Backyard, Bend Homes, Central Oregon Activities, Home Fun, Home Maintenance, Living Green, Oregon, Recycle, Uncategorized

Rethink Waste Challenge

The Environmental Center’s Second Local Challenge Kicks off May 11th!

You can join in the challenge that goes from May 11–June 7, 2020. Participants will be entered to win weekly prize drawings that help prevent wasted food, such as glass food-storage containers and reusable beeswax food wraps, plus a $100 gift card to the grocery store of choice. Two grand prize drawings for $250 in farm bucks to a local farm will be awarded to those who complete the whole challenge. Participants will also gain knowledge and feel good about making changes in their own lives to help their greater community.

The challenge asks participating households to weigh or measure then record their cumulative wasted food weekly for four weeks. They will track what ends up as waste in their home, then learn small yet impactful tips to change habits in order to produce less waste.

The Rethink Food Waste Challenge is made possible through a partnership with Deschutes County Department of Solid Waste and our local garbage and recycling service providers. To learn more about the challenge and sign up visit their website:

https://www.rethinkwasteproject.org/Challenge/


Backyard, Bend Homes, Home Maintenance, Living Green, Recycle, Uncategorized

Living Green Issue – Earth Day Edition

Earth Day is April 22, 2020 and this year marks 50 years since it began in 1970. Check out Earth Day’s History HERE.


HELPFUL TIPS TO LIVE GREEN:

Tips for Sustainable Landscaping

Attractive landscaping is key to boosting your home’s curb appeal as well as reducing your impact on the environment. Here are some ways to create landscaping that is both beautiful and functional.

Instead of using a hose or sprinkler to water your plants, try using a rain barrel. You can direct rainwater from your roof’s downspout into the barrel and use that water to irrigate flower and garden beds. If you do use a sprinkler, set a timer to help minimize wasted water.

Growing native species of plants will attract pollinators such as bees, butterflies and moths. If you really want to get the most out of your landscaping, focus on growing edible plants alongside ornamental ones. Fruits, vegetables and herbs can add beauty to landscape beds as well as help you save money on groceries. You can also use any produce scraps to create your own compost in order to continue feeding your garden.

Food Scraps for Your Skincare Routine

Composting may be the most common use of food waste, but did you know you can incorporate several food scraps in your daily skincare routine?

As it turns out, fruit peels are excellent for your skin. For example, banana peels can be used as a naturally exfoliating loofah. Simply sprinkle some sugar onto the fleshy side of the peel and apply in the shower. For your face, avocado skins make an easy, hydrating moisturizer.

To make a citrus body scrub, grind dried orange peels, and mix with sugar and vanilla. The natural oils in orange peels help to moisturize dry skin. Lemon halves are excellent for strengthening and brightening your fingernails. After juicing a lemon, rub the half around your fingers and under each nail. Coffee grounds are especially nourishing for hair and skin, and they make a great exfoliant. They can also enhance brunette hair colors.

Are Compostable Takeout Containers Good for the Planet?

In recent years, restaurants have become aware of the amount of plastic waste generated by takeout containers, and some have begun to package their orders in “compostable” containers made from plants. Also known as “bioplastics,” some research shows that these materials may not be better for the environment overall.

According to CivilEats.com, labeling takeout containers as biodegradable isn’t entirely accurate. Most of these containers and cutlery won’t break down in home compost bins and must be sent to industrial facilities in order to be processed. Of nearly 4,000 compost sites in the U.S., very few can accept bioplastics.

Oregon recently announced that the state’s compost facilities would no longer accept compostable products due to contamination from noncompostable look-alike items. Employees have to separate out the noncompostable containers, wasting time, energy and money.

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) reviewed lifecycle analyses for compostable food containers and measured the full impact of these products, including the raw materials used, the impact of manufacturing and transit, and what happens once they’re thrown away. Among the comparisons, the Oregon DEQ found that the creation and composting of compostable packaging resulted in a higher environmental footprint versus materials that were recycled, incinerated or sent to a landfill.

While compostable takeout containers may work well in some parts of the country, other alternatives such as checking out a reusable takeout container, bringing your own or eating your meal at the restaurant may do more to reduce waste than biodegradable containers alone.

Improve Your Recycling Habits

Recycling is not a fix-all, but there are steps you can take to improve the process. Whether you’re a seasoned recycler or a newbie, these ideas will help along your green journey.

Know what to recycle. Just because an item has the recycling symbol on it does not mean it will actually get recycled. Research your city’s rules for recycling as some places will not process certain plastics. Unfortunately, if your items have food waste on them, they could contaminate a whole load of recyclable materials and send everything to the landfill. Be sure to thoroughly empty and clean containers before placing them in your bin.

