Eco Friendly Sustainable Gardening tips

¨Turn off the News and Build a Garden¨ – As our ever so talented friend Lukas Nelson sings in one of his songs, thank you for the beautiful music and honestly we could not agree more.

We are really thrilled to hear about how many people during the lock down have gotten down and dirty in the soil and decided to grow a garden! Having this time at home has inspired so many to connect with their backyard and I really believe that to be an amazing positive of 2020.

Composting is probably one of the most beneficial things we can do for our garden as well as the planet. We wanted to share some tips and resources with you that we have used to make your gardens flourish even more. Firstly we want to introduce you to the Bokashi Composting System, it is so important that we nourish the soil so that our plants can thrive. There is currently a beautiful documentary about this on Netflix “Kiss the Ground¨ which we also highly recommend.

Feeding our soil is one of the most important steps we can take towards a better future for our earth, and it is as simple as composting the foods we are already using at home, instead of those food rests ending up in a landfill and rotting away, you can nourish the soil right outside your house with it and give back to mother earth.

Photo sourced from Bokashi

How great is that? You don’t even need to plant a garden, you can just nourish the earth right outside your house, with your waste products and feel good about doing your part towards climate change, or you can grow a luscious garden, with fruit and vegetables you and your friends can break bread over. Or simply plant beautiful flowers and attract bees, and humming birds into your life.

Photo by Ella Olsson on Pexels.com

We also recommend, Eden Brothers, they have a nice selection for organic seeds. I also highly recommend these awesome biodegradable starter pots, as you can just transplant them directly into the soil without harming the roots. There is even a better garden hose option, to water your garden without the toxic chemicals from you regular hose. As you can see the options are endless.

Not only is gardening relaxing. It connects you to nature and brings you to the simplicity of nurturing your own food. I truly see it as a beneficial practice for mankind. So get outside and put the good energy into the soil, plant some seeds and reap the rewards of watching your beautiful garden grow!

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I guarantee you, you will feel accomplished about doing it and we would love to hear about your gardening experiences and success stories. For more really resourceful gardening products check out our friends at Earth Easy.

Thanks for reading and sharing.

Sustainably yours,

Eco Couple

Eco-friendly Magic in a Box for ages 2-10+

Eco Couple uses affiliate links. We promote products we have tried ourselves and truly believe in. If you make a purchase using a link we may receive a commission. Such revenue helps keep this website running, and allows us to keep the content free for readers. This motivates us to stay on our mission of inspiring conscious consumerism.

Do you ever look at Insta Moms, or pinterest and think I would like to do these fun and creative things with my kids? Well look no further we found your one stop shop to eco-friendy, sustainable, super cool and fun things to do with your little ones!

Honestly there is so much to love about this company and its practices. So let me introduce you to Green Kid Craft. Not only does the company plant a tree for every box sold! So we are already so behind this project…. the founder Penny Bauder, is an environmental scientist and leader in conservation, sustainability, youth education, and activism. Someone you would be happy your children to spend some time with.

In these very odd times and the current situation the world is in it is more important than ever that we nurture our youth with positive influences and fun projects to keep their mind on things that are nourishing and fulfilling, especially if they are currently home schooled, or sitting in front of a screen for virtual school all day. No matter how old, even us as adults can benefit from zoning out into this type of creative time! I think that sometimes I get more excited than my son does about art and crafts projects!!!

These boxes are full of creative projects that bring out the best in our little ones, while also teaching them about the environment, the value of sustainability and ways to better our planet. I cannot be happier about this! And there are so many options to choose from. Wether you would like to gift someone a one time box or simply want to subscribe to an awesome program. Made from eco-friendly materials each box includes 4-6 projects filled with creative ideas and project to keep you entertained for quite some time.

¨Leading by example is the best way to help our children learn¨. – Green Kid Craft

So if you have reverted to using the screen, try replacing that time with one of these activities and help kids grow into little scientists, engineers and inventors! Which at the end of the day is so much more rewarding for you and them.

