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Archive for Healthy Living

February 12th, 2015

Join Me: Tell Congress We Have the Right to Know What’s in Our Food

Tell Congress We Have the Right to Know What's in Our Food Groovy Green Livin

Everyone has the right to know what’s in their food. It’s hard to disagree with that, right?

More than 90% of Americans believe GE (genetically engineered) foods should be labeled. Unfortunately, there are a few who don’t agree that GMOs should be labeled and they’re giving the pro labeling community a tough time.

Representatives Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.) and  G. K. Butterfield (D-N.C.) have introduced legislation dubbed the Deny Americans the Right-to-Know Act (DARK Act), which would deny consumers the right to know if there are genetically engineered ingredients in their food.

National Week of Action to Label GMOs

This week has been designated “National Week of Action to Label GMOs”. Together, we are trying to prevent another DARK Act from coming before Congress and possibly passing.

What is the DARK Act?

DARK is an acronym for the “Deny Americans the Right-to-Know” Act.  Last year the “Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act,” officially H.R. 4432, came before the 113th Congress and is likely to appear before the 114th Congress this year in a new bill.

The DARK Act would make the failed voluntary labeling system that we have had in place over the past 13 years permanent. Simply put, we have the right to know what’s in our food and the current system isn’t working. We need labeling.

How You Can Help. Let Congress Know that You Care.

There are many organizations working tirelessly to make sure GMO labeling remains on the forefront of the political landscape. As consumers, we can work alongside these organizations.

During this National Week of Action to Label GMOs we can work together to put a stop to this new version of the DARK Act.

Here’s what you can do to help: 

  • Sign THIS petition at Just Label It. You will be asked to enter your zip code. This will allow your petition to be sent directly to your members of Congress.
  • Call your Senator. This isn’t as daunting as it sounds. Use to determine who to call and then let them know why you care about GMO labeling.

It would also be fantastic if you shared this info with your friends and family. We need to work hard, quickly and together to make the DARK Act go away.

If labeling GMOs is important to you and your family please spend a few seconds on this. Can you help? Thank you!

P.S. If you liked this post you might enjoy our Groovy Green Livin NewsletterReceive new posts and special opportunities delivered right to your inbox! Sign up HERE.

photo credit: OccupyTheFarm: “Family Weekend At The Gill Tract Urban Farm” 4/28/2012 via photopin (license)

February 9th, 2015

4 Climate-Friendly Valentine’s Day Gifts


Climate-Friendly Valentine's Day Groovy Green Livin

 This was originally published on the Huffington Post.

It’s hard to ignore the sea of red gifts and boxes of chocolates lining the aisles in most stores this time of year. Valentine’s Day is upon us. While we ponder how to best surprise our loved ones, many areas in the country are being hammered with multiple blizzards. It’s hard to imagine, with several feet of snow on the ground, that winters have, on average, been getting warmer since the 1970s. According to Climate Central there has been an overall drop in the number of nights below freezing in most cities.

This increase in warmer weather throughout the world is becoming the new normal. Climate change is real. With 61 Senators (a vast majority of the Senate including 15 Republican senators) admitting the scientific reality of man-made climate change, we can now move forward and talk about solutions.

While discussions of political solutions to climate change are beginning to circulate we can continue with our own personal efforts to reduce our individual carbon footprints.

This Valentine’s Day rather than focusing on those red and chocolate filled aisles why not look outside the box and give a gift that will truly make a difference and impact climate change.

Adopt a Polar Bear

American polar bears are on the brink of extinction unless we take immediate action. These large marine mammals spend much of their time on the Arctic Sea, in areas where they can hunt seals at openings in the sea ice hundreds of miles from land. But the Arctic Sea ice is rapidly diminishing due to climate change, thereby destabilizing the polar bears’ habitat.

This Valentine’s Day give the gift of adopting a polar bear. Your gift will help to protect the fragile Arctic by fighting climate change through vital research and policy work, advocating a ban on all drilling in the region, and pushing for polar bears to gain the full protection they deserve under the Endangered Species Act.

Declare Your Love for the Planet 

The Climate Coalition is the UK’s largest group of people dedicated to action on climate change. This Valentine’s Day they’re asking everyone to submit photos of things they love and that they fear losing due to the effects of climate change. The #ShowTheLove campaign is a way to show politicians and those in decision making roles that climate change is something we all care about.

Climate change affects the things we love most. Our childrens’ future. Our hobbies. Our passions. Our lifestyles. Our safety and wellbeing. We’re saying loud and clear – let’s act on climate change, for the love of everything we hold dear. 

