Art supplies made in the USA?

I’m going to chip away on updating my made in USA resources, most of them were created many years ago. So, I’d like to know what your favorites are? Safe, effective, and made in the USA, please share below.

We’ve loved Earth Paints for many years, and that’s still the case. We always use their egg dye kit at Easter, and we love mixing up the powdered pigments into paint. Add more for a water paint ty[e, add less for darker, thicker colors. Here’s my original review from way back in 2013!

I keep them stocked via Pure Play too:

Here is what I have listed, I just deleted 3 brands that I had listed that apparently no longer exist!

Eco-kids: (dough, paint, crayons, rolling pin, paste, egg-dye, art pads) –Here’s my review of Eco-Kids Crayons:

Wee Can Too: (finger paint, crayons, sidewalk chalk, egg-dye,  paints) My Wee Can Too crayon review:

Earth Paint: (paint)

Comment below with any recommendations please!

Check out Pure Play Kids!

I recently added new inventory and restocked a bunch of best-sellers that were sold out! I’ve got great items for Easter, many items under $10, reduced items too! As always, you can count on everything being made in the USA, with love & pride!

Vitamix has awesome customer service!

Wow, I’m SO impressed with the Vitamix customer service. I bought a renewed one off Amazon last Feb (2020), and I’ve always questioned if it was working as well as it should. For reference, this is the one I purchased ( And for the record, more than ever I’m on a mission to avoid Amazon as much as possible. It’s definitely worth comparing with the vendor directly and other outlets, sometimes you’ll find that Amazon is even more expensive!

Here’s the post I shared when I purchased the Vitamix in Feb of 2020: I did it… I took the plunge & finally committed to my forever blender, I’m the proud new owner of a Vitamix! While this may not sound that exciting to some, I’ve been wanting one for years. I’m so sick of buying a new blender only for it to conk out on me after 6-24 months. We make smoothies almost daily, and our old blender took forever to blend. We just made our 1st smoothie in our Vitamix, and everyone agreed it was the best ever. We had some heavy whipping cream in the fridge so added that, and it turned out like frozen yogurt, I ate mine out of a bowl with a spoon!!

Fast-forward several months, and I just wasn’t sure it was working like it should. It vibrated really badly on the counter. It kinda’ stalled out after it started blending. I’d turn it up to high after starting it on low and it would shut off as it was getting too warm. After making smoothies one day I decided I should check on the warranty and inquire, this thing was super expensive and I expected it to work with a bit more ease. The pictures in the manual show it making ice cream, and I didn’t feel mine would do that. But I was super nervous because of course the 3m Amazon warranty was up, and did I have to buy it directly from Vitamix to get the extended warranty? I went into my Amazon order and when I clicked on ‘get product support’ it gave me the contact info to contact Vitamix, which was reassuring. I called and they said 20 min wait, so we’ll call you back, which they did in just 10 min. She assured me that they stand behind their product 100%, and asked what the issues were. She spent 20 min on the phone with me giving me some tips to try, and if those don’t work, they pay for me to send it back, they will get to the bottom of it, and pay to send it back. I asked how long their warranty is: 3 years from purchase. I had already had it 6m, and she said: you know, since you haven’t been too confident in it since you purchased it, I’m going to start your warranty today, and extend it by 2 more years for you. I explained how I placed a special emphasis on purchasing made in the USA items, and that I intended this to be my forever blender. She assured me they are still fixing blenders purchased in the ’90’s!!!

Anyway, I’m a huge believer in amazing customer service, and my 20 minutes on the phone with her was so reassuring that my nearly $200 investment was worth it. BTW, it was $189 when I purchased it in Feb, it’s currently $269 (renewed), and new it is $384. She assured me that anything renewed should be exactly as good as new. Made in Ohio. Oh, and her tips made it work much better. I put an anti-slip silicone mat underneath it so it doesn’t vibrate my whole counter. And it was overheating because it is supposed to be turned up to high quickly, I was leaving it on low too long and that was making it overheat. So I left as a VERY happy customer. It was such a great feeling!

