Phone Directories – Why waste the tree please opt out today!

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Yes I was hyperventilating this week, when I received my very large pack of items that I will NEVER use – the phone directory for my area and the golden pages. Tightly packed into plastic to keep the thousands that are dropped outside homes and might never even make it in the door. The packs also contain needless amounts of advertising – No I don’t want a new car insurance policy or SKY – I already have both and I can sort myself out thanks!!

But, then behind an advert lay a “Very Important” letter. Yes it actually was important as it contained the information needed to ‘opt out’ and no longer receive this useless piece of information. I would have thought it made more sense to send just one letter to each home in Ireland stating you have to opt in to receive a directory or even collect one from your local post office. I know the majority of people who will still rely on a directory will be the over 60’s and I appreciate that, but even then most 60 year old’s I know can use the computer aptly.

So I thought I would get going in my opt outed-ness and I logged onto www.phonebookoptout.ie. I thought it would be as simple as entering my address but no I had to create an account!!! So I did and it really wasn’t that bad I just kept thinking of the tree’s I would be saving.

Also apparently the reason we all receive a phone directory is to do with a European Communities Regulation 2003 to do with the Electronic Communications Networks and Services – bizarre to say the least?!

Mother & Daughter Bonding – Kooky time!

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Eabha has recently started a new crèche as some of you recently read, and she is still getting used to the ‘newness’ of the experience. Each morning she want’s me to stay and “mind me” but obviously I have to go and do my jobs that couldn’t possibly get done with a busy 3.5year old glued to my hip. I have been taking care to reassure Eabha that I will be back to collect her everyday and trying to spend a little QT with her and make her adjust a little easier.

And then I met Sophie Morris – the lovely and bubbly creator of Kooky Dough. A pre made Kooky Dough, pretty much what it says on the tin! You can purchase a box of Kooky Dough in the chilled isle of Tesco, Spar, Superquinn and a few other stores around Ireland . And in the UK you can pick these up in Waitrose. Check out here for more stockists.

Eabha LOVES cookies, baking and sweet things. So the marriage of cookies, STOPPPING and take time out of the daily grind to spend TIME with my little girl – who is showing signs already of growing up and giving her that QT that I spoke about was a perfect match.

And also the process of cooking the kookies appealed to me so much more than just opening a packet of them.

Needless to say we both enjoyed the experience and the end result was even more enjoyable. I didn’t even have to wash-up, perfect. Warm cookies, a glass of milk, a cup of tea and CBeebies was just what the doctor ordered after a busy morning of crèche.

Thanks Sophie xx

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The German Stores – I am loving their helpful recycling labeling on most of their own products.

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With My Waste Free Home – making your home as waste free as you want it to be – I have to watch what I purchase seeing as I no longer have a waste company collecting my trash. I usually shop in Tesco as it is the closest store to me and sells all my favourite brands such as Ecover & Glenesk, and their fish counter is pretty good. Well, this has all changed as when I am now shopping I look at the Recycling Labels on EVERYTHING I put in my basket. I need to know this information to be one step ahead and know where I will be putting the end of life packaging. Well Tesco are crap at giving me the information I need to be able to dispose of packaging correctly – their own products have little or no information and to be honest majority of big brands just don’t include this information either!

With My Waste Free Home – if you choose to reduce your waste bills by up to 90% and share a communal waste bin with your neighbours and recycle and compost the majority of your waste. The web site will give you all the information you will need and even a list of products – what they are made from and how to recycle them. I will also be giving information emails that you can copy and paste and will help put pressure on retailers and companies to 1. Label Correctly to ensure packaging is recycled where it can be and 2. If the packaging is just too over the top you can let the company know you feel this way and 3. Why they are not using packaging that CAN BE recycled????

I know it will shake up a lot of things in Ireland and hopefully pave the way for a more logical waste solution that gives people a greater choice. I am finding I have changed my shopping habits greatly buying more fruit and veg locally to reduce the dreaded non recyclable packaging. Shifted totally away from Tesco as I read all about their clubcard and didn’t like what I read…You can read my findings here. I just pop in for the few bits that I need there and pop quickly back out again. I am loving my local Lidl as their products have clear recycling labels and this gives me the understanding that yes as a whole, their company is much more involved in sustainability – their stores are smaller – they have a more European feel to them and I like that.

My Waste Free Home is still being implemented in my home and I am getting the whole concept together with the relevant bodies behind it – then the big launch will happen – in the mean time if you want any information be sure and email me claire@clairelewis.ie 🙂

GreenMe.ie – Find them at Electric Picnic!

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GreenMe.ie is proud to be part of the Global Green area of this year’s edition of the Electric Picnic festival (Friday 30 August – Sunday 1 September, Stradbally Estate, Co. Laois, Ireland) marking the 5th time that this website makes it to one of the greenest
and most eco-friendly music festivals in the world.

