FSC – Forest Stewardship Council


I am currently researching the many excellent organisations set up to safe guard different aspects of our world. From speaking to people in general about such organisations not many people are aware of the excellent work carried out, and more often than not ‘not-for-profit’. I have decided to do a blog on my favourite organisations starting with FSC – Forest Stewardship Council as I am embarking on the exciting road of getting my first book published and I want it to be as environmental as possible in the publishing process. The Soother Cycle is a book to aid the soother weaning process and encourage the recycling of the soother. I tend to stick with the area of teaching Environmental Responsibility to children and adults alike, so for me knowledge of such organisations is key as they are at the forefront of their cause.

Brief History:

First founded in California in 1990 by a group of timber users, traders and representatives of environmental and human rights organizations concerned about accelerating deforestation, environmental degradation and social exclusion. This diverse group highlighted the need for a system that could credibly identify well-managed forests as the sources of responsibly produced wood products. The concept of FSC and the name were coined at this meeting.

Types of Certification:

The FSC issues three different types of certificates: Forest Management, Chain of Custody and Controlled Wood. The different types of certificates relate to different stages of production and subsequent progress of forest products through the value chain. Verification against all FSC requirements ensures that materials and products with the FSC label are from responsibly managed forests.

Interested in buying FSC certified products:

By buying FSC certified products, you provide incentives for responsible forestry. Whether you are an individual or business, you can enjoy your purchases knowing it has not contributed to the destruction of the world’s forest or even come from companies involved in human rights abuses.

The FSC Trademark, if you see it please support it:

The FSC trademarks provide a guarantee to consumers that the products they buy come from responsible sources. The FSC trademarks enable consumers to choose products that support forest conservation, offer social benefits, and enable the market to provide an incentive for better forest management. The FSC trademarks are thus essential to the whole FSC system.

A Claire Lewis Product Review: Lilly’s Eco Clean Products

Lilly’s Eco Clean Products with a message to “Enjoy Cleaning and Spread the Eco Luv”

Cleaning my home is something of a chore! As a busy mum, running my own business as well as working part time I just get the job done, as mums know we always have a million and one other things to do.

It pains me to say that I do not own a dishwasher and hate washing dishes. I am also marrying a man who hates washing dishes more that me, because of which I usually buy cleaning products that help me cut the job in half. I have to admit that until recently I have been sucked in by the marketing power of large multinationals that produce chemical based cleaners and it was only a bad flare of my eczema on my knuckles and my 2 year olds eagerness to help with the cleaning led me to research the market and find some eco alternatives that are still within the price range and offer the same standard of cleaning.

Meet Lilly’s Eco Clean the sweet smelling all natural easy on the eye eco cleaning products. Made in the beautiful West Cork, Ireland. Purchasing these products will not only support the environment, your health but also if you come from Ireland local jobs! Lilly’s Eco Clean products share more than one of the Claire Lewis criteria,

  • they are eco friendly
  • chemical free
  • made from 100% biodegradable ingredients
  • some of the ingredients are organic
  • the bottle are made from 50% post consumer recycled plastic, which means 50% of the plastic is being reincarnated as a Lilly’s Eco Clean bottle and can again be recycled 🙂
  • Lilly’s Eco Clean supports the sustainable and environmentally responsible way of living.
  • The labels on the bottles are printed in a Carbon Neutral Company.

I reviewed quite a few of the Lilly’s Eco Clean products such as;

