Simple saucy salad
for the sauce:
Assemble + enjoy!
zero-waste saucy salad
One of the things I quickly discovered while making zero-waste meals is that a good sauce can make all the difference. As zero-wasters, we're working with the most delicious + nutritious ingredients: fresh vegetables, legumes, whole grains, nuts + seeds to name a few. Sometimes salt, pepper flakes + a bit of olive oil is all that is needed to make these into a tasty meal. Sometimes a simple sauce bumps the whole enterprise up a notch.
This meal was simple + delicious...and zero-waste. This salad can obviously be made with a variety of ingredients. I do especially like this dressing/sauce with chickpeas + cucumbers + tomatoes.
Simple saucy salad
for the sauce:
Assemble + enjoy!
A meal like this can be a quick meal with a little foresight + regular preparation. Regularly cooking up a large batch of chickpeas all at once, always having yogurt on hand + storing my greens effectively help so much when it comes time to make meals...even at the end of a long day. (I've linked a few of the ways I keep these ingredients zero-waste, fresh + ready for use above.) When I cook rice, I always cook more than I need, so that I can have some already cooked rice on hand for meals like this. This salad can be eaten cold or warm. It could be batch made ahead for lunches too. Nourishing, quick, easy + tasty...just how I like my meals!
fairdare favorites :: intimates
Starting out our fairdare favorites series with the first + most everyday layer seemed appropriate. It's also the easiest category of favorites for me to choose. Most of the favorites here are tried + true...and highly recommended. :)
What I'm looking for :: organic cotton or natural fibers/materials (as much as possible), fair labor, traceable origins, durability, wearability
Considerations :: Thrifting doesn't necessarily apply to the category of intimates, so having a fair favorite or two in this category is helpful. I'm willing to take special care to hand wash (bras) as needed + to line dry (as usual). This prolongs the life of these beauties + keeps them out of the landfill (or preferably the compost heap) for as long as possible.
Pansy :: organic cotton grown in Texas + milled in North Carolina :: rubber/cotton elastic made in South Carolina :: sewn in San Leandro, California :: non-toxic dyes
These beauties (above) are my top pick for sustainability. The fabric + elastic are traceable + biodegradable (the 100% organic cotton ones). I've collected mine one by one + on sale. :) Pansy has added a more supportive bra to their collection, which I'd love to try.
Arq :: organic cotton :: made in the USA :: environmentally friendly dyes :: children's too
I love these high waisted bottoms + comfy tops that accommodate a range of sizes. I find the tops supportive enough for everyday wear + like that the straps are pretty enough to be on display. I would be comfortable in a set of Arq pieces at the beach (one less thing to pack). Again, I collect these lovelies slowly over time.
For the whole family :: Pact :: organic cotton :: fair-trade labor :: budget conscious :: men's + children's too
We have lots of these in our house. I would wear them too, if they had a higher waisted version. Pact underwear are soft + long lasting + can be found locally (where we live).
For periods :: Lunapads :: organic cotton :: made in Canada :: boxers, bikinis + briefs
I have four of these + they have eliminated my need for liners. They feel like a light, reassuring hug. I just wash these along with the other dark laundry.
For Europeans + for a back closure bra :: The Nude Label :: organic cotton :: made locally in Valencia, Spain
I would love to try one of Nude Label's bras, when I need a new one. I like the back closure, because it allows one to tighten the fit as the bra stretches out. I also like that I wouldn't mind these straps being visible when wearing spaghetti straps.
Again...this fairdare favorites series will highlight a very few fair brands to maybe start a search with...when a wider search feels a bit daunting. For more (+ lots more) fair intimates including supportive bras + sports bras, right this way. There are new players in the fair intimates category all the time, which is very exciting! I'll keep my eyes out + will keep updating our fair intimates lists (which is searchable toward the bottom of the ethical brands page). This post will be searchable both there + toward the bottom of the fairdare page. Feel free to add your fair favorite intimates in the comments! :)
introducing :: fairdare favorites
I enjoy keeping + adding to our ethical brands list...and I enjoy doing more in-depth clothing category posts (see the bottom of the ethical brands page). Sometimes, though, it can feel a bit daunting to search through so many fair brands when it comes time to shop (what an incredibly, amazingly, fantastically exciting problem to have though!!). I thought it might be nice to narrow things down a bit + compile a little collection of fairdare favorites...a not-so-comprehensive list of places to start the search when a new pair of socks or not-so-casual pants is necessary. As a sort of introduction, let's define a few things that will carry through these posts:
What the fairdare is :: It's a commitment to value farmers, garment workers + the environment through the choices we make regarding our clothing. We strive to know "enough". We understand that the goal is to wear + wear out what we already own. We mend, repair, refashion first...thrift, make...and buy fair when necessary.
What I'm looking for in a "favorite" :: Fair wages. Traceable origins. Natural fibers. As little pesticide + pollution as possible. Durability. Styles to wear over + over. Some of these brands will be my + my family's tried + true favorites. Some will be the ones I might choose to try when the need arises. I live in the USA, so while I know that there are many fantastic ethical brands based elsewhere around the globe (too many for me to investigate all of them...yay!!), I will often choose brands based/sold closer to my home.
