Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tuesday Treasuries?

Why not?  Blogging and alliteration seem to go hand in hand...

more Etsy from the artisans at Fresh! 

Monday, November 15, 2010

Contest Winner!!

Just a quick note to announce the contest winner! The winner of this little contest was required to "like" the Joyful Earth facebook page and then comment on the blog to win a "Dick and Jane" Bento Mini snack bag.


And the winner is..... Heather!!

To claim your prize, send me an email with your address Heather!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

A Fresh Collection - Etsy Treasury

Posted by Picasa

The Artisans of Fresh on Etsy!

Get some Joy for the Holidays!!

If you haven't already heard, I'm currently taking orders for my very first Co-op!  Co-op's are a wonderful mutually beneficial way to shop from WAHMs.  As a customer you benefit from getting what you want, when you want it (ie no stalking or waiting for customs), you also benefit from a discounted price!  US customers may also find they are able to save a bit of money on shipping because the most expensive portion (from me to the US) of the shipping is split amoung all the co-op participants.

For the WAHM, we have the benefit of a large group order allowing us to batch tasks and purchase bulk supplies.  We also benefit from saving time on listing and individually shipping each item.  Co-ops also offer exposure and opportunity to introduce your products to customers who might not have discovered you otherwise.

This particular co-op is offered on the HC forums.  If you are already a part of that community, you will know how wonderful it is.  If you are not, you may want to join up and check it out!  The HC board is as close to a drama free public board as you can get!  There is a wonderful feeling of community and support there!

Go check it out!  My completion date for this co-op will be the first week of December, just in time for holiday gift giving!

I've just added some new fabrics to my co-op gallery on Flickr.  There are a few fabrics I was reluctant to share, and am very tempted to horde.

If you are more in the mood to shop instock,   I have a few bits and pieces scattered around the web. Click the photo to shop.

Bowl covers at Etsy!

Unpaper at Fresh
Tea Wallet at the Joyful Earth Hyena Cart

Monday, November 1, 2010


That was the sound of me dusting the cobwebs off the old Joyful Earth Blog.  Yep!  Back at 'er!  After a rather unplanned and unexpected break from biz, I'm back!!

As of November 1, Joyful Earth has reopened its virtual doors!  I'm excited to be back behind the machine again working on some of my favorite Joyful Earth items just in time for the Holiday season.

The product line up for the upcoming winter season will be our snapping snack bags, our adjustable bowl covers, the ever popular tea on the go! sets, and the odd coffee cozy & produce bag set thrown in here and there.  

Some new ideas sitting in the back of my mind are based around allowing you to create fun & imaginative lunches for your children while creating little to no waste!  I'm a big fan of the Laptop Lunch bento system for packing my kids lunches!  I've even designed a product especially for that system - the "bento mini" reusable snack bags.  I've got a few other ideas up my sleeve such as Bento box sleeves & napkins to help you put together lunches your children (and their teachers!) will want to eat!!  Stay tuned to the blog for more bento fun!

In the meantime, I've got a lone little Bento Mini snack bag sitting here in a Dick & Jane print... and I'd love to give it away!

To win, head over to my Facebook page and "like" me!  If you already count yourself among the Joyful Earth "likers", then suggest my page to your friends!  Post in the comments once you've done this & I'll do a random.org draw early next week for the winner!

Bonus points (you'll get an extra entry in the draw) for posting a photo of a creative lunch you've made for your children that involved little to no waste, even more bonus points if that lunch includes a Joyful Earth product!!  Post your photos on my facebook page! 

winner will receive one bag that looks an awful lot like these! 

In stocking news.... I've got a few things up at Etsy, a tea wallet at Hyena Cart with more to come soon, and will be stocking at Fresh on the 9th at the 9's. 

If you enjoyed my previous posts about Primal living, I've created a new blog for those musings!  Come check it out!  

Monday, April 12, 2010

Low Level Cardio - and the stay at home parent.

My apologies for being woefully absent from the blog lately. The 30 day Primal Challenge ended two weeks ago - and I haven't had time to sit down with some uninterrupted time to write a blog post since then. The good news is that I'm still going strong in my pursuit of a Primal lifestyle, and so are the many others who followed me on the 30 day challenge. Thank you to those who joined me and I've enjoyed the encouragement and support we've been able to provide and will continue to provide for one another.

