Subject: The Shoppe Newsletter No. 61

In This Issue:
- 30,000 Products and Rising
- If the Earth Could Speak at Christmas
- 10 Quick & Easy Chemical-free Things to Do with Plants from the Garden
- It's the Season for Preserving
Abundant Zucchinis - Zucchini & ginger jam & zucchini face mask
- The Shoppe Catalogue now available for down-load

30,000 Products and Rising!
   That’s how many products are currently available on supermarket shelves. As a comparison: 20 years ago in 1996 there were just 600-800 products. Now it’s a whopping 30,000! And the frightening thing is there is no end to this never-ending flow. More products are being created everyday further adding to the strain on Earth’s resources to keep up supply. Every one of these products are produced via resources taken from the planet. All involve the use of chemicals – one way or another - further adding to the waste the planet is left to contend with. Many of these products end up as land-fill due to low sales, discontinued lines or out-of-date. Container recycling is a positive thing – but does not address the over-all picture of the never-ending manufacturing of new products. The root cause of this problem is the current world philosophy that ‘profit and progress’ are far, far more important than anything else: Not a good approach to managing the future of our home - planet Earth.
If the Earth Could Speak at Christmas
One of the worst times of the year in terms of ‘resource over load for the planet’ is Christmas - when the Earth is ‘exhausted’ meeting the need of ‘consumer demand’. A time of extravagance and disregard for resources. From Christmas wrapping paper to over-indulgence of food it all amounts to excesses that the Earth cannot afford to give. It’s a commercial frenzy just seems to get bigger each year. Christmas paraphernalia comes out earlier and earlier in the shops just the make sure that extra dollar is squeezed from the consumer. It’s over-whelming to think how much of the Earth’s resources are drained to sustain the consumerism of ‘Christmas’ and worse still how much of those valuable resources are wasted – used as land fill when the season rush is over (NB: Not everything is 'recyclable'). Christmas has become a powerful source for profit and money - and a powerful example of how not to treat the planet.
Where is this leading us?
The bottom line is that at some-time in the near future in some way this flow has to be stemmed – whether it be by consumer choice or forced upon us by some dire change in circumstances. That’s the reality we are facing as a race. We cannot afford to look toward the future with an ever increasing load of fulfilling the past.
Don’t wait until it is forced upon us – and we no longer have a choice. Consumerism will, no doubt about it, meet a painful decline and death in the years to come. It is ‘unsustainable’. Start now by changing your ways to meet a more responsible need for the future of the planet.

What Can You Do?
The answer is reasonably simple: reduce consumer demand and break the habit of consumerism by replacing consumer products with simple alternatives that have innumerable uses. I believe that there is an alternative for absolutely everything commercial. Here’s a list of the most useful and versatile alternatives with reference to the relevant information source in the Shoppe’s publications for more information:
Basic uses - Cheap generic vinegar: cleaning, disinfecting, deodorising, anti-bacterial agent, insect repellent
Better quality cider or white vinegar: hair conditioner, culinary, skin astringent, personal deodorant, therapeutic uses, preservative (food)
More information e-Book No. 33 Versatile Vinegar - download information here

Bicarb Soda

Basic Uses -
abrasive cleaner, deodoriser, whitener, stain removal
More Information e-Book No. 9 Amazing Bicarb! - download information here

Bar of Soap:
Basic uses -
detergent alternative, household cleaning, personal cleaning, garden spray, deodorising, general household use (detergent alternative)
More Information e-Book No. 50 Recycling Soap - download information here

Basic uses -
mild abrasive cleaner, skin rejuvenator & cleanser, water softener, culinary, hair-care, chemical free soap alternative
More information e-Book No. 30 Natural Skin Care - down-load information here

examples: rosemary, thyme, sage, parsley, lavender
Basic Uses -
skin care, hair care, personal deodorant, general deodorising, oral care, cleaning, mild disinfectant, insect repellent
More information e-Book No. 61 - Harnessing Herbs - download information

Eucalyptus Oil:
Basic Uses -
stain removal, deodorising, disinfecting, cleaning, therapeutic, insect repellent
More information e-Book No. 51 - Uses for Eucalyptus Oil  - down-load information here

Basic Uses-
personal care products, talc alternative
More information e-Book No. 27 Fantastic Feet - download information here

Basic Uses -
mild bleach, cleaning, deodorising, skin care, hair care, disinfectant, culinary, insect repellent, therapeutic
For more informtion: e-book No. 10 - The Humble Lemon.  Download information here

For more information:

Environmentally-friendly Basics e-Book Set download
Six e-books covering with the most common household alternatives – Bicarb Soda, Vinegar, Lemon, Eucalyptus Oil, Soap, Oatmeal - that have a multitude of safe, environmentally friendly uses around the home. Very cost effective!

