Sunday, December 20, 2009

Neoprene Lunch Bag Winner Chosen

Congratulations to Denise - you've won our bug lunch bag giveaway! Please contact us at customerservice@lavishandlime.com with your shipping details and we'll get your prize out to you as quickly as possible.

Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Garden in a Bag: a Great Green Gift

We never realized how much joy a window plant could bring - until we started to grow a garden in a bag of our own.

The girls wanted to try one out and we didn't get around to planting our Chocolate Viola until late in the summer - about mid-August. The daily question - pretty much every day from planting - was, is it up yet?

It took a little longer to germinate than the 7 days on the package - probably about double that. Might have had something to do with the cloudy days but once the little green sprouts popped up, they just kept coming and still are! This plant has been blooming now since early October and - to my own personal delight while I'm washing dishes - it's continuing to do so right through December! They truly can be grown year around. Gorgeous little flowers that yes, do carry a faint fragrance of chocolate.

The girls have long since lost interest - after our eldest took it to school for sharing (aka the modern version of show & tell). Now it's our little project. How long can we keep it going? We'll keep you posted.
The little seedlings pop up - much to the kids' delight!

It seemed like just a few weeks and we had some great foliage on the grow.
Then the plant just kept growing...and growing taller and taller.
And the flowers kept coming and coming until things got a little too tall and floppy... so we gave it a wee trim. Now it's just bushy and healthy and flowering - again!
A garden in bag would make a great secret santa gift - would liven up the office - or make someone's day who maybe doesn't get out so much anymore. Bring the greenery inside!

View our full range of Garden-in-a-Bag flower and herb plants at Lavish & Lime. Check out our Butterfly and Bird Lover's Scatter Gardens and our Pocket Gardens too - great stocking stuffers for any gardeners on your list! If you have any thoughts or ideas about gardens in a bag or gardening indoors generally, please leave a comment below. We'd love to hear from you!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Last Minute Giveaway: WIN a Neoprene Lunch Bag!

With all the last minute Christmas shopping and preparations going on, we've decided to do a last minute Christmas giveaway. Wouldn't it be nice to win a free gift?

We're giving away a reusable bug lunch bag made of insulating, machine washable neoprene - a great gift for any little one on your list, or a funky bag to keep for yourself... Simply leave a comment below telling us about the best Christmas present you've ever GIVEN. Was it fantastically imaginative? Did it make the recipient incredibly happy? Tell us and you could win this bug bag!

Become a Lavish & Lime fan on Facebook - leave a comment below telling us you have - and you'll increase your chances of winning with an extra entry.

Tweet this giveaway and yes, another entry!


We'll be drawing the winner's name this Sunday, December 20th and shipping the next day - hopefully to be received for Christmas. Good luck to all!

For more information about this reusable lunch bag and to view our entire range of eco-friendly lunch essentials, visit eco boutique Lavish & Lime.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Bedol Water Clock Now in Canada: how it works

Anyone who's seen our new Bedol Water Clock agrees it's one of the coolest green gadgets for Christmas 2009. They also ask, how does it work?

This unique digital clock runs on tap water. No batteries, no electricity, no chemicals and no winding - just 100% natural power. It's the greenest timepiece of its kind.

The power comes from a charge created by the ions in the water when they interact with the two metal poles inside the clock. The
ions in the water are turned into electrical current for continuous, clean energy. Simply fill the tank with tap water ... and the Bedol Water Clock is all set for perfect timekeeping. Depending on the ingredients in the local water system, some people report it’s necessary to change water after 6 – 12 weeks, for others it just keeps running. When you do change the water the microchip remembers the time while you are doing the refilling.

The previous model of the Bedol Water Clock required lemon juice to work. Launched just last month, this new model features the addition of an alarm and works on water alone. It's a great gift under $35 for any green-minded person on your list - and an ideal travel accessory for any globetrotter.

The Bedol Water Alarm Clock is available online in Canada at Vancouver-based eco boutique Lavish & Lime.

If you have any thoughts or ideas about our new water clock, we'd love to hear from you! Please leave a comment below.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

WIN a Funky Recycled Sterling Silver Necklace!

If you're looking for a unique gift for a favourite gal on your list, or perhaps something special to dress up your own Christmas outfit, you may just be in luck.

We're giving away one of our gorgeous, sterling silver asymmetrical necklaces to one lucky Facebook fan! This necklace is made by hand in Canada from recycled, re-melted and recombined sterling silver components.
To enter, simply become a fan on our Facebook page and leave a comment telling us about your best ever Christmas present. Increase your chances of winning: encourage your friends to enter too and if in their comment, they mention your name - that's another entry for you!

The winner will be chosen on December 19th so we can get the necklace out in time for Christmas.

Hope to hear all about your best Christmas present soon - good luck!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Top 5 Green Gifts for Women

While practicality sometimes guides our gift-giving sensibility, making it special should also be in the mix - especially when it comes to the women on your list, or you for that matter.

We've come up with five gift picks for her that you know she'll use yet are guaranteed to make her feel special - plus they're all good for the planet too!

1. Bamboo Dreams Nightshirt
Why it's a top pick: Night or day, this is a nice fitting long shirt that feels so incredibly soft and luxurious she'll never want to take it off. Plus it comes in a handy reusable bamboo bag.
What makes it green: Made from
95% viscose from bamboo/5% spandex with non-toxic and AZO free dyes. Bamboo is considered nature’s most sustainable and naturally regenerative resource.