After 30 days of Primal eating, I've begun to focus on the other 9 Primal Blueprint Laws, trying to incorporate them into my day to day life. Law #3 is "Move frequently at a slow pace". Mark Sisson's book The Primal Blueprint describes the benefits of this blueprint law which is the subject of today's blog post:

  • Improved Fat Metabolism
  • Improved Cardiovascular Function
  • Improved Musculoskeletal System
  • Stronger Immune System
  • Increased Energy (p. 171)

The optimal zone for low level cardio activity is between 55 - 75% of one's maximum heart rate. To roughly estimate your max heart rate, use the following equation:

  • 220 - age = est. max heart rate for men
  • 226 - age = est. max heart rate for women (p. 172)

After reading the numerous benefits of low level cardio, I immediately thought to myself, "How on earth am I ever going to find time to go hiking?" and "I can't possibly get to the gym on a regular basis to complete the suggested 3 - 5 hours of low level cardio suggested by the Primal Blueprint" (p. 170). Trying to fit in the requisite three hours of LLC felt like a daunting task.

And then I began thinking about my days, and realized just how much low level cardio I already do. I have three children, we walk to and from school daily. Thats already 100 minutes logged in per week. Thanks to running late most days, I can reach a heart rate of up to 60% on these walks!

And then I thought about housework. I thought it might be fun to complete a few tasks and measure my heart rate while working. Here are a few of the results:

Vacuuming 60% (add to this Primal Blueprint Law #4 - lift heavy things, my vacuum is a beast!)
Making beds & tidying up 60%
Cleaning the bathroom 55%
Mopping the kitchen 60%
Washing walls 60%
Doing laundry 55%
Sweeping 55%
washing windows 50%

Add some speed to this and you can easily stay within the suggested heart rate zone of 55-75% of your maximum. Doing 1/2 hour of housework on weekdays can log 2.5 hours of low level cardio.

In addition to the LLC provided by housework, it also speaks to many of the primal movements that dictated how our genes evolved - Squat, crawl, walk, jump, carry, throw, push, pull (p. 163). I've left out run, climb, and hang but I imagine a creative housekeeper could find a way to throw those movements into their work too!

Increase the benefit of housework by focusing on your squats and doing them with proper form. Carry heavy loads of laundry up and down your stairs, don't use that laundry shoot! Get down on your hands and knees to scrub your floor, use lots of extension and stretch when you wash your walls. If you focus on the movements of each job you do, you will see just how beneficial this work is for your body! Add to this a clean house when you are done, you can not beat it!

So, between regular housework and walking the kids to school I've already logged just over 4 hours of LLC without even trying! Add to this: walking in the evening, a hike with the kids and my partner on the weekend, and working in the garden and I've easily gotten over five hours of low level cardio activity each week.

If you need any more reason to start logging low level cardio, check out this TED lecture on longevity throughout the world. You'll spot several Primal Blueprint Laws here!

I'm hoping to discuss more of the Primal Blueprint Laws and how they relate to a day in the life of a stay at home parent. Stay tuned this week for some exciting news from Joyful Earth!!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

snack bag redux

I've been sewing snack bags this weekend. Happy to report they've had a slight makeover and have been turned inside out! Funny thing is, they still look like they are inside out to me. I thought it would be more fun to have the print on the outside.

The inner is a nylon lining, not water proof but water resistant - enough to keep your food fresh and to ensure ease of cleaning! As always, Joyful Earth snack bags are closed with a snap closure. I prefer snaps for many reasons: they are easy to clean and keep clean, they are durable and long lasting, and the double fold keeps your food nice and fresh.

I've also added a smaller size for smaller snacks like pretzels, nuts or cookies. The larger size still has two size settings but the smaller size only has one setting.

You'll find some snack bags this week when I guest stock at the Alchemy congo on Hyena Cart. There will also be a few up for grabs at Lily Pad Landing on Thursday night.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Paddy's Day - Did you buy your copy of the Primal Blueprint yet?

A quick fly by post today - The Primal Blueprint is bidding for Amazon Best Seller status and is holding a campaign to sell as many books as possible over the next 24 hours. The book is available at Amazon for $17. Shipping to Canada isn't all that bad either! Read more at the MDA website - if you email your Amazon receipt to Mark, you'll get a bunch of freebies too!

Read details at Marks Daily Apple.

Order your book now!

Mine is on the way!

