Information on how to volunteer on National Public Lands Day.
Spring clean up on the farm doesn't only include cleaning fallen branches, but cleaning up the goats too! Getting ready for kidding and making sure the goats are all set is our most important spring task.
Fasting is a great way to cleanse the body and to tune it in for the changing seasons. In today’s world, toxins can leave the body feeling weighed down and sluggish, but with a little fasting know-how, toxins can be removed and no one needs to be a nutritionist, a doctor, or plastic surgeon to do it. Following a fast, the body and mind will experience a natural high, bringing with it motivation and healthier lifestyle decisions.
You can upcycle (make crafts from recycled materials) to beautifuly and simplify your world! Have a few old T-shirts that are past their prime? Make them into a rosette pillow! Use homemade recycled paper to send friends and family chic, personalized greetings cards. Overrun with stuff to recycle? Transform tin can lids into a melodious windchime! Have fun and get creative turning your old stuff into treasures!
The shopping website Hipcycle offers beautiful upcycled products for your home and garden.
Check out this natural All-Purpose Cleaner recipe.
I had such a great time talking with attendees at the Mother Earth News Fair in Puyallup, Washington, this past weekend about how to make green cleaners. As always, I learned a new trick or two, and I promised everyone I’d recap our conversation here for easy access. Today let’s talk about some of the unexpected food items—most of which you already have in your kitchen cupboards—that can be used to clean your home.
Use tea to remove old furniture polish and prepare wooden furniture for polishing. Simply soak a rag in room-temperature tea, then run it over the wood. The tea’s tannic acid makes your wood shine while removing all the dirt. Once that’s done, you can use mayonnaise to make the piece shine. Just rub the mayo into the wood, then follow with a damp rag and a few drops of vinegar to remove any residue. Olive oil is also a great natural furniture
Make your own all-purpose cleaners, dishwasher detergent and mildew remover with safe, simple ingredients. Ever think you'd be doing dishes with Kool-Aid?
Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence finds a company that upcycles old yoga mats. Recycle Your Mat, a company founded by yogini Stephanie Stano in 2008 gives yoga mats a second life as an upcycled or recycled product.
Conventional household cleaners contain toxic chemicals that could have adverse effects on your health. Learn how to mix up your own homemade cleaners with these suggestions from Natural Home magazine editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence.
The National Products Association releases its natural standards and certification for household cleaners and laundry detergents.
Absorb and Clean delivers unmatched performance for cleaning up liquid spills on land, water, and hard surfaces instantly.
Making your own cleaning products using vinegar, baking soda and water is healthy, easy--and cheap. Learn how to whip up your own cleaners using foods you already have in your kitchen cupboard.
Upgrading wall insulation is tricky. You can't see the insulation that is (or isn't) in your walls, and it's not easy to install new insulation in a hidden wall cavity. One solution that shows promise is filling wall cavities with injections foam.
Cut old milk jugs into the shape of your choice, rough them up with sandpaper and string them together to make surprisingly pretty window shades that offer privacy while letting the sun shine in.
The Lawrence Anthony Earth Organization published a new analysis that depicts the dangerous flaws in oil spill response and outlines technology they claim will save marine life, oceans, animals and people, while saving millions of dollars.
Designed with professional features and priced to be affordable, the new fuel-efficient STIHL BR 200 backpack blower helps clear leaves, grass clippings or other debris from the yard.
Noxious fumes aren’t conducive to happy cleaning. Give all your homemade cleaning solutions an invigorating and healthy boost by adding a few drops of pure plant essential oils such as lavender or lemon. Heavenly!
MOTHER EARTH NEWS readers recently named dishwashing formula as their most desired DIY cleaner, so we’ve rounded up some easy and inexpensive dish de-griming recipes for your automatic dishwasher or for washing by hand.
Save money and have a healthier home with these ideas for assembling your own green cleaning tool kit. Plus, get our recipe for Lemon-Mint Window Wash.
