5 Examples Why Going Green Can Make You Some Extra Cash5 Examples Why Going Green Can Make You Some Extra Cash

Having extra money in your wallet is certainly delightful. At least for the time-being, you can stop stressing out about bills and spending money. However, when you want these changes to be permanent, you should look into going green. What are some reasons why doing so can save you money?

Reusable Food and Beverage Containers
Every day, you are tossing a water bottle and a lunch bag away. If you are not recycling the appropriate items, you are doing even more harm to the environment. Instead, you should choose reusable food and beverage containers. Finding a sports water bottle is not difficult, and you can just use this one each day. Plastic food containers that can be washed and reused are smart options as well.

Cash in on Your Bottles
Many different types of cans and bottles can be brought to recycling centers in your area. On the item, it should say how much you can turn it in for. Do not throw these types of items into the garbage. Cashing in on your bottles might not seem as though it will bring you a lot of money, but if you consider how many you have used in your lifetime, you’ll start to recognize the savings.

Solar Panels and Energy Star
In your home, you definitely want to have EnergyStar certified windows. These types of windows will help to make your house a more enjoyable climate. If you have a little extra money to spend right now, you should consider installing solar panels as well. You might wonder how spending more could help you save more. Well, consider the long-term savings as opposed to the short-term ones. In the end, having these types of upgrades to your house can definitely help you to save a lot of money.

Consider The Monthly Bills
You pay for things like electric, heat and water usage on a monthly basis. You probably notice a spike in the bills when certain seasons come around or when you have out-of-town guests staying at your house. Work on controlling these bills by reducing the amount of resources that you use. You might not think that little changes, such as turning off the water when you brush your teeth or shutting off the lights when you leave a room, really make much of a difference. However, these little changes really do add up in the end.

Avoiding Penalties and Fees
Depending upon where you live, you might actually get fined if you are not living a somewhat green lifestyle. For example, some communities will fine you when you are putting items that are supposed to be recycled into the garbage can. On top of that, most communities impose a fine if you litter. When you take steps to be friendlier to the world around you, then you can stop receiving these unnecessary fines for your current practices.

About the Author

Dixie is a freelance writer. She recommends visiting recycling centers in New Orleans if you want to get started on your greener lifestyle today.

Tofu AgrodolceSimple yet sophisticated, this is tofu with a Tuscan twist!

Tofu Agrodolce

Ingredients

⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil
3 sprigs fresh rosemary, stemmed and roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1 (14 oz) package House Foods firm tofu, sliced into even 8 slices
2 tbsp olive oil
2 shallots, finely chopped
⅓ cup red wine vinegar
¼ cup honey
1 cup cherry tomatoes, chopped
1 sprig rosemary, chopped

Preparation

Whisk together the olive oil, rosemary, garlic, and salt and pepper. Add tofu to a large zip top bag and pour the marinade over them. Place in fridge, press between two plates, and marinade for at least 2 hours.

Heat grill to medium high heat.

Meanwhile, add the olive to a saucepan over medium heat. Once hot, add the shallots and sauté until tender. Add the vinegar, honey, and chopped cherry tomatoes. Let simmer for 10 minutes until it reduces and thickens. You want the sauce to coat the back of a spoon. Stir in chopped rosemary.

Remove the tofu from the marinade letting excess marinade drip off. Season again lightly with salt and pepper. Grill tofu on both sides for 3-4 minutes each. Brush the sauce on the tofu the last minute of grilling. Serve tofu with extra sauce.

Serves 4-6.

*Recipe created by Debi Mazar & Gabriele Corcos, stars of Cooking Channel’s show Extra Virgin, and courtesy of House Foods.*

Komplete_ThreeFlavors_TogetherPacking a lunchbox is always a challenge! As the kiddos head back-to-school, “Mom” has selected three delicious and nutritious options for packing a healthier lunchbox! In addition to fresh fruit, veggies, lean protein and whole grains, the products below are excellent choices for inclusion, as well!

3 Nutritious Lunchbox Snacks for the School Year

Fruit Bliss Medley

Fruit Bliss®
Seeking a sweet, healthy treat to pack in your child’s lunchbox or tuck in their backpack for an after school snack? Fruit Bliss offers a selection of all-natural, unsulfured fruit that is just as sweet and juicy as fresh fruit! We are loving the dried plums and apricots here at Tiny Green Mom – we devoured a little snack bag of each within minutes!

