Unwrpd Boxes! Your #ZeroWaste best friend.

Z E R O   W A S T E
Sounds easy enough right? To minimise your waste by lowering consumption of single-use plastic, unnecessary packaging, and other not so earth friendly things humans do. It is not until you start to think about the amount of waste you produce that you realise how wasteful we are as individuals and as societies.

It happens so innocently and slowly creeps into everything you do. Like when you order a (food) takeaway and it comes in a ‘convenient’ plastic container; or when you order a drink ‘to-go’ in a single-use plastic or paper cup. When you go shopping and use a single-use plastic bag, and evens when you buy your shampoo and conditioner in a plastic container.
All those things add up.

But you can make changes! small changes can go a long way! I started replacing all single-use plastic water bottles with reusable water bottles made of insulated metal by Klean Kanteen. These beauties not only look nice, but they keep your drinks chilled/warm for longer and help you reduce the number of plastic bottles you consume.

‘Every year, 8 million metric tons of plastic end up in our oceans. It’s equivalent to five grocery bags filled with plastic for every foot of coastline in the world.’ Plasticsolution.org

Companies like https://unwrpd.com make the zero-waste life transition so much easier. Earlier this month they contacted me and offered me to sample one of their subscription boxes!

“We choose products and companies with eco-credentials we can stand behind. Additionally, all our packaging is 100% plastic-free; recycled, recyclable and up-cycled where possible.”

The products they offer are all natural, environmentally friendly, chemical free and cruelty-free. They are a happy tree hugger eco-warrior best friend! They also offer one-off gift boxes which are the perfect treat this Christmas.

I also love the fact their packaging matches their company ethics. No plastic at all. And the box is completely recyclable (check your local council for full details)

Happy Environmentalist Holidays!

For a limited time only enjoy 25% off your order with my code Onix25 by accessing via this link 

Please note the discount code won’t work unless you use the link. You can also find the link on my Instagram bio 🙂

XOxo

Jihane

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Viva Organic, Cardiff’s #ZeroWaste Heaven!

You guys! I have been so busy and so Instagram dependant that I haven’t blogged in here as much as I really should. I mean, as a blogger sometimes you even question if anyone is reading. Is this thing on? hello? lol but I have had a few people reach out to me via email and social media lately who reminded me why I blog. Because I love everything green, eco-friendly and sustainable! which I assume is the same reason why you are here too.

So let me start reconnecting by letting you know about this uber cool place in Cardiff. Viva Organic! (what a fantastic name that is)

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Viva Organic is located in the Pontcanna area – which is filled with little British houses, trees, small cozy roads with people pedaling along on their bikes and an array of amazing little shops. Pontcanna reminds me a lot of the Montrose area in Houston – sans the heat – but with British accents and Welsh cakes.

Viva Organic is the first of its kind in the area. As a zero waste shop, it offers everything your little environmental hearts can wish for. Organic fruit and veg (without plastic containers or wrapping) juice bar, with cold-pressed juices and delicious smoothies – My 12-year-old son devoured a Tropical smoothie in a matter of minutes and said it was one of the tastiest he ever had.

 

 

They also offer a range of organic wines and beers and coffees. The only thing I didn’t see was Kombucha, however, there was a little sign saying ‘coming soon’.

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The best part of the shop is hidden towards the back. A whole selection of self-serve and pack areas with large glass containers holding grains, pasta, cereals and oils which people can buy and carry home using their own containers ❤ it is just perfection. You can also purchase shampoo and natural soaps along with a range of cleaning household items.

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fullsizeoutput_8387The only downside to the place is that I have to travel more than a few miles to get there from the Valleys. But it is definitely worth a visit!

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B I G Thank you to Rod (Thomas) owner of the place, for bringing this amazing little place to live! I am absolutely in love with the place, the concept and the ethics behind it. I was also very pleased to see so many young families, and kids in the shop – mine included.

Viva Organic is located at 79 Pontcanna Street, Pontcanna, Cardiff. General opening hours are Tuesday to Friday – 8 am until 6 pm, Saturday – 9 am until 5 pm, Sunday – 11 am until 4 pm. Closed on Mondays.

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Gypsy Heart :: Moving to Another Land

I often choose to start with a blank page.

Why are we so scared of beginnings?

Some of us have that nomad gene dormant in our subconscious perhaps? I was born in one country, moved to another, then another, then lived my childhood in one place, but always traveling, tasting and exploring (thanks, mum & dad).
Then I became a young adult, and I went back to my place of birth. Became an adult and found myself falling headfirst against the ground of adulthood reality. I moved again. I moved again to heal, to find myself, and to grow internally and as a person. I’ve accomplished my mission and I am now ready to go.