Have you heard of STEAM (Science & Technology, interpreted through Engineering & the Arts, all based in Mathematical elements.”) You have nothing to loose by giving it a try and your kids have everything to gain! We absolutely recommend Green Kid Crafts

Thanks for reading and sharing,

Eco Couple

Water is life (Our favourite Water Filter)

Travel Berkey Filter
Eco Couple uses affiliate links. We promote products we have tried ourselves and truly believe in. If you make a purchase using a link we may receive a commission. Such revenue helps keep this website running, helps us pay our growing team, and allows us to keep the content free for our readers. This motivates us to stay on our mission of inspiring conscious consumerism. Thank You!

We are extremely connected to all bodies of water, as are many of us. Be it in the ocean, a lake, a stream or river. I always feel calmer when close to water. I have always questioned the importance of water and which water we drink and how that affects us considering we are made up of such a large percentage of water.

Where is my water coming from? Is it alive? Has it been sitting in plastic bottles under the sun for months? How clean is it? I was curious about these things and tried to get the best water I could find.

Over the years I have tried many different water filters, from complicated filtration systems under the sink to countertop filters, to Kangen water, and honestly what sits right with me personally is: can I get water that is closest to the source of how nature intended us to drink it! I don’t even know if that sentence made any sense but what I mean is…. Is there a filter that would work if I found a natural water source, it can of course be tap water but I am thinking more like a natural waterfall. I eventually stumbled upon the Berkey on one of our trips, the house we rented had the filter. I was intrigued but not 100% convinced until, I went and collected fresh water from Iao Valley and brought it home to filter through my Berkey. So yes I admit I found my perfect water! I am not going to lie we do not always have the time to collect that precious water, so we sometimes use our fawcett and that tastes great too. We try to make it a weekly ritual with the family to drive an hour into the valley and collect water from its source, and it is always a great excuse to connect with nature and swim in the cold fresh water.

The travel Berkey is the one we ended up getting and I really like the size for a family of 3 and it is easy to travel with, also in case of an emergency we can even filter rain water through it. So we are super happy with it.

Pure Water flowing from a waterfall
Photo by Jonathan Meyer on Pexels.com

On the other side, imagine never having to buy a plastic bottle ever again!! (Well almost never) When you have your own filter at your house you never run out of water, you fill up your reusable bottle, my preferred bottle when we are out and about is The Yeti (Keeps things cold for a long time) and an absolute must have for home is my Blue Bottle, which I can lay under the full moon or energise with the sun…. water does not get better than this!

If you would like to purchase the filter in Europe or the UK you can use this link Berkey Europe.

So whatever you choose to go with just be a part of the plastic pollution solution and drink your choice of filtered water wherever you are in the world.

Sustainably yours,

Sanny and Family

Surf – Reduce Reuse Recycle – let’s do this!

iñaki putting eco friendly wax on our recylced refurbished surf board

I really think that as lovers of all things water, be it surfing, paddling, kayaking or windsurfing, in part it is our duty to raise awareness about the plastic pollution in the ocean. The time has come when it is finally much easier to do this, I much rather invest in a surf leash that is made from recycled plastics than simply contribute to more waste. Wouldn’t you? Wave Tribe makes such a leash and we are lucky enough to test it in the waters, it even has a secret pocket. We are truly impressed!

surf leash made from recycled plastics

And honestly there is absolutely no reason any surfer should still be using wax with petroleum in it when we have a better eco friendly option, this wax is made from organic beeswax and coconut oil, simply the better choice. So let us protect our waters and support brands such as these.

Surf wax made from bees wax, non toxic
Here at Wave Tribe, we do our part by making it our mission to keep oceans safe from toxic surfing. We do this by creating stylish and eco-friendly surfing gear and products so that you don’t have to worry about harming the ocean while enjoying the benefits of surfing. – Wave Tribe

I often find myself wondering how we can do more bit some really simple steps to being a more conscious surfer…… we can always do a beach clean up after a good session. Or simply tell other surfers about brands like Wave Tribe, help us create that wave. Come be a part of our tribe.

