Journey toward happiness

April 27, 2010

A few things….

Filed under: environment, Fun, North Carolina, Uncategorized — Tara @ 11:58 am

I have not been very active with my blog lately. A lot has been going on(see previous post). I can’t help but wonder, why I continue blogging.  I do have a bunch to say, but can’t quite finds the words to say it all. As I sit and ponder where I am in life and where I want to be, I am not sure where blogging fits into the scope of things. Please don’t take me wrong, I am not just giving up and quitting(not anytime soon anyway).  Hopefully, once I get some other things in my life straightened out, blogging will fall into place.

In the mean time, here are some pics from our BIG backyard project.

This is how it started. Just a typical back yard. The only features were the greenhouse and small vegetable garden.

The first mini-project. We used tree limbs and old 4×4 posts for the edging. Lillies  inside.

The new rain barrel catches plenty of water for the plants.

The yard was all tilled and posts holes dug.

The fence completed and the bones of the arbor put  into place.

All done! Yay!!! Now for the planting and weeding and fertilizing and…..

Some of the lovely flowers that are in bloom:

Pink Climbing Rose

Red Climbing Rose

Guinness Columbine

Purple Iris(my favorite)

Hope you enjoyed the little tour through our project. There will be more pictures as other plants bloom.



September 22, 2009

Tueday’s Teaspoon

tuesday teaspoonLately, I have been thinking about how to clean my home in a way that is inexpensive and good for the environment. I searched for organic cleaner recipes and found that all cleaning needs can be met with these basic household products:

Baking Soda
Barkeeper’s Friend®
Bon Ami®
Lemon juice
Liquid Vegetable-oil based soap
Mineral oil
Vegetable oil
Washing Soda

Click here for the recipes and tips.

(I ❤ Borax and think everyone should keep it around.) Check out the recipes and let me know when you try something. I am interested in reviewing everyone’s results.


September 14, 2009

Tuesday’s Teaspoon

Filed under: eco-friendly, environment, Tuesday's Teaspoon — Tags: , — Tara @ 11:40 pm

tuesday teaspoon

I have decided to start a new weekly post called Tuesday’s Teaspoon. It will include a little teaspoon of information that I think everyone will find interesting. This will be a short post with links to more information.  Give me some feedback, so I know how I am doing.  If you want to know more about any topic, let me know and I will feature it in the Teaspoon.

And here is the first Tuesday’s Teaspoon post:

I decided to do a search for recycled crafts. Instead, I ran across Coca-Cola’s recycling program. Not only are bottles recycled into new bottles, but the plastic is also used to make clothing, purses,  jewelry, bags, and umbrellas. It is pretty interesting to see what major corporations are doing to help our environment. Give it a look and let me know what you think.


July 7, 2009

Great Upcycle Blog

Filed under: environment, Fun, Handmade — Tags: , — Tara @ 1:19 pm

I just saw this on Twitter: Wardrobe Refashion blog about upcycled projects. I am thinking about taking the pledge, although I am not much of a seamstress. Check it out and let me know what you think.

May 5, 2009

Pisgah National Forest

Filed under: environment, Fun, North Carolina — Tara @ 1:33 pm

A few weekends ago, NC Man, Zeke and I went camping in Pisgah National Forest in western North Carolina.  The forest covers 510,119 acres of mountainous land in the Appalachian Mountain Range. Established in 1916, Pisgah was one of the first national forests in the eastern United States.

American forestry has roots in what is now the Pisgah National Forest. The Cradle of Forestry, (Biltmore Forest School), located in the southern part of the forest, was the site of the first school of forestry in the United States. It operated during the late 1800s and early 1900s. The school was opened and operated at the direction of George Washington Vanderbilt II, builder of the Biltmore Estatein Asheville. The Cradle of Forestry and the Biltmore Estate played a major role in the birth of the U.S. Forest Service. Today these lands are part of the Pisgah National Forest.” (

Looking Glass Waterfall


Looking Glass Rock


Creek where we camped



Pisgah is full of recreational opportunities; backpacking, camping, climbing, fishing, horseback riding, waterfall tours, and more.  If you get the chance to visit, please respect the forest. Carry out your litter and keep the forest beautiful.


April 22, 2009

Hug a Tree Today

Filed under: compost, environment — Tags: , , — Tara @ 10:02 am

Earth Day was founded in 1970 by Senator Gaylord Nelson as a way to promote awareness and appreciation for the environment.

“In September 1969 at a conference in Seattle, Washington, U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin announced that in spring 1970 there would be a nationwide grassroots demonstration on the environment. This occurred during a time of great concern about overpopulation and when there was a strong movement towards “Zero Population Growth.”