Made using high-quality whole fruit sourced from Turkey, France and Tunisia, Fruit Bliss’ sun-sweetened whole apricots, plums, dates and figs are infused with moisture to deliver a deliciously juicy fruit every time. Packed with fiber and essential vitamins, Fruit Bliss snacks are Non-GMO Project Verified, Vegan and OU Kosher certified and available in five varieties, including Soft Dried Apricots Sourced from Turkey, Soft Dried Figs Sourced from Turkey, Soft Dried d’Agen Plums Sourced from France, Soft Dried Dates Sourced from Tunisia and Soft Fruit Medley – Apricots, Figs and Plums. Fruit Bliss snacks are available in 1.75 oz. and 6 oz. re-sealable pouches. You can locate a retailer near you or order online at FruitBliss.com.

Komplete_ThreeFlavors_Together

Komplete Ultimate Shakes
Some mornings, there just isn’t enough time for a nutritious breakfast! If this is a common problem among your kids, try Kate Farms’ Komplete Ultimate Shakes – a line of dairy-free, gluten-free, and soy-free ready to drink meal replacement shakes.

Made with certified organic ingredients and blended with antioxidants and 21 superfoods (including acai, mangosteen, raspberries, and green tea extract), this creamy creation of all-natural ingredients will ensure that your little ones are receiving the proper nutrition to stay healthy throughout the school year. We also like creating a morning smoothie that includes Komplete Vanilla Bliss, 1 banana, a dash of cinnamon, and ice for quick morning pick-me-up! You can visit www.KateFarms.com for more information or to order online.

KIND Blue

KIND Minis
Little ones can snack big with these mighty little KIND Bars. These perfectly portioned KIND Bars are an optimal after school snack before sports or a healthy dessert option packed in a lunchbox (think Almond & Coconut!). The Mini Variety Pack has four popular KIND Bar flavors packaged together, including Almond & Coconut, Nut Delight, Fruit & Nut Delight, and Cranberry Almond + Antioxidants. At just approximately 100 calories, and boasting a combo of fiber, protein and heart healthy fats, KIND Bars are a delightful and nutritious snack! Check out Kind Snacks to see all their yummy offerings!

*Companies generously provided samples and images for this piece.*

Fresh-Fruit-BonanzaParents are living a more fast-paced lifestyle focused on their children and extracurricular activities as the kids head back to school this fall. With this on-to-go lifestyle, it can be hard for parents to find time to cook for their families after a long day.

To help make the planning and preparation process easier, Cooking Planit is offering a few tips for busy parents. Cooking Planit is an important website and mobile app that provides home cooks with step-by-step instructions to create full meals, organizing the process for a more efficient cooking experience that leaves all dishes ready to serve at the same time. Essentially a “GPS for the kitchen”, users can filter by main ingredient, occasion, dietary restriction and type of dish, with each recipe showing a full list of ingredients and necessary cooking utensils.

5 Meal Planning Tips for Busy Parents

1. Prep Ahead: Organize your grocery list for each recipe that you intend to prepare. Prepare ingredients earlier in the day, or while you are prepping dinner the night before. Wrap chopped herbs or aromatics, like garlic and ginger, in damp paper towel in airtight container, and refrigerate. Then, go straight to cook mode come dinnertime.

2. Freeze It: So many recipes freeze well and defrost in minutes, providing fast and flavorful dinner solutions. Soup is my favorite because it can make a meal all on its own.

3. Opt for Seafood: Fish or shrimp cook quickly and have unique health benefits compared to chicken or red meat. Don’t be intimidated by making fish at home.

4. Hide Veggies: Kid’s might not dig into a big pile of broccoli, but you can put broccoli or other veggies into a delicious recipe and they’ll never realize how much healthy stuff they are eating too.

5. Keep It Interesting: It’s easy to get into a dinnertime rut, making the same 5 or 6 relied upon recipes over and over again. Keep kids coming to the table by surprising them with new recipes.

six environmentally friendly waysSix Environmentally Friendly Ways to Dispose of Used Electronic Devices

As the world continues to consume more electronic products each year, it is important to either dispose of or recycle those items in a responsible fashion. The recycling of consumer hardware products is a major aspect of the global eco-friendly initiative. This is why so many firms have adopted a commitment to minimizing the environmental impact of their electronics, as well as that of their customers. To that end, there are numerous programs available to help consumers conveniently and properly dispose of or recycle their products. Below are six environmentally friendly ways to dispose of used electronic devices.

Participate in Earth Day
Many communities offer ways to celebrate saving the environment with festivals including dropping off unwanted electronics and their accessories at participating locations. This greatly helps to reduce and divert the approximately 96 million pounds or more of e-waste from U.S. landfills. Every citizen can check for details at their city or town’s website or other information resource.

