Shrimpton Couture Makes Vintage Lovers Drool


When it comes to fashion, you can't get much greener than vintage clothing. Reuse, renew and recycle right? I have been a fan of vintage clothing since I was a teenager. I still wear some of the great finds I scored while rummaging through the back racks of The Red Rose. One of my favorites is my U2 concert t-shirt from the Unforgettable Fire European Tour. I plan on wearing it when I see them live in October!

I wish I could still fit into the great pair of blue corduroy bell bottoms I scored there when I was 14. They were the real deal. When I came across them in 1995, bell bottoms were just starting to come back into fashion and were still a rare site on the streets. I lived in those babies. Just slipping into them sent me back to another era. I could almost hear the music, smell the pot...pourri ;) and feel the warmth of the fire from the bra burnings. Sadly, The Red Rose has been closed for many years now and I'm reduced to Good Will for my thrifting, which has actually become quite pricey in my book.

However, for the snobbier vintage enthusiasts out there I have a favorite site to share. Shrimpton Couture is a fun place to window shop and get great ideas on how to work those vintage gems into a modern wardrobe. Even if you're not into vintage, you should check them out. It's like looking through a fashion museum, only here you can purchase and wear those pieces of history!

If you have a favorite vintage shopping site or tip, share it with us in a comment.

Photos courtesy of Shrimpton Couture

Higher Ground Coffee Winners!


Congratulations to Jay and clemery! You both won a bag of Organic, Fair Trade Coffee!

Numbers 2 and 15 were randomly chosen using the integer generator at

Thanks to everyone for participating. We have lots of special giveaways coming up soon- better luck next time!

Enjoy your weekend.

Mambo Sprouts Makes Saving on Natural & Green Products Easy!


I admit I have caught the coupon fever that is spreading rapidly around the country. With great blogs like Money Saving Mom that make it so easy to save SO much, how can I not get hooked?! I search the Red Plums out of every community paper that hits my sidewalk and even began purchasing the Sunday paper for the coupons. I have a hard time saving as much as the pros (like my sister Rebecca who constantly gets her dog food, cereal and body products for free and pays $.19 for a block of cheese) but I am managing to save about $45 on my Kroger visits. The challenge I face is finding coupons for natural, green, organic and gluten-free products. These items are the most expensive on my list and coupons for them are hard to come by.

But recently my sister turned me on to a great website called Mambo Sprouts. Membership is free and they offer coupons for natural and green products only! A selection of printable coupons is available online and three times a year they send out a coupon book in the mail. I get occasional email alerts to let me know when new coupons are available to print. If you can have these coupons on hand and combine them with store discounts and store coupons as they come, you'll be looking at some serious savings!

If you have a blog dedicated to helping people achieve incredible savings with coupons, feel free to leave your link below in Mr. Linky and share a good deal you've recently posted!

Green Giveaways Around the Blogoshphere


Good Luck!

eaurganic Shampoo and Conidtioner Giveaway at Sage and Savvy

STL Mommy $50 Target Giftcard Giveaway (ends 10/10)

Alaskan Bargain Hunter $10 Target Giftcard Giveaway (ends 9/28)

Green Smart Bottle and Tote Giveaway at Money Saving Tips for the Keeper at Home (ends 9/25)

KidsKonserve Giveaway from Green Organic Mama (ends 9/20)

Eco-Friendly All Modern Baby Toy at Babies Gotta Have It (ends 9/30)

Clean & Green Carpet Cleaner Giveaway at Momma In Flip Flops2 (ends 9/23)

Don't forget about my current giveaway for Higher Ground Organic, Fair Trade Coffee ending on Spetember 25th!

Sun Crystals Review and Deal Alert


Anyone who begins a diet will quickly learn that sugar is a no-no. High sugar diets bring extra pounds and dreaded cellulite. This is a problem for me. Hi, my name is Beth... and I'm a sugarholic. I love sugar and sweet things. Sweet tea (true Southern sweet tea), chocolate, candy and sugary baked goods. I woke up this morning thinking about the jumbo bag of candy corn stashed in the cabinet above the refrigerator behind the flower vases. I had to have them. Just one. At least one to start my day off right. Then I would go running. And 7 1/2 candy corns later, I set out for my run smiling to myself.

