Archive for the ‘Going green’ Category

Sacramento Scoops Earth Day

April 21, 2011
Sacramento’s Earth Day Logo

As parents, we try to teach our children to share, so of course we want to model it ourselves! We wanted to take a moment today to share that the local blog Sacramento Scoop has a great summary of Earth Day events happening in our area. Click HERE to check it out.

We’ll see you there!

Earth Fest at the Sacramento Zoo

March 30, 2011

Earth Day isn’t until April 21, but why not make it “Earth Month” and start the celebration with the Sacramento Zoo this weekend? Earth Fest is Saturday, April 2 from 9AM to 4PM you can take part in the following activities and events, along with enjoying the zoo’s inhabitants!

Participants and Exhibitors
Association of Professional Landscape Designers
Chipotle Mexican Grill
Consumnes River Preserve
Friends of the Sacramento Public Library
Friends of San Juan de Oriente
Friends of the Swainson’s Hawk
Gus the Green tree frog, Sacramento Zoo Mascot
Heifer International
Mira Loma High School – Arcade Creek Project
Organic Gardening Club of Sacramento County
Recycled Zoo Banner Bags for Sale!
Sacramento County Sierra Club
Sacramento New Technology High School
Sacramento Regional Sanitation District
Sacramento Stormwater Quality Partnership
Solar Cookers International
Tranquill Gardens
Village Nurseries
…More participants to come!
All Day Activities
Recycle Rummage Sale in the Kampala Center
Interactive Wildlife Wagons
Hands-on artifacts in the Discovery Room
Face painting
Funshop crafts
Timed Activities 
Zoo P.I.’s Critter Caper
   11:00 am on the amphitheater stage 
Wildlife Stage Show
   1:30 pm on the amphitheater stage  
Keeper Chats — all talks at the exhibit
   2:15 pm Giant anteater
   2:30 pm Mongoose lemur
   2:45 pm Tortoise by the Giraffe exhibit

The Sacramento Zoo is located at 3930 West Land Park Drive and for more information click HERE or call 916.808.5888. Admission is *FREE* for children under 2, $7 for ages 2-11, $10.25 for seniors, and $11 for the general public. Remember, members get in *FREE*.

We’ll see you there!

Fairytale Town Goes Green

March 17, 2011

Green matters, if we each do a little, we all do a lot! Join Fairytale Town and several local area organizations and spend the day promoting environmental awareness. The event will feature educational displays on global warming, conservation and pollution. Children will be able to participate in various free recycled hands-on art activities. Local area organizations will also be on hand with booths to discuss green programs they offer, and to provide tips and tools on how to get started.

Puppet Art Theater will be performing The Three Little Pigs, with a conservation twist, in the Children’s Theater. Puppet show tickets are $1 for members, $2 for nonmembers, and children 1 and under are *FREE*. Puppet show times are 12:30PM, 1:30PM and 2:30PM. Fairytale Town Goes Green will take place from 11AM to 3PM on Saturday, March 26th.

Fairytale Town is located at 3901 Land Park Drive and admission is $4.50 for ages 2 and up and *FREE* for ages 1 and younger. For more information click HERE or call 916.808.5233.

We’ll see you there!

Farm fresh and family friendly :: grilled pizza

September 20, 2010

I know, I know, grilling season is almost over. This is Sacramento, however, and I know we’ll be grilling for many weeks to come. So…humor me with one, end of season grilling post.

Grilled pizza. Super yum. There’s something about the way the crust cooks on the grill and the way the cheese melts over the other ingredients. Only grilling the pizza provides such a combination of flavors and texture.

With that said, a bit of prep is necessary. All toppings must be prepared ahead of time and taken outside–to the grill–for pizza assembly.

The dough must be rolled quite thin, cooked on one side (on the grill), flipped, and then covered in toppings.

We grill with a Webber and use a chimney to start the briquets.  Grilling pizza is probably a bit easier on a gas-powered grill, but don’t let a charcoal grill dissuade you!

Making pizza–inside or out–is an easy way to eat seasonally. Almost anything can be placed on a pizza. One of the pizzas we made this last time included pesto, potatoes, and eggplant. All local.

