beauty, convenience, the apocalypse & chickens

*Caution!  In the following post I dump out lots of things that are in my brain right now, cause I need a place to put them.  It’s also akin to taking a lady’s handbag and turning it over to dump out the contents…no telling what might fall out. 

For example:  I’ve always admired other bloggers photos of their chickens, and well, I finally had an opportunity to catch some chickens with my camera.  I helped some friends this past weekend, who have a small farm, with a wedding they hosted at their house.  I took the opportunity to head out to their coop.  I also got a portrait of their tom turkey.

Moving on…  I titled this post beauty, convenience & the apocalypse, because the other night I was scrambling for dinner ideas.  I went to the store after work and decided to buy convenient food.  Some of the easy to prepare, because most of the work is done for you, kind of food (alright dammit – I bought two boxes of hamburger helper, and some pre-made salad).  You don’t know how much I hate admitting to buying hamburger helper, because I am so not that kind of cook – SO NOT! ; )  Anyway, by the time I had finished “making” this meal, I had opened and disposed of 14 packages!!!  It made me physically ill to realize how much garbage I had generated in order to make a convenient meal.  

Later, I’m reading an article about all the chemicals we are exposed to in health and beauty products.  I start thinking about all the stuff we use around here and what is in those products.  I counted that up too.  When I get ready in the morning I use no less than 11 products from soap to eyeliner.  And every single one of those products is contained or comes packaged in plastic, and has ingredient lists longer than my arm. 

Preceding these monumental thoughts I had read two books.  I don’t recommend them because they were really awful books (Sorry Margaret Atwood – your latest is a stinker!).  They were both set in the future and had apocalyptic themes.  And while both were fiction, they might not be too far off the mark if we humans continue down this god-forsaken path we’re on.  I know, perky aren’t I?

Well, here’s a little project to assuage some of the guilt.  I first got the idea when I saw this project on design sponge for cocktail napkins using vintage sheets.  A couple of years ago I participated in a vintage sheet swap via oh fransson.  Some of the fabric is going into my quilt, but I have so many fat quarters I decided to make everyday napkins.  These are fun, didn’t cost anything, and do not go in the garbage when we’re done using them.

I have more stuff to dump, out of my brain,  but I’ll save up for the next few posts.  And does anyone have any good recipes for shampoo, body lotion, etc.?

9 Comments Add yours

  1. So good to “hear from you.” Mark and I were just discussing you! The window over our sink has beautiful found nature goodies. Mark added some crystal rock thingies this weekend and was admiring them. I told him that my favorite thing on the window sill was the beetle from you. He is currently climbing up some piece of wood and looks as though he is going on a big hike. Mark was asking if I had heard from you lately and here you are!

    BTW….after a long day at work, I opened a package of ham, nuked some broccoli and left over squash….and fixed a pack of Rice-a-roni. Sometimes you just gotta do what you gotta do.


  2. sara says:

    Zach and I had this same terrible realization a few months back when we questioned our choice of sunscreen (we go through a lot). We found this great website from the Environmental Working Group, that analyzes the toxicity of body products.

    That helped us to make changes to our shampoo (now using Dr. Bronners with a tad of cocoa butter rinsed through in hot water) and sunscreen (now using an unscented stick by Badger). We already use lots of natural products because I’m so allergic to fragrances and lots of chemicals.

    The napkins are gorgeous!!

  3. Ayama says:

    angry chicken has tonnes of posts about shampoo alternatives and making your own beauty products. she put me on to using baking soda (don’t gasp) instead of shampoo and has worked wonders for my array of skin disorders. one admits to being very skeptical at the time but trust me the stuff i was putting in my hair was causing me serious skin irritations. read her posts about the humble cooking aide. i typically pulverise a few herbs (mint’s a summer fave) for a sweet odour.

    currious as to where you head out the door. hoping it’s not as mad or as far as my place of employment. the daily 90 minute commute has muted me some….

  4. wonderv says:

    I “thought” I was going to be helpful because I “thought” that this natural plant item could be used to make shampoo’s and all of your other 2000 parts, and maybe it does but just isn’t listed on this web site. SO….even though I possibly “thought” wrong, I give you info anyway. I have been wanting to try these things for YEARS, just never got off my lazy (stingy) butt and done it. I give you: The Soap Nut!

    PS: I LOVE your chickens! I had the honor of shooting a gorgeous turkey (who was well aware of the fact that he was a sexy bird) at a wild bird sanctuary almost 2 years ago. They are SO much fun!

  5. Mousy Brown says:

    I was going to say angry chicken too and also a book – organic bodycare recipes by stephanie tourles, seems like good stuff so far….

  6. amandasworldofmotherhood says:

    I love the napkins. I upcycling stuff.

  7. I love the napkins! You have an excellent group of stripey vintage fq’s!

  8. amyks says:

    Those napkins are so great, so cheerful and happy…with respect to using Hamburger Helper, can’t you recycle all of the cardboard boxes and tomato cans that I am assuming you used? Don’t be so hard on yourself, there isn’t anything wrong with taking the quick and easy way out once in awhile.

    Sorry to hear that the latest Margaret Atwood wasn’t any good, I used to love reading her stuff, but they definitely can be “out there”. Have you read “The Book Thief”? It is one of the best books I have ever read!!!


  9. batspit says:

    I read the flood immediately- loooved Oryk and Crake, but I agree- the Flood was a bit… beyond depressing.

    Are you going to start using things in Bulk? Its cheaper and if you’re together enough to remember your own containers you get to reduce that container waste twofold… I’m seeing dry-skin and doctor bronners in your future… 😉

    we can spend so much time and guilt counting all the things we do that hurt the environment- it’s so overwhelming and debilitating… I’m glad you celebrate the things you do that help- those napkins are AWESOME sauce.

    you’re one of the best people in this universe. (At least to me.) Never forget that.

    *** I’m off to go count my daily beauty products… I think we’re at about the same number

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