Natural Living Clubhouse!

Okay, I think it’s time that those of us who are interested in wholesome, organic, holistic, natural living come together and talk about all of our tips, habits, practices and healthy way of life!

This is a place to share about recipes: food, household items and toiletries. Share about growing herbs and their many uses, whether home remedies or a dinner meal. Share about where you shop organically (as much or as little as you can), how you cut costs, what you grow at home, mill at home, ferment at home, etc. Where and how did you come by those products? What ways are you committed to keeping your family healthy and growing with as little dependence on manufactured products as possible? How do you use, re-use, recycle or freecycle? What ways do you keep your family healthy with simple remedies that have done the trick?

You don’t have to answer these questions at all, just some ideas to get discussion started and a way in which to learn about new ways in which to live healthfully and respectfully toward our bodies and the earth.

lol well I have one foot in the door and one out…I’m slowly making the switch over to more organic/natural foods and personal products. I have a handy wallet card that lists the fruits and veggies that are “highest” in contaminates and “lowest”. The high ones I buy organic or not at all, and the lowest I buy regular, since regular is generally cheaper. Although, a lot regular grocery stores seem to be carrying more and more organic produce and expanding their organic foods area…tends to be cheaper than a full health foods market.

We also use organic eggs and generally organic meat…sometimes I stumble with that (newly married+essentially honeymoon baby on the way+recent college grads=not lots of money;) ) I have not made the switch to organic milk…DH is real picky on how milk tastes so we are going to have to slowly move into it.

Anyhow…I guess this produce card is my tip. :slight_smile: It’s laminated and in my wallet for easy consultation:
Highest: apples, bell peppers, celery, cherries, grapes (imported), nectarines, peaches, pears, potatoes, red raspberries, spinach, strawberries
Lowest: asparagus, avocados, bananas, broccoli, cauliflower, corn (sweet), kiwi, mangos, onions, papaya, pineapples, and peas (sweet).

“Anyhow…I guess this produce card is my tip. It’s laminated and in my wallet for easy consultation:
Highest: apples, bell peppers, celery, cherries, grapes (imported), nectarines, peaches, pears, potatoes, red raspberries, spinach, strawberries”

Okay i know this is going to sound like a stupid question but what about grapes that are not imported?

Also i have to say ever since i started shopping at the farmers market i find things so much cheaper.i struggle with the idea of spending so much money on organic beef etc since i am currently unemployed and we are only getting unemployment checks…

My ex boss hunts and just gave us a bunch of deer meat so i guess that could be considered organic meat:)

The farmer’s market we have in the city seems to be more expensive then other produce around…but I just found out about another one that I’m excited to try.

Someone today was telling me about homemade shampoo. At first it seemd out there to me, but then when she began talking about all the benefits to using just a mixture of baking soda and apple cider vinegar, it began to sound slightly appealing. She said there’s a period of time though during transition that a lot of the residue on your hair takes its time in coming out (she referred to it as the ‘gunk’ period). The idea is that just using a natural cleanser takes all the stuff from hard water and chemicals used in shampoos, etc. out of your hair and leaves it VERY shiny–it’s true that her dark hair was very glossy and healthy. It’s supposed to help with all sorts of general hair maintenance–curly hair isn’t frizzy, straight hair isn’t so limp, oily hair doesn’t get greasy after only a day without washing, etc.

Anyone else tried baking soda with vinegar as a shampoo…?

Depending on the clilmate where you live, this could be carried further if it didn’t scandalize the neighbors:bigyikes: .

lol well…to be quite honest I have no idea…the grapes have always puzzled me, so I just buy them organic regardless (or if they’re real pricey…we go without).

My ob/gyn just told me not to eat deer meat of any kind while pregnant - anyone ever heard this before? I asked him and he told me but I forgot…wait - I guess I can Google it…AHA! Toxoplasmosis risks. Well, guess that explains it then. :slight_smile:

I’m really interested in the homemade shampoo, Abby.

I’m doing homemade laundry soap as soon as I run out of detergent. :slight_smile: I’m gonna experiment with it first to see if it’s worth my time and effort. Sounds nice and CHEAP though.

I would LOVE to eat more organic but it’s SO expensive, and the standards for something to be labeled organic are really dropping (allowing limited amounts of hormones, pesticides, etc but still calling it “organic”), so sometimes I think it’s mildly pointless - unless you find a local farmer or something you can trust.

Any idea what the proportion on this should be, Abby? Or just experiment? I’d like to try it!

Here’s a blog about it. She says:

How do I go shampoo free?
Use one tablespoon of baking soda per one cup of warm or hot water. You can double or triple the recipe if you have very, very long or thick hair. But do not use more baking soda, your hair will become hard, dry or feel brittle if you use too much. You can put this mix in a recycled shampoo bottle, and apply to your hair with warm water.
The mix should not feel gritty, and should be a liquid. If you have very short or thick hair, you may find it easier to make a paste with a tablespoon of baking soda (or less) and sprinkle it over *very *wet hair and massage in. Otherwise, spray or pour the mixture onto your hair and work it in. Let it sit about a minute, and then rinse. I personally find it easiest to make a liquidy paste in the palm of my hand with about half a tablespoon, and then sprinkle and massage into dripping wet hair. I have very short hair, so I use less. Experiment and see what works best for you, there are no official rules.
For a typical rinse, make up a solution of one to two tablespoons of Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) per cup of water. Apply to wet hair, massage into scalp and rinse off with cold water. Please note, you don’t always have to apply a rinse with every wash! I personally find I only need to do a rinse every 2-3 washes.”