In honor of Valentine’s Day head on over HERE and #ShowTheLove by sharing what you love and how it could be impacted by climate change. There’s also a short film and green hearts to make, wear and share with your loved ones.

Plant a Tree in Honor of Someone You Love

Instead of giving cut flowers this Valentine’s Day why not give a tree? According to the Arbor Day Foundation planting trees helps to fight climate change.

Through the natural process of photosynthesis, trees absorb CO2 and other pollutant particulates, then store the carbon and emit pure oxygen.

You can reduce your energy use by strategically planting trees near your home. Trees will keep your house cool in the summer and allow the sun to warm your house in the winter. According to the U.S. Forest Service Center just three trees, properly placed around a house, can save up to 30% of energy use. Forests are the world’s second largest carbon reservoirs (oceans are the largest). We can’t create new oceans, but we do have the ability to plant new trees. One acre of forestland will capture between 150 – 200 tons of CO2 in its first 40 years.

Honor your friends and loved ones this Valentine’s Day with the gift of trees. Every dollar donated to the Arbor Day Foundation plants a tree in one of our nation’s forests.

Forgo the Cut Roses and Give a House Plant

So often we forget that the environment has the natural ability to clean itself. Many common houseplants act as an air purifier, removing toxins from the air we breathe. They are known to produce oxygen from CO2 and they absorb toxins including benzene (gasoline, inks, oils, paints, plastics, and rubber), formaldehyde and/or trichloroethylene (printing inks, paints, lacquers, varnishes, and adhesives).

Through air purification household plants reduce the amount of humidity in the home, which in turn means less air conditioning is needed during the hot summer months.  Most electricity needed to run an air conditioner is currently produced by burning fossil fuels. Reducing the amount of air conditioning needed will require less electricity to run an air conditioner, which will in turn reduce the amount of greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere.

A few years back NASA scientists studied nineteen different plants over a two year span to see which did the best job cleaning the air. The NASA study recommends that you use 15 to 18 good-sized houseplants in 6 to 8-inch diameter containers to improve air quality in an average 1,800 square foot house.

What are your plans for Valentine’s Day this year?


P.S. If you liked this post you might enjoy our Groovy Green Livin NewsletterReceive new posts and special opportunities delivered right to your inbox! Sign up HERE.


photo credit: Rex Rosetta Fur Heart via photopin (license)

February 3rd, 2015

4 Gadgets to Help You Through a Snowstorm

Snowstorm Groovy Green Livin

After a two hour delay this morning my kids are finally back in school. Two snow days later. That means, as it does for many, I can finally get back to work.

We’ve been hit with two snowstorms in a relatively short period of time. Check out my Instagram photos to see the insane amount of snow. This last snowstorm was a heavy hitter, with the snow continuing steadily throughout the day yesterday.

As the groundhog predicted, it’s no surprise that we have at least 6 more weeks of winter coming our way. I’m sure we’ll have a few more notable snowstorms as well.

If you’re anything like me you’ll want to be prepared the next time a snowstorm decides to blow by.

Here are a few of my gadgets picks to help you through the next snowstorm.

There are affiliate links contained in this post (see below).

True Temper SnoBoss ($53)

snowstorm gadgets Groovy Green LivinWorried about throwing your back our while shoveling? The  True Temper SnoBoss  has an ergonomic design and unique features that make it ideal for your back when shoveling, and also pushing, scraping and cleaning snow and ice.

External Battery and Portable Charger ($46)

snowstorm gadgets Groovy Green LivinThe Anker® 2nd Gen Astro3 Portable Charger External Battery Power Bank with PowerIQ Technology for iPhone, iPad, Samsung, Nexus and More is what you need to have when the next snow storm rolls around. This charger is a powerhouse. It will  charge the iPad Air once, the Galaxy S5 over three times, the iPhone 6 five times and other smartphones multiple times.

Rechargeable Heated Insoles ($97)

snowstorm gadgets Groovy Green LivinThe Thermacell Rechargeable Heated Insole is on the top of my list before the next snowstorm. My feet are always the first part of my body to get cold. I might invest in a pair of these for skiing too. This is a rechargeable foot warmer which is operated by a wireless remote control while the foot warmer is inside your shoes or boots. How cool is that?! They’re adjustable to three temperature settings to warm cold feet by remote control and can be recharged up to 500 times using the charger that is included.

