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The Link Up: Emily’s Next Book Purchases, Brian’s Unexpected Favorite New Sweats, And Our Favorite Nail Polish

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This Sunday feels different in a very good way! History has been made (GO MADAM VICE PRESIDENT!), unity is the central message, and real progress feels tangible. There’s still a lifetime of work to be done but at least we are headed in a hopeful direction. So to keep the good feelings rolling, here’s this week’s linkup:)

Today’s home tour is from The Design Files and they have yet again published a stunning home by Louella Boîtel-Gill that is both welcoming, wonderfully designed, and perfectly lived in. Go and enjoy all of the wonderful surprises this home has in store for you.

From Emily: Brian’s new favorite sweatpants might make you smile. We aren’t sure whose they are – I don’t think they are mine, but technically they are from Stars Above which is a technically women’s brand at Target. He found them in the closet, threw them on and every day is like, ‘do you know whose these are? They are so comfortable’. So the other day I said – ‘show me the tag we apparently need to get you more of these because you won’t stop talking about how soft they are’ and that’s when I saw they were Stars Above joggers in Medium. He thought it was hilarious and was like, ‘no seriously, order me a couple more while you are online’. So we did.

Also From Emily: I know I’m not alone in being completely BLOWN AWAY by Amanda Gorman’s performance at the Inauguration on Wednesday. Naturally, I wanted to know more about her and found out that she has two books that we can all preorder now! One for the older kids like us and one for kids. Basically, I am buying them both because preorders are SO important to a book’s success and getting on lists like the NYT Bestsellers list. I am sure that won’t be a problem for her after Wednesday but regardless, I think we and our children need these books:) ALSO if you are a middle or high school teacher PBS put out a lesson plan that discusses Amanda’s poem. Pretty awesome.

From Ryann: One thing I am committed to in 2021 is reducing as much waste as possible and right now I want to stop using paper towels. In the past, I’ve tried replacing them with reusable bamboo towels (which don’t last) and washcloths (which are annoying to wash and manage). I was pretty desperate for a new solution so when my friend recommended these Swedish Dishcloths I knew I needed to try them. Turns out they are super absorbent, crumbs don’t stick to them, they dry fast, and are easy to wash. I love them so far and if anyone has other product recs for replacing paper towels and other single-use items, please do tell! 

From Jess: Olive and June just restocked at Target and if you are at all interested in trying their products DO IT. My friend and I were just talking about how it’s our favorite nail polish to use. And use it I do. I give myself a little manicure almost every Sunday to make myself feel fresh for the week (or as fresh as I can get). I do have to say though that this brush and this nail polish remover jar are the real game-changers! The first time I ever used a brush to clean up my little nail polish mishaps was in October when I got the full set as a birthday present. Now I won’t do a manicure without them. It’s what makes them look like they were maybe done at a salon.

Also From Jess: Armchair introduced me to ANOTHER incredible podcast from the only and only Common. First off their interview was the best and made my Monday. Then I listened to Common’s podcast Mind Power Mixtape on Audible (included in the app) and couldn’t stop. Yep, I listened to all 6 episodes in one day because I have zero self-control. From what I understand this is a limited series which makes me sad because I want more. I was going to pick a favorite but I don’t think I can. Just go listen and your day will be better I promise.

Also Also From Jess: Whew I’ve got A LOT to say today but this is the last one I promise. So you may know that candles were my 2020 epiphany. I know very late to the party. But my friend just turned me onto the more affordable version of the Fraiser Fir Candle and it’s at Target! It’s called Sugared Birch (it comes in a variety of vessels) and thank god for my friend because I would have never even picked it up with that name. Sugar to me equals sweet and sweet candles are not my jam. But alas it’s perfect and if you are happy to have your tree down but sad the smell is gone, pick yourself up on of these babies.

From Albie: Hello luxury! I’ve always had a love hate relationship with drapery hardware because, on the one hand it’s jewelry in the room, but on the other hand I certainly wouldn’t want my jewelry taking away from my outfit aka the drapery itself. This rod set is a win win — the acrylic keeps it low profile while the gold endcaps are just enough bling to make it matter. And I have to admit that these are a great alternative to investing in custom treatments, especially for renters who wanna elevate their windows while they’re in the apartment but also want to take it with them later. 