We took it upon ourself to find an old second hand board… And paid very little for it. We figured that if it didn’t have the chance to go back in the water at least we would hang it on our wall as decoration! Well Iñaki worked hard on it, sanding it down several times and fixing the dings and dents (thank you Ding King for letting him use your space), we weren’t sure how it would hold up. Now just a few weeks after fixing it not only did we find out that it was worth quite a bit of money, but I have been catching waves with it like crazy, and pretty much every time I take it out someone offers to buy it. It is not for sale, it was a gift to me and I hope one day our son will get to use it, the hours of love and dedication that went in to it do not have a price in my eyes. Honestly it is one of the greatest birthday gifts I have ever gotten.

The whole point of sharing this story however, even though there are some really nice Eco friendly surfboards surfacing on the market, and I am sure we will enjoy trying them at some point, there is something really magical about taking someone else’s trash and turning into your very own treasure.

To finish off this beauty of a board not only do we have the sustainable leash by Wave Tribe but we have also discovered a brand that makes fins out of recycled bottle caps! So what can I say other than we are stoked and yes we are both using the board now.

Have you refurbished something recently that you would like to inspire us with? We are always eager to hear your stories!

Thanks for reading and hopefully see you in the waves sooner rather than later.

Sustainably yours,

Eco Couple

P.S Thanks to Silversurfer72 we have just found out that this is a Skippy Slater model Takayama board!

Takayama Surfboard refurbished, reused, and loved

 Eco Couple uses affiliate links. If you make a purchase using a link we may receive a commission. Such revenue helps keep this website running, helps us pay our growing core team and allows us to keep the content free for readers and keeps us on our mission to inspire conscious consumerism.

Top Choices for Eco friendly shoe brands (Vegan)

Verdura shoes (Italy)

This shoe comes in at number one for us….. not only is it stylish, vegan and just simply beautifully crafted. Not a day goes by that I do not get stopped on the street when I wear them. The shoe fits your feet like a glove, especially after wearing them in for a few days….. it is super comfortable and most importantly, eco conscious. From vegan leather to recycled fishing nets, this shoe exceeds every expectation from a vegan friendly shoe.

Beautifully handcrafted italian shoe made with recycled fishing nets
Every detail is hand made and sourced locally in Tuscany

Hand crafted in Tuscany, Italy. With every detail sourced locally even using natural dyes, making each and every pair unique. Wether it is out and about with a pair of summer shorts or a fancy dress these shoes make their mark wherever they go…..and we are beyond ecstatic to have found them!!!!!

Love for the planet is in the heart of Verdura as well as love for beauty and for the aesthetics” -Verdura

Beyond Skin (UK)

Every girl needs a good pair of high heels in her closet, so why not make it a vegan pair. This high heel is an all time classic style and by far one of my favourites, I absolutely love the peek a boo toe. This is a classic, timeless design that can always be worn. Dress them down with a pair of jeans, wear them on a red carpet or to a wedding. The shoe fits for every special occasion.

Their sustainable and leather-free footwear is all ethically and beautifully handmade in Spain. They have a beautiful selection of vegan shoes

Quoting Beyond Skin and a very interesting fact we did not know: ¨On average, one cow hide will provide 18 pairs of leather shoes and each pair of shoes is accountable for the use of over 1.4 million litres of water! This figure includes the water used to rear and slaughter the cow, and to process the hide in to leather.
Put simply, each time you purchase a new pair of leather shoes you are responsible for using as much water as having a bath everyday for over 40 years! In terms of disposal you’d think that leather products would be biodegradable, but the tanning agent renders it non biodegradable.¨

To me this is enough reason to look for a more sustainable option!

Simple Shoes (USA)

For a classic comfortable sneaker for men and women we have landed on these super comfy shoes. ¨Simple innovation in the form of an organic cotton canvas sneaker. A timeless style that will become a wardrobe staple. The textile lined memory foam insoles support and cushion your every step for maximum comfort.

simple shoes and skateboard made from recycled fishing nets
Even the skateboard is made from recycled fishing nets (carver)

There are no harmful dyes used and the materials are held together with eco-friendly water based glues. The flat cotton laces are made from 100% recycled cotton; and yes, it is a vegan shoe.  A classic organic cotton canvas sneaker that goes well with whatever music is playing.¨ Now how would you chose any other sneaker over this one….¨memory sole insoles are absolutely something worth a try!