Just like pizza made in the oven, grilled pizza is kid-friendly. Depending on the age of your kids, they may or may not be able to help assemble the pizza (my kids are 5 and 2 and were not able to help throw toppings on the pizza), but all kids will love the way it tastes.

If you’re interested in trying grilled pizza, check out this post from 101 Cookbooks.

Bon appetit!


For more cooking and urban gardening ideas, trials, and errors, as well other things from the commonplace scene, please visit my blog at

Farm fresh and family friendly :: in season

September 6, 2010

For the past few months, I’ve discussed zucchini, eggplant, berries, and other seasonal fruits and veggies. With summer–the most abundant of seasons–soon folding into autumn, I invite you to stay true to the season.

Your initial reaction may be, “Sure, no problem. There’s so much to choose from at the Farmers’ Market. It’s so easy, however, to get caught up in convenience, efficiency, and mindlessness. With school starting, soccer leagues in full swing, and the sense of busyness that often comes during times of transition, I encourage you to stay connected to what the earth is providing us right now. Fully enjoy peach juice running down your arm. Corn–crisp and sweet. Tomatoes, warmed by the sun.

There’s no time like the present. There’s no time like the current season.

Leave No Trace Workshop at Trailmix.Net

August 19, 2010

My favorite childhood memories are of huge family camping trips with aunts, uncles, grandparents and great grandparents. Every time we packed up to leave, my great grandpa would offer a cash incentive to the grandchild who collected the most trash or litter from our camp site. We learned from a young age how to “leave no trace” and, thanks to Trailmix.Net, you can too!

Leave No Trace promotes responsible outdoor recreation through education, research and partnerships. They are hosting a *FREE* awareness workshop covering the seven principles of leave no trace for families with children of all ages on Sunday, August 22 from 9AM to 11AM.

Although the workshop is *FREE*, seating is limited to 20 participants, so be sure to reserve your space in advance by calling 888.95.TRAIL or emailing

The Trailmix.Net store is located at 116B I Street and for more information click HERE or call 888.95.TRAIL.

We’ll see you there!

Baby Cuisine Demo/Book Signing + Cloth Diapering/Baby Wearing Workshop at Whole Foods

July 8, 2010

Join Shane Valentine, author of The Baby Cuisine Cookbook, on Sunday, July 11 for a special event at Whole Foods. Shane will be teaching a recipe from his book and asking participants to help. This event is Mommy/Daddy & Baby Friendly. Shane will also be signing copies of his cookbook after his mini-workshop.  All participants will be entered into the following raffles: a Whole Foods Market gift basket and a Keekaroo high chair ($250 value)!

There are two demo/book signing sessions available and while participation is *FREE*, you must register ahead of time. Click HERE to register for the 10-11:30AM session and HERE to register for the 12-1:30PM session.

On the topic of babies, Whole Foods is also offering two fabulous workshops:

Part 1: Are you interested in learning how to cloth diaper? Overwhelmed by all the choices on the internet? Modern cloth diapers are easy, better for the environment, and more affordable than disposables.  In this workshop they will discuss various styles of cloth diapers (pockets, pre-folds, all-in-ones), how to use the various styles, and how to care for cloth diapers.

Part 2: Temperance Harkins will discuss and demonstrate some of the many ways to wear your baby: sling-style (Maya wrap), Asian-style (Mei Tai), wrap-style (Moby), and structured (Ergo, Baby Bjorn).   Also covered will be reasons to wear your baby, pros and cons of the different carriers, and safety.

Both workshops will take place on Tuesday, July 13. Part 1 will be 6-7PM and Part 2 will be 7-8:00PM. The cost for both workshops is $5 and you can register by clicking HERE. For more information check out the Mothers’ Support Network website HERE.

Whole Foods is located at 4315 Arden Way and for more information click HERE or call 916.488.2800.

We’ll see you there! (No really, we will– I’ve already registered for the second session of the book signing.)