I misunderstood–apparently the vinegar is used as a rinse–I thought it was mixed. She goes into how to make a homemade conditioner though, later on down on her page.

For dishwasher detergent, this is what I’ve read:

1 part baking soda
1 part borax
1 part citric acid

Plain vinegar works for the rinse cycle.

Just thought I’d share! Haven’t tried it. I read about that on a local AP board I’ve started reading.

what a cool thread!
we are about to get a whole foods store just down the street and I am so excited about it. I’m hoping they’ll have organic chicken at a decent price. I miss chicken, we don’t eat much because I haven’t been able to find any affordable organic.

we get beef from a co-op here and it’s pretty cheep because there’s no middle man.

the shampoo with baking soda and a viniger rinse sounds interesting. how does it make your hair smell though? does it stink?

anyone here ever heard of melaluka oil? I may be spelling that wrong. if you have heard of it, or use it, what do you think of it?

Great thread! I am very drawn to natural living but it’s an uphill battle since DH most definately is not. I’m working on him. :slight_smile: I’m not a great poster, but I’ll most certainly be reading along here.

My dh & I have just started a vegetarian diet, mostly because he was just diagnosed with lymphoma. (Please Pray) I’m having trouble with lack of protein, so if anyone has any good ways to add protein, please let me know. Thank you.


I’m slowly making my way into the organic, natural foods. I am gluten-intolerant and lactose-intolerant, and most of my family have food allergies/intolerances, so my mother started about 3-4 yrs ago. However, it’s been difficult considering I’ve been at college for the past four years munching on junkfood the whole time :). Anyone use Melaluca products? I was thinking about it but haven’t yet.

i’ll be mostly taking notes:thumbsup:

Oh goody, I have one for you! I hate using harsh chemicals to clean with, so I have been slowly switching out the main ones over the past few years. The newest thing I’ve come across is an alternative to bleach for disinfeting:

**Susan Sumner, a food scientist at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, developed an effective disinfecting procedure using white vinegar (or cider vinegar) and 3 percent hydrogen peroxide (the same as found at the drugstore). These ingredients are completely nontoxic and inexpensive and work not only on fruit and vegetables but can be used to sanitize counters and preparation surfaces, including wooden cutting boards, as well. **
**Here are the very simple directions for using these ingredients effectively: **
**After you put the vinegar and hydrogen peroxide into individual spray bottles: **

**1. Spray your produce or work surface thoroughly first with vinegar and then with hydrogen peroxide. **
2. Then rinse the produce under running water or wipe the surface with a clean wet sponge.

I have been using plain white vinegar for quite awhile to clean with and this is a nice addition.


Thanks, Abby! My next question was going to be about conditioner. I think I’ll try this over the wekend.

Love, love, love this thread Abby! :thumbsup:

I too will be taking notes and adding as much as I can. It’s a bit late to start tonight 'cos it’s actually ticked over into morning and I reeeally have to get to bed. :yawn: It’s just so nice to have the living room and computer all to myself. :o

I have been slowly switching to natural living for, well, years now. I find that it takes time. It is overwhelming to change one’s entire life in a weekend - even though this is one of my favourite topics and I get so motivated reading info on this topic - that’s what I feel like doing. :slight_smile: I’m just trying to add new things bit by bit.

My first natural cleaning tip is use steam. I have just brought a hand held steam cleaner for the bathroom etc and I have a steam mop for the floors. You buy the item one time only and no need for repeat purchases of expensive cleaning chemicals. It’s also a very hygenic clean. :thumbsup:

O.K. :sleep: will share more soon.

I was a vegetarian for about a year, but DH couldn’t cope, so I eat meat on occasion now. I got a lot of protein from beans, tofu, and grains, like quinoa. When you’re planning your veg meals, don’t think about cooking like most people do–meat and 2 veg. Look for good vegetarian recipes, stews and casseroles are wonderful transition foods, b/c even in versions with meat, the meat isn’t the center of attention. For a good intro to vegetarianism check There are some delicious recipes on there. One thing to watch out for–don’t just substitute eggs and dairy for the meat you used to eat. They’ll be high in fat.

I’ve been trying to do more organic foods, but that isn’t really a good option around here. We have an excellent health food store, but it’s about 45 minutes away, so anytime I go, I stock up! I’ve been getting cage free eggs b/c I can’t stand the idea of those bird crammed into tiny cages just so I can have a few eggs. I really wish I could get free range organic meat b/c what I’ve read about factory farming really creeps me out.

One thing I’ve discovered in my attempt at veg*nism is that I love to cook. I’ve become very picky about eating out and pre-packaged foods.

One tip I’ve got is about cleaning the bathtub and sinks. Microwave vinegar so it’s hot, put it in a spray bottle, spray tub and sink. Leave for 10 minutes or so, and come back and clean. Cheap and easy! I got that from the Queen of Clean; her books are full of great tips (if only I used them more often :o )

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