Contrast that with my Cuisinart customer service experience: they told me to throw away my 3 year old coffee grinder and buy a new one (that they’d give me a 20% off coupon for 😦

Boycotting Cuisinart & the search for the last coffee grinder of my life…

Ugggghhhh, coffee grinder woes! I spent $60 on a Cuisinart (yes made in China) grinder in 2018, hoping it would last many years. It’s flaking out on us. It comes with an 18m factory warranty and no I didn’t buy the 4 year extended warranty, was hoping for $60 I would be getting decent quality. In my 20 or so years of grinding coffee I’ve already gone through at least 5 coffee grinders, usually we just grab a cheapie. They never last more than a couple of years. I will always justify spending more money on something that will last many years. I didn’t find any electric coffee grinders made in the USA when I was in the market back in 2018, so went with the Cuisinart (this one for reference). It has 4.5 starts out of over 20,000 reviews (will be adding my negative review shortly). The on/off/grind switch is starting to flake out, we have to hold it down while inserting the plastic container all the way in. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.

I called their customer service hoping I could send it in to be serviced, even if it was at my cost. She said no, it’s past the 18m warranty and there’s nothing they can do (I guess if I had bought the extended warranty they would’ve just sent a new one?). She said throw it out and buy a new one. They’ll offer me 20% off on a new purchase. It old her I will not be buying anything from them ever again if that’s their solution. I just hate the throw away culture. Anyway, what have you had luck with? I’m leaning towards a manual crank option or worst case, pre-ground! Of course, my 1st choice will be something made in the USA, does that exist? I’m imagining I can find some antiques off Ebay, might those have lead concerns? Comment below if you have knowledge on this topic please!

It’s my 9 year blogiversary today!

Wow! 9 years. 9 years ago today I decided to launch my own page on Facebook. I thought that I might as well start cataloging the info and resources I was finding along my mission to find the best & safest products on the market, that were also made in the USA whenever possible. If you’re newish to my journey, here’s an article from way back in 2013 that discusses what launched me on this path, my interview with American Made Insider.

What I really want to say today is what a great joy it has been to connect with so many of you over the years. Some of us go WAY back. My Son was 1 when I started my site, meaning he’s going to be 10 years old next month (say what!?). When I first began sharing my research findings with the online world I made a point to keep my personal life out of my posts. I desired to stay anonymous, and also not to have my kids childhoods be made public. But over time I could feel small connections being made with the conversations that were taking place daily in my group. As time went on, I learned more and more about your family, and felt safe and happy to share about my growing family too. The result of this is that we’ve truly grown into a wonderful community. I have actually met a few people from the group in real life, which is an INCREDIBLE experience. And I yearn for a lot more of that. But the fact remains, most of us will never meet. But it doesn’t diminish that I feel like we’re friends. I’ve asked for support over the past few years, both for my father, my friend with her struggling orchard, and many of you have stepped up big. When I posted yesterday about a Mama in the group whose 3 year old daughter is undergoing chemo for a rare type of cancer, several donated immediately. Stranger to stranger. That is something I will never take for granted. I firmly believe that human connection is more important than ever, and do know that feeling can be alive & well even in an online community.

I whole-heartedly started my blogging journey altruistically, wanting to connect with others who shared similar values. And I’m so proud of the path it has taken me down these past 9 years. And I’m eager to continue to follow this path and see what doors open next. As I get burned out and turn my back in one area, a door opens with new, exciting possibilities to pursue. And I will never, ever get tired of discovering new made in the USA products and companies. Each time I learn about something new (to me) my heart literally feels like it skips a beat.

So, thank YOU for being a part of my community. Thank YOU for continuing to vote with your dollars and considering the impact your purchases have on our communities, our families, our planet. Here’s to many more blogiversary posts in my future 🙂