Contains:  No. 9 - Uses for Bi-carb Soda,  No. 10 - Humble Lemon,  No. 33 - Versatile Vinegar,  No. 51 - Uses for Eucalyptus Oil,  No. 50 – Recycling Soap, No. 58 - Old-time Oatmeal.  (Also available for purchase individually).
Money Saver Ideas!
10 Quick & Easy Chemical-free Things to Do with Plants
from the Garden

1. Infused Vinegar: Place sprigs of your favourite fresh herb or flower into a bottle of vinegar. Leave to infuse one week before using (for culinary - such as salad dressing, cleaning, skin-care, etc,)

2. Gourmet Oil: Place 2 garlic cloves and few sprigs of herbs (sage, rosemary, thyme) in a bottle of olive oil. Leave to infuse or 2 weeks. Use for cooking or culinary.

3. Rosemary Room Freshener: Half fill a spray bottle with cider vinegar. Top up with rosemary infusion*. Spray as required to alleviate odours.

4. Cleansing Milk: Place 50mls of milk and four tablespoons of herbs or flower petals of your choice (lavender, rosemary, violet, nasturtiums, chamomile - for example) in a covered saucepan. Gently warm the mixture, but do not boil. Turn off the heat. Strain and leave to cool. Apply to the skin with cotton wool (Milk is very nourishing for the skin and the flowers/herbs perfume, heal and rejuvenate). Store in fridge and use within 5-7 days.

5. Refreshing Skin Wash: Use a cool herbal infusion* as a skin astringent to refresh and heal the skin after cleansing. Some suggested plants to use: LAVENDER (normal skin), ROSEMARY (oily, normal, dry skin), CHAMOMILE (sensitive - dry skin), GERANIUM (normal to dry skin).

6. Rose Body Spray: Place one cup of scented rose petals in a shallow pan and cover with water. Simmer very gently for 10 minutes. Strain the liquid. When cool - pour into spray bottle ready for use. Repeat the process for stronger scent.

7. Floral Air-freshener: A simple bunch of fragrant flowers placed in a room will naturally perfume the immediate environment as an alternative to chemical deodorisers.

8. Mint Flea Repellent: Place fresh mint in pet's bedding to deter fleas and deodorise.

9. Lavender & Thyme Deodorant: Pour into small spray bottle: 10 ml
s cider vinegar and 100 ml rosemary and lavender infusion*. Use as underarm spray deodorant twice daily.

10. Sage Mouth-wash: Use a sage infusion* as a refreshing mouth-wash. Sage is good for both teeth and gums.

*How to Make an Infusion: Place 3 teaspoons fresh herbs or plants in an earthenware cup. Add 250mls boiling water. Leave to steep for about 5 minutes or for a stronger infusion leave longer. Strain and use as required. Store in fridge and use within 5-7 days

(From The Shoppe Newsletter No. 34)
For more ideas & information on things to do with garden herbs:

e-book No. 61 - Harnessing Herbs: Techniques for making use of and harnessing the potent properties of herbs and plants to appreciate all year round. Covers: growing and harvesting plus infusion, maceration, decoction and drying techniques. Recipes for: cosmetic waters & vinegar, culinary oils, infusions, herbal products (honey, butter, cheese), bath oils, and more. Price: $12.00
Click here for download information
It's the Season for Preserving
  For some people garden produce is in abundance right now.  I've made my usual array of bottled produce: tomato sauce, pasta sauce, zucchini jam, pickled zucchini, preserved peaches and peach jam. 
  Food items made with home-grown produce are tastier, cheaper and healthier than the commercial counterpart.  It's a great way to use up your hard earned garden excesses. You'll find all my recipes (tried and tested!) in my e-book range:
e-book No. 74 – Ways With Fruit
Lots of info and recipes for making making a range of home produce: syrups, cordials, various types of jams, conserves, pickling, glacé, mango chutney, conserves, curds, butters, fruit cheese, freezing, candying, crystallizing, pickling. Interesting recipes include: rose petal jam, orange marmalade, fig and plum jams, lemon cordial, and more. Price: $12.00  Click here for download information
e-book No. 52 - Salubrious Sauces: Fill your recycled glass bottles with an array of luscious and flavour-some homemade sauces. Recipes for tomato sauce, Worcestershire, sweet chilli, Chinese plum, barbecue, mint, pasta/pizza sauce, sweet & sour, black bean and more. Contains instructions for sterilizing bottles and jars. Price: $8.00
Click here for download information
No. 46 - Preserving Without a Preserving Outfit:  No need for an expensive preserving out-fit - minimal equipment required (just recycled jars, a large stock pot and food thermometer). Easy-to-follow 5-step method for preserving fruit (and tomatoes) cheaply and sensibly using recycled jars (the common metal lid type).   Price: $8.00
Click here for download information
'Preserving' e-book Set
Full set of all e-books relevant to preserving - lots of tried and tested recipes and information. Much cheaper than individual e-book purchases. 
Contains 6 Books: No. 46 – Preserving Without a Preserving Outfit, No. 52 - Salubrious Sauces, No. 49 - Bringing Back the Beverage, No. 72 - Drying Food, No. 73 – Food Storage Techniques, No. 74 – Ways with Fruit.  Price: $42.00    Click here for download information about e-book sets
Abundant Zucchinis!
  As many gardeners will well know - zucchinis grow abundantly this time of the year when conditions are right (plus are cheap to buy at vegie stores). However they do have a reputation of being limited in uses.  So - not wanting to waste anything - over the years I've collected many recipes and found ways to use my zucchinis. Here's a couple of my recipes - and you'll find many more in my e-book 'Ways With - Zucchinis'
Zucchini & Ginger Jam
Ingredients: 500g zucchini, 100g crystallized ginger, 500g sugar, grated rind & juice of a lemon.
Method: Peel zucchini and cut into small dices. Cover with sugar in a suitably sized bowl. Leave 12 hours or overnight. Pour into saucepan, add lemon juice and chopped ginger. Bring to the boil – stirring frequently so that it does not burn. Continue simmering until jam is correct consistency*. While still hot pour into sterile jars (see page 25) and seal ready for storage or immediate use. Keeping time: 3-4 months.
NB: Ginger can be deleted if preferred. I prefer zucchini & orange jam. Simply replace ginger with the grated rind of 3 oranges.
'Hot Day' Zucchini Face Mask
Blend together half a small zucchini with 2-3 sprigs fresh mint to form a fine pulp. Add 1 teaspoon almond oil for dry skin.
How to use: Apply liberally to the face. Massage well. Leave 5-10 minutes (or longer). Wash off. Wonderfully cooling and refreshing after a day in the warm-hot sun - on the beach, in the garden, bush walking, etc.
You'll find many more ideas and recipes using zucchini in e-book 'Ways With - Zucchini'.
e-book - Ways With Zucchini:
Grows abundantly in the right conditions and often in abundance. Many recipes and ideas: including roasted, grated, baked, stir-fries, soup, grilled, fritters, cakes, bread, rissoles, pasta, salads, jam, stuffed zucchini flowers, pickled. Ideal substitute for cucumber intolerant people. Try the zucchini chocolate cake! Other uses: cosmetic, sun-burn, skin lotion. Price: $12.00  Click here for download information
'The Shoppe Catalogue' now available for download
I've put together a range of environmentally friendly products that are examples of what you can make at home as alternatives to complex commercial products. All products can easily be made at home using easy-to-find ingredients (recipes available). Many have been mentioned and suggested in The Shoppe Newsletters, e-books and my workshops. The philosophy of the products is to by-pass powerful consumerism and take control of what is used in the home. The advantages are many: Safer, less chemicals, respectful toward the earth and, of course, it’s much cheaper to use alternatives than what is offered commercially.
It’s a statement that things can change for betterment of family, environment and future.
All products contain just 3 or 4 easy to find ingredients. What you see is what you get - there are no secrets – the recipes (and contents) are freely available so you can make it yourself if you so desire.
Just as unprocessed, natural, chemical free food is good for you – so it is with what we apply to our body and use in the home.
Down-load the full Shoppe Catalogue here

Many thanks!  Keep well.
Pam Marshall -The Self-Sufficiency Shoppe

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