*Have you entered July’s East Sac Mom GIVEAWAY yet for an awesome got milk? prize package? If not, you have until midnight tonight to enter HERE. The winner will be announced tomorrow morning!*

Farm fresh and family friendly :: home herb gardens

July 5, 2010

I love fresh herbs. They enliven food like no other and—if grown at home—are super economical. Well…they’re fairly inexpensive at the store or farmers’ market, as well, but even more so at home where you can harvest just what you need for the meal at hand.

Our current herb garden is located in a few different spots. We have a rosemary plant in the backyard along with a few basil plants.


I recently planted a new herb garden in one of my favorite spots, just under the kitchen window and outside the front door. This location is ideal for its closeness to the kitchen and the ease with which I can step outside and pick a bit of thyme, oregano, or other herb for use.

My daughter and I ventured to a local nursery, selecting a few herbs and some flowers to fill in this spot. My daughter—who is 2—enjoyed declaring it “her turn” and taking the trowel from my hands and digging holes for the various plants. She also enjoyed ripping apart the thyme seedling. (It will grow back, so I’m not too concerned.)

Herb gardens are easy to plant. They don’t need much space and they can be planted in all sorts of places. Our rosemary plant is in a border area of our backyard. The basil plants are intermingled with our other summer vegetables. The new herb garden—thyme, oregano, and sage—is in a planter box.


Herb gardens can also be a great way to involve the kids in a garden project. My kids love to water things, dig in the dirt, and participate in the harvest. An herb garden generally isn’t too big, providing “child-size” opportunities for gardening fun.


For more urban gardening tips, ideas, trials, and errors, as well other things from the commonplace scene, please visit my blog at

McKinley Park Produce Stand

June 29, 2010

You could probably already tell, but East Sacramento Mom is fan of supporting our local farmers markets. Our family regularly shops at the Sunday morning market under the freeway at 8th and X Streets (or somewhere around there, you know the one) and we were excited when we heard that Soil Born Farms was going to be operating one of their urban produce stands in McKinley Park!

From 9AM to 1PM every Saturday beginning July 11 and ending October 30, the stand will offer seasonal, organic fruits and vegetables. Proceeds will be used to subsidize prices of food for others in our community who need assistance. The farm stands offer certified organic produce from Soil Born Farms as well as produce from other small local farmers. When you shop at the farm stand you are supporting many small farms and local growers from Sacramento, Yolo, Placer, El Dorado, Yuba, Sutter, Solano and San Joaquin counties. We encourage you to walk or ride your bike to the farm stand and bring your own bag. Cash and EBT are accepted.

For more information about Soil Born Farms click HERE and for more information about the McKinley Park urban produce stand click HERE.

McKinley Park is located at 601 Alhambra Boulevard (the stand will be situated in front of the library).

We’ll see you there!

Farm fresh and family friendly :: summer squash

June 21, 2010

Summer squash. It’s that time of year. They’re popping up in many stalls at the farmers market. They’re maturing in many people’s backyard gardens.

I don’t really like squash. Nonetheless, I plant it every year. This year, we went a bit overboard. We have 4 very healthy zucchini plants and 3 or 4 other squash plants blooming away. Not only is it squash season, but squash recipe season. If I can successfully mask the flavor of the squash I’m good to go and ready to eat as much as my garden can provide (that may be an exaggeration this year).

If you’re like me and need help consuming squash, or if  your kids need a little help, or if you love squash, I have a couple of tried and true squash recipes to share today. My family loves both of these recipes and I hope yours does to!

The first recipe is a summer squash gratin recipe from 101 Cookbooks. It takes a little bit of time, but it’s easy and so good. Any type of squash will do. We made this last week, enjoying it with hot dogs and sausages (from Bledsoe Pork). Get the cheese the recipe recommends–either gruyere or feta. So tasty!

The second recipe can be found in Barbara Kingsolver’s book Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. The recipe can also be found online, here. We’ve made this recipe a number of times over the last couple of summers and will be making it for the first time this weekend. The ingredients are simple: zucchini, orzo pasta, onion, fresh herbs, and parmesan cheese (we substitute romano). It’s a great as a side or as a main dish mixed with some chicken. It’s also a great dish to make when you’ve run out of time to make dinner. It’s super quick!