2. Will Cook for Shoes Apron

Why it's a top pick: She has to wear something to protect her gorgeous little black dress when she's cooking a storm, so why not make it a bit glam and humorous. A definite ice-breaking talking point.
What makes it green: Made in Canada.

3. Bamboo Dreams Short Wrap

Why it's a top pick: Totally versatile, this lightweight wrap can be worn tied up at the waist or open for a more fluid look. Again it's so incredibly soft, the question will quickly become, what won't she wear it with?
What makes it green:
Made from 95% viscose from bamboo/5% spandex with non-toxic and AZO free dyes. Bamboo is considered nature’s most sustainable and naturally regenerative resource.

4. Pink Bedol Water Alarm Clock

Why it's a top pick: It's totally pink! Plus it's so cool that it runs on tap water - every morning she can wake up knowing she's starting out the day doing a little good for the planet.
What makes it green:
Runs on natural energy - water - with no batteries, no electricity and no chemicals.

5. Recycled Silver Leaf Imprint Necklace
Why it's a top pick: It's gorgeous. It goes with everything. The leaf imprint and long shape is so unique, it's a definite source for compliments.
What makes it green:
Made from recycled, re-melted, and recombined sterling silver components. Handmade in Canada.

For these and a great selection of unique, affordable green gifts for everyone on your list, visit Canada's eco boutique Lavish & Lime. If you have any thoughts or ideas about great gifts for women, please leave a comment below - we'd love to hear from you!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Top 10 Green Gifts for Christmas 2009

Looking for something a bit different? The products on our Top 10 List have made the cut for their innovative designs, bright colours and uniqueness. Most are new to the market this year. Feel good about the gifts you give - give green.

1. Bedol Water Powered Alarm Clock
For:
Him/Her

Why it made the list: A clock that runs on tap water is not only cool but the greenest a digital timepiece can be. Plus the unique water droplet shape gives it a contemporary look and it comes in pink - plus charcoal, green and blue.
What makes it green: No batteries, no electricity, no chemicals - just 100% natural power from water makes this clock run.


2. Herbal Tea Pocket Garden
For: A tea drinker with a penchant for gardening
Why it made the list:
You can blend your own tea. There's seeds and gardening stakes to grow your own herbs for tea plus a guide telling you how to harvest and blend your own. Pocket Gardens also available for: wine lovers, chocolate lovers and chefs. $17

What makes it green: Five varieties of natural seeds, natural wooden gardening stakes - all in a recycled steel container.


3. Recycled Rubber Passport Holder
For:
Him

Why it made the list:
It's classic black with a slightly edgy, grooved look. The fact that it's waterproof and features protective rustproof brass corners makes it ultra practical. Matching travel wallet and business card case too. $22

What makes it green:
It's made from tires that would otherwise end up in the landfill. Made in Canada.

4. Envirosax La Boheme Resuable Shopping Bag 5-Pack Pouch
For:
Her - teacher, friend, sister-in-law

Why it made the list:
These newest designs are so gorgeous there's no doubt they'll be used for much more than groceries. Give up the bulky store logo'd bags in favour of these handy little numbers that fold down to the size of a piece of sushi yet carry the equivalent of 2 plastic bags of groceries. The 5-pack is a money saver - great for splitting and using as stocking stuffers. $43
What makes it green: Reduces plastic bag use and the amount of non-biodegradable plastic going into our landfills and oceans. The inks and dyes are all eco-friendly.

5. Ancient Roman Glass Trio Necklace
For: Her
Why it made the list:
This necklace takes recycled glass jewelry to the next level - the three pieces of glass are 900 to 1200 years old and date back to the Roman Empire. The glass was unearthed in the last few years in Afghanistan and some of it still has rustic sedimentary crust. $60

What makes it green:
Recycled glass pieces. Made in Canada.


6. Natural Girl Power Beauty Sleepover Kit
For:
Green-minded tween girl

Why it made the list:
An all natural product with funky packaging made specifically for girls. Contains 6 different beauty products that smell fruity, wonderful and they're all natural so safe for young girls to use. $25

What makes it green: Each product contains real fruit and floral extracts, plus veggie-based cleansers, soy and natural beeswax. No parabens, no aluminum - no harsh chemicals. Made in Canada.

7. 6-in-1 Solar Educational Kit
For: Green-minded tween boy
Why it made the list: This one kit produces 6 different workable models he can play with for hours after he builds them. All the parts and tools are included in the kit and there's no need to buy batteries. $23
What's green about it: Teaches kids about the value of alternative solar energy. No batteries required.

8. Reclaimed Wool Animal Puppets
For: Any child
Why it made the list:
They're soft, cozy, funky, fun and bright. They encourage imaginative play and creativity and look just as good on display as decor in a child's room as they do on a hand. $33

What's green about it: Made from reclaimed wool sweaters. Made by hand in Canada.

9. 70-Piece Natural Log Cabin Building Set
For:
Children 3+

Why it made the list: The logs are hand cut and fit together easily and snugly to create larger structures than most building sets. Building helps children develop problem solving skills and creativity. Comes packaged in a 100% natural cotton bag tied with rope. $25
What's green about it:
Made using wood obtained from mills that follow sustainable forest management practices. Each piece is tumbled for a smooth finish and left in its natural colour - no dyes, no harsh chemicals. Completely non-toxic.


