Green Living

Natural Health is Green

Sustainability starts at home.

Inspiring you with the tools and ideas you need to live a simpler, healthier, and greener life.

  • Why You Should Join a CSA This Year

    Over the last 20 years, CSA or Community Supported Agriculture has become an increasingly popular way for consumers to buy local, seasonal—often organic—food directly from a farmer at a great price. Here's how it works... Continue reading Why You Should Join a CSA This Year at Small Footprint Family™.

  • How to Grow Winter Squash Organically

    Winter squashes are members of the Cucurbitaceae family and relatives of both the melon and the cucumber. Winter squashes like butternut or pumpkin have hard shells that are difficult to pierce, enabling them to have long storage periods under the right conditions, making them an essential crop for anyone trying to grow a lot of their own food. History of Growing Winter Squash Modern day squash developed from wild squash that originated in an area between Guatemala and Mexico. While squash has been grown and eaten for over 10,000 years, they were first cultivated specifically for their nutritious seeds because early squash did not contain much flesh, and what they did contain was very bitter. As time progressed, squash cultivation spread throughout the Americas, and varieties with a greater quantity of sweeter-tasting flesh were developed. Christopher Columbus brought squash back to Europe, and like many other native American foods, their cultivation was introduced throughout the world by Portuguese and Spanish conquerers. Winter Squash Varieties Today, there are hundreds of beautiful varieties of winter squash, and the largest commercial producers include China, Japan, Romania, Turkey, Italy, Egypt, and Argentina. SFF readers get 10% OFF all squash seeds at MiGardener! Continue reading How to Grow Winter Squash Organically at Small Footprint Family™.

  • Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About (25 Types of) Sugar

    Many people are confused about the different kinds of sugar and sweeteners available today, and whether they are healthy and safe. Here is the lowdown on 25 different types of sweetener on the market today. Continue reading Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About (25 Types of) Sugar at Small Footprint Family™.

  • Dandelion Magnesium Lotion for Muscle Cramps

    There are over 85,000 chemicals in use in our soaps, shampoos, deodorants, lotions, make-up and home cleaning products. Guess how many have been tested for safety? Almost none. Chemicals Get No Safety Testing Up until 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has mandated safety testing for only a tiny percentage of the industrial chemicals in use today. And once chemicals are in use, the burden on the EPA is so high that it has succeeded in banning or restricting only five substances: polychlorinated biphenyls, dioxin, hexavalent chromium, asbestos and chlorofluorocarbons. Because of this, hazardous chemicals have become so ubiquitous that scientists now talk about babies being born pre-polluted, sometimes with hundreds of synthetic chemicals showing up in their blood at birth. The increase of harmful chemicals—like the bisphenol A (BPA) in can linings, cash register receipts and hard plastics; the flame retardants in couches; the stain-resistant coatings on fabrics and the nonylphenols in detergents, shampoos and paints—have caused experts to call for changes to our laws to require better testing and set much stricter standards on what chemicals are allowed in the products we use every day. But until we have adequate scientific evaluation of the tens of thousands of chemicals in everyday household use (which will take years), the only way to be sure your personal care and house cleaning products are safe is to either check them against the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep database, or to make your own. Continue reading Dandelion Magnesium Lotion for Muscle Cramps at Small Footprint Family™.

  • Homemade Almond Milk Yogurt (Gluten Free, Paleo, Vegan)

    Is your dairy-free family obsessed with yogurt like mine? This homemade almond milk yogurt recipe is a delicious, affordable option if you and your family love yogurt but are vegan or can’t tolerate dairy products. Years ago, I made a gallon of homemade cow’s yogurt at a shot. My kids would gobble it up in a few days. It was simple to make and the control over each ingredient made me happy. Fast forward a few years. We discovered milk caused tummy aches, diarrhea, and heartburn in my kids. It was heartbreaking. My kids loved milk and yogurt! But the cost of non-dairy yogurt was a hard pill to swallow. The way my kids eat yogurt, they kick a pint size yogurt container each by 10am. I experimented with making my own almond milk yogurt. It was a rough road: Lots of failed yogurt batches and disappointed little kids when a batch didn’t pan out. We made the best of it. Here are 3 lessons I had to learn the hard way. Don’t make the same mistakes. Let’s save you time, money and frustration. 1. You Must Use Homemade Almond Milk I have attempted to make yogurt with several varieties of store-bought almond milk.  Continue reading Homemade Almond Milk Yogurt (Gluten Free, Paleo, Vegan) at Small Footprint Family™.