From Mallory: My sister bought the Malibu Farm cookbook recently, and I didn’t think much of it as someone who has never been to the actual restaurant in Malibu (can I even call myself an LA resident??) but I was SHOCKED to see how insanely good the recipes are given there’s so much hype around it… but there’s literally a GRILLED chocolate cake in there and some INSANE looking dinners I’m dying to make. Plus the woman who started Malibu Farms, Helene Henderson (no her and Emily aren’t related) is such a boss ass lady and I want to be her. If you’re tired of cooking the same things, grab a copy and enjoy!!!

From Caitlin: I wanna share my all-time favorite podcast episode about a seemingly-normal man named Paul who started a website that fulfilled prescriptions online (without an in-person doctor’s appointment!) in the early ’00s. It obviously got very shady VERY quickly – and it was definitely abused – but after years of site growth, he was faced with a choice: get everything above-board OR keep it running as-is with the hope of not being arrested by the government. Paul eschews both of these options and instead becomes a full-on murderous kingpin who traffics drugs from North Korea and moves gold across Africa and SOMEHOW IT GETS CRAZIER FROM THERE. (The podcast also has a full transcription – it’s VERY long but if you made it through Ann Patchett’s essay, you will breeze through this while on the edge of your seat!!! The full book documenting the story is here and also SO GOOD.)

Also From Caitlin: Last week I learned that these uni-balls are Obama’s favorite pens. I was #penfluenced and they are, in fact, very good. (They come in purple too! With this link recommendation, I have solidified myself as the least-cool person on this team. “Do you guys wanna know what kind of pens this one man used between 2009-2017???” I’ll be in my room, attaching my own ‘kick me’ sign to my back.)

It’s that time of year again! What time you ask?? Well, our annual EHD Reader Survey of course. We hope that you know that we always want to hear from you and get feedback no matter the time of year. And because of your wonderful and helpful responses, we learned a lot in 2020. So we would love for you to fill out this survey so we can really be sure that we are creating the content you want, need, and will be inspired by. Thank you so much and we love you all!

That’s it and we hope you have a beautiful rest of your Sunday. See ya tomorrow for more farmhouse fun!

Fin Mark

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Deena

I’’m a big fan of Swedish dishcloths too. You can put them on the top rack on your dishwasher each day to make sure they’re clean (much more sanitary than kitchen sponges). You can get several months use out of a single cloth, and they’re biodegradable when they eventually have to be tossed.

Rusty

That sounds like a great idea! Now if I only had a dishwasher… hahaha!

Diane

Swedish dish cloths are terrific! I use one a day and wash them with the laundry. When they get beyond pretty, I cut one corner off and use them for bathroom cleaning.

Deena

Also adding here another product that was a game changer for me: Jude’s Miracle Cloth. They’re an eco-friendly way of cleaning glass without any chemicals. I use them on mirrors, glass coffee tables, my iPhone, and my eyeglasses. I first found them in Canada, but you can find retailers in the US: https://judesmiraclecloth.com/pages/where-to-buy

Alexandra Rose

Ryann, I’m so glad you’re working on a lower waste lifestyle! I’ve been working on that as well and I love the idea that “We don’t need a handful of people doing zero waste perfectly. We need millions of people doing it imperfectly.” – Anne-Marie Bonneau of Zero Waste Chef. Follow her and you will get so many good ideas. Adding to that, the one place that I have managed to make plastic-free is my shower. I use the shampoo and conditioner from HiBar and the Shea Moisture African Black soap from Target for my face and body. Also, no plastic loofah. I really like the washable washcloths from EarthHero. They have a ton of other ideas there as well.

Rusty

Alexandra Rose, beautiful name!
“We don’t need a handful of people doing zero waste perfectly. We need millions of people doing it imperfectly.”
YESSSSSSSSSSS!!!
I’m proud of you and your efforts! x

Rose

LOVE Hibar!!! Will never buy shampoo/conditioner in a bottle again 🙂

StephanieZ

You can buy or grow loofahs…. they are just gourds. Use for 4 or 4 months then put in your compost.