10. Classic Eco Teddy Bear
For: Baby/Any child
Why it made the list:
Cute is in and this bear is it. Super soft and luxurious looking - like traditional plush - but good for the planet too. Matching baby bear available. $36

What's green about it:
Made by hand from 100% soy fibre. The stuffing is 100% kapok, a golden silky fibre known for its hypoallergenic qualities and softness. Kapok is a sustainable rain forest crop.


For these and other unique and affordable green gifts for everyone on your list, shop Canada's eco boutique Lavish & Lime or call toll free 1-877-216-5463, in Vancouver 604-922-2220 and we'd be happy to help!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Save 15% at Spud! with our Special Coupon Code

We like to give you deals and we try to get deals for you with our friends too. Here's one we love for all kinds of reasons, the top one being you can get all the fixings for your Christmas dinner delivered to your door - hassle-free! Just one more thing you could cross off your list...

Our friends at online grocer spud! are offering you - our customers and friends - an Exclusive 15% Offer. (This is a really great deal, trust us.)

Spud! is the only 100% carbon neutral online grocer that delivers organic, local and affordable produce and groceries right to your door. Choose from fresh produce, artisan breads, local free range meats, organic milk, cheeses, cage-free eggs and prepared meals. They also carry a wide range of items for special diets (ie. gluten-free, vegetarian/vegan).

Sign up at www.spud.ca and use promo code LAVISH to receive 15% off your first order! Minimum order of $35 applies. Free delivery is available for most areas. Some restrictions apply, see website for details. Offer expires December 31, 2009.

Have you had any great spud! experiences? We'd love to hear from you, just leave a comment below.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Puppets Make the Perfect Christmas Present

You want them to learn to use their imagination and develop their creativity, so why not give a gift that helps them do just that? A puppet is perfect.

Puppets let kids be kids - and through role playing, someone or something else. They encourage imaginative play and are flexible - they can be played with alone or with others. Whether the puppet is based on a familiar story like Goldilocks, Red Riding Hood or even Eric Carle's The Hungry Caterpillar, or whether it's generic like a wizard or pirate kids can both act out stories they've seen and heard, or create something that's entirely their own.

We strongly believe that puppets are a valuable toy for kids and
have been on the hunt for some for a while. Just in time for Christmas, we found two very different types that we absolutely love - and hope you do too.

The first is a line of 100% natural wool puppets handmade in Nepal with fair trade and fair wages. Because the wool is natural, the colours are amazingly bright and the detail is truly impressive. These puppets are primarily wet felted in one piece so there's minimal stitching (except for detail), making them stronger and more likely to last longer. The story and finger puppets also come in lovely handmade gift boxes.

This range includes hand puppets like the quirky pig and dog, story puppets that include a hand puppet plus 3-4 finger puppets and then sets of 4 adorable finger puppets, like the Princess and the Pea or generic Pirates. The unique Hungry Caterpillar story puppet set includes 2 hand puppets plus about 16 pieces of food. These puppets make great gifts and stocking stuffers - at a great price.
This is a photo of the sewing room in Nepal where all the stitching detail is done by hand.

Most recently, we picked up a range of upcycled puppets made here in Canada. The characters are unique, adorable, full of colour and perhaps most interestingly, each one is unique. While we do carry 4 different animal designs: monkey, dog, frog and giraffe, each one is slightly different as they're made by hand from a variety of soft, reclaimed wool sweaters.

We consider handmade products mini works of art and more often than not when they're as well made as these are, they become treasured favourites for years to come.

Check out our full range of soft toys and gifts at Lavish & Lime where you'll find great Christmas gift ideas that are good for the whole family - and the planet too.

Does your child have a favourite puppet? Did you when you were growing up? If you have any thoughts or ideas about puppets, we'd love to hear from you! Just leave a comment below.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Save 40% in our Sale Shop - Starts Today!

While we normally like to wait until after Remembrance Day to talk about Christmas, we realize that many of you are already checking your lists and thinking about what to buy - whether for loved ones overseas or those closer to home.

So we've decided to kick off the festive shopping season in our Sale Shop with 40% OFF absolutely everything. It's our Super Sale Shop Sale - for 3 days only. Use code SALESHOP40 to save until midnight, November 12th.

This sale is a great opportunity to stock up on Christmas gifts - for everyone. For him, we've got lovely leather flasks, Moleskine notebooks and silver cufflinks. For her, there's some gorgeous jewelry - including oversized silver rings - and super soft mohair-esque scarves. For little ones choose from a range of toys from German toymaker Sigikid and great baby keepsake gifts.

Just please keep in mind quantities are limited so if you do spot something, don't wait too long to pop it in your cart!

Hope to see you saving soon at Lavish & Lime!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

WIN 1 of 3 Cleanwell Natural Hand Sanitizers!

NOTE: We've extended the deadline for entries to this contest - you have until midnight, this Friday, November 20th to enter. See you on Facebook and good luck!
The Lavish & Lime Team


We want to help you fight germs naturally, so we're giving away a bottle of our Cleanwell Natural Hand Sanitizer to three lucky winners.


To enter, simply become a fan on our Facebook page and leave a comment on our wall telling us what you're doing to fight the flu.

We'll
be drawing for three winning fans on November 18th. Enter now!

Good luck!


Cleanwell Natural Hand Sanitizers are available for purchase at Vancouver-based online eco boutique Lavish & Lime.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

10 Ways to Fight Flu Naturally

If you're not wholly on board with getting the H1N1 vaccine or are simply waiting your turn, there are steps you can take to help prevent you and your family from getting the flu.

