Aquatic Glassel–An Eco-Friendly Replacement for the Traditional Fireplace or Fire Pit

I recently saw an exciting new product that can be a replacement for the traditional fireplace. It is called Aquatic Glassel, and is a beautiful tumbled sparkling glass that will turn your existing fireplace or outdoor fire pit into a stunning show piece. It looks like fire on ice as the flame dances and flickers without soot, ash or smoke. The glass will not degrade, discolor or produce any by-products, and the company promises that it will last a lifetime. The glass itself radiates heat, providing a constant flow to warm your home. It is far more efficient than other methods because nothing blocks the radiant heat as a screen or glass doors found on more traditional fireplaces are not needed with this type of heat.


Aquatic Glassel was originally produced for the Decorative and Aquarium Industry, but just recently the company has been producing new products for the Fireplace and Hearth Industry as well. Aquatic Glassel is a specially processed tempered glass, not recycled glass. Recycled glass (trash glass) is dangerous as it can crack and pop, causing injury.

The sparkling glass produces exceptional beauty in an outdoor fire pit too. The brilliant reflection of the midday sun causes the glass to sparkle, and in the evening, the glass creates a shimmering reflection of magnificent flames. No screen or glass doors are needed inside or out as there are no popping cinders.

Aquatic Glassel comes in hundreds of elegant colors and allows you to create your own individual look to match the decor of any home whether rustic, eclectic, contemporary or classic or somewhere in between. The tempered, formulated glass pieces are not sharp and can be scooped up with the hand. The transparent colors can be interchanged as desired to accommodate changing furnishings or seasons.

Aquatic Glassel directly replaces gas logs or wood and burns cleaner and more efficiently than other conventional products. The possibilities for combinations are endless. The company claims it is simple to install yourself; is safe for the environment and the touch; and has no cinders or embers or odors. There is no mess and it is pollution free. There is neither chemical treatment nor surface coating on this product, or any chemical by-products generated from using Aquatic Glassel. When the glass bits get dirty or dusty, they can be scooped up and washed with dish detergent and thoroughly rinsed. You can add or mix colors at anytime to create special effects also.

The company that makes this product is called Moderustic, Inc. and is located in Rancho Cucamonga, California. A few undesirable competitors have apparently spawned from this original company but Moderustic, Inc. holds the patent for the Aquatic Glassel products. This sounds like a truly eco-friendly product. This sounds like a truly eco-friendly new product.…

Easy to Be Green

Nowadays, everyone is aware of the need to go green and the steps we need take to reduce our environmental impact. Unfortunately, not many people are taking that step for whatever reason they may have, but the most popular reason is that it is too much work to live green. It is a huge misconception that it takes a lot to go green, in fact it is the complete opposite. Here are three simple steps to get you on the green track.


When you’re cleaning your driveway or porch, don’t use water to remove the dirt. Sweep! Yes, using your water hose is easier and faster to remove dirt and leaves, but remember you’re taking a green approach. Avoid the water hose as well when you’re cleaning your outdoor windows, use an eco-friendly window cleaner instead. If you’re cleaning your gutter, get up there and get dirty. Clean up the gutter with your hands and a scooper, it doesn’t hurt to get a little dirty. Only use your water hose to water your lawn, and don’t overdo it, watering your lawn once every 10 days is good enough. If your city does not have water restrictions, consider applying water restrictions to your home. We all need to reduce the amount of water we waste in a daily basis, plus reducing your water use reduced your water bill.


We all have things in our home that we just keep for no reason and don’t even use at all. To steer clear of becoming a hoarder, give away what you no longer use and you know someone else can use it for their home. Look around in each room of your home, collect items that you no longer use or don’t need and donate it to your local goodwill or charitable organization. Donate your gently used clothes, electronics, appliances, kitchenware, old cell phones, hardware, photo frames, and any item you no longer want. Someone else can benefit from the items that you have lying around in your home. You’re cleaning out your home and doing a worthy act of thoughtfulness.


If you don’t recycle, get started a.s.a.p.! Develop a small recycling station in your garage, backyard, or kitchen. Start by creating bins and label each bin for its purpose, aluminum, paper, plastics, and cardboards. Don’t throw away your ink cartridges and toners, Office Depot and Office Max offer recycling services for such items. Many of us use our garage for storage instead for its actual purpose of parking our cars, garages are a goldmine when looking for items to recycle. If you have used oil stored in containers and old batteries in your garage, recycle them. Many auto parts stores take in used oil, old batteries, used auto parts and some stores actually give you credit for those items. There’s several organizations and businesses such as, and that give you cash to recycle your old cell phones and electronics. Be less wasteful because it does pay to recycle.

