I’ve lived in Santa Cruz for some 30 years now. As with so many things in life, I was accidentally fortunate in landing here. At the time, my mind was set more on finding employment than on sandy beaches. I enjoy living here – great weather, there’s a cool new vibe happening on the Westside and there is always the chance of greeting a friend or neighbor when I’m out pedaling on West Cliff Drive.
I also see our beach town as a community concerned with the environment. Santa Cruz has been at forefront in reducing the use of plastic bags, styrofoam to-go containers and plastic straws. We are also committed recyclers. Whether through curbside pick-up, drop-offs at Greybears or Habitat for Humanity, we seem to be a pretty dedicated group.
Recycling often comes to my mind when I travel, especially if it involves multiple time zones. I’ll be at my new destination with my empty glass bottle, yogurt container or empty toilet paper tube and I end up hunting around airport terminals, my Air BnB rental or the local tourist attraction in the hopes of finding that familiar blue bin with the white recycling triangle on it. Many times having no luck. Ah, the guilt of throwing it in the trash! At that moment it makes me long for home. Now if I can just get rid of all those single use coffee cups in Santa Cruz, I’ll be a truly happy man!
– Brian Corser, owner
Best Green Retailer 2019!
New Product: Micodur
Waterproof PVC-Free Flooring
Micodur’s ground-breaking technology delivers a floor that combines the durability and stability of ceramic tiles with the simple click-down installation of a floating floor and no grout. This natural, mineral-based, vinyl-free floor is the perfect combination of cement, minerals and natural bonding fibers which provides extreme density and dimensional stability.
Advanced digital printing technology and HotCoating surface technology combine for a beautiful yet durable flooring product that works perfectly in both residential and commercial areas. Micodur’s stability is possible due to its durable mineral core board and is an excellent alternative to plastic or wood-based flooring.
See lico-us.com for more information.
Teragren Bamboo Flooring Sale
10% off Teragren floors
April 1 – 30
Teragren has redesigned its entire line of bamboo flooring, adding beautiful new colors and styles. Bamboo flooring is durable, elegant, and sustainable.
See teragren.com for more information.
20% off towels & robes
April 1 – 30
20% off Coyuchi’s certified organic bath towels, mats, and robes for the month of April.
See coyuchi.com for more information.
OMI Earth Day Sale
20% off latex mattresses & accessories
April 19 – 27
20% off OMI’s solid organic latex mattress, pillows, mattress covers, pads, and other accessories. This amazing sale includes the Flora, the Flora Nouveau, and the popular Terra mattresses.
See omimattress.com for more information.
|It’s time for spring cleaning! All of us at greenspace avoid bringing toxic chemicals into our homes whenever possible. Luckily, you can clean your home using products that you probably already own.Here is Cathy’s glass cleaning recipe. We’ve tried a few different homemade formulas over the last year and she swears this one is the best:|
Homemade Glass Cleaner
Combine in a reusable spray bottle and shake well each time you use it. Enjoy your sparkling clean mirrors and windows!
Crews are coming on Friday to pave Ingalls Alley, the new street being constructed in front of our store! Once the asphalt is in, permeable pavers will be installed at the intersection with Swift Street. The pavers will catch some of the rainwater that we hope will be coming our way this winter. Once those pavers are installed, you should be able to drive up and park in front of the store! The end is in sight.
For now, though, parking is still in the back of the building. For more information and a parking lot map, see greenspacecompany.com/construction/. And if you want to know more about what is happening in our parking lot, check out delaware-addition.com/.
NEW NATURAL LATEX MATTRESSES AT AN AMAZING PRICE
In response to customer demand, OMI has created a new mattress system called the Metta Bed.
Metta Beds are made using all natural botanical latex, organic unbleached cotton, and organic wool. They have no inner springs or petroleum-based latex. What’s more, Metta Beds come with free comfort exchanges, free returns, and competitive pricing:
- Twin $899
- Full $1199
- Queen $1299
- King $1599
Metta Bed mattresses are a great value, GREENGUARD Gold Certified, and super comfortable! What’s more, they are made in Northern California by a company you can trust. And you can test one out before ordering. Come lie on a Metta Bed today!