The indisputable #1 way to prevent sickness is to wash your hands with soap and warm water frequently. Find out more about when you should wash your hands here. It's recommended that you wash your hands as long as it takes to sing Happy Birthday.

In the absence of a sink, the next best thing to keep hands clean is to use a hand sanitizer. Schools are now asking parents to send their kids to school with a bottle of hand cleaner. The problem here in BC is concern over kids misusing alcohol hand sanitizer. With alcohol hand cleaners containing more than 60% alcohol and that usually being 120 proof, it's no wonder there's some concern over kids ingesting or experimenting with it. Alcohol also dries the skin and stings when it comes into contact with cuts and abrasions.

A great option for fighting germs when you're on the go is a natural hand sanitizer. Cleanwell natural hand sanitizers are lab proven to kill 99.99% germs on contact - and they're free of harsh chemicals, including alcohol. Plus they come in a chic and handy little spray bottle with a no-mess flip top cap - great for your purse, pocket, backpack or desk.


After clean hands, boosting your immunity is perhaps the best thing you can do to fight flu naturally. Here are nine ways we've come across to do this that people are talking about.

2. Gargle twice a day with warm salt water (or Listerine if you don't trust salt). H1N1 takes 2-3 days after initial infection in the throat/ nasal cavity to proliferate and show characteristic symptoms. Simple gargling prevents proliferation and is a good, inexpensive preventative method.

3. Swab your nostrils with salt water. Blowing the nose hard once a day and swabbing both nostrils with cotton buds dipped in warm salt water is helps bring down the viral population.

4. Drink warm liquids. Drinking warm liquids has the same effect as gargling, but in the reverse direction. They wash off proliferating viruses from the throat into the stomach where they cannot survive, proliferate or do any harm.

5. Eat a well-balanced diet with lots of fruit and vegetables.

6. Take a Vitamin C supplement - because most of us don't eat enough Vitamin C-rich foods - and now that the clocks have gone back and we're getting less daylight, this should be supplemented by Vitamin D, the sunshine vitamin. Zinc also helps with absorption of Vitamin C.

7. Take immune-booster Oil of Oregano (liquid) under your tongue or diluted with a little water.

8. Get lots of sleep. Adults should be getting 7-8 hours and growing kids 10-12.


9. Keep your hands away from your face. Don't touch your eyes, put your fingers in your mouth, etc.

10. Reduce sugar intake. Sugar can have the effect of suppressing your immune system. (Good luck with this one after all that trick or treating yesterday!).

For more information about H1N1, visit fightflu.ca.

You can purchase Cleanwell natural hand sanitizer at eco boutique Lavish & Lime. Buy a 6-pack and save $3. If you have any thoughts or ideas about fighting germs naturally, please leave a comment below. We've love to hear from you!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Natural Hand Sanitizer Vs. Alcohol Hand Sanitizer

It seems all everyone is talking about at the moment - at least on the playground - is the flu. There's an abundance of questions out there and we decided to put ours directly to Dr. Larry Weiss, the Stanford-educated MD behind our new Cleanwell all-natural hand sanitizer, and get a clear understanding of the facts about fighting germs - naturally.

Is a natural hand sanitizer like Cleanwell as effective in fighting germs as traditional alcohol-based products?
Alcohol is not the only effective germicide. In fact there are many classes of chemicals that are laboratory documented germicides including the Thyme Oil based active ingredient in CleanWell. It is a not-uncommon mistake to misinterpret the warning that alcohol based products must be greater than 62% alcohol to be effective as an indication that nothing else would be effective.

CleanWell natural hand sanitizer is a safe and effective product proven in independent laboratory studies to perform as well as alcohol based products. So you can confidently use CleanWell just as you would an alcohol hand sanitizer. In fact CleanWell hand sanitizers are registered with Natural Health Products (NHP) in Canada and exceed the efficacy requirements for Human-Use Antiseptics as per Health Canada's Natural Health Products Directorate.

How do you know Cleanwell instant hand sanitizer really does kill germs?
Cleanwell hand cleaner has been tested against a wide range of germs by one of the top independent microbiology labs in the US, using methodology accepted by the FDA and EPA and in compliance with GLP (Good Laboratory Practices) standards. It has been proven to kill 99.99% of germs on contact, including MRSA (resistant Staph), E. Coli and Salmonella.


Is Cleanwell effective in fighting H1N1?

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates this category of products in the United States and restricts all products, including alcohol, from making any antiviral claims especially H1N1 claims. This is a policy decision and doesn’t mean that the products aren’t effective against the virus, only that any company that makes such claims is subject to enforcement action including fines and product seizure. Although Health Canada permits antiviral claims on these products, CleanWell is a US based company and it is our policy to comply with all FDA regulations. As such, we make no antiviral claims on CleanWell hand sanitizers.

Fortunately, Orthomyxyovirus, the family of viruses that includes Influenza A is relatively fragile and easily killed or inactivated by most germicides. ((H1N1 is the currently accepted designation for the Swine Flu which belongs to the Influenza A family of viruses.) Not surprisingly, the key to effective prevention is compliance with good personal hygiene practice. The foundation of good personal hygiene is hand washing with soap and water. However, since this is not always readily available when the risk of exposure is high during cold and flu season, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends the use of both alcohol and non-alcohol based hand sanitizers.