This simple DIY project is a quick and easy way to repurpose a metal tray into a pretty place to display photos, notes, even holiday cards. The supplies needed may be found in your home or bought inexpensively at a local craft/home improvement store or found at a thrift shop.
It's important to keep indoor cats occupied to help them live long, healthy and happy lives. These homemade toys will do just the trick! The supplies are low cost and/or can be made by re-purposing items you already have at home.
With just three ingredients and two simple steps, you can clear away germs and freshen your home's air to welcome spring.
What do farm-raised salmon, your typical DEET bug spray, and non-filtered drinking water all have in common? These are frequently encountered sources of toxins which in excess could be threatening your health, but following a detox cleanse will keep you protected and restore energy!
If you still want to do everything you can to make your home healthy—for your family and the planet—take a look at how you clean. Like it or not, we have to clean our homes on a regular basis. Natural Home offers lots of great ideas for making your own healthy, natural cleaning solutions—or look to some of the great green solutions now available at your grocery store.
Share your thoughts. What homemade and natural cleaning products do you find work best in your home?
Guru Drain keeps hair and debris from clogging drains, saving you time and money.
Clean with vodka for a spic-and-span house and less of a headache in the morning! You can use the alcohol to freshen your laundry, remove mold and mildew, and even repel bugs. Vodka kills bacteria and dries clear and odor-free, making it an ideal addition to your cleaning cupboard.
15 tips to help you get rid of clutter once and for all and create a clean, serene home.
Build an inexpensive bicycle trailer out of upcycled walkers and other easy-to-find materials.
You don't need to rely on toxic chemicals to clean your house. Opt for natural homemade cleaners or nontoxic options such as Bon Ami.
The joy and sustainability of a greenhouse made of salvaged everything (well, almost).
Instead of throwing out that empty feedbag, get creative and turn it into something new! Homesteader Ed Essex shares ideas for finding new uses for old objects.
When it comes to that most essential of all modern appliances, the best way to be eco-friendly is to stick with the tried and true three R's: reduce, reuse or recycle.
This framed floral arrangement made with dried flowers and corsages is a lovely and sentimental art piece. It can be made with flowers saved and preserved from many occasions, or from this year’s Valentine’s Day flowers.
This post is an overview of my wood pallet guitar. It explains the material sources, how they were obtained and preparation involved with little or no budget, along with the story of my life. Also, you’ll learn the benefits of recycling, repurposing, and reclaiming.
Turn a collection of carpet-sample pieces into an eclectic rug for your kitchen or bathroom! This resourceful DIY project can be make with just four materials - some of which may already be in your home.
Because it could cause eye and skin irritation and harm reproductive systems, the Environmental Working Group recommends avoiding it. Baking soda is a solid, safe alternative.
Your simply imperfect arsenal for getting the whole house clean--naturally.
It’s springtime and the weather is getting warm, but that is no excuse for letting money and energy fly out the window every single day. Hopefully you were able to find all the drafts and leaks in your windows last fall (if not, now is just as good a time as any).
A recipe for a salt scrub that can clean those dirty garden hands while promoting healing.
I wanted a DIY natural cleaner for stainless steel appliances, because I don't use all those terrible chemical-filled products that I was tricked into buying 10 years ago. How do I clean without the name brand products that promise to make life easy and clean your stainless steel products? Let me tell you my secret.
"Green" cleaning products are awash with misleading labels and false claims. Always look for a third-party certification to assure you're buying the healthiest, most environmentally friendly cleaners.
If you crave great music with an eco-conscious cause, attend Rock the Green, Milwaukee’s first green music festival.
Highlights from the "Make Your Own Green Cleaners--for Pennies" workshop at the Mother Earth News Fair: How to use vinegar and baking soda to clean just about everything.
An automotive whiz explains why it's not a great idea to let your car warm up by idling.
Although you might think warming up your car is best on a cold morning, doing so is a bad idea — and not just because it wastes gas.