Monday, March 8, 2010

~fresh~ the 9th on the 9's

Excited about this! My first official stocking at Fresh is Tuesday March 9th at 9am and 9pm Hyena Cart time. The theme this month is "Wee/Pocket or Tiny", check it out:

From special guest Les Petites Choses

From Little Bear Knitwear and Beneath the Rowan Tree

From Alphabette Zoope and Bugsnugger

From Earth Muffin

From Starving Artist Bazaar

From Tickety Bu:

From Wild Child Woolies

Saturday, March 6, 2010

So, how much protein/fat/carbs do I need?

One of the first questions I am asked when someone I know is going to attempt the Primal Blueprint diet is what on earth should I be eating? Sometimes knowing just how many carbohydrates are suggested, how much fat to eat and how much protein to eat can be a bit confusing. I had these same questions, and asked for advice from the person who originally introduced me to Primal eating. I've since put all of the steps into an email that I send out on a pretty regular basis.

Without further ado - the "What on Earth should I be eating?" email. With a disclaimer... I am NOT a nutritionist, I am not a Primal Blueprint specialist... this is just what I've surmised/learned over the past six months and it is what has worked for me. I think that each person needs to sit down, figure out what their goals are, what their own lifestyle will permit and create their own plans from there. Consider this a jumping point:

First, go to this site to figure out your Basal Metabolic Rate:


then click on the link below that says "Harris Benedict Equation" - that will let you know how many calories per day you need based on your activity level.

To figure out the amount of protein you need, you need to figure out your body fat composition. I used this calculator, its not as accurate as a caliper test but it gives you a general idea:


You need .7 grams of protein per lb of lean body mass per day. This will help you to maintain your lean mass - the key to health according to the Primal Blueprint! The rest of your diet should be primarily fats (healthy fats like nuts, coconut and olive oils (no vegetable oil!!), avocado, meat, butter, cheese) and then the only carbs from vegetables and some fruit, mostly berries.

To get an idea of how you are doing with total calories/carbs/fat/protein - you can track your eating for a day or two on fit day. Its too much work to do this regularly - but I did it for the first few days and would probably do it again once a month to make sure my #'s are still in check.


Here are some interesting links from Marks Daily Apple:


Thursday, March 4, 2010

some random joyful earth goodies still available

Available at Etsy

Available at Lily Pad Landing

Available at Alchemy

Available at Venus Vanguard

Sunday, February 28, 2010

primal pancakes

1 cup almond meal
2 tbsp. melted butter or coconut oil (I prefer butter)
1 egg (sometimes I use two eggs, either works)
1/2 tsp baking powder
pinch sea salt
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/4 cup milk, almond milk or coconut milk (continue to add milk to your own desired consistency, I usually just estimate the milk)

Preheat griddle - I like to use a cast iron fying pan. Melt a spoonful of coconut oil (you can decide how much oil you want to use) or butter in the pan and prepare pancakes as you would normally.

Serve pancakes with butter, fresh or thawed frozen berries, a nice dollup of whipping cream (I like to add a bit of ginger powder to my cream before I whip it for some added flavour), and if you are like me, a tiny little drizzle of maple syrup makes the meal complete.

This is one of my staple primal breakfasts. I think it tastes more like desert - its so delicious and you will notice how you stay full (ie you are not hungry in 20 minutes) after eating primal pancakes compared to traditional wheat pancakes.

A Spark People calculation puts this recipe (before adding berries and whipping cream) at 32 grams of fat, 10 grams carbohydrates, and 11 grams of protein. This is when it serves 3.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Primal Blueprint Menu Planning - making it work for our family

Groceries are in, time to plan the meals!

This is a pretty typical menu for our family - we have a few other staples like primal chili (no beans, lots of meat and some added vegetables), roasts (chicken, beef or pork), breakfast for supper. I try to keep the meals easy, affordable and adaptable - they also need to pass muster for my three very particular food critics. In other words -they need to be ultra kid friendly.