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I keep moving. My mind and my body feel the need to explore, learn, move. We are not static beings. Our ancestors kept moving in the search for more food, land, and opportunities. It is part of human nature. However, if you chose not to move and to stay in one place that is fine too – if it works for you, it works for you. I personally don’t need to have roots in one place in order to feel whole. I am whole in the wind, in the immense universe of life, in the eternal shining of the stars.

Life is fluid. Is a constant movement of actions, reactions, people, and worlds.

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After spending 9 years in Newcastle, I moved to Houston, Texas. That was a 180-degree change. From the old world into the new. From the small streets to the vast distances of Texas. From the rainy cold afternoons to the hot and humid sunny gatherings.
Texas opened its gigantic doors to me and I embraced it’s cultural diversity, its simplistic pomposity (Hipster style) and its warm long afternoons – although I still think sweet tea is an abomination, sorry not sorry… joking, it’s ok if you hate tea. lol.

My heart is black and white stripes (Newcastle FC) with Catrinas (Mexican, Dia de Los Muertos) and majestic bullhorns (Texas). My heart also waves the Venezuelan flag (Amarillo, Azul y Rojo) and has so much more space waiting to be colored and filled with new experiences, cultures, and faces.

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I am forever grateful to all the things learned during my time in the USA. The truth is, I am a culture junkie. I find eternal happiness in the discovery of new cultures, in the understanding of new traditions, in the tolerance of new ideologies. I am a Third Culture child and my heart aches for knowledge and adventure.

So today, I say Salud! Cheers to new and old places. Cheers to growth and discovery. Cheers to adventure! Cheers to YOU, to ME and to the WORLD.

See you at my next destination – Cymru.

Xoxo

Books Worth Reading: Sustainability Made Simple

A little while back I was offered a courtesy copy of the book Sustainability Made Simple by Rosaly Byrd and Lauren Demates (March 16, 2017 ISBN: 978-1-4422-6909-5 hardcover $36.00; Rowman & Littlefield). If you have been reading me for some time now you know I am all about sustainability, green living and healthy lifestyles (with a few indulgences now and then, because life is too short)

So I obviously jumped in delight when I heard about this book! Anything that can make my life simple, green and chemical free is always welcomed. However I try to stay critical and real with my choices. This book is perfect for anyone starting the sustainable living journey.

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What I love the most about this book is how practical it is. All of the tips and suggestions are easy enough for the average person to follow. It introduces the readers to a world in which sustainable living is not only possible but achievable. In this day and age in which in some parts of the world the impact to the environment is being ridiculed, it is important to keep informed. Know how to separate fact from opinion and make your own judgement. Remember we have only ONE planet, and it is our responsibility to sustain life in it, not only for us but for generations to follow.

Small changes can make a big difference. If we all act united and together small changes become big changes in the long run. For example, Rosaly Byrd and Lauren Demates, offer small and simple little steps such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator, and to carry reusable cups and water bottles instead of contributing to plastic pollution. Same goes to reusable non-plastic bags for your grocery shopping trips – hemp bags are a brilliant alternative.

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Eco-Lunchbox BPA free and reusable

 

The book is conveniently divided in sections, from household shores to travelling tips that cover all your sustainabe living needs. Best part? It is kid friendly, there are many activities in there you can do with your whole family and kids. Make concious consumers from an early age and you will change the world.

This educational and engaging book is perfect for someone who has heard the term sustainability and is interested in learning what it’s all about, the novice environmentalist looking for new ways to improve their impact, or anyone in between. Case studies and tables highlight interesting information and trends, and an extensive bibliography provides further reading for those who want to learn more about the world of sustainability.

xoxo

Jihane


About the Authors:

Rosaly Byrd is the co-founder and author of the blog The Sustainability Co-Op that works to engage readers on global environmental issues. She also writes as a freelance blogger for the Huffington Post. Rosaly has lived in Haiti and Brazil, working on environmental policy and sustainable development for the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and UN Development Programme (UNDP). Rosaly holds a Master’s degree in International Affairs with a focus on international environmental policy from University of California, San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy, and a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts from Florida Atlantic University Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College in Jupiter, Florida.

Laurèn DeMates is a sustainability professional committed to improving the environmental impact of government, corporations, and individuals. Her work has included applying behavioral and social science-based strategies to increase energy efficiency in the federal government and assisting companies collect and analyze corporate social responsibility metrics. Laurèn is a LEED Green Associate and a co-founder of The Sustainability Co-Op blog. She graduated from the University of California, San Diego with a Master’s degree in International Affairs, and from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo with a Bachelor of Science degree in Social Sciences.