Home & How-To

Home and How-To Content


It’s a good habit to think about ways to reuse an item before you throw it away and old sports equipment can definitely find new life in your home.  Think outside the baseball diamond and turn old wooden bats into decorative furniture. 

Have you always wanted to grown your own fruits and vegetables but don’t have the space to get started?  Consider growing produce in containers.  Pot ornamental edibles in large containers and keep them near the kitchen or on the deck. 

Jazz Up Sweet Tea

Jul 29, 2016

Sweet Tea is a staple in the south and whether you like yours as sweet as can be, or half and half, jazz up your sweet tea by brewing a simple syrup additive.  Try Raspberry vanilla sweet tea by heating one cup of sugar, half a cup of water, half a cup of smashed raspberries and one split vanilla bean until the sugar has dissolved.  

Old picture frames are easy to come by- whether you have a box of them in the basement or enjoy shopping for them at thrift stores.  But have you ever considered that those old frames could be used for projects that don’t involve pictures

Rain Barrel Tips

Jul 27, 2016

Water shortages are becoming a real problem across the country, and that’s why many people are turning to the centuries-old practice of collecting rain water as an alternative source of water. 

DIY Tricks Part 2

Jul 26, 2016

We’re always looking for a quick and easy way to save energy and money and sometimes it’s as simple as turning off the light when you leave a room.  But there are other small things you can do every day to save energy.  For instance, set your computer or laptop to go to sleep after 10 minutes of nonuse.  Purchasing big ticket items like a patio grill on the off season can save a little money, too. 

DIY Tricks Part 1

Jul 25, 2016

We’re all looking for ways to save a little money here and there, and there are some easy tricks to help lower your monthly expenditures.  For example, we all know we should change the filter monthly and adjust the thermostat while no one is home to save energy, but did you know that if you have closets along exterior walls, keeping those closet doors closed can help insulate the house and lowers the square footage your HVAC has to keep cool?  

Disposable Fashion

Jul 22, 2016

The media has been abuzz recently with the effects of disposable fashion on the industry at large and it’s not a pretty picture.  Many of the clothes we buy are made in sweat shops abroad where working conditions are unsafe and where workers aren’t making a livable wage. 


Our bodies absorb up to 60% of what we put on our skin, and children’s bodies absorb 40-50% more than adults.  From parabens to phthalates, sulfates and more, beauty and skin care products contain compounds that can be potentially hazardous to your health

Many of the chemicals we use to clean our homes are banned abroad and when combined with other products can be potentially hazardous to your health.  And because manufacturers don’t have to list all ingredients on their labels, you could be creating a toxic environment in your home. 

By now, media reports and scientific studies have all raised awareness about the hazards of Bisphenol A, or BPA in plastics.  BPA is a chemical which makes plastics clear and tough, but in the human body, it acts like estrogen and has been linked to certain cancers and birth defects in lab rats. 

Lawton Grimball

Being eco-friendly is not as difficult as you may think; it just takes a little effort to think outside the box.  For you that may mean choosing a recycling bin rather than a trash can, purchasing products with little or no plastic packaging, or finding new ways to use what would otherwise be trash.  I got an email suggestion recently from Lawton Grimball in Charleston who said, “I work next to an electrical business and noticed they were putting their plastic wire spools in the recycl[ing]. The spools looked like perfect little bird houses.

Solarize SC

Jul 15, 2016

Solar energy is a great eco friendly energy alternative, but for many the price point for entry into residential solar panels has just been too expensive.  With an average of 227 sunny days per year and some of the highest energy rates among southern states, South Carolina is perfectly poised for the transition to solar energy.  Now, a community driven program called Solarize South Carolina is trying to make going solar an easier proposition for many residents. 

We’re all looking for ways to get healthy, and one quick tip is to use smaller dishes.  Research suggests that the larger your plate, bowl or glass, the more likely you are to eat more.  Reducing your consumption of salt can also help you lose weight while reducing your blood pressure. 

Green Your Diet

Jul 13, 2016

We often talk about ways to go green on Earth Sense and often these tips can include turning off a light when you leave the room or reusing items to reduce landfill waste, but you can green your diet as well.  Here are five green super foods that will jumpstart your healthy eating plans. 

Safe Sunscreens

Jul 12, 2016

Perhaps you’ve gotten the memo that you should be wearing sunscreen any time you go outside to protect your skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays.  But have you ever considered that the sunscreen you’re using may not be much better for your health? 

Being eco-conscious is a transition that happens one small step at a time and realizing that every small choice you make every day adds up to making a big difference.  Here are some tips for going green at the super market. 

Whether you need a little pick me up in the morning, or a nice afternoon break, this smoothie recipe, called the Jumping Monkey will really get you moving!  This recipe serves two or maybe just one really jumpy monkey.

Homemade Popsicles

Jul 7, 2016
Homemade Popsicles

  Are you looking for fun ways to cool off and spend time with the kids on a hot summer night or even this weekend?  How about make your own popsicles?  Many stores carry Popsicle molds at reasonable prices or you can make mini popsicles in an old ice tray. 

Now that the kids are out of school, you may be wondering what you’re going to do to entertain them for the summer.  South Carolina has beautiful museums, and extensive aquarium and a celebrated zoo and of course the summer is a great time to visit the local cinemas.  But keep in mind that you can have fun at home too! 

A leafy green salad is a delicious appetizer or delicious meal on its own, but the ingredient that can make or break a great salad is the dressing!  Whether it’s Thousand Island, Ranch, or acidic vinaigrette, you can make your own salad dressing at home to save money. 

Picnic Food Safety

Jul 4, 2016

A picnic at the park or on the beach can be great fun in the warmer months, but it’s important that your food arrives safely to prevent food borne illnesses

DIY Compost Bin

Jul 1, 2016

Are you hesitating to start a composting bin because you’re not quite sure how or even where to start your pile?  Here’s a quick and easy do it yourself solution: make your own bin with a large trash can. 

Cold Brew Coffee

Jun 30, 2016

Cold brew coffee makes a non-bitter coffee that’s great for iced coffee drinks and helps conserve energy as well.  It’s very simple to do, there’s less caffeine per cup when cold brewed, and cold brewing allows for a different flavor profile. 

Have you ever considered how long it would take to work off the calories in your favorite treat?  The answer can be quite a shock.  For example, if you were to consume a cheeseburger, you would need to run a little over five miles to burn the equivalent calories. 

Money Stress

Jun 28, 2016

For many people, money equals stress.  In fact, a number of studies have suggests that stress about finances leads to higher levels of physical impairment.  But fear not, there are ways to deal with stress that is caused by debt. 

Electronic cigarettes or e-cigarettes are being marketed as a healthier alternative to smoking cigarettes, but while the jury is still out about the safety of these products, studies show they may help smokers quit.  However, e-cigarettes make smoking appealing to children and in fact, the findings from the National Youth Tobacco Survey suggest that e-cigarette use among middle and high school students is on the rise. 

Stress is the workplace seems to be getting worse as American workers are expected to do more with less.  But don’t let the stress at work affect your health.  The first step to avoid stress is to recognize when you’re feeling stressed. 

Landscaping on a Budget

  Whether you’re a green thumb or have an unruly backyard, landscaping can get terribly expensive.  There are creative and attractive ways to fix up your domain while staying frugal.  A can of paint can do wonders for livening up a space. 

Healthy Vacations

Jun 22, 2016

You deserve a break, in fact, many studies suggest that taking a vacation can relieve stress and improve your level of happiness.  But do your homework before you leave to ensure your vacation is a safe and relaxing one.