Sell Your Old Electronics
Selling old electronics is another safe way to reduce waste and prevent improper disposal of potentially dangerous devices. For instance, it is safe to assume that many people generally have at least one or more old PDAs, cell phones or other devices lying about in their homes. However, rather than let these devices take up valuable space, people can participate in saving the environment while earning money by doing something as simple as deciding to sell your iPhone for cash at AppleShark.com.

Donate Used Electronics
Donating used electronics is another way to dispose of old products responsibly. Many organizations accept computers, VCRs, printers and other electronic products when they are still in good working condition. Check with community centers, schools and other firms in the local area or consider contacting an electronics charity program.

Find a Recycling Center
For electronics that no longer work, there are numerous disposal units and recycling centers in a number of cities and towns. Most state and major cities offer programs that make recycling convenient through special city-run drop off locations. Recycling organizations use old electronic product materials such as metal, plastic and glass, all of which require that energy be used to mine and manufacture them. In partnerships with townships and private vendors, some firms offer the convenience of recycling consumer electronics through national voluntary programs.

Trade In the Electronics
Trade in old electronic devices through retailer and manufacturer programs that give consumers credit or a gift card toward another purchase. Generally, the value of these products can be determined at each company’s website. Typically, items may be mailed in or dropped off. However, much like trading in a car, the credit for the product is generally less than what a consumer may receive when they sell their electronics.

Be a Conscious Consumer
Another way to reduce waste is to become a conscious consumer and purchase products that produce less toxins and are made of reusable products. This reduces the amount of potentially hazardous substances from entering the environment, while making it easier to dispose of them in the future.

Olive tapenadeTerry Walters, author of CLEAN FOOD, often serves this to company with her recipe for Garlic Crostini (page 240) as an appetizer or as an accompaniment to a pasta dinner. But she suggests enjoying it the next day spread on toasted sourdough bread in a roasted vegetable or portobello mushroom sandwich.

Olive Tapenade

Ingredients

2 garlic cloves, peeled

11⁄2 cups kalamata olives, pitted

1 cup oil-cured black Greek olives, pitted

2 generous tablespoons capers

1⁄4 teaspoon dried thyme

1⁄4 cup fresh parsley

1 tablespoon lemon juice, plus more if desired

Freshly ground black pepper

Extra virgin olive oil,as needed

Preparation

With food processor running, drop in garlic and mince. Turn processor off, add olives, capers, thyme, parsley, lemon juice and pepper to taste.

Process until smooth, scraping down sides as needed. Add olive oil a little at a time to achieve the desired consistency. Adjust flavor with more lemon juice and transfer to bowl. Store in airtight container in refrigerator or freezer.

MAKES 1 1/4 cups.

*Recipe and image courtesy of Terry Walters.*

About Terry Walters 

Terry, one of the original leaders of the *clean-eating movement* tells her audience how *to eat healthy*, and delicious — *easy!* Terry’s new version of her best-selling cookbook *CLEAN FOOD,* has tons of new information resources and recipes, as well as a new chapter dedicated to CLEAN SNACKING (perfect for busy moms & kids). She uses seasonal food that will delight the taste buds, strengthen immunity, clear skin, and improve sleep, and so much more! Visit www.terrywalters.net.

Just Hatched TrioLook what has recently made its’ debut! A new, all-natural and hypoallergenic baby care line that has all mama hens chirping! Just Hatched is a baby care line by Garcoa Labs that is free of sulfates, parabens, phthalates, and artificial coloring – we are chirping about that, too!

The collection features an eco-fabulous array of baby care products for your tiny green tot, including Bright Baby Shampoo, Happy Baby Body Wash, Precious Baby Dusting Powder, Love My Baby Body Oil, Butter My Bottom Tushy Cream, Cuddle My Baby Cream Talc and Soft Baby Lotion.

Just Hatched Creamy Baby Talc

Mom” is absolutely loving the new Cuddle My Baby Cream Talc – what a novel idea! It rubs onto baby’s skin like a lotion, but dries to a soft, powdery finish. In addition, the Happy Baby Body Wash will have your little chickadees smelling delightful after their bath. Don’t forget to put a bit of Love My Baby Body Oil on afterwards!

Just Hatched Tushy Cream

What “Mom” loves about this new line is that the products are the handiwork of mommy-professionals who are dedicated to creating quality products for little ones at an affordable price. You can learn more at www.justhatched4babies.com.

*Company generously provided samples and images for this piece.*

Jicama Strawberry Guacamole PicIf you’ve never tasted a watermelon radish, you have been missing out. Its sweet taste and vibrant pink flesh will have you hooked in no time. If watermelon radishes are not available, don’t deprive yourself of this guacamole. Tomatillos, cipollini onions or even peaches make great substitutes.