A family in need of our help

Susie Z, one of my fellow Poofy Guides for many years now, my neighbor to the West in Minnesota, homeschooling Mama of 4, chapter leader for her local Weston A. Price group, is in need of help from strangers. You can read all the updates from her GoFundMe (click on ‘read older updates’), but long story short is: what they thought was an abscess in her daughter’s tooth turned out to be a rare form of cancer. Thus, she is going through chemo. She’s 3. I’ve been following the story for the past couple of weeks. When I asked Susie if there was anything she needed, anything I can do, she said not at the time. They were waiting to find out how much of the treatment insurance would cover, how much they would be responsible for out of pocket. Well, bills are starting to roll in, and $20,000 is their 1st portion, likely with higher numbers to come. I know we’re all like extended family here. And I know most of us are Mamas. Last week was Random Acts of Kindness Week. I know we’re not all in a position to donate financially, Susie knows that too. But even if a couple of us can chip in, we will help this family in need. My Eco-friendly USA group page has 5000+ people, if we all chipped in just $1, that would be a significant donation! And of course, keep this beautiful little girl, and their entire family, in your thoughts & prayers


GoFundMe link, with many updates on what has taken place thus far:

Adaptogens vs Modulators

One thing I want to start doing more of is moving really good Q & A that come up in my closed group page over to this site. This was the question: Anyone who is well studied on adaptogens? I love Poofy’s super shroom… is that considered an adaptogen? I’m looking at CHOQ and wondering what’s the difference and should I take both?

While I don’t necessarily want to give out medical advice here, I wanted to share the info that was shared regarding the topic in general. I wasn’t entirely sure on the difference between modulators and adaptogens myself. But I shared this article that I reference frequently regarding immune stimulators vs modulators, you can read it here. I was glad a college-trained herbalist in my group who is my go-to for advice on topics such as this weighed in. Here’s what she said regarding the difference: modulator refers to the immune system. Adaptogen refers to your adrenals and stress/nervous system response. Nice thing about mushrooms is that they are both modulators and adaptogens.

I’m a huge fan of Poofy’s Super Shrooms myself! I don’t take any supplements daily, but I do take the Super Shrooms several times/week. Growing up, and actually into my 30’s I did not like to eat mushrooms at all, I picked them out of any dish. But I’ve come to appreciate them now! But I was a bit leery of how this tincture would taste, if it tasted like a dried up mushroom I was afraid I wouldn’t enjoy it. But the good news is, it pretty much tastes like alcohol, with a little bit of chocolate flavor even. It tastes nothing like mushrooms. It does burn a bit, but I’ve found I can tolerate it now. I just hold it under my tongue as long as I possible can (about 30 seconds).

I have come to have SO much respect for mushrooms not just on burger with fried onions, but for their plethora of medicinal powers. They truly are amazing little powerhouses! Here’s some info about Poofy’s Super Shrooms blend, and if you click on the link at the bottom you can read more about the particular mushrooms selected. Also, for a LOT more info go to PubMed and do some reading, there is a ton of info.

triple extraction process contains 14 different mushrooms! Take around 100 days to make this tincture!
1. Mushrooms are fermented to make the polysaccharides, triterpenoids and alkaloids more bioavailable. 
2. Hot water extraction, because polysaccharides are only water soluble
3. 90 days in alcohol, because triterpenoids are only alcohol soluble.  

Ingredients: Organic Cane Alcohol, Filtered Water, Mushroom Blend (Organic Reishi, Organic Cordyceps, Organic Chaga, Organic Mesima, Organic Lion’s Mane, Organic Turkey Tail, Organic Maitake, Organic Shitake, Organic Agaricus Blazei, Organic Poria, Organic Agarikon Suehirotzake, Organic Oyster, Organic True Tinder Polypore), Organic Myceliated Brown Rice (food for the mycelium)

I offer a 10% rebate on all 1st time orders as a thank you for registering as my customer., and EVERY order after that earns a 5% rebate! What you do: go to ‘login’ then ‘create customer account’ using my link. Then complete your order, shipping is free over $55. Afterwards, send me an email with your order # and let me know how you’d like the rebate, options are: PayPal, Venmo, check, Poofy gift certificate towards a future order.

Breaking the Amazon Cycle of Easy Ordering!

I’m guilty of falling into the ease of ordering from Amazon. But please take a few extra minutes to cross-check from the vendor directly. I was about to order some organic boxers for my Son, from City threads, via Amazon. I took 3 extra minutes to compare with City Threads directly. Here’s the difference: $33.25 via City Threads, $34.76 via Amazon…. And they don’t have to give Amazon a chunk of that so it’s a big difference for the vendor. I know return policies are a big deal, especially when it comes to clothing.

