Review: Good Mail Day

Innovative, bright ways to re-invent your junk mail and build relationships via the old-fashioned art of correspondence wait for you in this book. Gone are the days of the pony express, sadly. Yet we humans still loiter around the mailbox, rallying our hopes if the postal worker’s bundle looks interesting. If I received any of […]

FURemover: Pet hair removal without waste

Furremover Last week I found this FURemover, a zippy brush that promises painless pet fur removal, for sale at my local Walmart for $4.99. I was skeptical. I’ve been promised results before. But, aware that my foot-long lint roller with sticky sheets made for pet hair removal was using 8-10 sheets on a single couch, I thought it was probably worth a try. I have three couches (well, two plus a loveseat), and several pet beds throughout the house that need a good once-over after a hot summer with two dogs and cat nesting in them.

Typically, I buy replacement rolls several times a year. My usual method is to vacuum each couch first, removing the easy, surface fur with the vacuum’s brush extension; then, I use the lint roller to nab embedded hair that needs extra prodding. I’m not a fan of spending $8 for a single bout of hair removal, so I crossed my fingers and bought the thing.
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Cutest (and Most Enduring) Reusable Bags

People ask me where I bought my reusable bags. They really do, all the time. That is, those who are not annoyed and/or threatened by them. I’m not sure where I originally found Envirosax, but at the time they were a tiny Australian company exporting handfuls of bags to the US at very dear shipping prices. I bought myself a bag o’ sacks — it’s a real thing — and then dozens more for everyone on my shopping list that year. The thing is, they were adorable! Sweet, printed florals or bold, sweeping graphics gave each bag purse potential. While the company has bloomed, I, along with the original recipients of my holiday 2005 buying spree, still carry the bags from my first Envirosax order. That’s how durable they are, and mine have been sorely tested with everything from heavy canned goods to weekly farmers market runs. One bag has holes poked through the center after a loose artichoke prickled through two years ago and he’s still going strong, though I’m careful about the artichokes these days.

This year I supplemented my fraying, tired collection with two newbies from Envirosax. (Now that I live in the country, I need a few extra bags for stocking up.) Yes, there are plenty of other reusable bag manufacturers. But I like to adopt the second and maybe even fourteenth cousins of my current bags and think of them all giddily catching up on family business when I’m asleep.

If I think about how many plastic bags I’ve avoided by using these five bags on nearly every outing for the past four years, I’m proud of the tiny dent I’ve made. I’m down at least 1,040 bags, at five bags per week. Scoff if you must, but it’s more than a few bags.
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