Sunday - Fruit & cottage cheese, a handful of nuts
Monday - Almond meal pancakes, mixed frozen berries, whipped cream (my own recipe, I will be posting it sometime over the course of the month)
Tuesday - Smoothie (berries, spinach, yogurt, 1 banana (a bit of a cheat carb wise, but needed in my opinion), and almond milk)
Wednesday - Fruit (berries or melon) & full fat plain yogurt
Thursday - Eggs (probably scrambled with grated cheese on top)
Friday - Bacon & Eggs
Saturday - Fruit & Yogurt

(often my kids will eat what I am having or they have toast or cereal for breakfast)

Sunday - Spinach Salad (spinach greens, mushroom, boiled egg, bacon, red onion with a olive oil and balsamic vinegar dressing), boiled eggs & bacon for the kids
Monday - Mixed Veggie tray or big salad with side of tuna, soup and grilled cheese for the kids
Tuesday - I skip lunch on this day because I am at work - a bit of intermittent fasting
Wednesday - Big Salad, quesadillas for the kids
Thursday- Mixed Veggie tray or big salad
Friday - Mixed Veggie tray with leftovers from supper (meatloaf), kids get some crackers and cheese, meat, and fruit added to their trays

Sunday - Pork loin chops, sweet potato and veggies (thinking of trying this recipe)
Monday - Make your own pizza (this is for the kids) with Caesar salad (for mom & dad)
Tuesday - Perogies (for the kids), Sausage (found some organic beef nitrate free smokies) & vegetables with dip
Wednesday - Chicken Stir fry with some whole wheat egg noodles for the kids
Thursday - Meatloaf (without breadcrumbs or ketchup), mashed potato for the kids, big salad
Friday - Broccoli and Cheddar Soup (my children LOVE this, our recipe is NOT 100% primal or healthy)

apples dipped in almond butter
raw almonds
beef jerky (for my partner, I think it tastes like dog treats and is not a favorite)
primal muffins
fair trade organic dark chocolate

coffee with 1/2 and 1/2 cream - one cup a day
matcha green tea lattes (will post a thread with my instructions sometime this month)
tea tea and more tea

So, that's it in a nutshell.

Contest time!! I have a set of 2 organic muslin reusable tea bags that I'd like to give away. Post your favorite primal/paleo or low carb meals to the comments and I'll do a random.org drawing to pick the winner next Sunday. Don't forget to ensure that I have a way of contacting you if you win.

Primal Grocery List

Today is shopping day! Here is my primal list....

pork chops (try to find a good pastured source)
ground beef (grass fed)
chicken breast (again, pastured is best but I buy Costco frozen in the interest of being economical, this is a staple meal for us)
sausage (gluten free a must, nitrate free a bonus)
tuna (eat in limited amounts due to mercury content but great on salads)
cubed squash
organic chicken stock (making squash soup)
cheddar cheese
butter (a staple)
cottage cheese (great with berries and nuts for breakfast)
almonds (snacking, salads)
red pepper
feta cheese (greek salad, omelette, frittata)
baby tomatoes
spinach (salad and smoothies)
bacon (breakfast, salads)
olive oil
balsamic vinegar (salad dressing)
coconut oil (a staple)
mayonnaise (you could make your own, but I'm lazy)
snap peas (for snacking)
carrots (for snacking)
frozen berries (mmmm... on almond meal pancakes with whipped cream, smoothies)
almond milk (smoothies)
almond meal (baking)
eggs (a must have staple, get pastured eggs - even at $4 a dozen they are great value)
whipping cream (satisfy that sweet tooth with berries and whipped cream)
fresh berries in season
1/2 and 1/2 cream (for coffee and matcha green tea)
plain full fat yogurt (for smoothies and dips)
salad greens (lunch, every.single.day.)

Have anything to add? Don't forget your Joyful Earth produce bags!

Tomorrow look for my menu plan for the next week.

Friday, February 26, 2010

living a joyful life

Last summer I was introduced to the Primal Blueprint fitness and nutrition plan via the blog Marks Daily Apple. I had long been a follower of traditional foods/nutrition and the Primal Blueprint really spoke to me, it was MORE traditional than traditional! Think Paleolithic nutrition.. think GROK.

So - I started and it went amazingly well. I lost weight, I felt amazing, I even managed to lose that foggy mommy brain I had been battling for the last seven years. Then Halloween came, and the ugly sugar addiction reared itself again. Followed closely by Christmas and all those comfort foods that come with a cold Canadian winter.

Needless to say - I fell off the wagon a bit. But, I know I feel best when I cut the carbs (especially grains, my poor skin and gluten do not mix), and eat lots of grain fed protein (beef, chicken, pork, eggs & meat) and ensure I'm getting lots of good healthy fats like nuts, coconut oil, olive oil (the list goes on). Oh and we can't forget whipping cream (best when its raw!) and fair trade organic dark chocolate.

