Tag Archives: Animals

Self Cleaning Fish Aquarium

This self cleaning Beta Fish aquarium uses no batteries, filters, or fuss. Using physics alone, the clean water you put in flushes the dirty water out.  You can then use the wastewater to fertilize your plants.  The tanks are made in the US and won Best New Aquatic Product at the Global Pet Expo 2013.

Learn more at The Grommet.

solid shampoo is a win

photoSo I’m wandering the haircare aisle looking for a shampoo that won’t strip the oils out of my dry hair, isn’t full of toxic type chemicals, doesn’t cost a fortune, doesn’t pollute the environment, and is in a skinny enough bottle that it will fit on the side of my tub.   I spied a tiny little package – the only bar in the shampoo aisle.  I’d never heard of a bar shampoo so took a closer look.  This is J.R. Liggett’s old fashioned bar shampoo. It has no synthetic oils, no chemical concoctions, no plastic bottle, no detergents, so this shampoo won’t strip the natural oils from hair, is good for our water (from bathing in streams, to city showers because it travels well and doesn’t pollute!)

It sounded interesting, and seemingly fit all my criteria and more.  The ingredients are mostly oils such as  olive oil, coconut oil, castor oil, a little bit of New Hampshire spring water, sodum Hydroxide (a binder) and essential oils for fragrance.

Since it was cheaper than most regular shampoos, I bought a bar to try it out. It doesn’t have a noticeable smell, so I can’t tell what essential oils were used.  I rubbed the bar shampoo around in my wet hands to make a lather, and shampooed as usual.  I can’t say my hair came out looking salon like, but it looks and feels CLEAN, and it’s not as dry as when using regular bottle shampoo with no conditioner, so probably all those oils in the bar soap are doing a good job of moisturizing.

I used it on my guinea pig and it lathered up and rinsed out fast and complete ( a plus when bathing animals!).  My husband tried it with his short hair and said he barely used any at all and it was effective.

I think J.R. Liggett’s is a keeper:)

I got the wire chair as an attempt at a soap dish, and it seems to work well to keep the shampoo bar dry.  I think the bar would melt into a sloppy mess if it didn’t have a place to dry out between uses.

RentTheChicken.com lets you practice raising backyard chickens

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If you like the idea of having fresh eggs straight from the backyard, but aren’t sure if you’re ready to commit, RentTheChicken.com lets you rent some chickens!

Here’s how they pitch their service:

Thought of Raising Backyard Chickens? Every spring, thousands of chickens are sold at local farm supply stores. Often these chickens die before they are ready to start laying eggs (16-30 weeks). Children quickly realize that chickens are not as fun as the Xbox and parents find out that chickens cannot be house broken! The costs quickly start becoming more and more, then chickens are “sent to the farm”. Other people think about chickens but think they don’t have the space, worry about regulations, or just don’t know what they need. Do you build or buy a coop? Do you buy peeps? How do you raise an egg-laying hen if you buy a peep? Did someone tell you about a heat lamp? It can all be overwhelming and we take the guesswork out of all of the questions by offering a portable coop, the food & supplies, and the egg-laying hens!

RentTheChicken.com is based in Continue reading

Plant or pet? Dino Pet uses algae to create light

bioluminescent-dino-pet-1Blurring the line between pets and plants, Dean Sauer and Andy Bass of Yonder Biology in San Diego have come up with the Dino Pet:  a living, bioluminescent night light/pet.  This little dinosaur-shaped food grade plastic toy is filled with tiny creatures called Dinoflagellates, saltwater, and nutrients.  When the toy is set in light (sunlight, another lamp in the room), it absorbs the light.  Then when you shake up the water, the sea creatures release the stored light.

This invention complicates the whole pet/plant paradigm.  You have to feed the Dinoflagellates to keep them alive, so it’s like a pet.  Yet it’s a sea plant.  I guess it’s kind of like a fish, in that it lives in salt water and needs nutrients to survive.  But yet it also is like a plant in that it uses photosynthesis to create light.  So it’s a pet that creates light.  How cool is that?  Yes, this would be a fun biology project for kids, but geeky adults Continue reading

My computer has been holding me hostage

Last mid-week I visited my sister in a small rural town for a few days.  We enjoyed visiting with her women friends at her house for a potluck dinner.  My sister and I walked through a local forest munching a snack of woodland sorrel and the first ripe salmon berries as we smelled the fresh ferns, and viewed the straggly moss hanging off the vibrant green trees and crumbling nurse logs.  We took her small perky dog to a field and my sister combed out copious amounts of the dogs winter undercoat to take off the weight/warmth for spring, allowing the fur to blow through the field to be picked up by birds for their nests.  We went to a local teashop for sandwiches, tea and brainstorming.  When my sister was at work I journaled, read, and took a hot bath in the quiet privacy of her home.  It was bliss.  One thing I didn’t do was go online, as my sister’s home has no Continue reading

Put a beehive on your roof!

beeRecently, Portland-based grocer New Seasons Market introduced colonies of honeybee hives on the roof of its Happy Valley store.  Aware of the honeybee’s plight and decrease in populations, New Seasons Market wanted to be part of the solution by raising bees and educating customers. This team of 50,000 bee workers forage for nectar and pollen, and produce honey, which will eventually be available in stores.

This project is a team effort: The hives were donated by New Seasons Market’s longtime partner Continue reading

Shelby the 13 year old chicken farmer

happy chickensIf you’re low on money and looking for a way to bring in a little more to make ends meet, take a page out of this 13 year olds workbook.  Shelby saved her parents from medical bankruptcy.  She got a loan from her grandma when she was 9 years old and purchased chickens.  She not only takes care of them, but she does personal delivery of the eggs as well, earning about $15,000 a year.  She’s also the youngest farmer to be awarded the Animal Welfare Seal Of Approval – meaning her chickens are very happy. Shelby used her compassion for her family, her care for animals, and her work ethic to make a positive difference for herself and her community. Maybe her example can spark ideas for us on how to use our simple skills in creative ways?

Here’s the video from CBS news:

http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=50139764n

Thanks to the Good News Network for this story.  (P.S. above photo is of our backyard chickens, not Shelby’s.)