GreenMe.ie is the leading Irish green consumer website and social campaign promoting greener and more sustainable ways of living in a simple and realistic manner and offering independent info on green products and services. The website is not just for the
green “purists” but for everyone who wants to be greener. Through the website and social media forums GreenMe strives to help to make informed decisions about ecofriendly lifestyles. It’s your trusted source of information, from green news and tips to environmental blogs, product information and advice for a greener lifestyle.

At this years festival GreenMe will be returning with the hugely popular welly up-cycling station using

old materials/clothes/bits’n’bobs to fashion new-style funky wellies sure to be the envy of fellow festival revelers. Last year thousands of up-cycled wellies could be seen glittering and boppin’ to the wee hours and it was delightful that this creative recycling idea captured the imagination of so many young people who happily embraced the notion of upcycling. Should the weather turn out to be sunny (fingers crossed), fear-not, GrrenMe will help you upcycle your sunhats, your sandals or whatever you wish. Pictures of last years creativity can be seen on our facebook page.

Additionally, this year there will be an information stand with simple tips/ideas/recipesetc. to live a greener lifestyle. Some of the crew is deeply involved in high-level recycling and biomass activities should any of the more serious greenies wish to visit and have a chat.GreenMe will also have some face painters on hand using face paint made in-house with common kitchen ingredients which children (or adults) can make if they wish. (This recipe for the face paints will be available at the information stand also)
A multi-media information and broadcast point will also be running in the tent and theGreenme.ie roving reporter will be touring the Global Green area interviewing all of the other Global Green community sites which will be streamed in the tent after on-site
editing via our multi-media broadcast point. In this way, GreenMe.ie hopes to provide useful information and directions about all of the activities ongoing in our Global green community as the weekend progresses.

Greenme.ie counts with almost 4,000 followers on twitter and over 1,600 on their facebook page. The communications manager will be busy broadcasting the goings-on around Global Green via social networking to the techno-savvy assistants, promoting
upcoming activities throughout the weekend, sharing fun pictures with participants etc.. In-keeping with the Global Green community spirit, GreenMe will be hosting an open mike evening on Saturday where poets, singers and musicians alike are welcome to join in or simply sit and enjoy.

Finally, keep an eye out for some members dressed up in funky retro-traditional stempunk gear. A reminder how we can invent out future by drawing from the past!

The Big Upcycle Event – 23rd & 24th of August…

The Big Upcycle Market

Lynn Haughton founder of The Upcycle Movement is so passionate about Upcycling and the Environment it was natural that we got on like a house on fire when we met last year. It is great to see Lynn getting so proactive about her passion with the upcoming launch of The Big Upcycle Market. Ireland needed an expo for all the creative and amazingly professional and functional items that are being made. Upcycling can be something that everyone can enjoy and you don’t have to be a certain type to appreciate the excellent craft that is Upcycling. I even have a love for Upcycling myself and have completed quite a few projects – check them out here.

I am sure this Market will be a massive success and it is a shame that I will be in Cork to welcome the arrival of my sister Sue’s second baby tomorrow 🙂 But I will be here for the next one and hope to have a stall there too!!

Best of Luck Lynn and of course Gwen xx

For anyone interested in The Big Launch Night that is Friday from 5pm – 7pm.

Location: The Stillorgan Park Hotel, N11 Dublin

Date: Saturday 23rd & Sunday 24th of August

Time: 11am – 6pm on both days.

Greystones Americana and Roots Weekend: 2nd-5th August.

Americana & Roots

If you like Bluegrass, Rocabilly or alt-country music, then grab your banjo, hop in your truck and drive to Greystones, Co Wicklow for the 4th Annual Americana & Roots Weekend.

You can listen to The Cujo Family – Dog gone crazy here.

Roots music has a very rural vibe which I love – there is a fashion following for roots that is very raw, hair braided or undone, loose clothing, boots! Straw, trucks, red barns, banjo’s, whisky, and of course denim….

Of course with every genre there is a style – even the very natural look has a forced element, a structure to conform some what!? But I love the rural-ness of it all. Thats why I think Greystones is the perfect place to hold an Americana and Roots Weekend.

The majority of events are FREE.

If you would like to find out more check out: 

www.rootsweekend.com

americanaweekend@gmail.com

Hope to see yoa’ll here!

The Dublin Horse Show – August 7th – 11th.

Eabha and the horses

If you like horses or even just the smell of them,  make it your business to get to Dublin for the annual Dublin Horse Show. It opens on Wednesday the 7th of August and closed on Sunday 11th.

I took Eabha for our debut show last year and I enjoyed it immensely, as did my then 2 year old. She even got her picture taken with two beautiful Garda horses – which never fails  to make me laugh – out loud!!

There is so much horsy stuff to see – with different events and shows on at the one time, you will be spoilt for choice. For the fashionista who wants to win a rosette then the Blossom Hill Ladies Day will be right up your street on Thursday 8th. Check out all the information on the Dublin Horse Show website Here, where you can pre book your ticket. If the weather is anything like last week, then I will be packing up a big lunch and heading in at the dawn.

Here are a few pics I took at last year’s show:sidesadle

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