GUMBIES (USA, UK, EU and AUSTRALIA)

These may be the most comfortable flip flops we have ever owned, Iñaki loves them just as much as I do! Inspired by tires and made from recycled rubber these flip flops have their own unique look and are truly a great price. We hope to own many more of them, and there are so many wonderful colours to choose from, we have yet to try the cork flip flops but do not doubt that they will probably be amazing too.

Gumbies Islander flip flops

The Outback Slipper is made using 8 recycled plastic bottles, how amazing is that. For more info read up on it on their website. There is nothing greater than a good surf session and then slipping into a nice warm slipper, no matter what part of the world you happen to be in.

After a good surf session at hookipa, Hawaii

So all in all we have introduced you to our favourite eco conscious shoe brands for every and any occassion and look forward to hearing from you to discover more brands you would love to share with us!

Eco Couple uses affiliate links. We promote products we have tried ourselves and truly believe in. If you make a purchase using a link we may receive a commission. Such revenue helps keep this website running, helps us pay our growing core team, allows us to keep the content free for readers and keeps us on our mission to inspire conscious consumerism.

Eco-Friendly Bedding

If you stop and think about the fact that you spend almost a whole third of your life in Bed ….Do you not deserve to be lying in what is the best bed and bedding ever?

We believe it is essential to sleep with comfortable and healthy, organic bedding and our always on the lookout for brands that are aligned with nature! Lana Care has introduced us to a fibre we knew nothing about. Kapok (Ceiba) fabric, it is super cozy and it’s function is very innovative. Kapok fiber is harvested from the fluffy fiber surrounding the seeds of the tropical kapok tree. One of the things I personally like is that the Ceiba plant is like horses hair, hollow on the inside, which makes it breathable. It wicks moisture away throughout the night. Which is incredibly important as we all sweat at night. It is also referred to as the lightest fibre in the world. It is extra fluffy and comfy.

We are thrilled with Kapok (Ceiba) through and want to thank our friends over at Lana Care for sending us the lovely duvet…. It feels like silk!

“Sleep is the best meditation” – Dalai Lama

We encourage you, if you cannot currently buy a new organic mattress atleast invest in an organic topper and enjoy some extra special cozy bedding for an extra special nights rest, every night! Good night!

 

Socks, Socks, Socks…Where is the second one?

If you are like us you are in constant search for the second sock! With babies, especially when they are learning how to crawl and walk, this can be a challenge.

We came across a brand that made that a little easier for us AIDIE LONDON, not only are they super cute they are also “Award-Winning Baby Booties. Designed by specialists in Child Psychology.” according to their website.

Lined with Organic Cotton, they are soft and cozy, keep your babies feet warm and allow for sensory stimulation to the soles of your babies feet….which when they are learning how to walk is especially important.

What we like most is the little buttons that keep the booties on your babies feet, even if they do try and pull them off, they stay on. In addition they get to grow in to them as they are adjustable, which at their growth rate is very convenient to get to use them a little while longer.

We can finally be done with lost socks! EcoCouple definitely approves of these booties!

To purchase and help us continue our mission please go to our affiliate link:

AIDIE LONDON BOOTY

Eco Couple uses affiliate links. If you make a purchase using a link we may receive a commission. Such revenue helps keep this website running, helps us pay our growing core team and allows us to keep the content free for readers and keeps us on our mission to inspire conscious consumerism.

Conscious Traveler: Maui, Hawaii 🇺🇸

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We have been blessed with the opportunity to have traveled to Maui, Hawaii for almost two months. Iñaki was competing in a windsurfing contest, The Aloha Classic (IWT), a life long dream, and I was blessed to enjoy motherhood and continue researching eco conscious brands. Upon arrival we came across a wonderful photographer…that took some of the pictures in this article….who not only did the shoot with us but also recommended some of the amazing brands we ended up collaborating with. Thank you Chelsea! If you are headed for Maui it is definitely worth it to capture this stunning place with some beautiful photographic memories.