Nicolette

This!! I over the past year or so I have been making small changes that don’t really impact my daily. Easy ones are switching out disposable make up wipes for the Makeup Eraser. And disposable cotton balls or rounds for washable ones. These small changes are so easy and cost effective too!
We still use paper towels for gross things but want to switch to a more eco friend brand (bamboo?). I am curious why that didn’t work out for Ryann.

Jessica

Caitlin I appreciate your nerdy interests <3 Maybe you didn’t get the memo but it’s cool to be nerdy these days 🙂

Kelly

So happy to see that Obama has found the Uniball pen! It’s the best for lefties because of it’s quick dry time. Highly recommend!

Sheila

Back in the day when we used paper lab notebooks at work, that Uniball was my go-to pen. I’m not left-handed but I appreciated the quick drying ink because we were always writing all over the page. I should get some for old times sake!

Vicki Williams

Appreciate your comments! Same, same. I was just given some of the Swedish dish cloths from Bath and Body works! Love them!

Bo

I did want to mention that “real progress” did occur under the previous president in the area of a more peaceful world and a more prosperous economy, the latter of which was accomplished by reducing taxes and regulatory burdens. He of the reckless mouth had a huge impact on minorities: jobs, jobs, jobs; prison reform; opportunity zones; encouragement of school choice in the face of opposition from the powerful and well-funded teachers unions. I am giving the new guy on the block the benefit of the doubt but I’m looking for substance, not style. Can we find those Swedish cloths somewhere other than Amazon?

Sarah

He also greatly advanced the field of stealing children from their parents because of the color of the skin. That’s just one reason why the “minorities” you claim he helped came out and voted for him by huge margins—oh, shoot, wait.

LouAnn

A more peaceful world? Trump didn’t send our troops to any new countries but he dropped unprecedented numbers of bombs on places like Yemen and Afghanistan. In fact, Trump dropped more bombs on Yemen than Bush and Obama combined. And the Trump administration in 2019 stopped even reporting how many bombs the defense department was dropping. I don’t think the people living overseas in those places that Trump rained bombs upon feel he’s been all that peaceful. And I fear that Americans will pay the price for those bombs someday.

Rusty

Yup and he trashed international opinion of the USA.
The global opinion is that he’s a proverbial knob head!🤬

Rusty

It goes way beyond America.
What America does impacts its allies all over the world!

Jane

Sorry, but I’m having a really hard time getting beyond what that guy did/didn’t do for the last quarter of his term, which also had a huge impact on minorities: dead, dead, dead. That “prosperous” economy is going to have a heck of a time coming back from the effects of lying and misleading a country during a pandemic.

Irene

I thought the inauguration poem was divisive, myself, but at least it has gotten people interested in poetry and resulted in poetry books becoming best-sellers. (I’d like to recommend Natasha Trethewey’s poetry, for those who want to read more books by Poet Laureates of color.)

Bo, I’ve bought Swedish dishcloths at a local Amish store, and I’ve seen them at several farmers’ markets. If you’re comfortable shopping in person, try places like that. (Reminds me, I need to get those cloths out of the pantry and start using them again. Unlike other people’s experiences with them, I find them hard to clean [no dishwasher]).

Deena

I ordered my last set of Swedish dishcloths online here. They were great: https://mightynest.com/products?utf8=✓&keywords=swedish+dishcloths

Lily

Where did all those “jobs, jobs, jobs” for minorities go when the previous president ran the economy into the ground and exacerbated the impact of a deadly virus on America by engaging in science denialism and whipping his followers into a frenzy of anti-mask sentiment in the name of “liberty”? The latest jobs report should be a helpful tool for you in answering this question – but, spoiler alert, they’re gone.

Vicki Williams

Evidently i replied to your comment under Sheila’s name. :/ Go to Bath and Body works. They have the Swedish dish cloths. I love them!

Eliot

You should do a little more research on opportunity zones. They have had virtually no impact on the communities they purport to help, but they’ve been great for the owners of yacht marinas, Goldman Sachs, and Jared Kushner. ProPublica has done great reporting on the scandal. “School choice” is a similarly misleading term, for a set of programs designed to gut public education, which like slashing corporate tax rates and the regulations that protect our health, has the ultimate effect of further concentrating wealth.