I've learned to tame my cravings for the most part by completely cutting sugar out where it's not missed. Hot tea was a tough sell but I eventually began to prefer it without sugar. That's a good thing because I drink about four cups a day. Cold sweet tea I began to split and mix with regular tea- a tip I learned from my mom in the Chick-fil-A drive through line. (Thanks mom.)

Many choose to use artificial sweeteners as a way to have their cake and eat it too- guilt free.

Unfortunately, the negative effects of many of these sweeteners are just as
scary as the added cellulite you may achieve with sugar.
With the scariest risk being cancer, there are a slew of other more common side effects to worry about such as severe headaches, skin rashes, breathing difficulties and diarrhea.

So put down the aspartame and saccharin and reach for a new, ALL NATURAL alternative.

Sun Crystals is a new all natural sweetener that mixes pure cane sugar with stevia, a naturally sweet plant native to South America that has been used around the world for centuries, to create a delicious sweetener at only 5 calories per packet! To give it a try, I decided to indulge in my first sweetened cup of hot tea in over four years. The packets are small and I was doubtful that just one would bring much flavor, but I sprinkled the contents into my cup and stirred. The crystals are white and look just like regular table sugar. Turns out, it tastes like it too! I actually thought my tea was too sweet! Half the pack would have done the job.

I look forward to trying it in my lattes and over some strawberries, and at only 5 calories a pop and NO health risks, I can afford to. I highly recommend this product.

For those "try it before you buy it" readers, Sun Crystals will send you a free sample if you sign up at their website. Also, there was a $2 coupon in the recent Red Plum, which would leave a box costing only around $1.75. For those Texan readers, HEB has Sun Crystals on sale for only $1.99 until October 16th. Use your $2 coupon and you'll get it for free with a $.01 overage! If you missed the Red Plum coupon, there are printable coupons available here.


30 Seconds to Better Milk in Our School Lunch Rooms!


A few months ago I told you about the hormones in our dairy milk and the negative effects they bring in my post Got Hormones?. (Read post here!) In the post, I also spoke about the need for hormone free and organic milk in school cafeterias and urged you to sign a petition to Congress. Well, now it's time to pick up your phone. The Child Nutrition Act will go before Congress this year for reauthorization, so now is the time to begin contacting our representatives. A phone call will only take 30 seconds or so from your day and could make a huge difference to the health of our children!

Did you know that our milk is not accepted in many countries because it
contains growth hormones? Canada, Britain and others have long
acknowledged the dangers these hormones present and have taken action to protect
their citizens. The least Congress can do is make a move to protect
our children while in the care of the public schools.
Food & Water Watch has organized a call to action on their website. They give numbers and links, and have even provided a script for you to follow if you are among the many who avoid calling Congressional leaders because you don't know what to say. Take a moment and visit their page here and make your call. Every call to a Congressional office is recorded and counted, so your call really does count!

For additional reading, check out these handy fact sheets put out by Food & Water Watch:

Take Action to Protect Roadless Areas in Our National Forests


Beautiful isn't it?

You can help keep it that way.

The Tongass National Forest in Alaska (pictured) as well as millions of acres of other national forests are in danger of losing their awe inspiring purity. In 2001 President Clinton put a "roadless rule" into effect that banned the construction of roads in areas of national forests that did not already have any roadways in place. This ban, which protected these roadless areas from logging, was reversed during the Bush presidency and has since been a source of much controversy.

President Obama has invited American citizens to submit their comments on how America's roadless areas should be handled. To make your voice heard, simply follow this link. The Sierra Club has created a template letter that you can personalize and send within a matter of minutes. If preserving our most pristine forests is a priority to you, take a moment now to submit your request.