Maui was especially fun as we not only came across really inspiring brands but also made friends for life. Our first stop was Mana foods, of course  we had to stock up for our adventures. Surprisingly the prices are quite similar to Los Angeles. Mana foods is also the place you can be quite entertained simply standing in front of the store, you may be serenaded by a harp or find yourself philosophising about God and the world, you know what I mean if you have been there. This is where we found our water source now we just needed to find the right container.

We were so very blessed to meet Kayden, of Blue Bottle Love, we were taken into her humble abode. Surrounded by beams of sunlight filtered by the cobalt  blue bottles ….making her home and workspace even more magical. Our meeting turned into a 5 hour extravaganza, including everything from Meditation to the whole story of how Blue Bottle Love came about.

From that day on… at least one blue bottle (1 gallon:-) made it with us wherever we would go. The water tasted clean, conscious and simply delicious.

Blue Bottle Love photo by Chelsea Heller Photography

Iñaki was windsurfing every day and getting ready for the competition, now the sun is strong in Maui so it was imperative we found the right sunscreen, that was reef safe to keep us all protected while making sure we were not harming our environment. That is when we came across Raw Love Sunscreen Jenna also received us in her home and explained to us about all the harmful ingredients sunscreens use and how they damage the reefs and coral.  We were so excited about this knowledge that we decided to speak to the people of IWT (International Windsurfing Tour) and got Raw Love Sunscreen to become a sponsor for the event, thereby educating and keeping us and the nature around us safe.


We also came across a very innovative brand located right in Paia. Ellemer we wrote a separate article on them check it out for a discount code.

One of the brands we were very happy to find was was Green Toy. You can purchase them at the organic food market ¨Down to Earth” – really close to the airport and Kanaha beach. Being on Maui and having fun toys for the beach is imperative and these ones are made from recycled milk bottles, how cool is that, so we had to get in touch with the brand and test them out. Atlantis, our son, loves them, they are perfect for the beach and the bath tub. The boat even turns into a watering can.

Chelsea suggested so many other local brands that are fully green-eco; on an Island you especially realise how important it is to consume less and make wiser choices. All and all we are so happy to have had the chance to experience Maui and visit its gems like Lumeria (best home made veggie burger I have ever tried), or the lavender fields, the local farmers market, also if you invest in a fruit picker and have a good eye you can eat fruit right from the trees, a must try the local banana bread on the road to Hana (We recommend you download a guide before heading out in the very early hours of the morning, as you will lose reception and there are many magical stops to make), taste the orange passion fruits and the delicious papayas, there is also a local Kombucha brewery in Haiku…but be warned too much kombucha and you might get a booch high as they like to call it (don’t drink and drive)……. Last but not least our favorite restaurants by far…. Nuka sushi in Haiku…. Go for the elaborate rolls…. And for a delicious organic pizza…. Flatbread company in Paia is the place to go!

Lastly we came across a really special store and brand, in Lahaina, they have the most beautiful swimsuits made of recycled ghost nets….. They are very orginal in their designs and I absolutely love mine!!!!! Kelley Chapman the owner of Manakai is a true eco goddess and lives and breathes a sustainable lifestyle…. Please check out her blog and amazing projects! 💕 MANAKAI

One really great insider tip: at the Kuau store, if you wait to the end of the day, you can get their Ahi Poke for half price, and it is DELICIOUS!! If you have been to Maui you know it isn’t cheap to eat…. So that is a good one…. Speaking of savings… It is absolutely worth it to get a costco card…. The gasoline is waaay cheaper and they have lots of delicious organic food in bulk!

One more thing, don’t miss the sunsets on the south side of the island, or the sunrises for that matter, thousand peaks for example. So many things pop into my mind… Try the Açai at Choice, and the Fish tacos at the Fish Market….. It is a place to revisit for sure!