Living green doesn’t take a major change to your life; in fact it gives you structure and organization. We can all benefit from using the three R’s, it saves you money, de-clutters your home and provides less wastes for our landfills. Be active in finding new ways to live green and spread the word.…

How to Make Your Life a Little “Greener”

There are choices you can make every day that will decrease your impact on the environment. Besides being eco-friendly many of these actions also save you time and money, improving your quality of life and putting a little extra green in your pocket. Kermit the Frog is always telling us “it’s not easy being green”, but perhaps he hasn’t considered these simple things you can do every day to make your life a little greener.


Buy Local

Buy food that is in season and grown in your area, requiring less travel time to your table. It is becoming easier to buy local products. Many cities have farmers markets, where local farmers sell their products. Locally owned grocery stores tend to favor local producers. Ask your grocer where they buy their produce, and frequent those that buy locally. Also, use natural ingredients as much as possible rather than processed foods. Besides being healthier, natural or raw ingredients require much less energy to produce than processed foods.

Buy in Bulk

Much of the energy cost of a product is wrapped up in its packaging. Buying gallons rather than quarts, reduces the total amount of packaging required for the same amount of product. This will save you money as well as result in fewer trips to the grocery store. If buying in bulk is not feasible, look for products that use minimal or reusable packaging, achieving the same net result of lower energy costs.

Minimize Personal Vehicle use through Planning

Besides driving to work, you also have to make trips to the grocery store, pharmacy, dry cleaners and bank as well as take your son to baseball practice. Your spouse has his own list of errands to run. Plan your family’s errands ahead of time so that you minimize travel. This not only saves you fuel, but will give you extra time that you can spend with family. Support the businesses that are close to your home. When the weather allows, walk or bike to a nearby restaurant – make the entire experience an outing for the family.

Develop a Sustainable Garden

By choosing the right plants and the right mix of plants you can make the best use out of the natural resources (soil, sunlight, water) in your garden, requiring fewer external inputs such as fertilizer and pesticides. Use native plants. Native plants have adapted to the local conditions (temperature range, amount of rainfall and sunlight) and will not require fertilizer, pesticides, or watering. Use a diverse set of plants that optimize the use of your soil. The right diversity will also attract birds, butterflies, and beneficial insects, creating a sustainable ecosystem. Find a local nursery that specializes in native plants, they often offer services to help in garden design. Spend the time upfront planning out your garden, utilizing a diverse set of native plants, and it will save you countless hours and money in upkeep.

Reduce Energy Consumption in Your Home

You can reduce the energy usage in your home without impacting your comfort. Cooling and heating your home uses a great deal of energy. Why cool or heat the house when you are not home. Buy a programmable thermostat that controls to your comfort level when you are home, but allows it to drift when you are not.

When buying new appliances, look for those with an Energy Star Label, which are designed to minimize energy consumption. Using Energy Star qualified fluorescent light bulbs, particularly in places that are lit most frequently, can save more energy than many of the other recommendations in this article combined.…

Eco-Friendly Style Items

Eco-friendly Style Items provide the opportunity to save that favorite sweater and recycle it into something else. Creative recycling has even produced some of the coolest jewelry pieces, totes, wallets, and purses. The whole concept of recycling items no longer used into something that can be used is all a part of the plan of saving the planet while making fashionable style items that appeal to people. The Eco-friendly Style Items to be reviewed are attractive, and unique while still being earth friendly.

A favorite of the Eco-friendly Style Items is the Crispina Scarves which are made from recycled sweaters. The warm and cozy woolen scarves are handmade from all reclaimed and recycled materials. They are all organic, chemical free, and most importantly are recyclable. Artisans from Massachusetts carefully select the recycled colors and fabrics and create beautiful renewable Crispina Scarves that are a comfortable six feet long. The retail price for these lovely Eco-friendly Style Items is $42.00.

Totes tend to wear out rather quickly because of wear and tear. The Eco-friendly Hemp and Felt Totes is fashionable, trendy, and provide the opportunity to give back to Mother Earth. The Eco-friendly Hemp Totes are great match for summer wear and is large enough to carry large beach gear, books, and more. The Eco-friendly Hemp Totes is also a great grocery bag due to its durability. The Hemp Tote is 16 x 28 x 2 inches including the handle and retails for $8.95.

