Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Freezing corn and more...

Too good to waste
Yesterday, I asked if anyone could offer me some guidance about freezing corn and no one, not a single one of you, responded. What's that about? Maybe you're as clueless as I am. So I did some research and here's what I discovered:

After cutting the corn off of the cob, I need to blanch it by boiling it in a little bit of water for about 4 minutes. Then I immediately dunk it into ice water (with lots of ice), drain the water, and put the corn in freezer containers. 

Sounds easy enough. I can't wait to try it this coming weekend. If you have any other suggestions, let me know. Or if you want to learn more about freezing veggies, click on this link from ecoCENTRIC.

In the meantime, I had some grass-fed ground meat in the fridge and decided I better get it in the freezer since the expiration date was just a few days away. We'd had red meat within the past couple of days and didn't want to have it again right now. Sometimes it's hard to know whether or not to freeze what we have or keep it in the refrigerator so it's ready to be cooked. But the important thing is to not waste it, so this time around, freezing was the best option. 

But really, other than saving money by not wasting food, why does this matter? Food waste comes with an environmental cost as well as a cost to your grocery budget. It is estimated that nearly one-third (1.3 billion tons) of the global food supply is wasted annually. Average families of 4 generally toss out about $175 worth of food monthly! Ouch.

Wasted food accounts for more than 25% of all freshwater consumption and uses 300 million barrels of oil per year. With the current water crisis, this is a disturbing figure. Unless composted, the food rots in landfills, releasing methane, a greenhouse gas that traps 23 times more heat than CO2. Keep in mind, there is a cost to disposing the waste as well, close to $1 billion in the U.S. alone!

The more food wasted, the more food needed. That means more fertilizer, pesticide use (unless you're buying only organic foods), more processing, more transportation fuel, and, unless we all learn our lessons, more food wasting away in the landfill. Yikes.

That's why learning proper freezing methods is important, folks. It's about more than our pocketbooks. It, too, is about caring for this amazing planet of ours.

So, are you part of the problem, or part of the solution? What are you doing to prevent food waste?

Are you interested in 'eco-eating'? NBC's Green is Universal is hosting an "Eco Eats" sweepstakes from September 29 - October 17. To join, visit their free green-living tool, One Small Act, and join the "Eco Eats" challenge. Everyone who signs up and tackles at least one action by October 17th will be entered to win one of five 6-month subscriptions to NatureBox. No Purchase Necessary. Must be US resident and 18+. Read official rules here.

Disclosure: In exchange for participating in the challenge and writing this post, I was given a gift package from Green is Universal. All opinions here are still my own.

Monday, September 29, 2014

It's about the corn

I'll tell you what. I've really enjoyed eating corn-on-the-cob this summer, which is pretty awesome since I had almost given up on it. You see, I will NOT eat conventional corn because of the GMOs and it was difficult to find non-GMO corn. But when I did (thank you, Freedom Farms), I went out of my way to buy it nearly every week.

As autumn is upon us, I'm being challenged to do something I've never done. Freeze corn. I know that if I don't take the time to do it now, I will not be eating corn again until next summer. Yikes! The problem is, I don't have a whole lot of time right now. I over-packed my schedule and I'm operating a little bit on panic mode. So how am I going to find the time to freeze corn?

But what if I don't find the time? It's a real dilemma.

My mom froze corn. I'd love visiting her in the middle of winter and she'd pull some lovely Silver Queen corn out of the freezer that she'd frozen the summer before. But I never took the time to learn how she did it. I took for granted that when the time came for me to start freezing corn, she'd be around to help. 

Well, she's not. And now I'm on my own to figure it out for myself. 

So, if you have a good method for freezing corn and you'd like to share it with me, please do so in the comments below. My mom would appreciate it. So would I.

Trying to plan ahead,

Friday, September 26, 2014

IOTUT -- It's about your wedding gown

Have you ever wondered what to do with your wedding gown after the wedding (or after the divorce, for that matter)? It's Friday's Instead of This, Use (or Do) This. Today, I'm going to share some suggestions for those of you who no longer want to hang on to their wedding dresses.