Jicama Strawberry Guacamole

Ingredients

1 cup diced strawberries

1⁄2 cup peeled and diced jicama

1 watermelon radish, peeled and diced

2 avocados, peeled, pitted and diced (save the pits)

1 jalapeno, seeded and minced

Juice of 2 limes

1⁄4 teaspoon sea salt

1⁄4 teaspoon garlic powder

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Preparation

In large bowl, combine strawberries, jicama, watermelon radish, avocados and jalapeno. In separate bowl, combine lime juice, salt, garlic powder and olive oil. Pour over strawberry mixture and stir until combined. If not serving immediately, place avocado pits in bowl to keep dip from turning brown. Cover and refrigerate. Before serving, remove pits and stir briefly.

MAKES 3 cups.

*Recipe and image courtesy of Terry Walters.*

About Terry Walters

Terry, one of the original leaders of the *clean-eating movement* tells her audience how *to eat healthy*, and delicious — *easy!* Terry’s new version of her best-selling cookbook *CLEAN FOOD,* has tons of new information resources and recipes, as well as a new chapter dedicated to CLEAN SNACKING (perfect for busy moms & kids). She uses seasonal food that will delight the taste buds, strengthen immunity, clear skin, and improve sleep, and so much more!
Visit www.terrywalters.net.

5 Surprising Ways Going Green Can Save You Money5 Surprising Ways Going Green Can Actually Save You Money

Going green is often considered and expensive and privileged venture. It’s considered something that only rich people can afford, but that’s far from the truth. Going green can actually be cheap and save you money in the long run. There are plenty of green products that don’t cost a fortune, and you will be doing something good for the environment.

You Will Use Fewer Items
Using green all-purpose cleaners means you will be buying fewer cleaning supplies. Green cleaners, or ones you make yourself, are excellent at cleaning grime and stains. They are often made using natural oils and fragrances. You can also make your own cleaning solutions with vinegar or hydrogen peroxide.

Using Environmentally Friendly Energy
Energy consumption is the biggest concern for those who are going green. Energy is expensive. Switching to different types of energy from your electric company can result in a price increase, but you will be doing better for the environment. You can get a home security system like Vivint home automation so you don’t have to leave lights on all night or while you are traveling.

Organic Food Can Be Cheap
Organic-store brands can be just as cheap and affordable as normal brands. Buying organic is an important part of going green, but people often mistake it for being so expensive. It can be pricey if items aren’t in season, but overall it’s a better investment. Shopping around can net you cheaper organic items that you would otherwise buy conventionally.

Saving On Water
Saving on water is also a way to go green and save green. Use a low-flow shower head and time showers to be shorter. Take no more than 15 minutes to shower for saving the most water. You can also plant gardens that don’t require constant watering. Using a faucet aerator to get a high-pressure flow without using as much heat and water. It’s a brilliant solution that costs very little.

Think Before You Shop
Thinking about what you buy before you shop for it is a good method to save the environment and go green. You may not need to buy something new, but some items should always be purchased new. If you’ve been a victim of burglary, you may want to consider buying a new Aurora home automation system. Craigslist and other places online offer free items you may want and need. You can also go to thrift stores and yard sales to get the best deals.

Pizza RomanoTo kickoff a healthy, back to school season, this recipe is perfect for busy fall schedules, when parents only have a short amount of time to prepare a nutritious meal for their family. Not only healthy, the lean beef in this recipe is packed full of protein, fueling an active lifestyle.

Pizza Romano

Ingredients

1 lb Laura’s 96% Lean Ground Round
2 2⁄3 clv garlic (minced)
1 1⁄3 t dried Italian seasoning
2⁄3 small onion (chopped)
2⁄3 small green pepper (chopped)
2⁄3 pk (8-ounce) sliced fresh mushrooms
1 1⁄3 (12-inch) refrigerated pizza crust (“Mom” prefers making a homemade crust)
1 c marinara or pizza sauce
1⁄3 c chopped sun-dried tomatoes
1 pk (8-ounce) shredded reduced-fat Mozzarella cheese
Crushed red pepper (optional)

Preparation

1. Cook beef, garlic and Italian seasoning in a nonstick skillet about 5 minutes or until browned; drain and remove from skillet.
2. Add onion and bell pepper to skillet; sauté 2 minutes or until slightly tender.
3. Add mushrooms and sauté 1 minute more.
4. Spread crust with sauce; top with beef, onion, bell pepper, sun-dried tomatoes and cheese.
5. Bake at 450 F for 8 to 10 minutes or until cheese is melted. Sprinkle with crushed red pepper, if desired.

Cooking Tip: For a time saver, use kitchen shears to chop the sun-dried tomatoes.

Serves 8.

*Recipe and image courtesy of Laura’s Lean Beef.*