Higher Ground Organic, Fair Trade Coffee Review & Giveaway

My husband has been a loyal Starbucks consumer for about four years now, so when I gave him the organic, fair trade coffee I had ordered from Higher Ground he was reluctant. He opened one of the bags and in no time the room was filled with that heavenly smell that tempts even non coffee drinkers such as myself. After grinding some beans and brewing them in his French press the moment of truth came. He loved it.

When I explained that the beans are grown organically in the shade of forest canopies by small family farmers throughout South and Central America, he was sold.

What does Fair Trade mean?

By purchasing Fair Trade beans you are supporting small, independent family farmers around the world. You can buy confidently, knowing that these farmers are being fairly compensated for their harvest and that your money is being reinvested into their communities.

Why Shade Grown?

The purest level of shade growing is categorized as "rustic" meaning that the coffee plants are grown under a natural canopy of an existing forest. Typically employed by small independent farmers, rustic shade growth methods coincide with natural vegetation instead of interfering with it, preserving and encouraging the plantation's natural biodiversity. Rustic plantations grow a wide variety of trees, typically averaging 25 species, and boast shade cover of 70-100%.

Shade growth makes it easier to farm the plants organically as it reduces the growth of weeds, encourages cross-pollination and protects from forms of infection.

Bottom line- shade growing promotes biodiversity, preserves the natural
ecosystem, produces healthier plants and, because the beans are allowed to
mature slowly, result in an overall better tasting cup of coffee.

Why Higher Ground?

Investing in quality coffee from Higher Ground roasters means investing in a socially responsible company. Your dollars will not only be reinvested in the communities that produced the coffee, but also communities and local causes around the US. Higher Ground offers many roasts that support certain charities and organizations such as The Mercy Corps Blend or The Appalachian Trail Blend. Higher Ground is also a member of 1% for the Planet, meaning that they have committed to give back at least 1% of their annual sales to environmental charities. They also use 100% recycled materials and biodegradable corn husk plastics wherever possible and donate their waste as compost to local farmers.

Win Higher Ground Coffee!

When The Spotted Apple Store launches in a few months you will be able to purchase Higher Ground Coffee from us on line. Until then you can purchase it directly from them by visiting

But today you have the chance to win a bag!

Two readers will win a 12 oz. bag of Higher Ground's whole bean Mercy Corps Blend. This exotic dark roast is a blend of the best beans South and Central America have to offer resulting in a "bold and nutty, full bodied [taste] with a sweet finish." Our lucky winners will enjoy their morning cup of joe knowing that $0.62 of every bag goes directly to support the Mercy Corps' efforts to alleviate poverty and suffering in more than 30 countries around the world.

How to Enter:

* To enter simply leave a comment on this post telling how you would enjoy your cup of coffee. Please include your email address.

* For an additional entry, become a follower on my blog. Be sure to leave a second comment telling me that you did and include your email address again.

* Get another entry by telling someone about this giveaway! Whether you call your sister or blog about it- be sure to leave me another comment telling me and include your email address yet again. :)

***This giveaway is open to continental US residents only and ends on September 25th at 11:59 PM CST. Please be sure to check out my Giveaway Pledge under the Giveaway tab.

Good Luck!

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I'm Back!


After a month of rest and recuperation, I am back and feeling so much better! I had surgery in August to fix some minor health problems that were getting me down. It's amazing how those small and seemingly insignificant health complaints can wreak such havoc on your body! But, thanks to my brilliant doctor and attentive husband, I'm good as new and ready to rejoin the world.

As a thank you for your patience I will be hosting a few giveaways over the next couple of weeks, starting with a yummy one tomorrow! You'll have to check back here tomorrow morning to find out what it is, but there will be TWO winners!

I will leave you this evening with National Geographic's picture of the day and a song that I think is fitting. It may take you back to your childhood and if it doesn't make you smile you may need to take a vacation.
Brown Bear Under Water

**Photograph by Randy Olson**