So, starting March 1st, I'm back on the Primal wagon. I'm going to be updating here, on facebook and wherever else I can keep myself accountable. I'd also encourage blog readers, facebook fans, friends and the like to join me for this 30 day challenge. And who better to explain what the 30 day challenge is than Mark Sisson himself. Post to the comments if you are "in" and what you'd like to see blogged about as the Primal 30 day challenge, Joyful Earth style, begins! (I'm thinking a blog about being ecologically responsible meat eaters is a start... might have to enlist some help with that one!)

Friday, February 19, 2010

exciting news!

Its been about a week - and they already feel like family! I'm so so very thrilled to announce that the outstanding group of artisans at Fresh have asked me to join their ranks! This is a huge honour for me, as I admire each and every vendor in that congo and count myself very lucky to be part of this group of pretty rockin' women!

My first stocking as an official member of Fresh is on March 9th. Check out some of the items currently available on the congo:

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

shop joyful earth.

Monday, February 8, 2010

The Cove will screen in Japan!

Any of you who have been reading this blog from day 1, know that the dolphins off the coast of Taiji have been of special interest to me. I wanted to share this news story as it hopefully signals the beginning of the end for the dolphin hunt in Japan. If you have not seen the documentary yet - make sure you rent it soon, its excellent.

The Cove Breaks Into Japan

Monday, February 1, 2010

Reusable tea bag winner announced!!

I'm very excited to announce that random.org has chosen Bonnie as the winner of the set of two reusable muslin tea bags. Congrats Bonnie!! Your tea bags will head out in the mail this week. Thanks to everyone for entering and telling me about your fave teas.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

What an amazing response!!

Produce bags are sold out! I'll be ordering more fabric very soon and will continue to fill orders from the spreadsheet as I am able. I'll contact everyone individually regarding the status of their current order! Thanks to everyone for their overwhelming support of Joyful Earth!

Saturday, January 30, 2010

preorder for organic muslin produce bags

I'm happy to report that I've just received my shipment of organic muslin. I'm excited to start sewing up produce bags this weekend. Since there has been a demand for the bags, I am going to take orders for them to ensure that everyone who was interested in getting some is able to get them.

Click here to order

You can also find a link to the order form in the side bar.

Please feel free to comment with questions or contact me directly.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Thursday stocking updates!

Click the photos to shop!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

joyful earth reusable muslin tea bags

As I sit here enjoying a nice cup of chai tea - I thought it would be a good idea to write a detailed post about the joyful earth reusable tea bags.

The idea for the reusable bags came from receiving a muslin tea bag with a tea order I had made. I loved using the bag, but found it was not durable enough to survive multiple washings. I had been using muslin to make the joyful earth produce bags, so I figured I'd whip some up using scraps I had kicking around.

The first tea bags featured a drawstring closure:

Great design, instantly popular! Like many of my products, inspiration strikes me in the wee hours of the night either in a dream or having just woken up. The idea to change the design to the current fold over tea bag design was one of those middle of the night inspirations! I woke up the next day and made a big stack of tea bags.

I've since expanded the tea bag line to include eco tea lovers on the go tea wallets. These wallets include three reusable tea bags and little mini PUL wetbag. My most heartfelt thanks go to Lisa, from Healing Pixie, who mentioned the need for such a product ~ it's been so fun creating this particular line for joyful earth!

I've been asked how the muslin reusable tea bags work. They are really easy to use. To open, flip the top over itself like a plastic sandwich baggie. Add your favorite tea and flip the top back over to close the bag. Steep as you would any other tea. When you remove your bag from your cup or tea pot, allow the leaves to cool before cleaning the bag.

To clean your tea bag, flip it inside out and dump the leaves into the compost or garbage. Give the bag a good rinse, and allow to air dry. If you have used milk when brewing your tea - you will want to wash your tea bag with each use. If you are brewing with just water, you can use the bag two or three times before washing. To wash your reusable muslin tea bag simply add it to your regular kitchen laundry.

The joyful earth reusable tea bags feature serged seams, with added reinforcement to ensure our product lasts for a long time. I am excited to announce that very soon our tea bags will be made using organic cotton muslin!

I'll bet you are craving a cup of tea now! Want to try one of our reusable tea bags? I have a set of two bags ready to send to anyone who has not tried the joyful earth reusable muslin tea bags before. To win, simply post your favorite tea blend in the comments section of this post! I'll randomly draw from all the entrants next Sunday night.