Steve Maxwell, “Canada’s Handiest Man”, sheds light
on a new rural Canadian invention, Seg-Ins Big Bed, a truck extention that
improves cargo capacity.
You can get your whole house fresh and shiny clean with just five ingredients: lemons, vinegar, baking soda, tea tree oil and salt.
Here are some suggestions for removing rust from cast iron.
Some of the nastiest chemicals we bring into our homes are used to clean ovens and drains--and they're not necessary. Learn how to clean your entire kitchen using vinegar, baking soda and a little salt and lemon juice. You'll love the results!
My grandmother taught me everything I need to know about keeping my house clean--without chemicals.
Building a greenhouse out of an old carport destined for the dump.
We started our adventure of building a barndominium on our Texas property while still in Australia. The past year has been spent finishing and enjoying the house. As we've learned, finishing the house is only the first step in developing the homestead.
This blog post explores eco-friendly gardening tips to refreshing your garden tools, furniture, accessories and outbuildings without the need to buy mass-manufactured goods or use harmful chemical treatments.
A simple technique for using salvaged tiles to make beautiful floors.
Ah, the fun begins for building a wood pallet guitar. In this post, we apply the following building steps: planning material, matching the right tools to the wood, shielding cavities, and basic electric guitar electronics assembly and testing.
Upcycle abandoned shopping carts into funky shopping cart furniture that is both fun and functional. This DIY shopping cart project takes some elbow grease, but is well worth the results.
More than the electricity needed to run these machines, the “rinse hold” hot water setting that many households use is the biggest energy drain associated with dishwashers – as much as 80 percent of the energy your dishwasher uses goes to heat water.
Did you know that a dirty filter in your HVAC equipment can reduce its efficiency by up to 20 percent? Didyou also know that it is recommended to check your filter every month? Don’t despair!
When you get home today, do this simple test: Close your fridge door on a dollar bill or piece of paper; if you can pull the bill out easily or worse, if it falls, then it is time to replace the seal.
Did you know that heat transfer through windows can account for up to 25 percent of your energy bill by allowing heat out during the winter, and makes your air conditioner work overtime to combat the sun’s warming? Drafts and leaks can be the biggest culprit of energy waste but can also be fixed with relatively little effort.
Attics can be a huge energy drain if they are not insulated sufficiently. We’ll leave the
heavy lifting for next weekend, but for now look for uneven insulation, base sports, water damage, and anything else that looks out of place.
It might seem like a small thing, but your refrigerator can be a HUGE drain on your energy bill. We’ve already shown you how to check for leaks in your refrigerator seal—now let’s take the next step in keeping your fridge in top working order.
Having a properly maintained water heater is like going to the dentist: No one wants to do it, but it’s gotta be done. Ideally, you should have an inspection and necessary maintenance performed on your water heater once a year.
Wind power grew by 30 percent and solar power grew by 40 percent in 2010, according to a new report.
Tips for solar advocates to invest money smartly and be part of the growing solar market
From IBM to Sprint to Dell, companies are going green and even realizing they can save green too.
A University of Georgia study finds that common houseplants can remove toxins and improve indoor air quality.
Mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will stop accepting loans from the nationwide Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) program, which helps homeowners pay for the cost of energy-efficient retrofits.
The Sierra Club’s top 100 greenest colleges and universities carve a clean energy future—students demand it.
A reader wonders how often to change furnace filters to keep the air clean in her home. Learn the frequency with which homeowners should replace a furnace filter.
Alka-Seltzer can give your cleaning routine a little extra fizz. Try it for unclogging drains and cleaning toilets.
Clean out the hive at the end of winter
Does the huge task of cleaning windows leave you feeling overwhelmed? Follow these six simple steps--using inexpensive materials you already have around the house--to get your windows sparkling and streak-free.
4 or 40, growing up isnt always straight up. Branches, bumpy outcroppings and the occasional low hanging fruit serve as speed bumps on the road of life.