Buy recycled. Industries track consumer patterns and produce what people want to buy. From furniture to household products to clothing, there is an entire subset of items made from recycled materials. Buying recycled paper towels or leggings made from recycled water bottles encourages companies to invest in this technology and helps create a more circular, sustainable economy.

Follow the three R’s. You’ve likely heard “reduce, reuse, recycle” with the emphasis being on the final R. But the first two are more important and actually have a larger impact. Reducing the number of single-use plastics that you buy in the first place is the best way to keep items out of the landfill, and reusing what you already have helps lower the demand for new items. Some environmentalists are also adding a fourth R – refuse – as the first step toward eco-friendly living. For example, if someone offers you a plastic straw or plastic promotional item, politely refuse as a way to begin influencing industries’ behavior and lowering your environmental footprint. Rather than being the focus, recycling should be the last resort.


Acreage, Backyard, Bend Homes, Buying a Home, Interior Design, Luxury Homes, Moving, Oregon, Properties, Ranch Properties, Real Estate, Second Homes, Selling a Home, Uncategorized, Vacation Homes

Luxury Digital Magazine

The latest edition of the Coldwell Banker Bain Global Luxury Magazine is here!

It includes a special feature on Frank Lloyd Wright’s amazing architecture.

Enjoy your cup of coffee as you browse beautiful properties throughout Central Oregon and the Pacific Northwest.

To take a private tour of all the luxury homes in an easy-to-navigate online format click on the link below, then simply enter keywords such as city name or property features to instantly locate luxury homes that most inspire you.

Global Luxury | Vol. 20 Issue No. 4

Backyard, Home Fun

6 DIY Backyard Games

Summer has been going well so far. But maybe it’s time to kick it up a notch with some easy do-it-yourself yard games to add some silliness to your backyard BBQs.

1. Cornhole

Cornhole

We’ve never met anyone who doesn’t like cornhole. And how about making your very own set of customized boards? Pick your colors, pick your teams. Patty and her husband, Peter, have a set of civil war boards at home – Ducks vs. Beavers.

2. Backyard Yahtzee

Recently played Yahtzee again for the first time in many years. And boy, that is still one seriously fun game! Bring out your competitive side and make a GIANT Yahtzee set for your backyard shenanigans.

3. Giant Jenga

If you’ve been to J.C.’s in Downtown Bend, you’re familiar with Giant Jenga. But did you know that it’s a lot easier to create one of your own than you might think? Give it a try and add it to your set of yard activities.

4. Flamingo Ring Toss

Flamingos

Snag yourself some pots and flamingos from Fred Meyer and this one is a breeze! How fun for the kiddos as well. It’s silly. It’s adorable. And everyone will want to make their own after spending time at your house.

5. Ladder Ball

A few of our friends have ladder ball in their backyards. It’s always such a blast! But you can also make one of your own, customize it and invite all your friends for a little ladder ball tournament (equipped with burgers and chips).

6. Oversized Checkers

Checkerboard

This one is a little bit more of a commitment. But boy, is it worth it. No one is ever upset to find a giant checkerboard waiting for them when BBQing. Be the friend that offers that kind of excitement for your guests.

Backyard, Home Fun

Find Your Happy Place: Backyard Ideas

Summer projects are upon us. It’s also a time of finding, and creating, spaces that make us feel good. Get the paint, the saws, the funky pillows and give yourself a nice space that’s yours (or share with friends too) to relax.

Firepit Hangout

Firepit

Here in Central Oregon, our summer nights are still chilly. Makes a backyard firepit an ideal location for family and friends when those temps drop. Why not give yourself a firepit worth hanging out at.

Hammock Lounge Area

Hammock

One hammock is great. But what about an entire lounge area dedicated to hammocks. One for everybody! Have a lot of trees? This might be a great idea for your yard. It’s a funky, creative way to set up a great relaxation space that’s different and just so fun.

 

Covered Lounge Area

Covered Lounge

Keep it classy with a nice covered area. Equipped with some greenery, blankets, soft lighting and cozy feels. Use your existing patio or create a space deeper in the yard. This space can feel like a little getaway.

Personal Outdoor Yoga Studio

Outdoor Yoga

Give yourself a space to do yoga and meditate. Another covered area or tack it on to your covered lounge area. Add some nice tapestries, candles and artwork, bring in your yoga mat and you won’t need to head to the studio again until winter.

Finally, how about a fort For Adults?

Why not? Take the concept of the kids’ fort and put a spin on it. Add all your favorite books, some comfy pillows, a great reclining chair and give yourself a little escape away from the house.

What ways have you made your backyard your happy place? Please share with us!