  • 10 Green New Years REVolutions

    Here are 10 things you can resolve to do this year to help make a big difference in the world, and save you some money, too. Continue reading 10 Green New Years REVolutions at Small Footprint Family™.

  • 12 Ways to Have an Eco Friendly Holiday

    Between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day, Americans throw away a million extra tons of garbage each week. Here are twelve ways to reduce your environmental footprint this holiday season. Continue reading 12 Ways to Have an Eco Friendly Holiday at Small Footprint Family™.

  • Thanksgiving Leftovers: Black Friday Pie (Gluten-Free, Paleo)

    Named for the Friday after Thanksgiving (U.S.), when all the stores have big sales to start the winter holiday season, Black Friday Pie is an easy and delicious way to make the most of your Thanksgiving leftovers. Similar to Shepherd’s Pie, but even faster to make, you will have Black Friday Pie on the dinner table so quickly, there will be plenty of time to hit the post-holiday sales! More Leftover Recipes: Turkey Soup with Root Vegetables (Gluten Free, Paleo) Easy Roasted Butternut Squash Soup (Gluten Free, Paleo, Vegan) Print Black Friday Pie .wprm-recipe-rating .wprm-rating-star.wprm-rating-star-full svg * { fill: #343434; } This easy to make turkey pie is a very tasty way to use up Thanksgiving leftovers! Course DinnerCuisine American, GAPS, Holiday, PaleoKeyword Thanksgiving Prep Time 10 minutesCook Time 40 minutesTotal Time 50 minutes Servings 8 servings Calories 103kcal Equipment 9-inch pie pan Ingredients 1-2 cups leftover mashed potatoes or sweet potatoes (or combination) 1/2 cup leftover cooked turkey cubed or shredded 1/2 cup leftover cooked green beans 1/2 cup leftover turkey gravy 1-2 cups leftover stuffing 2 Tbsp. Continue reading Thanksgiving Leftovers: Black Friday Pie (Gluten-Free, Paleo) at Small Footprint Family™.

  • 16 Ways to Eliminate Indoor Air Pollution

    According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the air we breathe inside our homes and offices can be five times more polluted than the air outside, and this may be affecting your health and the health of your family members. “Indoor air quality can be worse than outdoor air quality in almost every case,” according to William J. Calhoun, MD, professor of medicine and vice chair of the department of medicine at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston. That’s because enclosed spaces like homes and offices allow pollutants to accumulate and concentrate in the very places where we spend almost 90% of our time. Improving Air Quality Improves Your Health I believe the health of the human species directly correlates to the health of our environment. It’s not an accident so many of us are facing chronic illness, autoimmune disease and cancer at the same time that the planet has become so polluted. We are inherently interdependent with all things.To heal one, we must also heal the other. Because children, elders and people with illnesses are particularly sensitive to pollution, getting the toxins out of your air at home is just as important as getting them out of your food and water. Continue reading 16 Ways to Eliminate Indoor Air Pollution at Small Footprint Family™.

  • 10 Things You Should Not Put In Your Compost Pile

    While technically you can compost anything that was once living, some things are better left out of the compost pile for the sake of a better compost and less hassle. Here are 10 of them... Continue reading 10 Things You Should Not Put In Your Compost Pile at Small Footprint Family™.

  • 20 Perennial Vegetables to Plant Once for Years of Bounty!

    With the exception of asparagus, rhubarb and artichokes, most gardeners are unaware of the tasty, nutritious bounty that perennial vegetables can offer. Continue reading 20 Perennial Vegetables to Plant Once for Years of Bounty! at Small Footprint Family™.