There are a number of organizations that take wedding dresses for a variety of purposes. My first suggestion, if you're not looking to sell your gown, is to donate it to a local charity that provides dresses for women who simply can't afford a brand new dress. You'll have to do your research on that one. These would either be organizations that provide the dresses for free, or thrift shops that accept wedding gowns. 

On a national level, here are some suggestions:

DonateMyWeddingDress.org offers a selection of charities that benefit from wedding dress donations, including
  • Adorned in Grace -- Benefiting victims of sex trafficking, they sell the donated gowns and use the money to help the victims on the US West Coast.
  • Brides Across America -- This Massachusetts charity gives out free gowns to US military brides.
  • Brides for Haiti -- They accept both wedding gowns and prom dresses. They're located in Maryland and they sell the donated dresses at consignment shops to raise money to help St. Joseph's parish in a remote location in Haiti.
  • St. Anthony's Bridal -- Located in Bethesda, MD, they loan wedding gowns to lower income brides in the Washington, DC area.
  • Wish Upon a Wedding -- Partnering with Brides for a Cause, they help couples to have their dream wedding or renewal of vows in the case of terminal illness and serious challenges.
  • The Bridal Garden -- The donated gowns are sold and the money is used to help underprivileged children in NYC.
These are fabulous ways to take a dress that was special to you and use it to make a difference!

You can also contact NICUHelpingHands.org and donate your gown for the Angel Gown program. Volunteers make gowns for those precious little ones who never make it home from the hospital.

One of their missions is to make sure parents have something special and sacred to bury their child in.

There are many other options of what to do with your wedding gown. You can scroll through Pinterest for a variety of ideas. But I think the above suggestions are worthy of consideration. Why not extend the special meaning of your bridal gown by donating it to a charity that makes a difference. It made a difference for you on your wedding day... so perhaps, instead of letting it take up space in your home, you can let it take up space in someone's heart.

Presenting alternatives for you to consider,

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Frozen Soundtrack Giveaway!

Frozen - The Songs Soundtrack Giveaway

Hosted by: Queen of Savings

Sponsor: Walt Disney Records/Disney Music Group

Admit it. You love the songs from FROZEN as much as your kiddos do. Right? How often have you found yourself humming, or even belting out, "Let it Go"?

Well, here's your chance to win the soundtrack for yourself... ummm, I mean your kiddos.

Featuring original songs from Kristen Anderson-Lopez (“In Transit,” “Winnie the Pooh”) and Tony® winner Robert Lopez (“The Book of Mormon,” “Avenue Q”), and an original score by Christophe Beck (“The Muppets,” Oscar®-winning short “Paperman”), FROZEN won two Academy Awards® (best animated film and best original song with “Let It Go”) and a Golden Globe® (best animated feature film). It is the fifth highest grossing film of all time and the highest grossing animated film earning more than $1.27 billion globally. See the full track list here.

Prize: Frozen - The Songs Soundtrack CD

Dates: 9/25-10/3
Open to: US Residents 18+
Enter to win using the widget below. Good luck!


Disclosure: Green Grandma did not receive compensation for this post and is not responsible for prize fulfillment.


TBT -- I poo in blue... really now?

It's Throwback Thursday. Today I'm reposting an updated post from July 2010. I had one grandchild at the time and she was in cloth diapers. Since then, I added a cloth-diapered grandson and another cloth-diapered granddaughter. This post evolved from my feelings about a popular commercial of the day, shown in this video. Cue the sexy music.

Here's the post:
Photo courtesy of Heather Desuta
Since I'm on an advertising roll -- with a critical eye on ads that make my blood boil, I thought it would be a good time to express my feelings about that catchy commercial where the toddler struts his stuff in a denim-colored diaper. I HATE THAT COMMERCIAL! Granted, it has its appeal. My granddaughter giggles when it comes on. But really folks, making a toddler appear sexy in a diaper pushes all the wrong buttons. He's so suave and debonair...why? He's a baby, people! A baby with a chauffeur and NO CAR SEAT! This ad is wrong on so many levels.

While he may poo in blue, my grandbaby tinkles in periwinkle. And a whole rainbow of other colors and designs. After all, cloth diapers shifted away from plain white a long time ago... there just aren't commercials with catchy jingles promoting that. Too bad. I wish there were. After all, if cloth were cool, perhaps more young parents would be jumping on the bandwagon.

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