Tag Archives: Camp 4

Heat Pumps: Reducing your Energy Usage

The energy consumption in our home is horribly high!  We use a lot and we waste a lot.  We are not proud of either of these facts but our house is insulated poorly and uses a big, energy guzzling, electric furnace.  So try as we might to reduce our energy bill, we are only able to effect a small percentage.

While we have committed to upgrading the insulation ourselves (at least to date, we have committed to doing it ourselves) the heating component is something for the professionals.  After talking with many, and doing a lot of our own research, we have been leaning towards investing in a heat pump. Continue reading

Snow Birds: a Short Video Adventure

The snow has descended on Camp 4 and it has been interesting to see how the animals have reacted since it is a rare event here in the Pacific Northwest.

And then after three days you start to get cabin fever and splice together a montage of footage..  Check out our short video, “Snow Birds”.

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Sustainable New Year’s Resolutions

New Year’s is not a blow-the-doors-off party for us.  We take time with the family and enjoy a quiet evening together and a bonfire (weather permitting of course).  After all the busy rushing around, it is our time to reflect on the past year and ponder how we want to approach the fresh start that the New Year offers.

Beyond the traditional diet promises that we all make only to abandon them 2-weeks later, we look for one little thing we can do for the planet.  Your resolution choice is completely up to you, but to make things easy we have listed some of our favorite, simple things you could commit to.  After all, no point in starting really big and feeling like you have a mountain to climb.

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Wrapping up Christmas: a guide for gift giving

It is that time of year.  The scramble for the big Christmas day is underway!  You are in one of two positions this time of year: One, you are frantically trying to get your shopping done (or started) or two, you are struggling to get everything wrapped.

For the first, I wish you the best of luck and encourage you to check out some of my last minute sustainable gift ideas, or websites like World Vision, Uncommon Goods, and Ten Thousand Villages for unique and environmentally-friendly gifts.

For the second, I found myself in this boat and looking for some better solutions to wrap all the holiday gifts this season.  According to the EPA, from Thanksgiving to New Years Day, household waste increases by more than 25% and it all adds up to an additional 1 million tons a week to our landfills (EPA and Use Less Stuff).  That doesn’t feel good in a season where we are trying to give better lives.

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Maple Cranberry Bourbon Glaze

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This week I returned to my roots; to Northern Wisconsin and the family lake cabin. As per the tradition, there is plenty of food and family game time. There was also a visit to the local Cranberry festival in Eagle River, Wisconsin where we celebrated the local harvest. Needless to say, we managed to come back with a few pounds of these antioxidant rich, ruby red babies. I took this opportunity to use a few and come up with this tart and tasty glaze for our whoa-fully plain looking ham. The sweet and tart balance the ham’s salty smoke flavor and add a festive red color. This glaze can work on turkey or chicken as well. Continue reading