Boot and Shoe Dryer ($45)

snowstorm gadgets Groovy Green Livin
I can’t tell you how much I want this gadget. All of our boots are soaking wet from playing and shoveling during the snowstorm. The DryGuy Thermanator Boot and Shoe Dryer is the perfect solution. It provides a modular drying system with three mounting options (wall, floor, and free standing hardware) and can accommodate four shoes or boots.


What’s your favorite snowstorm gadget? 



P.S. If you liked this post you might enjoy our Groovy Green Livin NewsletterReceive new posts and special opportunities delivered right to your inbox! Sign up HERE.

Disclosure: Some links are affiliate links meaning, at no additional cost to you, I may get a small commission if you make a purchase. Thanks for your support! 

photo credit: Xydexx Squeakypony via photopin cc

January 30th, 2015

5 Healthy Superbowl Snacks for Kids

5 Healthy Superbowl Snacks for Kids Groovy Green Livin

Superbowl XLIX is here! Enough talking about Deflate-Gate. I’m ready for game day.

Since moving to the Boston area it’s been impossible not to get caught up in the sports world. The transition from a Packers fan to a Patriots fan has been bumpy, but I’m now officially aligned with almost all the New England teams.

It’s time for the Patriots take on the Seahawks in Superbowl XLIX.

The game kicks off at 7:05 pm. My kids have assured me that they’re staying up for the entire game. They know that it wouldn’t be a Superbowl without a party and a few million snacks to choose from.

According to the Snack Food Association, in a single day (Super Bowl Sunday) Americans consume an estimated 30.4 million pounds of chips, dips, pretzels, popcorn and other treats. 

This year I’m bucking the trend and suggesting a few healthy snacks to share at your Superbowl festivities.

Snacks that your kids will love. I’ve been collecting fantastic recipes from foodie bloggers on Pinterest. Here are a few of my faves:

I’m loving this fruit rainbow idea from Apartment Therapy. What kid wouldn’t gobble that up?

Healthy Superbowl Snacks Groovy Green Livin

How about bringing a batch of these Crispy Oven Roasted Chickpeas?  Fifteen Spatulas came up with a simple recipe that tastes delicious. Sure to be a Superbowl hit!

Healthy Superbowl Snacks Groovy Green Livin

I’m loving these Chocolate Covered Strawberry Footballs from My Mommy Style. How cute are the white laces?!

Healthy Superbowl Snacks Groovy Green Livin

If you’re looking for a gluten free option then pop on over to The Healthy Apple. Amie has quite a few healthy, gluten free Superbowl recipes to choose from.  The vegan, gluten free Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies look divine.

Healthy Superbowl Snacks Groovy Green Livin

This healthy snack is so simple, but with an added twist. It looks gorgeous and the peppers hold the dip. Brilliant. Thanks to It’s Written on the Wall for the inspiration.

Healthy Superbowl Snacks

What are you planning to share during the Superbowl?


P.S. If you liked this post you might enjoy our Groovy Green Livin NewsletterReceive new posts and special opportunities delivered right to your inbox! Sign up HERE.


photo credit: Elvert Barnes via photopin cc

January 26th, 2015

3 Small Kitchen Appliances I Can’t Live Without

Small Kitchen Appliances Groovy Green Livin

I always love taking a sneak peek into someone else’s home. I’ve shared with you what’s under my kitchen sink and some of my favorite safe shampoos and lotions. My friend Lindsay has also shared some behind the scenes glimpses into her home with a look at what’s under her sink and what’s in her pantry.

Today it’s time to take a little peek into my kitchen, which you can see in its entirety in my interview with ABC World News.

There are 3 small kitchen appliances that I use every day and I can’t live without them!

I spent a lot of time researching and seeking out the safest brand before buying each one. They are not inexpensive, but so worth the investment. Feel free to piggy back off my research and treat yourself to one of each. You deserve it!

There are affiliate links below. See * for full disclosure.

VitaClay Organic Multi-Cooker/Rice Cooker
3 Small Kitchen Appliances I Can't Live Without Groovy Green Livin

I’ve had multiple rice cookers over the years and hands down I like the VitaClay Organic Multi-Cooker/Rice Cookerthe best. The interior pot is ceramic rather than stainless steel and doesn’t contain aluminum, lead or any non-stick chemicals. It works like a charm every time I make rice or any grain. I’ve even used it for oatmeal.

There are multiple settings: for white rice (Quinoa), Brown rice (Wholegrain, or Wild rice), Sweet rice (Sushi, Sticky), Reheat, Stew (Roast or Steam or Beans, or less liquid cooking), Soup (Broth or more liquid based cooking) and Yogurt(yes, you can make your own yogurt).