Mary

School choice allows for people living in poor areas to send their children to a school of their choice (public or private). This is a HUGE! I’d recommend reading Thomas Sowell’s work on school choice and really, all economic policies.

Susan

*Madam, not Madame

patty

Instead of using paper towels to clean messes I use 6-ply cotton diapers. They clean well and are super absorbent. I always have them on hand.

Rusty

Patty, are they old fashioned washable or throw away ir what?
I need more specifics.

Megan

Rusty, we have some of these cotton diapers – ours are Gerber brand – that we bought to use as burp cloths for my daughter. We use them as cleaning rags, staining rags, etc. now. They can be washed and bleached if necessary.

Rusty

Thank you!
Makes more sense now.

Suzanne

Yes, I have all the cloth diapers I used as burp cloths, and they make the best cleaning rags.

Rusty

Oooh, my! Louella’s house is MY kind of style, lots of old wood, vintage dabrics, right down to the colour of pait in the bathroom! Love ut, but then Byron Bay … who wouldn’t?!?

I. Am. Sooooo jealous of the US Target., Aussie Target is crap! (They are completely different companies, but have the same name and logo?).

Amanda Gorman is amazing! I stayed up til 1.30AM to watch the inauguration and it was well worth it (more tga a few happy tears of relief and hope).

Ryann, good on you for changing your ways with ditching paper towels. x

Jess, the brush sounds cool. I have quite numb hands/fingers that can be so-so or really dodgy, depending on the day. So when I use nail polish, the next day, I give each finger or toe a little wriggle with a loofah mit and any bits that ended up off the nail rub off super easily. Everyone, without exception, thinks I have them professionally done! Hehehe.

Did the survey. Check!

Can’t wait for more farmhouse tomorrow! Yaaay! 🤗

Jane

Hey Rusty! As an Aussie living in the US, I can attest to the awesomeness of US Target, buuuut I really miss Aussie Kmart- especially when you factor in the exchange rate, their prices are amazing!

Rusty

Jane!
Kmart is killin’ it with their homewares, big time!
Myer and DJs are carrying the same gear, same quailty, at 10 times or more, the price!
Hope you’re staying safe re: Covid.
I’m very, very grateful for zero community cases in over 9 months for WA.
Hugz from Perth. 🤗 xx

Emily

Best zero waste changes I made in 2020 (that was my zero waste resolution year!): subscribing to a compost pick-up service; switching to a LenaCup and cloth pads from Aisle; vintage cloth napkins for meals ALWAYS; signing up for a local farmshare weekly delivery, to reduce the amount of plastic I was getting at the grocery store; switching from kleenex to vintage hankies (TRUST ME ON THIS ONE they are legit way better and softer); getting beeswax wraps instead of saran wrap (again, much better); and cloth towels instead of paper towels. I did each change gradually, and now I’m producing WAY less waste with basically zero effort. Also, just a note on the opening comment re. “unity”: I was anti-baking trump neighbors cookies, and I am anti-“unity” right now. I do not want to be unified with fascists, with people who were plotting to assassinate sitting congresspeople, with people who want me and poc and my fellow queers dead or subservient. I want to be as divided from them as possible. I know you had a MLK post last week, but let’s not forget his critiques of white people who prefer the calm of “unity” over the friction of… Read more »

Rusty

Go you! For walking your talk.
I get what you mean, yet I’ll take any improvement as a step in the right direction. Littele, tiny, elephant steps towards real change.

Way to go with your wise choices for our Earth!
Whoo hoo! 🤗

More people need to take incremental steps and stop choosing convenience and fast … they’re LAZY choices.
There is no Planet B! 🌏

Bo

The two f-words are greatly overused and an all-too-easy way to stigmatize others who don’t share your views. Rational discourse is a better replacement for the term.