Is Cleanwell safe for kids?
With no artificial chemical agents, Cleanwell hand cleaner is safe for kids, pets and those with sensitive skin. It is safe to touch, inhale and expose to food surfaces. The hand sanitizer dispenser-spray system and small pocket size make it easy for kids to apply the right amount of sanitizer - two sprays - every time. Cleanwell is made with a patented formulation of natural essential plant oils. These ingredients are all recognized as safe by the FDA, and have been safely used by people around the world for centuries.

With Cleanwell
alcohol-free hand sanitizer, there is also no risk to ingestion, especially by kids.

What's the best way to avoid getting sick - washing my hands or using a hand sanitizer?
Whenever it is available, good hand washing is your best way to prevent infection. Period. Hand sanitizers serve a very specific purpose in the personal hygiene toolkit and that is to provide a level of prevention when soap and water are unavailable and the risk of illness is high. However, just like soap and water, hand sanitizers only work if they are used properly. CleanWell offers the benefits of the alcohol based products to those who don’t or won’t use the alcohol products because they don’t like them. A substantial number of people don’t like the drying or fixative effect that alcohol has on their skin and for them CleanWell is a safe and effective alternative.

Cleanwell natural hand sanitizer is available in two scents: original and orange vanilla at Vancouver-based Lavish & Lime. Learn more about Cleanwell here. Save $3 on a 6-pack now.

If you have a question you'd like to ask Dr. Weiss, post it below and we'll be sure to get an answer from him for you. If you have any other thoughts or ideas about the flu, H1N1 or how to prevent it, please let us know by leaving a comment below.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Accessorize those Rain Drops: Rain Hats for Kids

While there may be snow already in other parts of Canada, here in Vancouver it's all about the rain - at the moment.

After our great summer, we honestly can't complain. In fact, to us born and bred West Coasters, the grey days are a bit of a comfort at this time of year. For kids however, they're not so great. There's more clothes to wear, boots and hoods that never stay on and if they do, they don't seem to protect their little faces from getting soaked.

Next time you bundle them up to play outside on a rainy day, consider adding a wide-brimmed rain hat to their gear. Not only does the brim protect their faces - and eyelashes - from being laden with wet drops, but the velcro chin strap keeps the hat on so there's no more need for you to worry whether a hood is on or not. Plus, unlike a hood, the hat allows a child full peripheral vision and doesn't cover the ears. They're also lined with a viscose from bamboo/cotton blend that's ultra-soft and keeps their heads warm.


The best part is these hats are made in Canada and feature colourful and funky prints that kids love. Choose from flower power, paisley or pink bloom for girls and a stripey blue bucket style for boys. Even better, for the next two weeks they're our Rainy Day Special and have been reduced by 15% - shop now while stocks last!

Browse our collection of kids rain hats at Lavish & Lime. If you have any thoughts or ideas about playing in the rain or rain gear, leave a comment below. We'd love to hear from you!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Hidden Spooks Inside Your House

It's that scary time of year again and while the spooks will be out on Halloween night, it's what's lurking inside your home that might actually be more frightening.

From PVC to parabens, here are a few ways to help create a safe, atoxic environment for your kids.

First off is PVC. You know that 'new shower curtain smell'? Well that's polyvinyl chloride, otherwise known as PVC or vinyl. PVC contains harmful chemicals, including phthalates, lead and cadmium which can be toxic to a child's health. Phthalates and other toxic additives can leach out or evaporate into the air over time causing potential danger to children. That's why PVC is called the poison plastic.

A recent study commissioned by the Centre for Health, Environment and Justice found that one PVC shower curtain can release as many as 108 volatile organic chemicals into the air. Some of these chemicals can cause developmental damage as well as damage to the liver and central nervous, respiratory, and reproductive systems.
PVC has even been linked to autism.

A recent Swedish study published in Scientific American found that infants or toddlers who lived in a bedroom with vinyl or PVC flooring were twice as likely to have autism five years later than those with wood or linoleum floors.

In addition to shower curtains and flooring, PVC is found in everything from mini-blinds to lunch bags. The best thing is to seek out PVC-free products - and there's lots out there. This alternative chlorine-free EVA shower curtain features funky bright gerber daisies and for lunch bags, you can't beat this chemical-free neoprene apple lunch bag.

Bisphenol-A (BPA) is another nasty chemical to avoid. It's found in polycarbonate plastic, which is the material most plastic water bottles, baby bottles and food containers are made from. Recent research has shown the chemical, which mimics the hormone estrogen and is a known developmental, neural and reproductive toxicant, can leach from bottles or containers into the contents. Water at room temperature leaches a little BPA - boiling water, 55 times as much. Animal studies have linked low levels of BPA to hyperactivity, learning disabilities, early onset of puberty, increased diabetes risk, age-related neurodegenerative diseases, and certain cancers, including breast cancer.

So play it safe and clear out your cupboards. Replace all that tupperware with
non-leaching stainless food storage containers or buy glass dishes and use freezer- and oven-safe BPA-free eco food covers (why buy endless saran wrap?). Certified BPA-free water bottles or non-leaching stainless steel bottles are an undeniable must.

Then there's parabens. Increasing concern for the safety of the wide use of parabens – synthetic preservatives – in cosmetics and lotions has made natural products more popular than ever. Potential links have been reported between parabens, which research has shown can mimic the action of the female hormone estrogen, and cancer. Check for parabens listed in the ingredients on your moisturizers and all your beauty products. There's loads of different kinds, methyl-, ethyl-, propyl-, butyl- and benzyl- and they can all interfere with your hormonal systems and more.