It seems to cook the rice very quickly. My favorite feature is the “delay start”. I can program the rice cooker to turn on at a set time. Once the rice finishes cooking it automatically keeps it warm.

My only challenge with this rice cooker is that the lid is sometimes difficult to take off when the pot is hot.


All-Clad 6.5-Quart Slow Cooker with Black Ceramic Insert
3 Small Kitchen Appliances I Can't Live Without Groovy Green Livin
The All-Clad 6.5-Quart Slow Cooker with Black Ceramic Insert is the best of the best.

If you’re anything like me and driving your kids around just before dinner time, this slow cooker is for you. It has a 26-hour programmable timer, which allows you to time dinner perfectly. It’s also quite large so we can prepare a meal and have lots of leftovers. I love that it turns to the warm setting once the cooking’s complete. The ceramic insert is very easy to clean.

PRICE: $179.95

The SodaStream Crystal


3 Small Kitchen Appliances I Can't Live Without Groovy Green Livin

We love our SodaStream . There are quite a few versions out there, but we chose the SodaStream Chrystal since it uses a reusable glass carafe. Personally I’m not a fan of carbonated water (I don’t like the bubbles), but the rest of my family can’t get enough. Since this love of sparkling water has turned into a bit of an addiction I decided to do a little homework to make sure that consuming a lot of the bubbly stuff wasn’t impacting our health.

The bottom line: carbonated water is basically harmless. It’s just water and bubbles. An added bonus: by using a SodaStream you’re creating a positive impact on the environment by not using all the plastic bottles and cans generated from the store bought version.

PRICE: $179.99

What’s your favorite kitchen appliance? 


P.S. If you liked this post you might enjoy our Groovy Green Livin NewsletterReceive new posts and special opportunities delivered right to your inbox! Sign up HERE.


*Disclaimer: I’ve included Amazon affiliate links for each of these items.  I will earn a small commission off of anything you buy through these links. Thank you for your support this site. All opinions are 100% my own, as always!

January 23rd, 2015

5 Healthier Peanut Butter Dessert Recipes

Healthier  Peanut Butter Dessert Recipes Groovy Green Livin

Now that my son no longer has a peanut allergy (stay tuned for this amazing story) nuts of all kinds have been a staple in our home. And there’s a good reason.

In a study published in The New England Journal of Medicine, researchers found people who ate a daily handful of nuts (including peanuts which are technically legumes) were 20 percent less likely to die from heart disease, cancer and other chronic illnesses over a 30-year period than were those who didn’t.

So in honor of National Peanut Butter Day (January 24th, 2015) I’m going to share with you 5 amazing recipes from a few peanut butter loving bloggers.

But first this fact: Did you know that it takes 550 peanuts to make a 12 ounce jar of peanut butter?

Now it’s time to take a peek at these delicious recipes and if something floats your peanut-butter-loving boat click on the link to bring you to the full recipe. My only suggestion-use organic peanut butter without added sugar whenever you can.

Healthy Peanut Butter Fudge by Chocolate Covered Katie

I was so excited to stumble across this recipe for Healthy Peanut Butter Fudge. Something so delicious without butter, heavy cream, or high fructose corn syrup.

Healthy Peanut-Butter-Fudge Groovy Green Livin

No-Bake Energy Bites by Gimme Some Oven

What got me with these delicious treats is the “no-bake”. And they’re incredibly easy to make. Take a peek here.

Peanut Butter No-Bake-Energy-Bites-Groovy Green Livin

Double Peanut Butter Layer Cake with Chocolate Fudge Frosting by Desserts with Benefits

This Peanut Butter Layer Cake with Chocolate Fudge Frosting looks seriously decadent, but it’s also healthier than most cakes, low sugar, high in fiber and high in protein.

Healthy Peanut Butter Cake Groovy Green Livin


Creamy Chocolate Peanut Butter and Avocado Pudding by Healthfully Ever After

Chocolate, peanut butter and avocado sounds like an interesting combo in this recipe. There are only 7 ingredients and the recipe is relatively healthy! This recipe calls for Greek yogurt and personally I like to add Stonyfield organic Greek yogurt to my recipes. I think you know why!

healthy chocolate peanut butter avocado pudding Groovy Green Livin

Flourless Chocolate Brownies with Salted Peanut Butter Topping (Gluten Free!)by Nutritionist in the Kitch

This cake is flourless! Guess what holds it together? Sweet potatoes! Don’t worry, Christal assures us that you can’t taste the sweet potato for all you sweet potato haters.