Emily

Thank you for that admonishment lol. I know what the term means, and I use it carefully. Good luck rationally-discoursing your way out of a capitol building filled with right wingers trying to kill you! 🙂

Bo

You need to put this into perspective and stop whipping up yourself and others into a histrionic frenzy in order to extract every drop out of utility out of this this event. Your response is hugely disproportionate to the event but is consistent with the alternative mythology of cultural Marxism in which truth takes a backseat to the story, the narrative of a coup of “right wingers out to kill you.” You may not even realize how you have been manipulated. (I don’t think those antifa types in the group are usually considered right .) The “right wingers” were mostly a bunch of yahoos who didn’t know what to do once they got into the building. Again, I plead with you to avoid name-calling in favor of rational discourse and accurate representation of the events of that awful day.

Emma

Oh, the irony…….

EK

FYI your survey has several questions where more than one answer can be true, ie, age options of “20-25” and “25-30.” Or “work full time” and “financially support my household” — single people do both…. Or the options for work and parent full time and being a dad who works full time and parents.

Rusty

Yup, there were a few clangers, but I think they’ll still get the data they are seeking.

L

As someone who occasionally creates survey instruments for work, it can be surprisingly difficult to take away useful data from a survey that didn’t ask quite the right questions. Hopefully this survey will be close enough for the EHD team’s internal purposes, but I think it’s still worth flagging so that in future iterations they can gather some more powerful and significant information!

Lisa

For future surveys I think it could also be interesting to haven an option for international readers at the ‘where are you from’ part – I mean maybe that’s partly motivated by the fact that this applies to me and I wanted to feel included 🙂 but I also think that you do have quite a few international readers but you’ll never now about them if you don’t ask about it… 😉

Rusty

I typed in that box, that I’m from Australia.
It bugged me that they could’ve asked IF they wanted to recognize it’s a GLOBAL audience.
Hhhmmm… 🧐

Sheila

Yeah, the “How likely are you to purchase featured items” question has numbers from 1-5 but no indication whether very likely is # 1 or # 5.

Emma

Yeah, the questions were a little confusing. Obviously geared toward people with families. Some of us are single people “working to support the household” – AKA me and my dog! lol

Sherry K

Our Swedish au pair introduced us to the Swedish dish cloth. The Xmas markets in NYC always have booths selling them and I’ve seen really cute patterned ones sold at lots of boutiques lately. They’re becoming much more popular. 😉

Rusty

Check out Apartment Therapy today… they have a great post about how to make changes for the better …they’re good ideas!
Environment… kitchen…. bookstores…
Seriously good daily life ways to live a better life!!!🥰 

Elizabeth

The trick to stop using paper and plastic is to just not bring it into the house! I keep one roll of paper towels that I have to go through three doors to get to. I started using fabric napkins 30 years ago – I make my own from a good quality cotton and they last years, and then become the dusting rags. It is important to have enough that you can go through a week (or how ever long between your wash days) without running out.

Rusty

So true, Elizabeth!

Same goes for anything we’re trying to change.

Trying not to eat chocolate? Don’t buy it!

Don’t want to be a non-thinking environmental vandal?
Think now and choose what you buy and who you buy it from, what it’s made from and who made it!

Think. Choose. Act. Repeat.🌏

yessssss, agreed! my husband still uses paper towels occasionally but we’re able to put them in the compost and a roll lasts us half a year+.
ryann, in the same vein of this comment – ‘consume less’ was my helpful/generic sustainability goal when i began. years ago when i was planning a travel year and really committing to less waste i implemented a shopping ban. it completely changed how i approach shopping – whenever i need something i can find it secondhand, borrow, diy/make it (hair care, planners, cleaners, etc), or ask family members/friends. it has prevented me from needing to buy new/at all for many, many things. we have a couple of beeswax wraps but mostly use an old pyrex set and repurposed jars for leftovers. sharing more on my waste-less/sustainability approach here: https://tps-steph.blogspot.com/2018/10/0002-menos-para-mas.html

all the small things add up and the creativity my sustainability efforts has generated is a true joy 🙂

Nicolette

Yes! I switched to cloth napkins about a year ago to cut down on our paper towel use. We still keep a roll in the house for gross things but one roll lasts many months. Changes like these are so easy!