As a healthy alternative, try 100% paraben-free natural body butter made in Canmore, Alberta or what about all natural apple blossom deodorant? (It really does work.) And for the wee ones, choose paraben-free body wash/shampoo and natural baby bum spray.

It's true we've been living with these chemicals for years but knowing what we know now, for the good of our health and that of our kids, can we afford to live with them any longer?

If you have any thoughts or ideas about scary things to be aware of inside your home, please feel free to leave a comment below. We'd love to hear from you!
Visit Lavish & Lime for more non-toxic and eco-friendly ideas for your home.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

3 Ways to Green Your Halloween

Who says you can't be green and spooky too? Here are three ways to enjoy a spooktacular Halloween that's fun, good for you and the planet too.

1. Choose non-toxic face paints and pencils
There are loads of products out there for making up your little lion, pirate, princess, witch or black cat, but aren't you just a little concerned about the potentially toxic ingredients you're smothering on your child? And what about the washability factor? Then there's the quality, ie. do they actually work.

Lyra is an established European art supply company that's been around since 1806. Their pack of six face painting pencils is dermatologically tested and non-toxic. The leads are extensively compressed (for high intense colour) and encased in a wooden barrel for easy handling. You don't need to dip them in water to start painting and they wash off easily with warm water. Check
out Monday's review on ParentingPink.com for more. These top quality pencils are made in Germany and come in two different colour packs of six - the basic has the primary colours plus green, black and white and the plus pack includes gold, silver, pink, purple, orange and brown.

For more coverage, try these plant-based body and face paints. They're all natural and completely toxin-free - ideal for any little witch, devil or ghost with sensitive skin. They're also
made in Germany. And for dressing up nails and eyes without the nasty chemicals, try made in Canada water-based nail polish or mineral eye shadow in bright blue or glittery pink.

2. Choose eco-friendly decorations
With eco being the trend, why should Halloween be the exception? Admittedly, spooky and gruesome does translate well into highly toxic plastics found at the dollar store but why not go green on October 31st with biodegradable classic pumpkins - carved and glowing or even painted - hay bales, ornamental corn, cobwebs fashioned out of hemp string. Give the little ones
a pack of non-toxic window crayons to go crazy with on the front window - rather than splurging on throwaway paper or cardboard decorations that tend not to last.

3. Choose local for costumes
If buying Canadian to help lower your carbon footprint and support the local economy and jobs is important to you, stay the course for Hallow's Eve. There's no need to stray. These kids' helmet covers are made in Ontario and ideal to top off any Halloween costume. Choose from a red devil, lion, shark, zebra, pig, bunny or turtle. They'll keep your little one's head warm during the big trick or treat and beyond. These covers stretch to fit any helmet - bike, ski, snowboard, skate, equestrian - and not only increase visibility of the wearer on the slopes, roads, rink, etc. but encourage kids to wear their helmets and provide added warmth.

For the ideal black cat costume that doubles for dance class, there's a lovely all-black tutu - often a challenge to find - made in Vancouver.

If you're pressed for ideas, there's always rentals - a great way to reuse. Don't forget local thrift stores and charity shops are are virtual costume treasure troves - and supporting them means you also support a good cause for a Happy Halloween all around.

Enter our contest to win a Glam Pack for a green Halloween simply by telling us about your best ever Halloween costume. If you have any thoughts or ideas about how to green Halloween, we'd love to hear them. Please leave a comment below.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Forget the 100 Mile Diet, Let's Eat Within 10 Feet

A couple of years or so ago the Sunday Times ran an article about Harrod's offering fresh produce from their rooftop garden. 'From vine to store within the hour' or something along those lines was the spin. Clearly 'fresh' was at premium and people were willing to pay.

And why not? There's nothing like a fresh tomato still warm from the sun. A carrot pulled straight from the dirt at its crunchy best. What about picking green beans and depositing them directly into a pot to be put on the stove? These are pleasures we've had during this lovely westcoast autumn we've been enjoying. All because we decided to plant some seeds and seedlings last spring.

We thought it would be good for the kids to see how plants actually grow and reap the benefits of fresh organic veg from our own garden - grown 10 ft from our door. The kids enjoyed seeing the plants grow, fending off the slugs, picking carrots, peas and eating them on the spot. Funnily enough, when their friends came over, picking fresh tomatoes and beans seemed to take precedence over the new trampoline.


It may be, however, us adults that have enjoyed the garden the most. We never realized how satisfying it is to pick fresh veg you've grown yourself, harvest it (we discovered our collapsible shopping basket makes an excellent trug) and serve it up for dinner, knowing it's nothing but healthy for your kids and you.

So we say yes eat local but forget the 100 mile diet with its 100 mile radius - if you can, grow your own and you'll reap benefits you never imagined.

Browse our collection of Gardens-in-a-Bag and bring the fresh taste of growing your own inside - on any sunny window sill. We've got a great selection of herbs for cooking and flowers to keep the spirit of summer alive.

If you have any thoughts or ideas about home gardens or the 100 mile diet, we'd love to hear from you! Please leave a comment below.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Burnaby Resident Wins $100 Shopping Spree at Lavish & Lime

Giving feels good but knowing what you give is appreciated, feels great! We felt great this week when we gave away a $100 shopping spree to Olivia S., of Burnaby BC.

Olivia was chosen as the winner of our quarterly newsletter subscriber draw. You could be the next to win $100! When you sign up to receive our newsletter, you not only get our latest news about new products, sales events plus exclusive offers and competitions, you could win a $100 shopping spree!

