Tips, tricks and remedies that will change how you go about everyday tasks, for the better.
Ripening a rock-hard avocado is easy if you have a banana on hand. Place your unripe avocado and banana in a brown paper bag (or other container) and store at room temperature. Avocados and bananas release ethylene gas, which is key to the ripening process. Popping them in a bag or container together traps the ethylene gas and helps it ripen more quickly. The Goodness of Avocado: 40 Delicious Health-boosting Recipes by Lucy Jessop
Eat with the planet in mind. Organic agriculture uses 30–50 per cent less energy than traditional agriculture. Cut down on the amount of meat you eat, especially red meat, and buy foods that don’t contribute to deforestation, which causes 10 per cent of all GHG emissions. Truth to Power by Al Gore
To keep or not to keep?
How do you make the most of ‘useless’ things that still spark joy? If it makes you happy, keep it confidently and put it on display. Things that seem senseless to others, things that only you could ever love – these are precisely the things you should display. Spark Joy by Marie Kondo
If you have an abundance of succulents and are planning a dinner party, use succulents to make rosette-like place settings. Collect an equal number of succulent heads to place settings, plus the same number of 10cm-long pieces of ribbon. Cut a V-tongue into one end of a piece of ribbon. Using a dot of floral glue, attach ribbon to underside of the succulent head. Repeat with remaining succulents. Branches & Blooms by Alethea Harampolis and Jill Rizzo
Beautify your shelves
Apart from holding books, bookshelves can make a beautiful statement in the room. Place a selection of your most-loved books, some vertically and some horizontally, then add objects of interest and something organic, like a small cactus plant – and ensure you change it up often. The Art of Simple by Eleanor Ozich
A dresser full of mismatched vintage china can be a pretty thing. Not only is mismatched china cheaper, more interesting and a beautiful exercise in recycling, it avoids the problem of replacing a broken piece from a discontinued range. If you start in a muddle, you can continue in a muddle and create beauty. A Guide to Natural Housekeeping: Recipes and Solutions for a Cleaner, Greener Home by Christina Strutt