  • How to Grow Great Garlic

    Fall is the time to plant garlic. Garlic is ridiculously easy to plant and care for. It tastes great, looks beautiful, and takes up so little space that even people with very small gardens or containers can grow enough to be well-stocked in garlic for most of the year. Here’s how to grow garlic… Selecting Garlic If you look in any good garden catalog, you’ll usually find many varieties of garlic listed. While different catalogs break them into different specialties and flavors, for general purposes, the most important difference in types of garlic is between softneck and hardneck. Softneck garlics are called “soft” because the whole green plant dies back, leaving nothing but the bulb and flexible stems that are easy to braid. In contrast, hardneck garlics have a stiff stem in the center that ends in a beautiful flower, followed by a cluster of little bulbs, which then dries to a rigid stick that makes braiding impossible. Softnecks are the easiest to grow in regions where the weather is mild. They keep longer than hardnecks, but they are less hardy and more likely to produce small, very strong-flavored cloves. Continue reading How to Grow Great Garlic at Small Footprint Family™.

  • Tricolor Kohlrabi Slaw (Gluten Free, Paleo, Vegan)

    Kohlrabi is a really strange looking vegetable related to broccoli and Brussels sprouts. It’s delicious and nutritious and easy to prepare. This simple slaw recipe will help you get the most out of this tasty, odd little vegetable. Kohlrabi Nutrition Kohlrabi is a powerhouse of Vitamin C, but only if you eat it raw. A single cup of raw kohlrabi has almost 84 mg of vitamin C! Kohlrabi also has a good amount beta-carotene, vitamin B6, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid and folate. Kohlrabi is a powerhouse of minerals, too. A cup of raw kohlrabi contains 14% of the Required Daily Allowance (RDA) for potassium and 9% of the RDA for copper and manganese. Kohlrabi also has small amounts of magnesium, phosphorus, calcium, iron and selenium. Selection and Storage of Kohlrabi Kohlrabi is at its best during winter months from November until March. Choose smaller kohlrabi, which are the sweetest and most tender. The purple variety is sweeter than the green. Bulbs bigger than the size of a tennis ball won’t be very tasty and often have tough, fibrous flesh. If the leaves are attached, make sure they are firm and green. Continue reading Tricolor Kohlrabi Slaw (Gluten Free, Paleo, Vegan) at Small Footprint Family™.

  • 25 Ways to Use Less Plastic (And Avoid the Toxins in It)

    Because of the toxins in plastic, it is important to avoid containers that leach chemicals like BPA, phthalates, lead and antimony into the environment. Continue reading 25 Ways to Use Less Plastic (And Avoid the Toxins in It) at Small Footprint Family™.

  • Pistachio Arugula Pesto (Gluten Free, Paleo, Vegan)

    It is sometimes called rocket, roquette, rugula or rucola. It looks like a baby lettuce and is often compared to watercress, but its little known secret is that it is really just a common local weed, and a member of the cruciferous family related to broccoli and cauliflower.  Arugula Nutrition Arugula is a very nutritious, leafy green vegetable with an unusual spicy flavor. It is high in vitamins A, C and K, and folic acid. It is also a good source of zinc, potassium, calcium and iron. Arugula of any type goes well in mixed salads, substituting for basil in pesto sauces and stepping in for spinach when required. From its cruciferous family roots, arugula gets its antioxidant power as well as enzymes needed for detoxifying the body naturally. Recently, it’s been linked to gastric ulcer relief. Like other greens, arugula is most nutritious when eaten raw, and can be juiced or well-blended for optimal nutrient digestion and assimilation. Here’s one of my favorite pesto recipes that we enjoy a lot this time of year. Other Pesto Recipes You’ll Love Basil Walnut Pesto Sun Dried Tomato Pesto Vegan Pesto with Zucchini Stinging Nettle Pesto Print Pistachio Arugula Pesto .wprm-recipe-rating .wprm-rating-star.wprm-rating-star-full svg * { fill: #343434; } Enjoy this pesto on crackers, veggies, zucchini noodles, or even chicken and fish! Continue reading Pistachio Arugula Pesto (Gluten Free, Paleo, Vegan) at Small Footprint Family™.