Visit our store or see website (mettabed.com/pages/comfort-guarantee) for complete details on Metta Bed’s comfort exchange and return policy.
CONSTRUCTION SALES FOR NOVEMBER
Week 1: “Refresh for Guests” Coyuchi Sale
November 1 – 10
20% off all Coyuchi organic cotton sheets, towels, blankets, and more. Treat yourself to some organic goodness today!
Week 2: Paint
November 12 – 17
10% off Colorhouse & AFM interior paints.
Time to freshen up your home before your Thanksgiving guests arrive! Earth-friendly, human-safe paint is more affordable than you think. We can match colors from 90+ name-brand paint collections!
Week 3: Shepherd’s Dream
November 19 – 24
10% off Shepherd’s Dream natural eco-wool bedding, constructed with organic cotton fabric in a Northern California workshop. Wool pillows, comforters, and mattress toppers are all on sale this week. Sleep in natural comfort!
See shepherdsdream.com for more information.
Week 4+: OMI Holiday Sale
November 26 – December 16
OMI mattresses are made with 100% certified organic botanical latex, wool, and cotton. The cleanest, most environmentally-friendly natural latex mattress you can find — and comfort that is unmatched.
See omimattress.com for more information.
I strive to live a simple life, one clear of clutter and filled with peace and purposeful space. Recently, I’ve been slowly working through my house, attempting to reduce the amount of stuff surrounding me and it has not been easy. I have been amazed at my attachment to possessions and how difficult it has been to let things go.
I had a boss in a previous career who summed up nicely how I felt about how much stuff to have. “Enough to carry in a backpack at a dead run” summed it up. But that was when I younger and desiring to be quick and nimble. At 60, things are a little different. Having a home, a partner, a child and a dog, it was easy for things to accumulate. There was a time, in my pointless attempt to stem the tide of possessions coming into the house, that I even voiced the ridiculous goal of “one thing into the house, one thing out.” This was met with various levels of eye-rolling from family members and replies of “yes, Honey, we know.”
My current project is sorting out my master bedroom closet – a challenging task to say the least. I have found that I am not above asking forgiveness from my surroundings for letting go of some unused item that has been sitting on a hanger or shelf, sometimes for years. I have rediscovered some things in the process – an art piece, a book or an article of clothing. But much of it I have given a kiss goodbye and sent on its way. I find I feel a lightness and that my memories surrounding those items remain undiminished.
– Brian Corser
I have an Excelsior Food Dehydrator. In fact, it’s in my workshop now, drying pears from the little orchard in our backyard. I was told it was the Cadillac of food dehydrators by my wife when she brought it home from a yard sale two years ago for the amazing price of $5. It just needed a little work was all… Hmm, was this Lydia project now going to become a Brian project? But we set to work: Lydia replaced the plastic drying screens with stainless steel ones, and I rebuilt the interior of the drying box. The end result was, in a nutshell, fantastic! I’ve used it for drying all manner of fruits and vegetables, taking the bounty on backpacking trips in the Sierras and as work snacks to sustain me when underneath kitchen sinks and replacing toilets. (I’m a plumber.)
I like to fix things. I take it as a personal challenge to see if I can revive a tired vacuum cleaner or non-functioning kitchen appliance. I’ve come to believe that life remains in so many things that I own that have a problem functioning and seem ready to be discarded. Now, this is not to say that I’m always successful in my undertakings – recently I had my 20-year-old non-functioning Bosch dishwasher on its side and disassembled in my kitchen, twice! I ultimately had to replace it. That being said, I have such a feeling of satisfaction in reviving for at least another day some well-loved gadget that will now serve me just a little bit longer.
If you’ve been by Greenspace anytime in the last four months, you will have noticed that things are a wee bit torn up on the exterior of the entire complex. Thank you for your patience! The building owners are doing the same thing with their building that I do at my house – breathing new life into the location and tying it into the Delaware Addition development they own directly behind us. I believe they are on the home stretch with the project and when complete in the next month or so, it will be amazing! Lighted crosswalk islands allowing safe pedestrian crossing to all the great shops across Swift Street from us – Kelly’s Bakery, Santa Cruz Yoga, West End Tap Room, and perhaps a new corner cafe – need I go on? So once again, a big thank you to all of you who support and believe in Greenspace and return time and time again to see what new life you too can breathe into your homes.