  1. Lilly’s Eco Clean Degreaser with Lemongrass;  €5.49 for 500ml but can also be purchased in 5l value refills. I found this excellent, I love cooking Italian foods and hate cleaning my oven so I sprayed the oven and left it for 15mins to take action. My oven was like new when I finished – need I say more.
  2. Lilly’s Eco Clean Floor Cleaner concentrate with Orange; €3.80 for 750ml but can also be purchased in 5l value refills. This smelled lovely and with heavy traffic in my kitchen and living room, two adults two dogs and a toddler, tiles and a solid wooden flooring this product put a sparkle back in my flooring. This was one of my favorite products and floor cleaner is always on my shopping list so the 5l value refill is a bonus.
  3. Lilly’s Eco Clean Washing-up liquid with Lemon oil; €2.80 for 500ml but can also be purchased in 5l value refills. As I mentioned previously I don’t have a dishwasher 😦 and as chief dishwasher in my house I love a product that is kind to my very dry sensitive hands. I found the smell of the lemon got me in a good mood and even though I wear gloves I always find myself rising a cloth or something in the water afterwards which irritates my eczema on my knuckle, this didn’t happen which I was very happy about!
  4. Lilly’s Eco Clean All Purpose Spray Cleaner Eucalyptus; €4.30 for 500ml but can also be purchased in 5l value refills. I found this a great all rounder for glass and granite antibacterial and anti fungal I went to work with this product in my bathroom with fantastic results! Also used this on my toddlers items such as potty, booster chair, plastic toys etc.
  5. Lilly’s Eco Clean Eco Toilet Cleaner with Tea Tree Oil; €3.80 for 750ml but can also be purchased in 5l value refills. I found this good and with a good scrub of a toilet brush it gave my loo a good clean and the tea tree oil made it smell hygienic. Perfect for my toilet trained little one.
  6. Lilly’s Eco Clean Non Bio Laundry liquid unscented with organic Aloe vera; €10.15 for 1liter but can also be purchased in 5l value refills. I know from speaking to people that this initially seems expensive but when see the results both in cleaning and environmental terms it is very reasonable. Great for little ones clothes and those with sensitive skin like me!
  7. Lilly’s Eco Clean Natural Fabric Softener with orange blossom and chamomile; €4.39 for 750ml but can also be purchased in 5l value refills. Fabric softeners are more widely used to get your clothes smelling beautifully as well as softening fabrics. This sent is quite yummy! Almost good enough to eat, for those of you with goats be careful when putting clothes washed with this fabric softener on your clothes line, they will definitely eat them all up.

Lilly’s Eco Clean has recently been approved by the Vegetarian Society  just another string to their bow. A eye catching product that can be purchased in not only your local health food store but is also stocked in Tesco and  Dunnes Stores all over Ireland. You can also purchase online and for all other information check out the Lilly’s website.

Lilly’s Eco Clean Special offer for Claire Lewis readers
20% off from any order you make at www.lillysecoclean.com
Valid until 31st December 2012
Limited number of offers available. 
Enter the exclusive coupon code CLRLWS20 when checking out at www.lillysecoclean.com to get 20% discount off your purchase.


Children in the home, boy oh boy what a change, and ways to make your home a child friendly and educational place.

When I became a mum nobody ever told me how much work was to follow! Don’t get me wrong it has been the most rewarding job in the world but I am always looking out for new ways to make my life easier as a mum without adding cost or endless manufactured products that are marketed directly at us suckers who are parents who want to do the very best for our children and feel that we must give them everything! Well everything can be home made and very educational and beneficial to your little ones development helping you along in your quest as a parent to guide and nurture your child to be the best person they can be.

When child proofing your home there are a number of ways to tackle this, I know there are quite a few excellently functional products on the market to help you out. I had a kitchen with press handles that allowed me to be creative and I used some ribbon to tie a bow and hold the doors closed. This was really effective and looked pretty. I also just moved any items that if smashed could cause a hazard to the child or caused me to break down and cry because they were now in a thousand pieces….!

Children do take over your home, well it is their home now too, but it is overwhelming as a first time mother the amount of paraphernalia that comes with such a small little person. For me the simple measures where most effective.



My daughter Eabha attends an excellent creche three mornings a week and I must say I have learned so much from the way they do things and help each child to become amazingly independent from such a young age. One trick I learned from The Park Academy is to get your child involved in setting their own table setting, getting all they need for the meal. Have the bowls, plates and other bits and bobs located where the child can do everything under your instruction and guidance. Even when it comes to pouring milk into their breakfast cereal put a measure into a jug and let them do it you would be surprised as to how much they love these simple things and how it builds their confidence and hand eye co-orindation. Young children absolutely LOVE being involved and you will also be delighted with the help, they are also less likely to whinge especially when you may be tied up with other things in the kitchen.



Cleaning was also a chore that I can’t say I love but it is part and parcel with running a home and taking care of children. Eabha loved helping me clean and I put together a basket containing all of her cleaning items, cloth, sponge, dust pan and brush, and an empty spray bottle filled with water. So instead of taking over my chores she now gets busy helping me complete mine in a lot less time than previously.

I hope my tips help you and yours. Always thinking of little fun ways to help make  life easy without costing the earth!