Irene

Ryann, I don’t have tips for you about replacing paper towels. (My Swedish dishcloths are stained and permanently wrinkled after just a few uses, so I’m still looking, too.) However, if you need a product to replace plastic wrap, these silicone lids are fantastic: https://www.altcookinghub.com/products/6pc-set-reusable-silicone-stretch-lids.

I got them in a Causebox last summer, and there’s a size for everything: citrus and watermelon halves, mixing bowls, even wineglasses (who leaves half their wine for later? Moi!). They’re nice and stretchable, sturdy, and even have a subtle “happy face” printed in the centers to cheer you up while you’re working hard in the kitchen.

Rusty

Yaaay!
There’s some positive think-tanking going on here!
🤗

Irene

I realize these lids are still a form of “plastic”, but I’ll fall back on Anne-Marie Bonneau’s “millions of people doing [zero waste] imperfectly” statement (thanks for informing me about her, Alexandra Rose) until I find something better.

Beeswax wraps don’t work for me, sad to say — they don’t provide an airtight seal and, just like Swedish dishcloths in my experience, they’re quite hard to clean.

Rusty

Irene, I’m considering buying some silicon ziplock bags because while they’re still plastic, they will last sooooo much longer!
We need to make improvements wherever we can.
Nobody’s perfect. Nobody.
Just as it takes many hands to make light work, it takes many, small cganges to make a tangible difference. xx

Irene

Thanks, Rusty! Silicon ziplock bags are on my list to buy soon, too. I’ve read some reviews that say it takes a long time for them to dry after hand-washing (didn’t you hint upthread that you don’t have a dishwasher? Me, neither.). People replied that drying them on one of those countertop contraptions with dowels sticking out in all directions was a good solution. (Here’s an example: https://www.etsy.com/listing/210990063/ziplock-and-plastic-bag-dryer-rack-wash?gpla=1&gao=1&&utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=shopping_us_c-home_and_living-kitchen_and_dining-cookware-cooking_utensils_and_gadgets&utm_custom1=_k_Cj0KCQiA0rSABhDlARIsAJtjfCfDXqnp_9mDVWDz5MReMRQBZQZBL7DEID_f-WBvtWb-yiRA5ZwldzkaApeZEALw_wcB_k_&utm_content=go_1843970815_69827672615_346429624076_pla-305102694227_c__210990063_12768591&utm_custom2=1843970815&gclid=Cj0KCQiA0rSABhDlARIsAJtjfCfDXqnp_9mDVWDz5MReMRQBZQZBL7DEID_f-WBvtWb-yiRA5ZwldzkaApeZEALw_wcB)

Rusty

Turn ’em inside out!

Emma

I use silicone bags and don’t have a dishwasher. They’re not any harder to wash and dry than a regular bag! I usually fill the bag about halfway with hot soapy water and then close it up and shake/massage so that the soapy water cleans it out. If there’s any residue left I scrub with my dish brush. Then rinse in clean water and stand up to dry! The important thing is to make sure the bag stays open so it gets airflow (sometimes I stick a cork in the opening just to prop it open). You CAN turn them inside out but it’s not recommended for the brand I have because it can wear out the seams.

Caitlin

Irene,
I just throw my swedish dishcloths in the laundry! I usually have a bunch of rags to go in anyways so they go in one load together. I try to keep both swedish cloths/rags all over the house where I typically need them- kitchen, bathroom, living room. Makes it convenient to use them! Thanks for your silicone lid rec…I’ve been on the verge of buying them but wasn’t sure if they’d work consistently for the different sized bowls I use.

Nicolette

Hi Irene! I also find beeswax a little cumbersome. Some alternatives I use are universal bowl covers (you can find both silicon or fabric) and food huggers for cut vegetables. Otherwise a good old fashioned pyrex container can hold just about anything 🙂

Swedish dishcloths have finally helped me to stop using paper towels, too! My other important find in going green is thegoodfill.co, which is a store in Nashville that ships eco friendly products. They have a lot of options that involve no plastic, and their shipping materials are eco friendly.

Leigh

Waahhh! I was on one of the last questions of the survey – others I follow on Instagram. I went to Insta to make sure I had a name spelled correctly. When I came back to the survey, it was gone.

