Our Top 5 Picks for Waste Free Living

The change starts with you! It simply must.

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There are so many everyday items that we could easily convert to reusable and it won’t hurt a bit! We promise!!

#1 is reusable bags! It’s our hope that the more people who make this simple switch will have everyone easily shouting BAN plastic bags!!  From reusable shoppers, produce bags and even bread bags, we have options for you!!

Did you know…

“Plastic bags are not biodegradable, they are “degradable”, which means that they will break down into smaller and smaller pieces until they form micro plastics but they will never disappear from the environment altogether. Plastic bags take between 15 and 1000 years to degrade. The problem here is that these micro plastics can enter the food chain, ending up inside animals and even humans”.

#2 is plastic food wrap!! We offer Colibri reusable sandwich and snack bags, Onyx stainless steel food containers and Abeego beeswax wraps.  These all work well to eliminate the need to wrap your food in plastic food wrap.

Did you know…

“BPA and some phthalates (found in plastic food wrap) are endocrine disruptors, meaning they can mimic the body’s natural hormones and cause a raft of health problems. There is growing scientific evidence that even at lower levels of exposure, phthalates and BPA may be causing problems such as infertility, obesity, breast cancer, prostate cancer, heart disease and diabetes”.

#3 is a reusable straw! Carry your own stainless steel or glass straw and say no thanks when a straw is offered!

Did you know…

“Plastic is a material made to last forever, yet 33 percent of all plastic – water bottles, bags and straws – are used just once and thrown away. Plastic cannot biodegrade!

#4 is a vessel for your beverage, water, coffee, tea, ditch the disposable cup!! Or if you reeeeally need one, make sure it’s compostable and that there is a compost collection happening on site.  Actually insist upon it!

Did you know…

“The more we insist & persist, then changes begin!  The choices you make are the reasons why things continue as they do.  We vote with every purchase, so if you don’t support the options given that’s when things will be forced to change!”

#5  Purchase items that can be refilled or even better, where you can re-use your own container to fill  (like at Generation Green tee hee!).

Did you know…

“Refill, Reduce & Re-use are the “R’s” we love at Generation Green! We have gotten so “used” to recycling that some think almost everything can be recycled and neglect the reduce, reuse.  The other thing we turn a blind eye to is that recycling uses energy and raw materials which in turn impacts the environment.  Recycling has its place but it really needs to be the last R we use.”

Sometimes problems can seem so overwhelming and just too huge to tackle, and I get that!  We are human, we get tired of never-ending problems, life stresses and hearing about world issues. Personally, for a long time the issues I was hearing about scared me to the point of  panic and having anxiety.  This feeling was amplified even more after I started having children. I was scared for them and what type of world they were going to grow up in. I’m sure many others can relate to this feeling. Eventually I realized I was going to either continue to contribute to the problems or make changes to not be a part of it, and maybe possibly even make it better.

 I’ll be honest in saying this took time as it’s difficult to face the big truths and start actively participating in the solutions.

We want you to know that at Generation Green we are here for you, if you are just starting to face the big issues, and need a little hand holding to do it! We also love learning from all of you that have taken on the role of the trail blazers! Your suggestions, ideas, guidance and wisdom is gratefully received!

Thanks for reading & for doing your part!  Sherry Sobey

Information respectfully sourced from:

One Million Women

The Plastic Straw

Choice.com

 

Butt Out….Like Seriously!!!

In April, Generation Green and Acorn Cafe’s owner and manager, Sherry, participated in an Exchange District Community Clean-up! She met with others in the area to benefit our beautiful nook of the city, by collecting non-organic waste that has been littered onto the sidewalks and boulevards!

Within a single hour, Sherry came back appalled, sharing that she was able to collect a full garbage bag of not only trash but a ridiculous amount of cigarette butts! We all know by now smoking isn’t any good for anybody, certainly not for our beautiful atmosphere! If you cannot stop smoking, please take the minimal time and effort to bring the end of your cigarette to a disposal bin!

“Cigarette butt waste is the last socially acceptable form of littering in what has become an increasingly health and environmentally conscious world”.

With this inspiration, we decided to host a new staff + community event, which we intend to do monthly! A Generation Green Community Clean-up! On Wednesday, May 30th Generation Green and Acorn Cafe are going to get together to walk around the Exchange District to pick up litter!