When we contacted Olivia to tell her the good news, her response was "Wow! thank-you so much! This is so exciting!!" She already has an idea about what she'd like to spend her prize on, which is great.

Congratulations Olivia! We hope you enjoy your spree.

For the latest in unique eco-friendly products to help you live life a little greener, visit Lavish & Lime.

If you have any thoughts or ideas about competitions and winning, just leave a comment below. We'd love to hear from you!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

WIN a Glam Pack Giveaway for a Green Halloween

You want to them to have fun dressing up for Halloween - but without all those nasty ingredients all over their skin. It may only be for one night, but still.

Tell us about your best ever Halloween costume and you could win a Glam Pack filled with Canadian-made, safe make up from Girl Power Beauty! The pack contains a special Girl Power angels necklace made of lead & nickel-free gold plated metal plus two bottles of water-based nail polish in pink and blue and two matching eyeshadow pots (great as body glitter too) made with certified organic corn starch and mineral pigments - all in a funky dot reusable cosmetic bag. These products do not contain any harmful ingredients and are preservative and dye-free. They're great for making up any princess, mermaid, ballerina or Hannah Montana - safely and without worry that toxins will be absorbed into the skin. The Glam Pack is worth $45 - but you could win it for free!

To enter, simply leave a comment below telling us about your best Halloween costume. Was it for you? your child? your partner? Did you make it or put it together yourself? (Admittedly, we're partial to homemade, but are keen to hear all!)

We'll be drawing for one lucky winner on Monday, October 26th (we want to ensure the prize is received before the 31st!) so please be sure to leave a comment by midnight on October 25th.

Good luck and we look forward to hearing about your costume!

The new Girl Power Beauty line of natural skin care products at Lavish & Lime is aimed at girls between 8 and 14 years, but frankly, the Pink Grapefruit 2-in-1 Shampoo & Conditioner and Apple Blossom Deodorant work just fine for adults too - and the scents from the natural plant and flower extracts are well, absolutely lovely!

For a selection of non-toxic Halloween face paint pencils (in pink, gold and silver) and plant-based body paint, visit our Kids Music & Art category.

Take $5 off Your Thanksgiving Turkey

If you live in Vancouver, Victoria or Calgary, we've got a great way for you to give thanks - the organic way.

We've teamed up with our friends at Spud, the online organic home grocer, so this Thanksgiving you can enjoy an organic free range turkey with all the trimmings and save!

Enjoy the bounty of this season's harvest, including fresh local produce and vegetarian holiday feast ideas, delivered right to your door. Spud! is a local online home grocer specializing in organic local produce and all natural groceries. They've given us this special Thanksgiving offer to pass on to you.

Sign up at spud.ca and use promo code LIME to receive $25 off over your first 4 deliveries. $5 off your first 3 orders, $10 off your 4th. Offer expires Oct 31, 2009.

Looking to green your Thanksgiving table even more than just with vegetables? Browse our collection of stylish and sustainable cork hot pads and place mats from Sweden. For the cook, we have dishwasher-safe bamboo cutting boards and a great selection of chic, made in Canada aprons that any kitchen diva would be proud to wear!

If you have any ideas or thoughts about Thanksgiving, going free range or Spud, please leave a comment below. We'd love to hear from you!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Send Your SIGG Photos & Save on BPA-Free Bottles - Extended

We've virtually been inundated with SIGG bottles. Honest. We've never seen so many - in online photos.

The response to our BPA-free bottle promotion has been fantastic, which means we've received loads of photos of your SIGG bottles with BPA in the lining. We've got pictures of all kinds of SIGGS - all colours, all sizes, some with Thomas the Tank Engine, others with French.

In return, we've sent you a unique code for 30% off any of our BPA-free water bottles. And for those of you who don't have a SIGG but still like to buy top quality, BPA-free water bottles we've been responding to your emails and sending you a unique code for 20% off our stainless steel Thinksport bottles or our European-made Laken water bottles.


Now we're extending our offer until midnight PST Monday, September 28th. So great news for all of you who haven't had a chance to take a pic of your SIGG just yet, you've got this weekend to do so then simply send it to us at customerservice@lavishandlime.com. Or just email us, asking for the 20% off code. Codes are valid for use through September 30th.

SIGG's recent revelation about BPA in their bottle lining is unfortunate, we're just happy to have teamed up with our bottle manufacturers to offer you
savings on certified BPA-free alternatives. Read more about our BPA-free water bottle promotion here.

Browse our collection of reusable water bottles at Lavish & Lime. If you have any thoughts or ideas about reusable bottles or Bisphenol-A, we'd love to hear from you! Just leave a comment below.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Sandwich Wrap Saves Egg Salad

We know and love how effective our eco-friendly reusable sandwich wrap can be as an alternative to plastic sandwich bags. It's great to hear how much our customers love them too.

Here's the prize-winning story that helped Tiff Gil win the sandwich wrap giveaway on our Lavish & Lime Facebook page last week.

"The absolute best part was that I had stored an egg salad sandwich in my wrap. Normally I pack the egg salad and bread separately as the sandwich ends up soggy by lunch, but I was not thinking when I made my lunch as it was the first time making lunch for work since being off on maternity leave. Anyway, the point is that my egg salad sandwich was perfect...as if I had just made it moments before eating it...instead of the night before. I’m sure the sandwich wrap had something to do with this. Regardless, I am hooked and will be snagging more reusable sandwich wraps, whether I win one or not." Tiff Gil

We think the sandwich wrap probably had something to do with keeping Tiff's sandwich fresh too. It's made from the same material as plastic sandwich bags but a thicker grade, to ensure its re-usability. The thicker material allows less air to penetrate, keeping what’s inside fresher than the typical plastic sandwich bag.

