All beautiful images :: Rowland Kirishima's Women on the Move for Yohji Yamamoto.
Coming across these images made me so happy, so I thought I'd share. There is just so much good winter style inspiration here...use what you've got...layer it up...add some color...throw on a hat...get moving...have some fun. Top it off with a smile. This is just a sampling, so go check out the rest!
All beautiful images :: Rowland Kirishima's Women on the Move for Yohji Yamamoto.
Homemade toothpaste may often be one of the first things people try when they decide to start reducing their waste. I've tried a few different recipes over the years. Baking soda alone felt a bit inadequate. I really liked this toothpaste recipe, but it only took me about three brushes to realize that coconut oil shouldn't be spit down the drain (because it will build up + cause a clog). There is advice out there to just wash it down with hot water, but that will only push it further down the pipes. And...I wasn't really into having a spit jar instead (is that just trash then?).
Then I came across the Wild Minimalist's coconut oil-free recipe. There were a few ingredients listed that I wasn't too sure about leaving on my teeth, so I started digging a little deeper. Here's what I found:
Baking soda :: Helps to remove plaque + reduces acidity. This is the main ingredient in most tooth powder/paste recipes. Though there are those who say it is too abrasive for everyday use, its abrasiveness is less than many commercial pastes. via
Aloe Vera :: Controls cavity causing organisms :: via :: choose dietary aloe vera, not topical
Bentonite Clay :: Antibacterial, absorbs toxins, + reduces acidity. via + via :: choose food grade (here or here)
Xylitol :: I chose xylitol instead of stevia, because xylitol reduces tooth decay + plaque and promotes the remineralization of teeth :: via + via :: choose xylitol from birch wood, so it's non GMO
Peppermint Oil :: antimicrobial properties, reduces cavities + freshens bad breath :: via
I found lots of information stating that fluoride is an essential toothpaste ingredient...and lots stating that it is a dangerous ingredient. I felt that this article struck a trustworthy balance.
Well...that all actually sounds pretty good to me, so I decided to give it a try. All of the ingredients were available at my health food store. While this is not entirely zero-waste toothpaste, I was able to choose products with mostly recyclable packaging (unlike regular toothpaste tubes)... + these ingredients will last for a long time.
Here are the adjustments I made for our recipe:
4 Tbsp. baking soda
1 Tbsp. bentonite clay
1 tsp. xylitol
2 Tbsp. aloe vera
12 drops peppermint oil
Mix with non-metal utensil in non-metal bowl + put into non-metal containers. I split ours into individual containers (no germ sharing). :) We just swipe a little out on our toothbrushes, wet, brush, + rinse well.
Allowing a little time to adjust to the taste + mouth feel is beneficial. Mr. Tribe says that he feels like his teeth are whiter. Jo + Julia agree. Jo says she can't express how much she was dragging her feet about this change, but that now it's one of her favorite things! All in all, I'm hopeful that this is the toothpaste recipe will help us to keep our teeth clean + healthy. In combination with dental lace (now coated in a natural wax instead of a petroleum product!) + bamboo toothbrushes...I feel good about our waste reduction in this department. No more toothpaste tubes! (Thank you so much, Lily!)
Do you have a toothpaste recipe that you love? Please share!! :)
I've been rereading Freedom of Simplicity by Richard J. Foster this month. It's my favorite book on Christian simplicity.
I preordered Fashion Revolution's zine as a Christmas gift for Jo, but then realized that it was more about my interests than Jo's. I bought her The Best American Non-required Reading instead (since she liked last year's edition so much). We can always share. :)
Two incredible announcements!
Beyond the label.
Another reason to do less recycling rather than more. (That means buying less that needs to be recycled.)
The first major city to run out of water.
Repair is a radical act.
"The garbage we generate creates opportunities for everyone."
Hope you are having a productive/relaxing weekend, depending on your intent! :)
When I learned about the plastic fibers being found in drinking water, I decided to sell my thrifted Patagonia Better Sweater. (More on my thinking here.) I replaced it with a 100% wool Ibex zip-up (Shak Traverse style). I shared the information with my tribe + soon I was offered no less than 6 fleece jackets to rehome!
