Norton's U.S.A. Brick & Mortar Store!

Norton's U.S.A. Brick & Mortar Store!

Monday, September 12, 2016

Healthy After School Snacks

Chewy oat squares snack

Where did the summer go? Now that the kiddos are back into school, it is time to think of healthy after school snacks to refuel them before tackling homework or after school activities! Here is a list to help you out:
Do you have any go-to healthy snacks for the kiddos that help them get excited about healthy eating? Share in the comments!

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At Norton's U.S.A., everything we sell is made in the USA! We know you have many choices when you shop, but when you buy American, you actually help someone keep their job and neighborhood thriving. Now that's a great feeling!

Friday, July 1, 2016

Handpainted Rocks for Summer Memories

Story Stones by Paint on the Ceiling
Story Stone craft by Paint on the Ceiling.
So many of us have fond childhood memories of collecting smooth rocks at the beach. Now that it is summer, it is time to put together a new collection! Once you have collected your new treasures, you can give them new life as handpainted creations!

Paint on the Ceiling suggests crafting story stones that can help guide children with storytelling. However, I think that they provide fun conversation pieces for adults as well!

Quote Stones by Read and Create.
Quote Stones by Read and Create.
Read and Create suggests using them for inspiring quotes.

Vegetable Garden Stone Markers by Painted Pomegranate.
Vegetable Garden Stone Markers by Painted Pomegranate.
For all of our gardeners out there, Painted Pomegranate suggests vegetable markers.

How do you use your beach stones? We would love to hear suggestions!

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Monday, March 21, 2016

Plant Milkweed to Help the Monarch Butterfly

Monarch butterfly resting on a flower.

Monarch butterfly populations have decreased dramatically over the past 20 years. The butterflies are migratory and winter in Mexico. Their migration includes multiple generations and requires sufficient habitat along the entire route. Habitat reduction and pesticide use has diminished the species. In 1997, roughly a billion monarchs wintered in Mexico. By 2013, the number plummeted to 33 million. This year, the population appears to be slightly up. However, an uncommon snowstorm in their winter location in Mexico may have had an impact on the population.

In recent years, conservation efforts to help the monarch have stepped up. It is too soon to tell which has helped but there is indication that many of those efforts have been bolstering the population. One effort we can all contribute to is adding more milkweed to our yards. Milkweed is the ONLY plant on which monarchs will lay their eggs. Additionally, milkweed is the primary food source for larvae. There are many efforts across the country to add more milkweed to the landscape. The effort is one that anyone can easily become part of and make a difference--simply by adding more milkweed to your yard!

One local conservation group, the Citizens For Conservation, will be holding a Native Plant Sale May 7-8, 2016 where you can buy native plants including milkweed. In an effort to further supplement the number of milkweed plants added to gardens, the group has reduced the price of milkweed. Pre-ordering by April 15, 2016 is suggested to ensure availability. We hope you can join in this effort!~

Further reading:

Monarch Butterfly Population Soars, Thanks To Conservation Efforts by Elyse Wanshel
Monarch Butterfly's Reign Threatened by Milkweed Decline by Lindsay N. Smith
It's a Good Year for Monarchs but more Butterflies Are On the Brink by Jason Bittel

Monday, February 1, 2016

Valentine's Day Dessert Ideas

Valentine's Day is a little less than two weeks away! If you are scrambling to put together some sweet surprises, we have a few dessert ideas for you! Nothing says "I love you!" quite like a surprise made from the heart!

Cherry Hand Pies have love written all over them! The Artful Parent's Recipe looks easy enough while sure to wow!

Looking for a no bake yet romantic solution? Create, Craft, Love's Red Velvet Cake Truffles are just what you are looking for!

Peanut butter and chocolate! The perfectly decadent marriage! Lemon Tree Dwelling's Chocolate Peanut Butter Lava Cakes will surely impress on Valentine's Day!

For a 'secret surprise,' try Hershey's Kisses Secret Cookies by Cakes Cottage!

What are your ideas for a Valentine's Day dessert? Any favorites?

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