– Brian Corser
I’m inspired on this second day of real rain in my recent memory!
It is with great pleasure that I introduce FOUR new staff members at greenspace. This is also the perfect opportunity to let you know how top-notch our current staff is.
Cathy Brothers is our new store manager. Just before she started working for us this May, she brought in her dog Marble to meet us, knowing that I love dogs. As you know, our shop dog Nikki died last year. When I met Marble, a Queensland heeler mix, I fell for her and asked her to be our new shop dog. Luckily, Cathy is not insecure, because I sometimes seemed more excited to introduce Marble to customers than Cathy. Predictably, my respect for Cathy quickly outstripped my adoration of Marble. Cathy has embraced the store as our anchor and has tremendous customer service and product knowledge.
But falling in love with Marble gave me the itch for a new dog of my own. Consequently, Brody, a Bassett hound and pit mix, was next to join our team. He is the sweetest, goofiest puppy you could hope to meet. He is happy to snuggle or untie your shoelaces for you. You should come in and meet him! (If you don’t love dogs, we are happy to crate or leash our dogs when you come in!)
Most recently, Kendall Argast-Watson joined greenspace. Kendall is weeks away from completing her interior design degree at West Valley College and will be available for outside appointments and kitchen and bath design projects starting in January. Kendall brings tile retail experience and a terrific attitude. We are so happy she has joined our team!
You may already have worked with Melanie, who has been at greenspace for over a year and a half. This past summer, she started going out on design and color consultation appointments. She will complete her interior design degree at West Valley in June and start adding more interior design clients at that time. Melanie is passionate about design, as you may already have experienced!
It’s likely you’ve spoken with Andrea over the years, as she and I took over greenspace together, essentially. I always say, “if Andrea quits, I quit.” I sincerely believe that she is personally responsible for the financial integrity of our business, and we wouldn’t have made it through the downturn without her. Never mind her lovely nature and customer service.
If you couldn’t tell, we’ve hit the sweet spot with our staffing. We are having a ton of fun running a successful business and we thank you and welcome you, your family and friends for new projects, gifts for the home and gift certificates.
As you might have noticed, we’ve been changing up our business model. We are providing more professional design consultations, helping clients design their perfect kitchen or bath, as well as in-home color consultations to help clients pick their ideal color palette. It’s working out well. We continue to learn and grow, and our furry friends keep it all down-to-earth and friendly. If you are interested in scheduling a design or color consultation, give us a call! 831.423.7200
Perhaps I evaluate my life overmuch. I’m always tweaking things, trying to live greener without irking my friends and loved ones. In the past week, I’ve read some pretty dire news regarding climate change. Typically, I live in the cup-half-full realm emotionally, but I was surprised to learn that we don’t seem to be making any progress in slowing carbon emissions. In fact, the opposite is true. The United States, along with China and India, are the biggest contributors. Considering the size of our population compared to those two countries, this is strong evidence of the impact of our lifestyles, in my opinion. I’m not leaving myself out of that criticism. It’s the only way of life I’ve ever known: growing up in the middle class in America is still many times more consumptive of natural resources and polluting than the way the rest of the world lives.
I feel pretty hopeless in the face of these facts. I tell myself that I can only look to my life and continue to do the best I can. But, I’ve still never lived anything close to what I think would actually be effective to truly make a difference. I don’t even work in a big enough company to have a voice of change that would cause a truly positive ripple.
So, here’s what I’m going to do: I’m going over to the Homeless Garden to pick my weekly CSA share, including a gorgeous bouquet of flowers. Then I’m going home to pick and can the apples and tomatoes from my garden. I’m attending my neighborhood block party, bringing carrot cake, because all the carrots I’ve been getting in my farm share are threatening to take over the refrigerator. And tomorrow, I’m going to ride my bike to swimming and work. It’s lucky for me that the things I treasure and love to do might help the planet at tiny bit. It’s my equivalent to burying my head in the sand. And, it cheers me up to live my life this way. I know in my heart that it’s not good enough, in terms of the bigger picture, but I don’t know what else to do.