Two of the jackets were worn daily + needed to be replaced. I spent some time searching online for 100% natural fiber, second hand replacements...and then I had a thought...did Julia still have that hand-me-down jacket from Jo? I was able to immediately locate it in Julia's closet. It's the perfect fit, the perfect weight, + looks better than any of the jackets that were surrendered! Jo had let go of her excess...which allowed Julia to let go of hers. With the sales from all of those jackets, we were able to purchase a new 100% wool Ibex jacket for Mr. Tribe (because I couldn't locate any used ones). After all the postage + fees were paid, there was $10 left over.
I know that trust in "enough" is a bit more of a leap for some in this tribe, so it's pretty cool when the numbers validate this trust. I'm grateful for what those jackets provided for us, both in previous wear + in replacement costs. It is amazing to see our trust turned into just what we need.
Out of our excess...a much more appropriate "enough".
It's the middle of the season + it's all getting a little old...the cold...the layers...the clouds...and the repetition in my wardrobe. I look to pinterest for a little inspiration. I anticipate new collections from my favorite fair brands. I complile dream lists + dream outfits. The thing is that I've made it this far, so I probably already have enough.
How do I get a little satisfaction? How do I get some real heartfelt contentment?
Contentment doesn't usually just show up for me. There is often work to be done to turn my mind toward contentment. This month, I've been doing a little exercise every day of choosing one of the things that I already own to write about...just a few sentences about this item's attributes + how grateful I am to have been provided for through its form + function...the makers that have blessed me + been blessed through it...and the origins of its materials. I've spent time thinking a little more deeply about my favorite blanket that keeps me warm on the couch + as an extra layer in bed each night. I received it as a (requested) birthday gift...it's kept me warm in 4 homes, 3 states, + 2 countries in the (at least) 12 years that I've had it. Socks, yoga mat, pillowcases, + various pieces of clothing have been my focus. There are a lot of beautiful gifts already in my life.
I have worked toward learning what I like to wear. So when I look at my pinterest board, I notice that I have a couple of pairs of pants shaped like the ones in most of the pictures...and I have a cozy sweater or two...and I have a pair of boots. It may seem strange to start this post with the images above...but I find it fitting. These are a few things that I find beautiful, useful, and good. They are all from amazing fair brands that support a variety of good causes...women, vintage, organic fibers, fair wages, local makers, natural dyes. When I look at them, I think of my vintage army pants that I wear often, my cozy organic cotton sweatshirt, flats that I will wear again as soon as my ankles can handle it, + the possibility of a little creative project. I already have so many good things...how will I wear them today?
This is not to say that a little something new thrown into the mix at this time of year couldn't be helpful. The point is to bring that one little thing into a wardrobe already full of recognized goodness...not to go looking for a total overhaul. In the past, I've made a pair of bright "January pants" out of fabric in my stash...or cast off a madder-dyed scarf...as a jolt to the pieces already in my winter arsenal. This year I have a tiny list of things that I thought maybe I could find thrifting. I have come up empty handed so far...but that experience has taught me that I like what I already have better than anything that I have found. :)
I want to live in contentment. It's not always easy, but it's always worth the effort!
All lovely photos via links.
"Moving from New Mexico to London in 2008 changed a lot of things for this tribe. (Weather!) Seeing that I would be charged money for each + every disposable bag at the grocery store changed one habit in a single trip. I grabbed three reusable grocery bags that were sold right there at the till + never forgot them.
Saving money was one incentive to quit plastic grocery bags, but the other was the normality of everyone else using reusable bags. I'd endured lots of weird looks when bringing my own bags back in New Mexico, so this new normal felt especially validating. Many of us would like something to become normal around us in order to feel comfortable doing the thing. This is understandable, but not very helpful...especially in this time of rapid environmental degradation. This is not a fight we can afford to win slowly.