Robert Zwald grew up in the 1900s, farming in Minnesota. This is part two of his stories from the past, as compiled by his daughter, Ruth.
Growing up on a farm during the Great Depression was no easy feat, but MOTHER EARTH NEWS readers share these stories of their or their elder's time on a farm.
The Joy of Green Cleaning is a fantastic resource with recipes to clean everything from grout to sheepskins.
Simran Sethi explores resolutions for healthy eating and offers a resource, The Cleaner Plate Club.
Two students have created an inspirational blog that features one upcycling project--something made from discarded materials--each day. They've committed to keeping it going for 30 days, but with your help it could go forever.
The “Remote Community Renewable Energy Partnership” exceeds Obama’s goal for supporting clean energy development in small native villages.
Renewable energy accounts for nearly 50 percent of added capacity in US in 2012.
Congress passed a piece of legislation which could have a serious impact on the nation's job crisis. This post explains the act, analyzes its impact, and notes that the whole renewable job sector has been pretty much ignored.
Electronic waste, aka e-waste, is the fastest growing waste stream of our time. E-waste is considered hazardous waste and more often than not, is recycled improperly. But there are ways to avoid contributing to the growth of this toxic waste.
Contact your senators now to encourage them to support the clean energy initiatives in the new stimulus package.
Despite utility opposition, key policy drives rapid expansion of rooftop solar.
Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence explains a Pew Charitable Trusts study that finds that jobs in the clean energy sector are growing faster than jobs in the fossil fuel industry.
Many people don’t know that most HVAC systems don’t produce more or less heating or cooling based on the room temperature – they simply blow air for longer.
When you get home, go to your hot water heater, remove the cover and turn it down to 120 degrees (sometimes labeled “hot” as opposed to “very hot”).
Replacing a task that uses electricity with one that does not is a no-brainer when trying to save on your energy bill — and air drying is one of the easiest ways to go.
“The Cleaner Plate Club” co-author Beth Bader shares an adventure to the farmers market with her daughter, her “eat local” food values, and her recipe for Lemongrass Tomato Soup.
Learn how to eliminate mold growth in your home and improve indoor air quality by using Concrobium.
Sixteen states have banned the sale of dishwasher detergents with high phosphate levels, and the American Cleaning Institute has urged its members to remove them.
Cam rationalizes his hoarding behaviour....
Tips on how to protect water quality with phosphate-free cleaning projects during spring cleaning.
How we clean out chimney on our A - Frame house with a steep roof.
It has become a Christmas ritual for me to clean out my mother's fridge. I find whiskery gnarled morsels, shoved to the back of the fridge many months previously, unseen, and untouched by my mother’s arthritic hands. Do I compost all this detritus?
Preventing allergy causes as opposed to treating the symptoms.
Bring back bottle-cutting! This contemporary candelabra, which gives new life to beautiful blue mineral water bottles, will make you rethink that old '70s craft.
Deb Murphy shares her dad's boyhood stories about making ends meet on the farm in 1930s Nebraska.
Tomatoes are the gray area of canning. They're not quite acidic enough to just straight can like fruit but the right amount of added acid can keep you from having to pressure can them. Here are the basics on canning tomatoes.
Our books are making a larger impact than we know!
People are often apprehensive about preserving their own food, whether they're intimidated by the process, or concerned about the safety of the finished product. As Sherri Brooks Vinton explains, it's time to bring canning back to the home kitchen.
It's easy to make your own air freshener spray. You'll avoid chemicals and delight in the fresh smell.
Most Americans believe that cleaning products are required to list ingredients on labels. They're not. But Whole Foods is taking matters into its own hands with a color-coded rating system that holds manufacturers accountable for green claims.
Organic Pond is pleased to announce that the Organic Materials Research Institute (OMRI) has reviewed the company's PureBacteria+ Biological Pond Muck Reducer and has listed PureBacteria+ for use in organic production.