Website reborn. We are thrilled to share with you our brand new, completely redesigned website: greenspacecompany.com! Created by web designer Gabriel Damon (gabriel-damon.com), who also happens to be the son of our bookkeeper Andrea, our new site has easy-to-use product information pages to allow you to explore and research our offerings with ease. We hope you will be as excited about it as we are!
R.I.P. Nikki. Many of you may have discovered already, but if not, I’ll say it here. In mid-July, our darling, sweet shop dog (also our family dog), went off to chase squirrels and cats in dog heaven. We miss her, but also know that she enjoyed a very long life, where her needs were catered to in my every waking moment. She was smart and sensitive, with an extreme case of separation anxiety. She did a LOT of very funny things over the years, and we reminisce with love. We’ve been paying a lot of attention to other people’s dogs, so bring yours in (on a leash, please) to help us fill the void and get some dog cuddles in. Babies help, too.
A new routine with benefits. I decided I would like to get more exercise, so I started biking along West Cliff on the days I don’t swim. I’m kicking myself for not starting this up years ago! Every time I’ve gone out on my bike, I’ve seen dolphins or whales, otters and naturally, lots of birds. My binoculars have moved from the glove box of the car to the handlebar bag of my bike. It has increased my appreciation for living here tenfold, if that was possible. It’s not a difficult or strenuous ride (unlike the bike-swim combination on other days), but I get to stretch my legs and the many repetitions of 18 oz. curls of binoculars-to-eyes does tire out my biceps.
Eco wheels. After driving our VW Passat for almost 16 years, we purchased a plug-in hybrid last week. Making the leap to that level of technology was both exhilarating and terrifying, and has proven pretty comical an adjustment. We got a Ford C-Max Energi, ticking most of my requirements: made in America, purchased locally, able to go long distances as a family car, affordable, compact, hatch-back, cute, fun. I drove around with the rear wiper on for a while, having bumped the button then being unable to turn it off. Since I can’t remember the last time we had rain, I was embarrassed. The funniest was when I “stalled” it in our driveway, half-way into the street. I have rarely driven automatic cars. They made me nervous. I learned to apply the brake before hitting the button (the button!) to turn on the car, and leave my left foot (used for the clutch for 35 years) firmly planted on the little slope left of the brake, so as not to put us all through the windshield when I’m inclined to shift gears. Though braking does add charge to the battery because the car has a regenerative braking system, I am trying not to scare everyone. I put a couple miles of charge on it coming down the hills from the UCSC pool a few mornings ago. Miramar hill is particularly good for adding miles to the battery. It’s all very exciting.
Do I dare declare that greenspace is finally successful? I think I can. Like The Little Engine That Could (which I begged my mother to read repeatedly when I was little), we seem to be through the worst of the downturn and truly beginning to thrive. Every week, new and previous customers discover us. Each time a long-lost customer walks in, I am so touched by how happy it makes them to find us. Having greenspace appreciated in this way is tremendously validating for a me as a small business owner. We are growing and busy, but in a way that feels sustainable (business-wise).
We just got our Green Business Certification in our “new” space. Even though we try to walk the walk, going through this process keeps us honest and helps us identify ways to improve, which are always welcome. We also got to show off some of the funny things we do in our obsessive quest to be green, like printing on both sides of our paper. So if you get a receipt with a teenager’s math homework on the back, you’ll know you helped us save a tree. Our sorting and bundling of recyclables makes it so that we only take a mini trashcan to the curb every other week. We always have samples and pallets for the taking. Right now, we have a lot of natural linoleum samples and I’d love to find a printmaker who would use them!
We are very excited to announce an American Clay workshop. We haven’t held one in several years, so join us for this rare opportunity, with Orit Yanai as our esteemed instructor, as we plaster my family room! Save the date of September 21st, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
You’ll have to be patient with us for the latter half of July, as I am taking an unexpected, but can’t-pass-up-the-chance-to-go trip to Thailand with my daughter. I’ll be leaving Sasha, Andrea (the bookkeeper) and my husband Brian (the contractor) to run the store. (Melanie will also be on vacation.) Sometimes, life hands you opportunities that are wildly inconvenient and create a bit of chaos, but can’t be missed. Be really nice and bring them chocolate, okay? Please know that they are capable and dedicated to your happiness! I will be checking in daily via email to help from afar.