 Enjoy National Peanut Butter Day! What’s your favorite peanut butter recipe?


P.S. If you liked this post you might enjoy our Groovy Green Livin NewsletterReceive new posts and special opportunities delivered right to your inbox! Sign up HERE.


January 20th, 2015

3 Important Tips for Buying a New Car

3 Important Tips for Buying a New Car Groovy Green Livin

For years I’ve wanted to head to the Detroit Auto Show which happens annually in January. I’m generally invited every year by gracious car manufacturers, but unfortunately the timing never seems to work out on my end. Someday I’ll hopefully get there to check out the latest and greatest in the auto industry.

This year I had the best of both worlds. I discovered that I didn’t have to travel far to get to a fabulous auto show. Who knew the New England International Auto Show was happening  just a few minutes from my home?!

When I was invited to attend the New England International Auto Show by SheBuysCars as a guest of Chevrolet I was beyond excited. I love how they refer to this show on the website as “Sneak Peeks for Auto Geeks”. I’m not sure I qualify as an auto geek, but I do love checking out the newest imported and domestic vehicles. I’ve been reviewing various cars on my site for a few years- so maybe that does place me in the “auto geek” category?

3 Important Tips for Buying a New Car Groovy Green Livin

3 Important Tips for Buying a New Car Groovy Green LivinThe day did not disappoint. It kicked off with a Design and Urban Mobility panel discussion. Of course I couldn’t help myself and had to ask the panel to name a few of their favorite sustainability initiatives. Wade Bryant, Manager, GM Advanced Design Studio & Design Senior Consultant on the Urban Active Solutions was all over my question. He spoke about how Chevy is in the forefront when it comes to sustainability. Check out some of their initiatives here. He also spoke about how there’s always room for improvement and it remains a work in progress.

After the panel came the reveal of the Chevrolet Trax. This is Chevy’s cross between an SUV and a compact car. This smaller car can seat up to five. One of my favorite features is the ability to fold the front passenger seat flat. This would allow for storage of long items such as skis or a surfboard, up to eight feet long. Not bad for a small vehicle.

We were then taken on an exclusive tour of the auto show led by James Bell, the Head of Consumer Affairs for General Motors. Mr. Bell knew his stuff and gave us the low down on many of the vehicles at the auto show.

3 Important Tips for Buying a New Car Groovy Green Livin

Women and Cars

My favorite panel happened after lunch. A few dynamic women spoke about Women in Automotive: How We’re Changing the World. They spoke about how on the consumer side more and more women are making the car deals. On the business side they are seeing more women rising to the top within the car industry. Pretty impressive.

For those of you who haven’t heard of SheBuysCars, it’s a pretty amazing organization. SheBuysCars is a web community for women who buy, care for, and live their lives in and around their cars. The brainchild of founder Kim Orlando and editor and journalist Scotty Reiss, SheBuysCars is created for the 80 percent of women who influence car purchase decisions. Their mission is to empower women as owners and buyers of cars.

3 Tips for Buying a New Car

When it’s time to invest in a new car here are three quick tips to help you through the process:

  • Test drive the car. I can’t emphasize this enough. Have your entire family pile in the car and make sure everyone fits. Especially if your car has a third row. Many of those third rows are a tight squeeze. Make sure the car is comfortable. Think about how much time we spend in a car!
  • Do your homework.  There is very little that remains a secret when it comes to car purchases. Once you find a car you’re interested in spend some time researching the available features and the value of the car. Look at reviews and be sure to check out safety records, Head over to She Buys Cars for great advice.
  • Check out the repair costs BEFORE purchasing the car. Head to the dealer or a local repair shop and ask for comparisons on what repairs will cost on a few vehicles you’re interested in.

The day ended with a group photo of the fabulous Boston Parent Bloggers . I also had a chance to catch up with my friend and fellow YoGetter, Alison from Green With Renvy.

3 Important Tips for Buying a New Car Groovy Green Livin

Overall the day was a complete success.

Just curious- did you walk into the dealership and make the deal on your car? 


P.S. If you liked this post you might enjoy our Groovy Green Livin NewsletterReceive new posts and special opportunities delivered right to your inbox! Sign up HERE.

 Disclosure:  Chevrolet and SheBuysCars provided me with complimentary access to the New England International Auto Show and compensation for this post.  As always, all opinions are my very own.


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About Lori

I’m Lori Popkewitz Alper, a recovering attorney, mom of three and the Founder of Groovy Green Livin. Come along with me as I work hard to make the world a little safer for each of us.

Click HERE to contact Lori

Lori on ABC World News

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