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Rainforest Alliance

The Rainforest Alliance

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The Rainforest Alliance works to conserve biodiversity and ensure sustainable livelihoods by transforming land-use practices, business practices and consumer behavior.

Rainforest Alliance also supports and promotes certification in sustainable tourism as a tool for improvement and market competitiveness and we work together with local certification schemes form the countries we are working with. We are leading the Sustainable Tourism Certification Network of the Americas as a way of facilitating the communication between programs and also standardize a minimum of criteria acceptable in order to be part of the network and recognized as a verifiable program. We are currently working in the second edition of a catalog that includes all the certified businesses in the continent.

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Travel Tip For Today

Bring one pair of comfortable walking shoes as well as a pair of sandals or Tevas. Before you leave home, break in your new shoes so you're not uncomfortable on the road.

Dad, mom and daughter, the all american family

The Family Travel Blog

Travel advice, deals and other tidbits from our professional travel writers, families on the go and special guests!

Spring, Finally!

A sure sign that spring has arrived

Spring, finally! This was a very long winter, was it that way for you too? It’s so great to feel that soft, moist air, see some colorful flowers blooming and finally put winter behind us. Today at our office, we are celebrating Easter, Passover and the coming of Spring with a tea party during which we are testing the finalist in our muffin madness contest, and sampling teas from TSalon in New York City, with whom we have partnered for a bed and breakfast blend, pretty exciting stuff! Pamela Lanier, Marie Lanier and the office staff of Lanier Publishing Inc. Shannon, bed and breakfast membership coordinator bakes like crazy and made some very professional Easter cookies.

Back row: Pamela, Marie, Nicole, Justina.
Front row: Courtney, Caitlin, Erin.

Shannon\s easter Cookies and tea sampling.

The highlight of my spring opener was the quote that drifted in from Cliff Cottage B&B:

"Thank you SO VERY MUCH for including my little salty tale in your newsletter. Everyone at Lanier's is SO helpful and does so much for our industry that I don't even know how to begin thanking you enough! I'm sending 1,000 gold stars to put on your shoulders!"

Of course spring brings on the need for one, a getaway trip, just to get out in the countryside and take a look at nature waking up. What better getaway could there be than a bed and breakfast stay? I’m headed to Alexandria, Virginia to a Publishing conference and really looking forward to staying at a historic inn in the old town and being seated at a breakfast table once used by George Washington’s grandsons. However, most of all folks, I’m looking forward to those cherry blossoms!

Washington DC environs all the way from the West Virginia countryside with verdant green fields, stone walls and baby lambs frolicking of the downtown mall and Washington Monument, blends itself for a spring trip for families. Many of our feature properties have spring fling rates going on, and the coming weeks, post Easter, are the perfect time to avoid the crowds and take off on a spring fling of your own.

Another topic that comes to the top of my mind come spring, is of course spring cleaning and we’ve included some traditional recipes for all natural, bio-degradable cleaners to get your home spick and span without harmful fumes or environmental damage. I recommend testing them out, there’s nothing better than saving money and also your health!

    Rug Cleaner
  • ¼ tsp dishwashing liquid (1.2 ml)
  • 1 cup lukewarm water (240 ml)
  • Combine the ingredients. Use a spray bottle to apply the solution over a large area or use the solution to spot-clean non-greasy stains. Blot dry.
    Carpet Freshner
  • 1 cup crushed dried herbs, such as rosemary, southernwood, or lavender (240 ml)
  • 1 tsp ground cloves (5 ml)
  • 2 tsp. baking soda (10 ml)
  • Combine all the ingredients in a large jar or other container with a tight-fitting lid. Shake well to blend. Sprinkle some of the mixture on your carpet. Let it sit for an hour or so, and then vacuum it up.
    All-Purpose Floor Cleaner
  • ¾ cup vinegar (180 ml)
  • 5 drops citrus or other aromatic essential oil
  • 4 quarts warm water (4l)
  • Mix ingredients in a large-bucket. Apply as you damp-mop your wood, linoleum and vinyl floors.
Bring spring to your bedroom with a new color scheme

Spring is also the time I start to think about lightening the bedroom, not only on the bed, but also in the color treatments. To me, a dose of blue and white will go a long way towards brightening up for the seasons ahead. And, with this years “color of the year”, Turquoise # 15-5519 claimed by Pantone, there’s no better time but now to add this favorite shade to your very own abode.

One of the things I love about blue and white are the way these two lovely colors blends so beautifully with mixing patterns, other shades and tones, to create a complimentary palette. Blue bedrooms have been proven to be amongst the most restful and calming. Another variation on the blue and white theme is cream and a greener blue, like turquoise or a grayer blue like Wedgewood. All these create a dreamy, glowing palette of cream and blue. Why not anchor your bedroom with an elaborately draped or canopy bed, or perhaps a plush upholstery head board and upholstered bench at the base? Upholstered bed treatments are some of the easiest ways to accomplish a lush look, even on a budget. And a canopy bed can be simply a box, bed width attached to the wall above the head of the bed and festooned with fabrics and trims, all compliments of a staple and or glue gun.

One of the things I love about blue and white is the way they mix up pattern, twills, florals, stripes and checks. As long as one stays in similar values of blue and white, or cream, the result will be very pleasing. For accent colors, green is a natural and so are shades of pink and rose. One of my favorite styles is Scandinavian country. A classic form, which takes simple furnishings lightens them up with white or cream paint, brightens it all up with blue, reflects the sky in gray blues and creates an all together delightful easy elegance that goes well with all sorts of architecture.

A glass shadded lamp.

Blue glass is a particular favorite collectable of mine. In these days I’m seeing more and more use of mirrors on furniture’s, walls and also mirrored lamps, mirrored burrows and mirror glass bowls. These all add a terrific note of glamour and style to any room.

Some colors of paints, a blue paint I especially love are bright blues. Great for accents or entry ways as well as small furniture pieces, or how about a porch chair? Some great blue shades are:

Majestic (regal 4005-8c) Peacock (Blueville A41-7)
Foggy Days (Danube 90BG 56/125)
Isle Waters (Isle of Capri (55oB-6)
True Blue (E26-1)
Star Spangled (59oD-7)
Blue Burst (4008-10B)
Gulf Grandeur (253-7)

I hope this note finds you all well, healthy and prepared for a gorgeous springtime.

Sending happiness, laughter and warm sunshine your way…



Thank you that is such wonderful advice...we too have had many family vacations that have started out with trips to explore possible new colleges and have ended up being such fun with all our family involved. You can certainly see some wonderful and unexpected sights on these road trips.

Jane Smith, Virginia.

Thank you Pamela for all your ideas. You have inspired my wife and I to take a long road trip this summer while taking our son to his new college. We are planning a different route there this time and hope to take in the many wonderful sights along the way there.

Mallard Cross, Oregon

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