The UK just might change another habit in one fell swoop. A proposal to charge for disposable coffee cups is currently being considered. It's really just the reverse of receiving a discount for bringing a reusable cup...but somehow it feels a bit different...especially when the "latte levy" proposed is 25 pence ($0.34). I'm 100% for it. Disposables cost the earth, + therefore us. We need to be reminded.
But what about the place where I live? We have no plastic bag ban or charge...let alone a charge for disposable cups. I still have yet to see another customer bring a reusable cup to a coffee shop in my city. I can't wait for using reusables to become normal in order to start. I can use them with confidence + answer the weird looks with a smile and an openness to explain my choices. What really matters is getting myself used to bringing my own bags to the grocery store + my own cup to the coffee shop. Courage begets courage...and now it doesn't feel weird (to me) at all anymore. Honest. Maybe...just maybe...that courage will rub off.
P.S. The best thing I've done for my bring-my-own-cup habit lately.
P.P.S. Even if we forget our reusable cups, we can ask for our drinks in a cup to stay...even Starbucks has them (+ reusable plates too)! :)
Our greatest strength lies in the gentleness + tenderness of our heart. ~Rumi
Hello friends- It's good to be back in this space after my computer went caput last week! It was not all bad...I spent more time reading. :) The computer was fixable (gotta love Apple Support), + I look forward to getting back into our conversation!! :)
Lots of love,
A few weeks ago I wrote about plastic fibers from synthetic fabrics being found in alarming amounts of drinking water tested around the world. This discovery prompted this tribe to sell our fleece. Although this keeps that fleece in use (+ potentially polluting our water stream), I felt that it was a marginally better choice than keeping it. I'm hoping that the people who bought our fleece will use it rather than buying new fleece + stimulating further production.
In addition to letting our fleece go, I wrote to Patagonia. I'm never certain that these letters make a difference, but I do think that it is important to offer our perspective as customers. Yesterday I was thrilled to find a personal response to my letter in my inbox. Regardless of how I feel about the response, the fact that I received one makes me feel heard. What gives me even more hope is to imagine the response to many letters on this topic!
I've attached my letter (not that it's great or anything) + their response. I will say that I could have written more, but thought that short + concise might be more likely to get read.
Hello- Our family loves Patagonia + considers you a leader in the ethical clothing industry. I learned about plastic fibers from our clothing shedding into the water stream from Patagonia...and now there are studies finding that 83% of the drinking water worldwide + 94% in the USA has plastic fibers in it. https://orbmedia.org/stories/Invisibles_plastics
A recent email from Patagonia stated, "Our mission is to build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, and inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.” One of the featured products pictured just below this statement was a fair-trade fleece. I am excited about your commitment to fair-trade certified production…but don’t at all support or understand the further production of fleece products.
Please consider again being the leader in exploring + promoting natural fiber options. No more fleece, please. Our water supply depends on it.
Thank you for your email! We apologize for the delay in response, we've been experiencing an unusually high number of emails this holiday season.
We greatly appreciate you taking time to write to us with your feedback regarding our fleece products. While we are aware of the nature of fleece fabrics shedding, we also feel that fleece is a crucial fabric for use in outdoor activities. We are currently conducting research in the attempt to develop a more environmentally friendly fleece so that we can help to reduce the amount of micro fibers that enter our water supply. For the time being, we offer a GUPPYFRIEND Washing Bag on our website for our customers to use when washing fleece. This bag helps to catch microfibers so that they do not enter our water supply or our oceans. The bag is sold at cost to help make it a more affordable, reasonable option for our customer who own fleece.
Please feel free to email me directly if you have any further questions, xxx. You can also reach out to our Customer Service Department by phone at (800) 638-6464 or by chat on Patagonia.com from Monday through Friday 6:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. (PST) and Saturday and Sunday 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. (PST) if you would like to speak with someone directly.
All the best,
Patagonia Customer Service
Let's make our voices heard. Someone just might be listening! :)
on a journey toward zero-waste, simplicity, + compassion :: daring to choose fair one choice at a time