Check our Facebook event, and if you are available, come join us!! Absolutely everybody is welcome!

It’s not just the unsightly mess that bothers us, there is the environmental impact, the health issues, the misconceptions the tobacco industry puts out (like adding a filter will make it less harmful), the toxic soup (leachates) that are created when those butts get wet! Just one  of those soggy cigarette butts will kill half the fish that are exposed to that toxic soup!  Click here to read more about this huge issue. 

Written by Savannah for Generation Green May 2018 Newsletter

Adaptogens & Superfoods Are On The Menu!

One of the first things we were sure we wanted to incorporate into our Acorn Cafe menu were adaptogens and super foods infused beverages and food.

Adaptogens are substances from plants, herbs, and mushrooms that help our bodies adapt or balance.

That could mean adapt to stress, balance hormones, ease digestion, increase energy, or even clearing brain fog and helping memory. Adaptogens are also great at contributing to a strong immune system and have been used to fight cancer and/or manage the effects of cancer treatments.

Adaptogens are not anything new. Adaptogens have been used by healers and herbalists for thousands of years!  They are becoming more common now, as people start to look for more natural ways to deal with common issues. A very common issue being chronic stress!  We all have to deal with stress. And are all affected by it; either physically, emotionally, or psychologically. And we all try to find ways to manage it. Stress can likely be the root cause of many health issues, including weakened immune systems, digestion issues, and inflammation in our bodies.

Some of the adaptogens you will find on the Acorn Cafe menu are turmeric, ginger, milk thistle, and reishi and chaga (medicinal mushrooms.) Just to name a few!

Superfoods, of course, are plant-based foods that are loaded with nutrition! Essential for healthy diets and optimum function. There is a long list of super foods that will be found in our menu items. A couple worth mentioning are: matcha green tea and E3 Live’s Blue Majik.

Matcha is a green tea that’s processed less than regular green tea. Since they grow in shade, the natural nutrients found in the leaves are entirely preserved. The leaves are never heated.  The benefits of matcha outweigh the benefits of some of the other most popular superfoods! Matcha contains over 6x the antioxidants in goji berries, 7x the antioxidants in dark chocolate, 17x more antioxidants than blueberries, and 60x the antioxidants found in spinach. In just one teaspoon!  Try out Acorn Cafe’s matcha latte (my personal favourite,) and experience an energy burst that lasts with no crash!

E3 Live’s Blue Majik is relatively new, and has some serious health benefits! Blue Majik is the most dense superfood known, loaded with the highest concentration of proteins, vitamins, trace minerals, and essential fatty acids. One teaspoon of the fresh or frozen concentrated algae is equivalent to eating a large salad. The Blue Majik concentrate is great added into lattes and smoothies!

In addition to adaptogens and super foods, our tea menu contains beneficial herbal concoctions created by Hollow Reed, that are known to help with digestion, stress, colds, and more!

Stop by Acorn Cafe at Generation Green and let our staff create something new, just for you!

Please note that all the information found on generationgreenwpg.com is not meant to treat or diagnose health issues. We intend to provide information on our products and ingredients. We encourage everyone to do their own research and consult with a professional before diagnosing or treating a chronic condition. Also take caution if nursing or pregnant.

There are many types of adaptogens which may work differently for everyone. For alternative treatment to chronic issues, I highly recommend a consult with master herbalist, Chad Cornell at Hollow Reed Holistic.

 

 

Acorn Cafe NOW OPEN!

This post is from 2018!

Please check out our Acorn Cafe page for the most up to date information!


We are soooo excited to announce that our cafe is finally ready to open tomorrow morning, Monday , January 15th bright & early at 7:30 AM!  Our cafe hours will be weekdays, 7:30am-6:00pm and weekends 9:30am-6:00pm.

We have expanded our team with some awesome folks that just so happen to be fabulous barista’s!  Our new cafe team will be led by our cafe manager Lily, who has done an amazing job getting everything set up!