Nelson viewed the stabilization of the nation’s population as an important aspect of environmentalism and later said:

“The bigger the population gets, the more serious the problems become … We have to address the population issue. The United Kingdom, with the U.S. supporting it, took the position in Cairo in 1994 that every country was responsible for stabilizing its own population. It can be done. But in this country, it’s phony to say ‘I’m for the environment but not for limiting immigration.'”

Senator Nelson first proposed the nationwide environmental protest to thrust the environment onto the national agenda.” “It was a gamble,” he recalls, “but it worked.”

Five months before the first April 22 Earth Day, on Sunday, November 30, 1969, The New York Times carried a lengthy article by Gladwin Hill reporting on the rising hysteria of “global cooling”.[citation needed]

“Rising concern about the environmental crisis is sweeping the nation’s campuses with an intensity that may be on its way to eclipsing student discontent over the war in Vietnam…a national day of observance of environmental problems…is being planned for next spring…when a nationwide environmental ‘teach-in’…coordinated from the office of Senator Gaylord Nelson is planned….” Senator Nelson also hired Denis Hayes as the coordinator.

April 22, 1970, Earth Day marks the beginning of the modern environmental movement. Approximately 20 million Americans participated, with a goal of a healthy, sustainable environment.” (


Small changes to the way we live can make a big difference. If you need some ideas, check out the ways that we are reducing our environmental impact.

This Earth Day, I pledge to restart my worm compost bin. One-third of the garbage we throw away each year is food waste. All of that food waste ends up in landfills. Because landfills are lined with clay or plastic, only small layers of dirt are added and very little oxygen exists, it makes it nearly impossible for decomposition to take place. In the absence of oxygen, the food breaks down and produces methane. Methane is a greenhouse gas which traps 20 times more heat than carbon dioxide and greatly contributes to global warming. A compost bin can make a huge difference in the amount of greenhouse gases we are releasing into the environment. They are easy to construct and fun to keep up with. Just search the web for some great ideas.

 Here are a few sites to get you started on the environmental track:

Now, get outside on this beautiful day and show Mother Earth that you appreciate her.

Peace, love and awareness,

Tara the Treehugger

June 19, 2008

We have worm poo tea!!!

Filed under: compost, environment — Tags: — Tara @ 1:33 pm

Just an update…


I checked on my little friends yesterday and there is about 1 cup of poo tea! Yeah! I will give it another week or so before I “harvest” the tea and give it to the house plants.


Much love,


June 11, 2008

Worms, Scraps and Poo

Filed under: environment — Tags: , , — Tara @ 1:03 am

We have been watching the Planet Green channel on tv all weekend. I find myself inspired by the “Green” movement although I have been recycling for years. This weekend, we decided to finally go through with plans for a worm composter. I have been thinking about it since last summer. True inspiration hit me this weekend and I headed to Walmart for supplies. This composter was super easy to construct and left me with a great sense of accomplishment.


Worm  composting is a great way to recycle kitchen scraps. When food scraps are put into landfills, it takes many years for them to break down. Garbage produces unhealthy methane gas which adds to the pollution of our beautiful planet.


It is simple and cheap to compost uncooked kitchen scraps and paper products. Worms eat the scraps and discard the waste. This waste becomes a rich organic fertilizer that is a wonderful addition to any garden. The water runoff(called tea) is a great liquid fertilizer for house plants and potted flowers.


So go ahead, decrease your carbon footprint. Help the planet while producing this great fertilizer. This is how we are decreasing our impact on the environment. You can do it too!


First, I purchased 2 clear storage bins with lids and screen material.  I spray painted the top box black(it will hold the worms) so it will simulate being underground.



NC Man drilled holes into the bottom and sides of the painted box to create air circulation. He also cut the top out of one of the lids. This makes it possible for the worm  “tea” to drain. The tea makes a great fertilizer for house plants and flowers.



I then lined the black box with the screen material. This will prevent the worms from becoming curious and escaping. They really need to stay in their box so they can eat up all the kitchen scraps that we produce.



Then, I filled the box half way with shredded newspaper.



Then, it was time for food scraps and worms.



We topped of the mixture with a little water to increase the moisture content and placed the boxes under the carport to keep the temperature down.



It was that simple. We now have about 80 new pets that will produce a whole bunch of poo and poo tea for the plants.


This project was very easy and kinda fun. I only spent about $10 which is amazing. Commercial worm composters can cost from $69-$200. Check them out online.


I guess I am a worm farmer now. Give it a try. The price is great so are the rewards.


Happy farming,




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