Thousand peaks is also a great spot to go surfing for anyone…. From beginner to advanced, there is a peak for everyone…. Hence the name.


As for the windsurfing spots…. This island is a playground for all levels… . For the more advanced windsurfer you can pretty much find conditions at ho’okipa every other day… And for the not so skilled, kanaha works pretty much every day! Both places are about thirty minutes apart.

If you are visiting maui with children we highly recommend the Maui Ocean Centre…. The tunnel is an experience to remember, especially for the little ones, and they have a lot of amazing info on helping and preserving marine life.

To finish this article we wanted to share an experience we had: During the IWT Windfsurfing Competition, we participated in an ocean clean up: in Hookipa this can be tricky: We were only a few people and it was about to be cancelled due to the big swell that was hitting the spot. Both Boojma and me (Sanny) decided to do it anyway, and in the end most of the people decided to get wet and join us. We ended up collecting about 60 masts, and some booms, fins….. the point is if you are enjoying the island, leave it cleaner than you found it so that future generations can enjoy it as much as we did.

For extra exclusive Maui tips….. feel free to write to us anytime at sustainablecouplegoals@gmail.com we may hand out a phone number or two!

Thank you for stopping by our blog…..and feel free to leave comments and help us grow!

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Eco Couple uses affiliate links. If you make a purchase using a link we may receive a commission. Such revenue helps keep this website running, helps us pay our growing core team and allows us to keep the content free for readers

Water: Say goodbye to plastic 🇺🇸 🇬🇧

The first thing that attracted our attention when visiting Tapp´s website, is the display that shows the number of plastic bottles that are no longer consumed when using filters such as this. We are using the model Tapp 2 Twist, that has biodegradable cartridges. Tapp filters eliminate more than 80 water contaminants and reduces another 50, while keeping the essential minerals needed for the human body.

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Collectively TAPP users have successfully avoided 4 million plastic bottles since their launch in 2017. And this is only one of the few brands that currently exist in the market. This shows that we can really have an impact using these filters.

It’s very convenient to fill up your glass bottle before you head out of the house; the combination of filtered water-glass bottle is simply perfect. If we are made up of more than 70% water, how do you not pay attention to the water we drink?

With each cartridge you filter up to 1500 liters, more or less 2-3 months of daily use; if you drink bottled water, you calculate how much money you save. (Tapp filter plus 4 cartridges – yearly budget – costs around $100).

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If you have access to a natural water spring and can filter the water, then you and your family are covered for your water needs whilst being responsible and sustainable; if you live in a city however, with no access to a spring, the filter is good enough. There are several options to think about when it comes to the water you consume, any option will be better than drinking water out of plastic bottles.

It is affordable: Filtered tap water is over a hundred times cheaper than bottled water.

It is sustainable: TAPP 2 refills use biodegradable (around 80%) materials which can be disposed of with organic waste

TAPP 2 refill cartridges are made entirely out of non-toxic materials which remain inert after decomposing.

For more info, please visit: TAPPWATER

To purchase click on the corresponding flag. Thank you.

🇺🇸  🇩🇪 . 🇪🇸 . 🇬🇧  

Eco Couple uses affiliate links. If you make a purchase using a link we may receive a commission. Such revenue helps keep this website running, helps us pay our growing core team and allows us to keep the content free for readers.

Elle Mer Eco Swimwear 🇺🇸

Photo by Chelsea Heller

When recently visiting the island of Maui we did some research on brands that were trying to have a positive influence on our environment…. We will post a more detailed blog in the near future…. for now we wanted to single out one of them: Elle Mer is a company that makes their swimwear from recycled fishing nets and produce in their own little factory in Paia, Maui. We went to visit and loved what we saw…. Here a few of my favourites… I was very postpartum in these photos but a proud mama 🙂

You can use this discount code to get 10% off : SAVE10SANNY

*A small % of this sale will go to Ecocouple to continue promoting eco-friendly brands

Thank you for coming back to our blog and helping us make this world a better place!

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