It's Be Green Week! I think this is the most important Pillar globally, correct me if you think otherwise.
This week our challenge is to live as GREEN as possible. Here are some of the challenge ideas offered up:
Take out containers - Bring your own tupperware if you eat out (sometimes this confuses restaurant staffers and makes for some funny looks! Share your stories with us on facebook!)
~~~~ I might actually try this one...just to see the looks on the faces and have a story to tell!! haha
Coffee cups - Carry your own travel mug
~~~~ I'm not much of a tea/coffee drinker outside of the home, so this doesn't really apply
Plastic Water Bottles - Use your own glass water bottle and save money by refilling. If you're flying this week, remember to bring your water bottle onboard. Airlines do not recycle their plastic or styrofoam cups!
~~~~ I do use a water bottle instead of plastic, so this is already my practice :)
Plastic Grocery Bags - Keep a stash of canvas bags with you so you don't forget!
~~~~ Oh this one gets me every time!! I have so many of the Sobeys bags and I always forget to put them back in my car for the next use! Drives me crazy. The only saving grace I have is that I re-use the plastic bags for picking up my puppy poo! lol
Paper Towel - Try hand towels or reusable cloths to wipe up your spills
~~~~ I don't really buy paper towel, but I do use the disinfectant wipes for kitchen use...hmmm...
Toilet Paper - Okay, we can't all go ZERO on this one, but why not try to use just what you need, if um, you know what we mean (tee hee!)
~~~~ Try getting a 12 year old to understand "just what you need" in this department! hahaha!
Printing Paper - Depending on the type of work you do, attempt to cut out all paper use for the week. Email instead of print paper, walk over to a colleagues desk to share information instead of writing a note, call your bank and cable company to ask for electronic bills, make a "No Junk Mail" note on your mailbox at home.
~~~~ In my line of work, I have no say on paper usage...
Paper napkins - Try cloth napkins instead (how sophisticated!)
~~~~ This could be fun!
Turn Off - your computer when it's not in use, lights (don't we all look better in candlelight anyway?) heat, electronics, and everything or anything else that requires energy.
~~~~ I'm going to look into energy saving power bars for around the home. I already keep my heat down and turn off lights when I leave a room :)
If you drive to work, consider car pooling, taking transit, riding your bike, walking or using offset companies to minimize your carbon footprint.
~~~~ I'm a transit user :)
Remember when computers became the big new thing and all the kids were doing it, and the parents were dumbfounded at how to even turn the damn thing on? That's how I feel about BEING GREEN. I feel like our kids know so much more than we do. They are being brought up in a community where littering is unacceptable. My daughter actually had on her list of school supplies, "reusable water bottle to be kept in class". I think this is fantastic!
I think I'm pretty GREEN now, except in the area of recycling...that seems to be the bain of my GREEN existence!
I think for me, the idea of BEING GREEN comes a lot easier than actually BEING GREEN. Up until last year I was an apartment dweller. This meant I didn't recycle or use a green bin. I know, I know, it's horrific, but keeping a rotting bucket of veggies and leftovers under my sink to attract all sorts of no-see-ums was not something I was willing to participate in. My building was also not a strict enforcer of this. I shouldn't say I didn't recycle...the cases of beer stacked nicely in the closet until it was time to return them for money...*sigh* so bad...I know.
Last year I bought my first home (yay me!) and started using my green bin that was provided with the house...again....HATE the flies!! I seriously can't stand them!! But I continued all summer and then slacked off again come winter time...
ALSO.. can I just say, the garbage men do not make it easy to recycle!! I will have one large box and break down all other boxes and set them in the large one, which I think is damn convenient and well controlled. Put that box full of cardboard out on recycle pickup day, and the end of the day, the damn box is still there?!? "I have to break them all down, wrap them with string in order for them to take them away"...WTF is that about?!?
This sounds like a lot of bitching doesn't it...haha, yes, it is a lot of bitching, but as much as I want to be good to my environment, society in general makes it difficult to do so!
So in preparation of BEING GREEN, I went to the grocery store on Saturday and shopped mostly in the outer aisles. Lots of vegetables and fresh meats. I love that spring is here because I will get a whole lotta use out of the barbeque!
I also have to give props to my cute handyman who came over and fixed my washing machine (or just showed me how to use it properly) so now I can actually do all my washes in cold water :) He's also fixing a leaky pipe in the bathroom (once we find the shutoff valve!haha!) so that will save water...since the bucket will no longer be needed ;)
So my challenge comes with recycling.
My brilliant cousin is a creative genuis in building household items/furniture etc. Her creations are space efficient, stylish, accentric, and beautiful!!! She has her own website in case you'd like to check out her creations! http://www.carolynclegg.com/
So I've been bugging her to create a garbage separator for 3 bags (1 garbage, 1 recycle, 1 recycle for money). I ended up drawing up a design and sent it to her...her response "Looks like you have a new project, come on down!!" Now, to say that I am completely clueless around power tools is the understatement of the century! BUT!! I'm thinking this week would be a fun challenge for me to actually make my garbage separator!!!
I will definitely be posting about that attempt! haha!
Good luck on your GREEN journey this week! xox
I'm not an environmentalist. I'm an Earth warrior.