We will be starting off with beverages, offering Deluca’s organic, fair trade coffee, espresso, latte’s and local teas from Hollow Reed Holistic and Amsterdam Tea Room.  You can also grab a Morning Glory muffin from Tallgrass Bakery to pair with your morning beverage! We will have some feature beverages that will change monthly and our menu will expand as we settle in, to include adaptogens, smoothies,

Meet our new staff!

smoothie bowls, soups, salads, summer rolls, chia seed puddings and lots of Happy Dance Hummus!  Our menu so far is all vegan even though we stated we were a vegetarian cafe.  We hope everyone is open to trying some new things, including dairy free options and sugar alternatives.

Watch for updates as we announce new additions, including food items and in-store sampling! We have so many exciting things planned and can’t wait to be able to share them with you!

Guys Going Green

Our new location will allow us to expand our product lines. One of the areas that we felt really needed some more focus was our mens section.  So guys, (or those of you that buy for the men in your life) we’ve have some amazing green personal care options for you!

New & Noteworthy Products:

Wise Mens Care –  Simple & Natural Men’s Care Products Designed for Conscious Living.

Wise products are made in Montreal, QC with the intention of not only offering natural alternatives for men, but with a focus on sustainability. “Care for yourself & care for the planet” is what Wise Mens Care says.  Their products are available in a reusable glass container or a recyclable refill package!

We will be stocking their Birch Bark shampoo, which is created from a sustainable botanical extract found in the Canadian Boreal forest. It is also renowned for its high levels of vitamin C and antioxidants.  We will also offer their moisturizing, healthy hair pomades.

************

Rituels For Men100% Natural, 100% Plant-based

Rituels For Men products also comes to us  from Montreal, QC.

This men’s line is handmade in small batches and scented using only essential oils, with a custom blend using bergamot, bitter orange, cypress, and patchouli. Think forest, nature and freshness!

We will be stocking Rituel’s shower gel, foaming shave cream, and after shave lotion.

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Vonbros Natural GroomingChanging the Landscaping of Natural Manscaping!

Vonbros Grooming products are created by three brothers; Scott, Mark, and Steve Von Riesen from Morden, MB.

What began through their own frustrated efforts to find all natural men’s products, that perform well and are affordable, led to Vonbros. A line that believes that this is how men’s products are meant to be.

A full range of products will be available, from body/beard wash, to tattoo balm, and of course beard care.

************

These three new lines join our existing line up of equally fabulous, locally made men’s products:

Beard & Brawn – Beard Oils, balms, creams, washes, and aftershaves for the everyday working man.

Made For Skin – Handmade men’s skincare that includes deodorants, body wash, body lotion, beard care, face wash, and balms.

Mama Pacha Herbal Skincare – Natural beard and stache care! These products are made to care for facial hair and the skin underneath.

 

 

Meditation – Don’t Overthink it!

When I first heard of meditation,  the thought of a silent mind sounded impossibly ridiculous!  Even in this very moment the amount of ideas and thoughts going through my mind make it seem impossible to say: “ok quiet time everyone, we’re going to meditate!” Like how can anyone possibly do that??

I understood the concept, even thought it would be lovely, because quite frankly my mind (and I’m sure yours) is an exhausting place to be at times!  But it was the “how” part that had me stumped!  I, of course, took to the internet in an effort to figure out the “right” way!

The problem for me is that there are so many ways to meditate! Such as a guided group, or youtube video, using your breath, gazing into a candle, chanting a mantra, or  music meditation, where the music is not understood by the conscious brain but draws someone into a dizzying state of relaxation.  Not only that, but figuring out how to sit, and how you should sit. Do I need a whole comfy pillow set up? Maybe it’s better to lie down? Once you have that figured out, you can’t be distracted by outdoor sounds, the kids, the door bell, the phone ringing, or your feet falling asleep!

One day the realization came to me… I was over thinking this whole meditation thing!  These words crossed my computer screen and changed my thought process: “If you can breathe, you can meditate.” Meditating is only being quiet with yourself and listening to your breath. I have a creative mind, so for me it really helped when I gave my breath a colour and visualized it going in and out of my body.  Yes, thoughts came to me but I did what I was suggested to, and stopped judging and shushing my thoughts. Instead I pictured them as clouds floating by, observed them for a moment, and then guided myself back to my colorful breathing.