The Eco-friendly Felt Tote is designed by San Francisco Designer Josh Jakus and is made from an industrial piece of felt turned into a unique designer bag. The Hobo styled bag is attractive and large enough to carry everything one might need. The earth friendly bag sports a zipper closure and is available in Blue, Gray and Green for approximately $115.00.

The next time you have a flat or blow out think about this Eco-friendly Recycled Inner Tube Tote. Though the name of the bag is “The Bentley” the earth friendly bag is actually made from none other than recycled inner tubes from truck tires. The well made black Inner Tube Tote makes a great attaché or computer bag. The retail cost for the Eco-friendly Tote is $134.00.

Out of all the cool and unique Eco-friendly Style Items, the all time favorite is the Vintage Bangles by Art Thang. Made from recycled and reclaimed material, the Eco-friendly Vintage Bangles are available in hues of Ivory, Black, Beige, Gray, Blue, and Yellow. Expect the most unique Bangle since no two are alike. The retail cost for the Eco-friendly Vintage Bangles is $14.99.

Buying Eco-friendly Style Items creates an awareness of the responsibility of periodically cleaning out one’s closet and discarding things to the appropriate centers for recycling. For more information on the above mentioned eco-friendly style items visit the Web site for Shop Blue House. Customer inquiries may also be made at 877-276-1180.…

My Family is Going Green- and it Hasn’t Cost a Dime!

I admit it- I resist change. I get set in my patterns of everyday life, and trying new things does not come easy to me. I have been hearing the phrase “going green” now for a few years, but I never really took the time to figure out exactly what this trend was all about, simply because I assumed that it would require me stepping out of my daily routines to do something different.


I happened to be watching a television show that featured Sara Snow, who talked about what going green was all about. She showed a family fun ways that they could help conserve our earth’s resources, and even end up saving a little money as a bonus! Seeing this could not have come at a better time, because our family recently went on a very strict budget, and so the idea of saving a few pennies here and there was rather intriguing. Part of the reason I had resisted going green before was because I was under the assumption that I would be paying out money to buy a lot of “eco-friendly items.” While making some purchases, such as compact fluorescent lights, or energy star appliances, definitely help, we simply don’t have it in the plans at this time. So, it was time to get creative and come up with all the FREE ways our family could take baby steps into going green…..and possibly even save a few pennies in the process! Here are the changes my family has made:

1. Conserve Electricity– ok, this should have been a no-brainer, right? Use less electricity, and of course it will cost less- we thought we already had been practicing this one. Once we started looking into going green, however, we noticed a few other changes we could make here. First, we are very diligent now in turning off lights and appliances when we leave the room. Not only that, but we now unplug all of the appliances that we can when they are not in use after we learned about “phantom draw” on Sara Snow’s blog. We turned down our hot water heater a couple of degrees; it is now just “hot” as opposed to the previous “scalding” level we had been achieving! Lastly, we turned down our thermostat from our normal 70 degrees to about 62 degrees, and we even set it a little lower overnight. Sure, we can’t wear t-shirts in the middle of winter anymore, but the electricity (and even more important- heating oil) that we are conserving are making a noticeable difference in our monthly bills.

2. Eat Wisely– this was probably our easiest change to make, because it was something that we were starting to do before our going green effort. We are trying to eat more organic foods, because it is keeping the pesticides and toxins from poisoning the earth in addition to our bodies. While buying organic foods at the grocery is a little more expensive sometimes, we have hugely offset this by growing our own organic garden in our backyard in the summers! It has been a fun family project, and we actually got so much of a surplus, that we packed our freezer full of veggies that will last us a long time. Growing the garden has also helped us to learn about recycling kitchen waste- we now have started a compost pile that will keep a little extra out of our landfills, and help to feed my growing garden at the same time.As a sidenote to this- we are also trying to buy more food locally, to try and save the cost of gas that it takes to transport food to my local stores. This has been another surprisingly easy change for us, since we live in a rural farming town- we have lots of choices of farmer’s markets that have fresh fruits and vegetables, and even meats and dairy from local farmers. It is a nice feeling to be able to support my local economy, and know exactly where my food is coming from.

3. Don’t use grocery store bags– this was a relatively easy switch too, after our first couple of times out. …

Living Your Modern Life with a Green Conscience

We live a modern life. We have become accustomed to the comfort and convenience that this modern life offers us. At the same time, many of us would like to become more green. We are concious of the fact that some of the conveniences of our lives come at a big price- to our environment. Yet we are so used to living the way that we do, that it can be hard to make changes. What do we do?