FWIW, I clicked through to the survey via your blog link on FB. I didn’t close any tabs. When I went back to FB it was just my regular feed. I pulled up the survey again and it’s blank.

I will redo, but just a heads up.

Lisa

Two things: OMG, Obama loves the same pens that I do!

And Emily, I wanted to thank you for being authentic in your political/decency leanings, most recently in your public support of this new administration. Many in your shoes would take the “safe and quiet” route so as not to alienate anyone, but I love that you are being you.

Rusty

Hell, yeah!

Robyn Mesher

Jess, if you are into eucalyptus and candles, you need to try 29 Palms by Roen. It’s my all time favorite.

Susan

Unity?? The divide is wide and it isn’t going to be fixed by an old white career politician. All of the troubles are going to be fixed because a Democrat is in the white house? Didn’t work when Obama was in, and didn’t work with Trump as Republican president either. Unity doesn’t come from elected officials -Each party has left huge numbers of the population out. I don’t know what the solution is, but it sure as hell isn’t Biden Harris…

Rusty

Anything’s better than Trump, like, seriously!!!
He destroyed and strained sooooo many international relationships and stretched relationships with allies.😒

Bo

…not with my relatives. They may not like him but they do respect him (maybe not Germany), but with the advent of Joe to the presidency China is acting up again by invading the airspace of Taiwan.

DS

China specialist here. I can confidently say that the USG’s ability to counter China is much improved already under this administration. Also airspace incursions and other sorts of military maneuvers from both the United States and China aren’t new or surprising regardless of who’s in the White House…

Eve

I’m surprised to hear that you found the bamboo towels didn’t last? I swear by them! I just checked back to see when I bought mine and it was March 2018 so nearly 3 years ago and I still have only used half the roll! We don’t buy paper towels at all, I just use the bamboo ones and once I’ve used one once I just throw it straight into the washing machine and they get washed along with the next load so it’s zero effort. I don’t think I have had to throw a single one away yet and I still have half the roll never used. I’ve seen people say that they look a bit off coloured and wrinkled which is totally true but why is that a problem for something you’re only using to wipe up mess?! Maybe the brand you tried wasn’t good – mine are from Eco Egg although I’m not sure if they are available in the US.
Other than these I just use Muslin cloths for cleaning and they also do the job – definitely don’t see the need for paper towels at all any more!

Actually Caitlin- My husband and I both love those pens, so your interest and the hype make me feel less like a Golumesque pen horder.

Sara

Ryann, last year I decided to learn as much about zero waste as I could. The book Zero Waste Home by Bea Johnson was where I started. I’ve been environmentally friendly for years but I just felt like we were drowning in plastic still. Still do but it’s gotten MUCH better! Two big things we did that are my favorite: Started a compost pickup service. Life changing and cheap. My h got me a terracycle kitchen box for Christmas. 😂 they’re expensive but amazing. Lookup terracycle. You can basically recycle anything with them. Now I have a place to put all the random plastic and snack bags and candy wrappers. It’s fantastic. My third favorite thing is so simple: turn off the water when I’m scrubbing my hands. With how many times per day I wash and for how long, that adds up to a lot of water. I turn it back on to rinse and it’s so much more relaxing. I realized how pressured I felt by the running water to hurry up. But now I can wash thoroughly without the pressure. I’m teaching our kids to do it too and it’s so simple and gratifying. Easy things we… Read more »

Sara

Despite this novel, I forgot to add something important! Buying from sites that don’t use plastic or are zero waste: I’m shopping from Unpackaged Goods I think it is. And there are more shops now than ever catering to less or no plastic. Wait til you see what they have – it’s ste opening!

Yarh! We must reduce as much waste as possible. I am using cloth towel. in my point of view, using a cloth towel is just as habit-forming as using a paper one. It’s also more satisfying. Sort of like an ex you thought you couldn’t live without, the longer I live without paper towels, the less I miss them.

Michelle mauro

LOL .. I have loved those pens for years, I actually have stocked up, I love them, they have been my favs. I love that you highlighted their goodness. The Obama stamp of a approval makes it twice as nice

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