Obviously my favorites may not be your favorites. Let these lists inspire lists of your own in the notes on your phone or in another memorable spot. Add your favorites in the comments here as a reminder you can revisit +/or to share with others. If these lists are helpful + you'd like to revisit one when a need arises, there is a link to these posts toward the bottom of both the fairdare page + the ethical brands page. The link leads back to this post (where the categories will be added as posted) in order to keep things a little more uncluttered. Let me know if you have any requests too. :)
weekend reads + such
This week has been cool enough to throw the windows open wide + let the breeze flutter the curtains. We've spent evenings at the pool reading books + chatting + soaking in vitamin D. We've picked more tomatoes than our stomachs can hold + ate all the kinds of berries. Sunflowers bob above my head + make me smile every time I see them. The cicadas + crickets are singing boisterously + the lightning bugs can still be found. It's glorious summer.
I'm reading Simplicity the art of living by Richard Rohr. It's a lovely read that has prompted me to fill many pages in my journal. I am trying to absorb things slowly + thoroughly. How do I free myself from myself?
A simple capsule to sew + to dance in.
Biodegradable, plant-based shoes.
Four major car makers agree to higher fuel efficiency standards for themselves.
Today, garment manufacturing is one of the largest contributors to modern day slavery.
I would happily live here.
Things need tending + using no less than buying + creating. Paying attention to use isn't some sort of ineffectual, alternative thing to do. But it's about how we might dress, how we might live in uncertain times with optimism, lightness + principle.
May you experience some of the beauty of summer (or winter) right where you find yourself this weekend, friend!
We still have everything in our own hands.
simple trip prep :: clothing
Once we've decided where our vacation plans will take us, one of the big things we have to deal with is what clothing to pack. I find this task both fun + daunting. No matter the size of our wardrobes, many of us might start to make a list of things we "need" to purchase in order to feel prepared for our travels.
Our past trips have often involved being prepared to do lots of walking + maybe hiking as well as looking cute enough to join the chic in the city. The trip we are looking forward to involves all things outdoors...in a place where outdoorsy style fits right in even in the city. (Fingers crossed.) :)
This trip will involve "living" outdoors + visiting areas steeped in this lifestyle. I anticipate feeling comfortable in pretty much one type of clothing + that makes the prospect of packing only a backpack seem really manageable. Layering is king here. A tank, soft pants (or shorts...yet to be decided) + sandals will keep me cool. Layering leggings, a long-sleeved tee, a wool layer, windbreaker + trainers will keep me warm. Outdoor living + hiking can call for various levels of layering throughout the day. I think these pieces will be up to the challenge.
I also love that as I think through packing for this trip, I can find almost all of what I anticipate needing in my own small wardrobe. (!)
Here's what I'm planning on packing:
-soft pants or jumpsuit or shorts
-trainers, socks, sandals
-baseball cap (+ maybe a beanie or headband)
I did need to purchase a windbreaker that packs small. Otherwise my small wardrobe proved sufficient! Yay!
Photos via links. Unlinked photos, mine.
We can't shop our way to sustainability. ~Céline Semaan
Such a good reminder! The very best thing for our planet...for sustainability...for the use of resources...for the reduction waste...for fair fashion...is also the cheapest action...wearing our clothes! Wear them with joy + love, when it can be managed. So simple.
zero-waste bread update
I've shared before how we buy + store bread in a zero-waste way. We did it that way for years, + it worked well. The only issue we had was that when the humidity was high, the bread became difficult to break off of the frozen loaf in one piece. Another issue with this storage option could be that some might prefer to eat bread rather than toast...or to pack a sandwich for later.
So...here is the way we've been doing zero-waste bread for the last year + a bit. An unpackaged loaf of bread is sliced at the store + put into a cloth bag from home. (I made my bags with the dimensions of a bag from the store as a guide. I like the bag to be big enough to slide over the loaf, but small enough to hold the sliced loaf together.) At home, I put the bread (cloth bag + all) into a plastic bread bag that we use over + over (I would imagine that a nylon baggu bag would work just as well). I just twist the bag closed, and it will keep in the fridge for a week. If I have part of a loaf still in the fridge when I bring home a new loaf, I'll put the new one into the freezer. When someone uses up the last of the refrigerated bread, they move the frozen loaf into the fridge.
If I was shopping for one or two people (instead of a family), I may split the loaf in half...storing half in the freezer + half in the fridge. This would keep the bread fresh + ready to eat as bread or toast. Hope all of that makes sense! :)
I have picked flowers where I found them-
Have picked up sea shells + rocks + pieces of
wood where there were sea shells + rocks + pieces of
wood that I liked
When I found the beautiful white bones
on the desert I picked them up + took them home too
I have used these things to say what is to me the
wideness + wonder of the world as I live in it
Every so often I check out a few of Maira Kalman's books from the library. I like revisiting the colorful paintings + quirky words in each one...like yummy conversation-inspiring + thought-provoking picture books for all ages. Relatable sadness + laughter are often wrapped up together...always in a magnificently, aesthetically pleasing package.
Ms. Kalman is a master at pointing out the magic in the mundane...the beauty of the unremarkable...the wonder in the everyday. These pages remind me to stop to remember that my great grandmother gave me handfuls of blueberries out of the pie she was making...even though she never really could put her finger on who this small girl in her kitchen was. I feel a comforting kinship with Maira, because I too tuck bits of the everyday into spots for my future self to discover + treasure. Just this week, I found a note from my much younger Julia that offers a glimpse into a regular...yet now untouchable...day many years ago.
We often look at life as the spectacular paintings in an art museum...as major events + accomplishments. I love that Maira's books prod me to paint the everydayness of a much used kettle with the same care as vacation memories. Oh, how I love to come awake to the beauty in my everyday...the moments that make up a life shared with those I love most.
on a journey toward zero-waste, simplicity, + compassion :: daring to choose fair one choice at a time