When it comes to living a greener, there are three basic avenues to get there. It is up to the individual to take a look at each of these ways, and find which they will use to lead them to their more eco-friendly lifestyle. It is important not to feel overwhelmed and do nothing at all. Small changes do add up, and while you are on your way to becoming more green, you may see improvements in other areas as well.

Here are the three avenues to a more eco-friendly lifestyle:

1- Cutting down

2- Changing habits

3- Greener innovations

Cutting down means using less, this can be done in many different ways. To really make a big difference, think of the things that we use the most that negatively affect our environment. Driving our vehicles, the heating, cooling and appliances in our homes, and so on. All of these things give us comfort or convenience in some way, cutting down on them is inconvenient, and uncomfortable, but it is necessary. The truth is we use these things more than we need to, yes, we may need our vehicles to get to work, but do we need to use them to go everywhere? Do we need to have our air conditioner on when it is only a mild summer day? If everyone would cut down on something by even 5% we could make a big difference as a whole.

Changing habits overlaps into the category of cutting down in some ways. For instance if we cut down on vehicle use, we will replace that habit with more walking, or doing things closer to home, etc. If we cut down on using the clothes dryer, we will replace that habit with hanging clothes out on the line if it is nice. But also changing our habits can be recycling instead of throwing everything in the trash, or using reusable totes instead of plastic bags at the grocery store. We could also unplug appliances when we are not using them, turn the water off when we brush our teeth, or fill buckets of rainwater to water the plants. Many of these things are not inconvenient at all, just a simple shift to a new habit.

The previous two paragraphs were things that everyone can do, they had to do with cutting down and changing habits. These two things are very important, they may inconvenience us at first, but once we get used to it, we will probably not even notice.

For those who have a little more money to invest, or who do not want to give up the convenience of their lifestyle at all, the third option is for you. Getting a more eco-friendly vehicle, means you could drive the same as you did before and still be putting less of an impact on the environment. The same goes if you get energy efficient appliances or solar panels. You can enjoy the same lifestyle and have nice new appliances that use less energy to run than your old ones.

Whichever avenue or combination of avenues you take to live a greener lifestyle, it is important to do something and stick to it. If everyone does something, we can make a meaningful difference collectively.…

Clean Green

Cleaning our homes is a daily routine, if we’re being productive enough. A few times a month, the liquids and sprays are retrieved to get the dirty jobs done. Chemicals in conventional cleaners can potentially do more harm than good. Most are petroleum-based, need I say more. Phosphates present in detergent can seep into the ground, stealing oxygen from water. Conventional cleaning products also release harmful volatile organic compounds (VOCs), diminishing your air quality.

The Environmental Protection Agency estimates each household to have anywhere between 3-25 gallons of toxic materials, most being cleaners. Unfortunately, the common theory has been the harsher the chemical, the better its cleaning ability. It is simply not true. It is only a matter of science putting one nontoxic substance with another for a powerful, but healthier reaction.

Green cleaning products are often given a bad reputation, but I credit that to thrifty shoppers. I shop for sales too, but when it comes to cleaning products, if you buy the cheapest thing on the shelf, it is likely to be a lower quality clean. That applies to any cleaning products, eco-friendly or not. Here are some trustworthy green cleaning solutions.

BioShield is best known for paints but also manufactures top-quality cleaning supplies like dish detergent, glass cleaner, bathroom cleaner, and a unique all-purpose vinegar-based cleaner.

Restore takes the extra step to green cleaning and are available at a myriad of stores. They even have a nontoxic toilet cleaner. Their products are plant based, made of corn, soy, orange, and coconut. What is unique is they have refill stations to reuse your bottle. Restore gives you a $1 coupon incentive each time you recycle your bottle by refilling.


Seventh Generation is probably the most popular green cleaning company. The cleaning supplies are biodegradable like most green cleaners. Seventh Generation offers recycled paper products as well like paper towels, paper plates, toilet paper, facial tissue, and napkins. They also manufacture chlorine-free baby wipes and feminine products.

Method makes uniquely shaped, decorative cleaning bottles. They are ideal if you do not have hidden storage. Method offers nontoxic, biodegradable all-purpose cleaners, dishwasher and laundry detergent, hand and body wash, and more. These cleaners were never tested on animals.

Soy Clean is exactly what it sounds like. Clean with soy-based products that are both nontoxic and biodegradable. They even make stronger formulas for tasks like stripping paint.

Sanitation is important, but so is the planet. You can still clean without damaging the earth with dozens of eco-friendly cleaning products that will usually let you know it is green on the label.…