Sandwich wraps fold out flat into a place mat for a clean place to eat and are easy to wash, just wipe clean and air dry. There's no hidden corners or fabric weave for bacteria to build up. They come in loads of fun and funky designs for adults and kids and are free of BPA, lead and phthalates. Once you go for an eco-friendly wrap, you'll never go back to plastic sandwich bags again.

Check out our eco-friendly sandwich wraps at Lavish & Lime. Become a fan on our official Facebook page and you too will be privy to our exclusive facebook giveaways where fans are winning some great prizes!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

What Do Sheryl Crow & My Thinksport Bottle Have in Common?

On Saturday night, they were both super cool.

We went down to Ambleside Park in West Vancouver with the kids and some friends on Saturday night to catch the Summer Sessions benefit concert featuring Sheryl Crow, Neil Young, Sarah McLachlan and loads of other acts. Let me clarify that. We went down to sit on the beach - outside the fenced in ticket-holder area - to listen to the concert.

Frankly, I think we had the best seats. We had a full view of the gorgeous red sunset, the kids happily played on the beach and loads of boats were bobbing a few feet away in the bay doing exactly what we were, except on the water.

So when we took out our Thinksport water bottle to sip our 'water' we were all amazed at how cold it still was. Even after being in transport for probably close to two hours, by the time we opened it up it tasted just as cold as when it went in. That stainless steel double-walled construction definitely acts like a thermos. [Fast forward to Sunday morning when I went to wash the bottle - the ice cubes were still rattling around inside!]

A nice, cool drink on a warm evening at the beach listening to Sheryl Crow singing "Everyday is a Winding Road" live. And then a meteor streaked across the sky. No kidding.

Don't know if it gets much better than that.

Check out our stainless steel Thinksports and all our reusable water bottles at Lavish & Lime. You can save 30% on our full range of bottles until September 22nd. Find out how here.

If you have any thoughts or comments about Sheryl Crow (we think she's super cool, especially after Lance), Thinksport or water bottles in general, please leave a comment below. We'd love to hear from you!

Sheryl Crow Photo: Rebecca Blissett, Straight.com

Monday, September 14, 2009

Show us your SIGG Bottle & Save 30%!

In light of the recent revelation by SIGG that their water bottle liners contain Bisphenol-A (BPA), the hormone disrupting chemical the Canadian government has banned in baby bottles, we're offering you the chance to save 30% on our certified BPA-free Lakens and stainless steel Thinksports.

Simply show us your bottle.

Email us a photo of your SIGG bottle to at
customerservice@lavishandlime.com and we'll send you a unique code for 30% OFF any of our BPA-free water bottles from European manufacturer, Laken. Laken water bottles are the only certified BPA-free lightweight aluminum bottles on the market. Or if you'd rather switch to non-leaching stainless steel, you can purchase our Thinksport bottles with the same code.

SIGG-Less
If you're SIGG-less but would still like to buy a top quality, BPA-free bottle at a discount, just
email us - with the subject line SIGG-LESS - and we'll send you a unique code for 20% OFF any of our close to 20 different bottles, all of which are good for you and the planet too!

This is a limited time offer - until September 22nd only - as these are quality bottles that are rarely discounted to this extent. We've been lucky enough to get the manufacturers on board which is why we're able to offer you these discounts. Click here for more information.

To get the full scoop on the SIGG situation, read this article at Babyvibe.ca and to confirm your bottle has the lining with BPA in it, compare your bottle with the pictures here.

You can browse our selection of BPA-free reusable water bottles here.

If you have any thoughts or ideas about BPA or water bottles in general, feel free to leave a comment below. We'd love to hear from you!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

The Pacific Garbage Patch

Did you know there's a huge patch of mostly plastic debris - pop bottles, old toys, etc. - about twice the size of Texas sitting in the Pacific Ocean about 1000km north of Hawaii?

If ever there was a reason for us to change our ways, this is it.

An expedition just returned from the most extensive study of the Patch yet and what they found most shocking was the incredible amount of tiny, confetti-like pieces of broken plastic they found floating in the water. They took hundreds of water samples between the Farallon Islands off San Francisco and the Patch and in every one found tiny, confetti-like pieces of plastic. As they got closer to the Patch the more plastic pieces per gallon they found.

Researchers also saw jellyfish eating the bits of plastic. Of great concern is the fact that jellyfish are eaten by fish like tuna, that in turn, we eat.

The exact boundaries of the Patch are unknown. It cannot be seen from the air or by satellite as most of the plastic in the Patch has been broken down into billions of little pieces that sit just below the ocean's surface. Scientists believe that this garbage washes down drains and rivers from places like the San Francisco Bay area and Japan into several large currents that eventually swirl together.

Read more about the Patch and the expedition's findings here. The photo above shows some of the debris brought back by the expedition.

In light of the Patch, we think choosing reusable shopping bags, food containers, water bottles, sandwich wraps is no longer a 'should do' but a 'must-do'.

If you have any thoughts or comments on The Pacific Garbage Patch, we'd love to hear from you! Just leave a comment below.

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