Our recycled home bar project

record playerMy husband loves listening to old rock music, and has been collecting vinyl records since we were teenagers. For his last birthday, I went to http://www.rockitrecordplayers.com.au and bought him a brand new record player… which he loves! While we were sitting around listening to the Rolling Stones, we began talking about how nice it would be to invite our friends over…have some cocktails and flip a few records. We have a few bars and pubs that we frequent, but we’ve always dreamed of having a nice place to entertain at home. I could hardly remember the last time we had people over!

With the decision set to design our own bar, we didn’t want it to look like anyone else’s, or anything conventional…we wanted one with a beautiful, aged look.  That’s how we decided to use reclaimed wood to construct our new home bar. Not only would it be more durable, of higher quality, and more sustainable than brand new wood- it would be a work of art. I couldn’t wait to start working on it.

Building with reclaimed wood isn’t a novel idea; there’s plenty of literature out there to assist with the process. Most importantly… the wood! An antique store referred us to someone selling pieces of wood from an old barn that had been recently torn down. When it arrived, it was so beautiful that I could hardly believe my eyes! A local carpenter helped us piece it together and finish the project. What would a bar be without bar stools? I found a beautiful set here: http://www.bohobarstools.com.au

reclaimed wood bar stools

It feels great to have a new and inviting space in my home to entertain guests. Everyone loves the look of our bar; in fact, most of my friends can’t stop complimenting it! Though it took a bit more effort to find good quality materials, choosing to use reclaimed wood is truly the sustainable choice. With kids in the house, it’s a wonderful way to educate them about how we make decisions that preserve our environment, especially the rainforests.


How to make your own eco-friendly cleaning products

green household There’s no better way to have a clean and healthy home than by making your own eco-friendly cleaning products. Most popular sprays, wipes, laundry detergents, and other cleaners are chock full of dangerous chemicals, which can cause adverse health effects for your family.

A lot of large corporations who produce household cleaners often use chemicals that are untested or unregulated. That means that there’s no guarantee that what’s in these products has been thoroughly evaluated for potential dangers.  Making your own all-natural recipes will give you the peace of mind that your home is clean and that your family’s health is safe from toxic ingredients. In addition, you will have less of a negative environmental impact on your community, as toxic cleaning products inevitably wind up in our waters.

Did I mention that you’ll save money too? The best part of making your own eco-friendly cleaners is that you can often use a few simple and affordable ingredients for several different recipes (many of which you probably already have!). These are ingredients that we are all familiar with: baking soda, vinegar, lemon, olive oil, hydrogen peroxide, water, etc.
Cleaning a green globe
One might say, “but what about mold, or messes that are truly so disgusting that only bleach could do the job?” – I hear you. Sometimes it feels like certain situations necessitate the use of strong chemicals to get the job done; however, it’s simply not necessary, once you discover alternative all-natural methods that truly work!

  • Vinegar: used for its natural and powerful disinfecting and deodorizing properties, as well as its quickly dissipating scent.
  • Baking soda: also a natural deodorizer (that’s why people often pop one in the refrigerator), but abrasive enough to clear away grime.
  • Lemon/other citrus fruits: their high acidity makes them antibacterial and antiseptic, not to mention their pleasant scent!

Here are a few recipes for the most common cleaning products: all purpose spray, toilet cleaner, and disinfectant. 

All purpose cleaner:

  • Combine equal parts white vinegar + water in a spray bottle, and voila!
  • If you’d like, add a few splashes of lemon, grapefruit, or lime juice for a fresh scent to accompany your new favorite all-purpose cleaner.
  • If you need a bit more muscle to clear away caked up grime, add enough baking soda to your spray to transform it into a paste. Using this with a Brillo pad will make your life easier too!

Toilet Cleaner:

  • Just like your all-purpose cleaner, white vinegar + baking soda work great together to clean your toilet.
  • Simply add a few tablespoons of baking soda and about a 1/4 cup of vinegar directly into your toilet, and scrub with your toilet wand. You could even spray your all-purpose cleaner into the toilet too (rather than straight vinegar), if you prefer.


  • Using plain old hydrogen peroxide will thoroughly disinfect your surfaces.

Green cleaning productsThe Internet is full of DIY cleaning recipes. No matter what type of cleanup you have,there is a healthier and less toxic method out there. There are also plenty of books that provide great recipes and overviews of natural cleaners.

Your cleaning products aren’t the only potential dangers lurking in your cabinets- cosmetics, lawn sprays, and even the food we eat can be full of chemicals. Take some time to do an inventory of your home, and get rid of dangerous products. Make it a safe and healthy place for yourself, your family, and even your pets!

green bucket of products

The best source for eco-friendly product reviews and information is coming soon!

That’s right, ‘Discovery Forest’ will be launching very soon and promises to be the best place on the web for detailed, candid and informative reviews of all the latest eco-friendly products for your home.

Your home is said to be a reflection of yourself, and if you are a discerning, environmentally-aware consumer than we can help you make informed decisions about the contents and products suitable for your home.

In the coming weeks, we will be exploring a number of cost saving, eco-friendly products and providing useful information on how you can do your bit to help keep our planet green and healthy for generations to come.

In the meantime, we’d like to share with you this amazing video as a prelude for what is to come.  If you want to get in touch ahead of time, visit our contact page.

We look forward to having you on board as a regular reader!