New investment in clean energy reached $243 billion last year, driven by soaring activity in China, offshore wind and European rooftop photovoltaics
From shampoo and lotion to wood polish and drain cleaner, you’ll be surprised at how many common household products contain potentially hazardous ingredients. Here’s how to identify problem products and find the best alternatives to buy — or save a little money by making your own.
Moving is stressful, but it's not an excuse to forget your carbon footprint. Here are some ways to make your move as eco-friendly as possible.
Replacing paper towels with rags is a super simple step toward sustainable living. Follow these simple tips to get disposable paper towels out of your house. You'll never miss them.
With WASHDROPS™, consumers can wash everything from vehicles and patio furniture to aluminum siding, conserve water, a precious resource, and be environmentally responsible.
To make liquid hand soap all you need is a bar of soap and a cheese grater. What could be easier?
Holy cow, I just wrote a blog about cleaning. I really am turning into my mother.
The Clean Power Plan to cut carbon pollution from existing power plants, proposed on June 2, 2014, by the Environmental Protection Agency, under President Obama’s Climate Action Plan not only limits our carbon pollution but also injects life back into our domestic workforce.
The Union of Concerned Scientists created a new Web feature to show the success of green-collar jobs.
The first Tiny House Conference will take place in Charlotte, North Carolina, on April 16.
Check out Annie B. Bond's list of 11 easy tips for making your kitchen more healthy and safe, from Care2.
Discover some of the properties of essential oils, along with some tips for cleaning with them.
In this piece, author Mary Moss-Sprague discusses the simple pleasures of tasty, home-canned tomato preserves.
Vermont farmer Walter Jeffries details all the cuts of meat on a pig, as well as many other uses of the animal, from working the soil to providing delicious lard for baked goods.
Let's quash, once and for all, the notion that only harmful chemicals can kill germs and bacteria. Hydrogen peroxide, tea tree oil and grapefruit seed extract are natural antibacterials that keep your home clean--and safeguard your family's health.
Comly Wilson, Associate with CleanEdison, a solar installation training provider, offers her tips to remedy 6 common mistakes solar PV installers make when setting up new photovoltaic systems.
Learn about advertising-induced fear of an innocuous, food-grade substance, vinegar. Plus, get interesting information about vinegar being used for bioremediation of extremely dangerous chemicals.
Describing how we are trying to provide a low budget solar panel back up system for under 1000 dollars that will run our laptops and router along with a few other things if the local power grid has any issues.
Keep your family healthy by paying close attention to your home's 10 germiest places.
Clear your home's air naturally for better health and well being.
Clearing out life's detritus is an important first step when spring cleaning. Follow these tips to make clutter-free, organized living possible.
The babies have arrived, now is the time to take care of all of the other parts of caring for the newborns!
The kids have finally arrived, and we have plenty of photos of them!
Simran Sethi describes the choices she made for her eco-friendly kitchen remodel.
The nation's largest community-owned solar array in Rifle, Colorado, will provide clean energy for up to 350 residents, who don't even need a roof to enjoy the benefits of renewable energy.
Simran Sethi looks back at her New Year's resolution: to nourish herself.
When the dining table is laden down with mail, laptops and other clutter, the entire house feels messy. Follow these seven steps to keep your dining table free of detritus. (Set it for dinner right after breakfast, if you have to.)
Wabi-sabi is never slobby, but we can allow ourselves to stop trying so hard and just appreciate our warm bed at the end of the day—whether it’s made or not.
After the kidding is over, we take good care of our girls! And, the babies need to be bottle fed, so here are the instructions on how we feed our kids.
Therapeutic grade essential oils have a tonne of uses on the homestead - here's how we've used them effectively, and how they bring us peace of mind.
Simran Sethi discusses what it takes for a home to be truly clean by avoiding harsh chemicals and using natural cleaning products.
An update on generating electricity with pedal power and which exercise bike we decided on and testing soil for nutrient ratios along with fixing a pair of leaky boots with adhesive and inner tube scrap patch.