This practice, (and it does take practice!),  basically helped me to become the observer of my thoughts, feelings, and emotions so that I am no longer controlled by them. Just try saying these words out loud: “I am going to be the observer of my thoughts, feelings and emotions. I am not going to judge them, question them, doubt them, or anything! I am only going to watch them float by and allow my body to receive cleansing breaths.”

Then something amazing happens!  You allow parts of you to come to surface that usually get drowned out by that constant chatter. You’ve now opened yourself up and made room for new ideas, new emotions, new beliefs. However it happens, trust me when I say: it’s a real thing!

In a nutshell, we live very busy lives and sometimes we are like hamsters in a wheel! That is not only exhausting but limiting! We miss out on experiences because we are so focused on running the wheel with the false belief that it’s taking us somewhere.

I encourage you to begin a practice of meditation. Start with 5 minutes and build up to make it a daily practice. It will become a moment that you not only look forward to, but also a moment you will cherish.

Lastly, there is no “right” way, there is only your way.  You can practice anywhere, anytime, anyway you like!

Facial Friday = Fresh, Fabulous, Faces!

Every Friday evening I love to give myself a facial.  It has become such a self-care ritual, that I am always looking for ways to improve either the atmosphere I create to enjoy my facial, or trying out a new facial product. It’s a great way to end the week, detoxify your skin from all the free radicals we are constantly exposed to that are so damaging to our skin.

When I was first learning about the possible toxins in skin care, I made my own facials from whatever I could find in my kitchen!  This is a fun way to experiment and can even include the kids!  I have sons and taught them early on about the importance of self care and taking care of your skin. Now that they are older they often come to me asking for me to whip them up something to help with either winter dry skin, sun stressed skin or occasional breakouts.  I now of course have access to ready to use facial masks that offer amazing benefits and make “Facial Friday’s” that much easier!

Naked Skincare Apothecary: 

Locally made, Naked Skincare Apothecary currently offers two types of facial masks.  Detox Mask & Radiance Mask.

Photo Courtesy of Naked Skincare

I lovvvve both of them! They are my go to’s and available at Generation Green!

Detox Mask will help neutralize oily skin and prevent or clear up breakouts.  Thanks to the activated charcoal & kaolin in this mask, it will basically pull out dirt & toxins.  Super easy to use, simply add a small amount of  liquid to a teaspoon of the mask powder.  Play around with different liquids to add like a toner, facial oil, or even hit up the kitchen for honey or yogurt!

Ingredients: Activated Bamboo Charcoal, Kaolin Clay, Fuller Earth Clay, Papaya Extract, Turmeric Powder.

Radiance Mask will do just that! Make your face radiate!  Offering up some magical ingredients like Australian and French Pink Clay that not only detoxify and do away with dead skin, but also leave you with a refreshed look!  This one really is great for mature skin too thanks to the addition of  Mango Extract which helps prevent the decline of elasticity in the skin.

Ingredients: Australian Pink Clay, French Pink Clay, Mango Extract.

Mama Pacha : 

Another locally made favourite that we stock at Generation Green and is offered in refill is Mama Pacha’s  Daily Face Wash & Super Scrubby Face Wash.  These face washes can also be used as a face mask just by leaving on longer. They are gentle enough for all skin types, including sensitive skin.

Both offer the benefits of kaolin clay (the mildest of clays). Kaolin clay contains a high content of silica that not only can remove dead skin but also regenerate skin. Also offers purification by removing toxins and oils without drying out skin.

Both masks contain oats that offer a gentle scrub as well as the soothing benefits of chamomile.  The only difference in the two is the Super Scrubby contains jojoba meal as an exfoliator (really good scrub) without dangerous microbeads (little pieces of plastic that are not only bad for your skin but also the environment) that can be found in some conventional face scrubs.

Orgaid Sheet Masks : 

This is a new stock item that I’m anxious to try out!  

Orgaid masks are not made like other sheet masks. Not only because of the serum combination in the masks but the delivery system they use!  The unique fibre, (called Ecoderma) Orgaid uses is not only breathable and adheres well but more importantly the fibre helps absorb the serum deeper into skin, helping you to get all the benefits those ingredients offer.  The masks are made with certified organic ingredients,  all safe ingredients with no chemical preservatives.  I also love the rating they get on EWG’s Skindeep Database!

Yes, you might look a little scary wearing one (think Jason from Halloween), but makes for great selfie pics! (before & after).