Here’s City Threads policy: City Threads offers returns for full refund or store credit within 30 days from when the order is received. The customer will be responsible for paying a small cost to return the item, as listed below: RETURN ONE ITEM: $3.67 shipping cost (deducted from refund when we receive returned item). RETURN 2 OR MORE ITEMS: $7.55 flat-rate shipping cost (deducted from refund when we receive returned item).

It’s so easy to justify Amazon Prime and “free shipping”. It’s not frickin’ free, it’s $119/year. So City Threads came in cheaper, and that included $4.75 1st class shipping. So much of life is about habits, and I am pushing myself to get out of the 3 click ease of buying via Amazon.

City Threads, a great source for made in the USA and even ORGANIC underwear and other clothing!

A change for the Buying Club…

This summer will mark 8 years since I started offering a buying club. Way back then I was doing many reviews for products and I’d consistently get feedback such as: oh, I’d like to try that item but shipping is so expensive… And it dawned on me: why don’t I bring together a bunch of my favorite brands/products so you can pay just 1 shipping fee and try a bunch of samples & new items? The 1st orders were tiny, I did them on my kitchen table, at night, while my family slept, trying not to squeak the tape gun while I sealed boxes up. Then I moved to my Mom’s basement for a couple orders. The orders kept growing, and growing! I was doing 4 orders/year at that time & I needed more space. I rented an office in town for several years. At the height of the orders, I had no problem getting 125 orders. I even had to outsource data entry and hire my niece to help me fill the orders in a timely manner.

Fast forward to now. The timing of the orders has been set in stone years in advance: Feb, June, Oct. I send out at least 3 email newsletters before & during each order. I post almost daily reminders on Facebook… And the orders just aren’t coming in. There are numerous reasons, and we don’t need to get into them all.  Also, I just finished up my books for last year and I make so little income once it’s all said & done, and I put a ton of time into it. It has brought me great joy over the years to facilitate getting these great products to everyone, supporting the vendors we do (many are group members) and that joy has kept me going more than the income it has brought in. But honestly I’m feeling burned out by the whole process too.

So, we’re going to try something new: 2 orders/year, Feb & September & see how that goes. I will work on the line-up for Sep soon, so everyone knows. I’ll plan on it being pretty large, offering the most popular vendors. Taking a break may be the death of the club forever, or it may revive interest in it. I pay a considerable amount to host my Pure Play Kids website, and I look forward to having more time to grow that site. While I can’t stock all the personal care products from the vendors I offer via the buying club, I would be able to offer many shelf stable items from the vendors that we’ve all come to love.

All that being said, I will extend last night’s deadline until this Sunday (2/14) at midnight central. Anyone who would like to add on to your existing order, or place one last order before the break, email me at:


A new life for this site….

While I’m not ready to turn my back on Fb entirely, I still enjoy a lot about the platform, I have been thinking about alternate ways to connect with everyone and most importantly to archive the great info shared there. And I know some have indeed cut ties with Fb entirely, I hear from them with questions via email. This platform is a resource at my fingertips yet entirely underused. I used to migrate info over here regularly, there are extensive archives which link to Fb threads that had a lot of info, but they’re all quite outdated now. My stats here tell me I have at least 200 unique visitors daily, some days many times that. SO, my plan is to try to get more dialogue happening here, as well as to migrate over important topics & info that come up in my Fb group. I’ve had comments turned off for many years (SO much spam, but I’ll deal with it), I’m going to enable those and I look forward to hearing from anyone who cares to participate.

I don’t anticipate daily postings, my goal is a few times/week. But when there is a flurry of activity in my Fb group, expect a flurry of activity here. I’ll work on getting more organized and creating tags & categories such as kitchen, bathroom, personal care, etc. And there is a search bar of course. Think of this as a supplement to what we already have going on in Fb, and I feel like a more permanent cataloging of the great info we share there regularly. In a couple months I will celebrate my 9th Blogiversary. I dislike having all my eggs in 1 basket, and currently, 11/12 of them on Facebook…

So, stay tuned!

If you’re not with us on Facebook but would like to be, here’s the link to my closed group page: