeaway which I will reuse before recycling and the case from the cat’s flea treatment (not shown). Soft Plastics: 2 toilet paper wrappers (I have recently read that the Earthcare wrappers can be composted), 1 plastic wrap from the Auckland Uni Alumni magazine, a whole lot of packaging from an online purchase on Mighty Ape (new bamboo chopping board […]

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Parnell Farmers Market & La Cigale French Market

Parnell Farmer’s Market Today is Black Friday in the USA. It is a day that I just cannot comprehend, people opt to spend the day pushing through crowds  to buy things they don’t necessarily need because it is on sale. I could go on a rant about Black Friday, but I will spare ye reader. Many conscious consumers are choosing to start an anti Black Friday and not buy anything for the day. I am all for this, however today is Saturday, which means local farmers markets. So I chose to spend my day wandering the streets of Parnell and buying from small local businesses. I had to go to Parnell to pick up some stainless steel cups I had bought off Trade Me, so I decided to make a morning of it. The BF & I caught the bus in to Newmarket and then walked to the Parnell Farmers […]

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A Guide to Waste Free Gift Giving

With the holiday season coming up now is the time that we are constantly reminded we should be out shopping. There are a numerous issues with buying presents from the mall, they are expensive, unsustainable, mass produced and malls are stressful, busy places. Don’t get me wrong, I love giving gifts, however I hate shopping and going to malls. I used to find after receiving presents they sat in a pile in my room for a while until I could figure out where they should go. Additionally every time I moved house I realised how much unnecessary stuff I had, gifts were often a huge part of this. I would feel guilty donating something someone had gifted to me. This is why I am huge advocate of gifts that don’t last forever, or gifts I know will be used or appreciated often. I tend to give gifts that I have […]

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