Available in 3 types: (information taken from Orgaid Website)

VITAMIN C 
 Reduces the appearance of brown spots and sun damage 
 Provides potent antioxidant protection to keep firm and youthful skin 
 Improves skin’s natural healing response, resulting in skin revitalization 
+ Orange peel and pomegranate boost healthy collagen synthesis
ANTI-AGING & MOISTURIZING
+ Vitamin B3  reduces skin aging
+ Aloe Vera  helps moisturize and calm skin
+ Witch hazel  reduces swelling and blemish
+ Hyaluronic Acid hydrates skin
GREEK YOGURT
+ Organic Greek Yogurt supplements essential nutrition on skin
+ Organic Botanicals soothe  skin smoother
+ Pro-Vitamin B5  and Allantoin tightens skin
+ Beta Glucan and Vegetable Proteins condition skin

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10 Ways To Find Your Zen

Whether you need a moment to de-stress, want more quiet moments in your life, or want some health benefits – taking time to find your zen is easier than you think.  Not only is it easy, but it’s necessary!

Life is so busy. In order to appreciate and enjoy it, or even to get through the rough patches, we need to find the moments that take us away from it all.  Moments that nurture our spirit and quiet the chattering in our minds.

The first step is to make yourself a priority!  Let go of any guilt you have for taking moments of self-care.  Remind yourself it’s important for your well-being.  Start minimally if needed and work your way up to a daily practice.  It doesn’t take long before it becomes a habit, and even better, something to look forward to.

There are so many ways to find “zen” or create it.  Here are my personal top ten!

1) Go for a walk, alone! No partner, no kids, no dog! Just you! Stop along the route to take notice of simple things. Maybe it’s the birds flying, trees blowing, or the warmth of the sun on your face.  While you take notice place your hand to your heart and breathe deeply.  Enjoy how it makes you feel and say thank you.

2) This leads to practicing gratitude.  Feeling grateful and saying you are grateful opens up a whole new world. When you take time to send out that grateful energy into the world, it returns to you tenfold.  Learn to be grateful for all moments, not just the good ones. The bumps in life are also lessons to be grateful for.

3) It can be really tough to quiet the mind but regular meditation practice can help.  Find the best way to meditate, for you! I sometimes like to lay down with headphones and follow a guided meditation. Other times I enjoy the mediation space I created in my room, or I will simply sit on my swing in the backyard and pat my dog.  However you can find ways to quiet your thoughts. It is natural that our minds will wander while we meditate but just recognize it and go back to your focussed place.

4) I recently discovered the benefits of burning resin.  The smoke of frankincense is used to quiet a racing mind, making it useful for meditation. Myrrh can also be used to still the mind and align the energy centers of the body. These can burn anytime in your home.  I am currently burning some as I type this!

5) Creativity helps!  I love to crotchet.  I don’t make much more than a scarf or a blanket but it’s the simple act of taking time to do something you can focus on in quiet.  Something that you can enjoy, that isn’t stressful. I am also an artist, and because of the type of art I do, I can actually delve into a form of meditation while drawing that requires no effort. For others – I can imagine dance being amazing for this, or a potter becoming one with the clay.  Try something new, something that can take you to that place of complete zen.

6) Exercise.  Yoga would be the first thing that comes to mind as it encompasses the body, mind, and spirit.  Tai Chi would also be great for this. Even a bike ride or a run. When we move our bodies we allow energy to move and flow through us. We also can release that “feel good” dopamine or “happy” serotonin from our brain.

7) Tune up your energy centers!  Otherwise known as chakra balancing.  There are seven energy centers that start at the base of the spine and run to the top of your head. When these centers are blocked it can stop us from living fully, and can even cause illness.  Each energy center has a specific function that is related to a specific emotion.  I once asked my energy worker how often I should have this tuneup done and she replied “you will just know.”  The more time you take for yourself, the more in tune you will become with your body and what it needs.

8) Massage or reflexology are more than helpful with pain or discomfort, they also can produce feelings of caring, comfort, and connection. How nice does it feel to have someone care for you?! Sometimes we are so busy caring for others that we forget how much we also need to be cared for.

