Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Who Gives a Crap?


This post was inspired by a discussion on Plastic Free Ripon's Facebook page ... a place I often find myself since becoming part of a similar group here in Harrogate.

It wasn't necessarily the fact that this toilet paper is plastic free that made me a return customer of Who Gives a Crap (although that's obviously a fabulous thing),
rather, it was their argument that I'd never have to carry toilet paper home from the grocery store anymore, which, when you do most of your shopping by bike or on foot, is quite a powerful sales point. 

Yes their toilet paper is also made from environmentally friendly materials and they donate 50% of their profits to charity to help build toilets and improve sanitation in the developing world, 
but is it any good?

To be honest, I'm not too fussy. 
Quilted, cashmere-enriched toilet tissue with flower print was never my thing anyway, 
so anything that gets the job done in an environmentally friendly way is fine by me ... 
but since people asked:

Should you go for the Best Value recycled version or splurge on the Premium 100% bamboo toilet paper?

Both come individually wrapped (in recycled paper).
The Best Value is nice and colourful ... if monochrome is your thing you'll prefer the Premium.

The Best Value is thin and easily tears where you don't want it to.

Both are 3-ply, and even the layers of the Premium easily separate (I'm assuming because there's nothing in them to "glue" them together but I'm not a toilet paper scientist so I could be wrong)
but it's definitely a little stronger ... and softer.

My verdict:

I was a fan even before my first order arrived. Had there not been a premium option, I would have happily stuck with the recycled toilet paper ...
the fact that I'll be paying £3 more (per box of 48 rolls) to get the Premium Bamboo from now on, and I'm not ashamed to admit it, is mostly because of the packaging. 

Also, because it's Earth Day later this week, Who Gives a Crap now offers a free trial on all their products to new subscribers.
Click here to find out more!



PS: I'm aware that any environmentally friendly & plastic free toilet paper made in the EU would have a lower carbon footprint than WGAC which is made in China ... so hit me up if you know of such a business! 





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Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Creating Space


I will never look back at this picture and not feel a sense of pride.
Pride mixed with (maybe slightly misleading) nostalgia.

This was not my first store space, not the last, but definitely the one I completely poured my heart into.

The picture above was taken on Gotland in the spring of 2015.

Yesterday, most of what was left of my stock went to live with Bo in her ethical and zero-waste shop CALF in Knaresborough until they find their forever homes with Bo's customers.

As she was leaving, carrying boxes to her car, Bo said she hoped I wasn't feeling too sad ...
and if I dig deep enough there is a slight twinge of sadness there somewhere, but mainly I'm proud of my well researched and thought-through products to get out there again, instead of waiting around in my cupboards for better days.
I'm happy that the remains of my old business now pave the way for new opportunities.

I'm letting go of things to create space for something else.
What that is time will tell.
I'm guessing it's going to be a mixture of my love for yoga, holistic nutrition, exploring, nature, houseplants, photography, my newfound love for ceramics ... and my need to write, document and share,
but in what form? We'll see.

***

CALF is in the process of getting a full make-over and will reopen again on Friday, with my stuff on the shelves amongst lots of other amazing products!

It's time for a trip to Knaresborough!

Monday, January 15, 2018

The Yorkshire Dales Yoga Show




Last Saturday I hitched a ride with a friend and went to Skipton for the Yorkshire Dales Yoga Show.

I brought my camera and yoga gear and planned to take pictures of pretty much everything and take as many of the free yoga classes as possible.

There were crystals, essential oils, reiki sessions, beautiful jewellery, homemade tea blends, eco skincare, raw vegan cakes and the most delicious vegan truffles, and of course, all things yoga.
I have seen my fair share of shows but nothing ever even came close to this level of fabulousness.

Yet, the whole thing was a trip down memory lane.

Setting up, glancing at others' tables, waiting for the first customers to arrive, always a little too cold, or a little too hot, wondering if it'll be worth your while ... a slight nervousness ... the anticipation ...

I ended up not bothering with the yoga as the queues always seemed longer than the amount of available mats, and found myself talking to the stall holders instead of taking pictures (with a few exceptions - I simply couldn't resist Tarn & Moon's setup ♡).

I loved the energy. I loved all of it. 
And since Saturday, my mind's been busy. Buzzing. Occupied.

"They" say yoga helps with these kinds of conditions ... so I went to Frankie's class at Yoga Zen (one of the perks of teaching there).

I stayed after class and we played around testing adjustments on each other, doing inversions, discussing potential workshop ideas and ended up sitting on our yoga mats talking about how great it would be to live a life trying new things, acquiring new skills and then building a business around them all.

Enter Buzzing Mind. Again.

Am I too comfortable in my current life situation to throw myself out there again?
Possibly.

Would it be a shame not to do it?
Definitely.

In conclusion, I hope the Yorkshire Dales Yoga Show gets a sequel. I'll definitely be there. Maybe even as a stall holder ... because #whynottoday? Right?

//Aina




Tuesday, January 2, 2018

2018



A new year.
A fresh start, even if it's just in your mind.

I've got quite a few resolutions, and new ones get added to the list every day now.
I've set intentions for myself as a thriving human being, as a yoga teacher, as a part of a family, as a creative person, as a body that needs the right kind of nutrition and care, etc.
Not all of those can be kept all at once, and I'm sure many will be forgotten or dropped as the year goes on, but I do think it's helpful to write them down.

I know there's plenty of cynics out there, especially when it comes to New Year's resolutions.
I'm one of them.
I laugh at overfull gyms and yoga studios at the beginning of every new year and then again when they empty a couple of months later.
Yet I'm no different.
That's why I like to split my goals for the year into smaller projects, to tackle and come back to month by month. Most of them are ongoing projects I've taken with me from 2017, the most recent ones being my 30th b-day resolutions.


Project #1 is Pottery (see previous post)
Project #2 is Photography and getting out and about giving me reasons to use my new toys.
Project #3 is Playing the guitar instead of saying I will get better.
Project #4 is Blogging more often (day 2 and I'm already on it!)
and so on.

The list is long, and will hopefully go on until I hit the grave.
because #whynottoday?

Happy New Year!

xxx

Aina