9) My other all time favourite thing to do that makes me feel completely grounded and grateful is the simplicity of rocking a baby to sleep.  Watching them doze off while you offer warmth, connection, and a hypnotic rocking motion. Then to enjoy the complete peace on their face and the slow, quiet breaths they take.

10) Lastly, sometimes we just need a break from everyday life and this is when travel can give us that take me away moment.  I have heard it said sometimes you need to go away to miss home but I also think going away helps you find a safe, sacred home in yourself.

I’m sure there are a thousand other ways to find and add zen moments into your life. No matter what you choose to do or practice, doing so with an intention of caring for yourself will make all those moments (big or small) zen.

 

Article written by Sherry Sobey

 

 

DIY Pumpkin Spice Lattes

As soon as the leaves start falling I begin craving anything warm, spicy, and comforting!  As convenient as it may be to stop off at Starbucks on the way home, it’s so much nicer to stay in pajamas on a Sunday morning and whip up some homemade pumpkin spice lattes. –It’s easy, trust me!

 Pumpkin Spice Lattes (Makes enough for 2)

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of milk of choice (I used soy)
  • 2-4 tbsp of pumpkin puree
  • sweetener of choice to taste (I used 2 tbsp maple syrup)
  • 1 tsp pumpkin spice
  • ½ tsp cinnamon (because more cinnamon is always better)

¼ cup espresso or 1 cup strong coffee (I used a ratio of 4 tsbp of coffee grounds to 1 cup of boiled water in my french press)


Directions

Combine milk, pumpkin puree, and sweetener in a saucepan.

Cook on medium heat while stirring, until steaming.

Bring to a boil and add spices.

Whisk well.

Pour in espresso or strong coffee.

Divide into two mugs and top with cinnamon.

~Enjoy!

Article & photo’s by Lily Thrift

 

Zero-Waste Pumpkin Carving

Photo Credit: Schwabe Pumpkins

‘Tis the season of… PUMPKINS! I don’t know about you, but fall foods is one of my favorite parts of the season. Fresh pumpkins, apples, squash, cider,…

With Halloween at the end of the month, pumpkin carving is likely to be on the mind! Here’s a little guide to making your yearly ritual a little more eco-friendly!

Source local!

Manitoba’s climate doesn’t always allow for the widest selection of fresh produce, but fall is where we thrive! Skip the big chain store, and line-up and go local! Manitoba has tons of produce farms where you can pick up your Photosoon-to-be jack-o-lantern! Stop by a farmers market before the cold weather, or make a whole day out of visiting a pumpkin patch. There are so many activity-filled farms close to home. A quick google search provided me with tons and tons of Manitoba richness!

Steinbach, Corn Maze and Adventures

Saint Adolphe, A Maze In Corn

St. Andrews, Schwabe Pumpkins

Springfield, Dear Meadow Farms

That isn’t even all of them! Search for one closer to ya!

Carve!

Carve you favorite face, design, or eco-friendly message! Here is a site for free template designs .

Skip the “carving kit” from the store. More likely than not, you already have everything you need at home! It seems mostly like a marketing scheme, it comes with pretty basic tools!

Stencil – print one off from home, or draw your own!

Carving tools – more likely than not you can use an array of kitchen tools for this

Scoop – spoons and spatulas if you need them. But who doesn’t love to clean out their pumpkin with bare hands???

Marker – any marker will do just fine!

And for cleanliness, just use some recycled or recyclable paper or cardboard!

From ecocajun.com

Eat!

Seeds

I really hope everyone is already onto this! I love roasted pumpkin seeds! Sort those seeds out of the goop, add in some oil and salt. Roast them for 45 minutes at 300 degrees!

Guts

I have always just thrown this part out. Turns out you can throw it in a food processor to make your own pumpkin puree! This is gonna be way better than the canned pumpkin from a store! How to make puree link here!

The pumpkin puree can be used in recipes, like soup or your own homemade pumpkin spice latte! You could even incorporate it into some homemade cosmetics such as a body scrub or lotion!

Flesh

You can cook up the rest of the pumpkin just like any other root vegetable! Roast it in the oven and serve it as a main dish! Likewise, you could chop it up for soup and salads. Or if you just can’t get enough of the puree, you can use it for that as well!

Compost

To finish up this pumpkin making zero-waste, be sure to compost, rather than trash, the leftover scraps!