4.22.2007

Happy Earth Day!

image courtesy of Karl LeDoux

Suit up, Earth, because today is your day!

Did you know that Earth Day is the only holiday that is recognized everywhere in the world? That’s awesome!

Being more “green” and earth-friendly is something that is pretty near and dear to me, and is probably why I was drawn to the Pacific Northwest. You could say that I’m a passive environmentalist(i.e., a little lazy), but I really believe that every little thing counts…even the small things.

So in celebration and recognition of Earth Day, here are a few little changes that we’ve incorporated into our lives to try and be a little more earth-friendly:

  • switched almost all of the light bulbs in our home to compact-fluorescent bulbs

  • began paying more attention to what we eat and where it comes from – we get a certified organic fruit & veggie delivery from Pioneer Organics every week and we try to pick as many locally grown foods as possible for our order

  • eliminated meat from at least 2 dinners per week, and oftentimes more than that

  • Karl drives a short distance to a park & ride and then takes the bus into work

  • recently started using a more natural cleaning solution (once we use up our current stash of 409 and Windex we’re going to start making our own so we don’t use so many harsh chemicals)

  • trying to use glass containers for food storage instead of plastic

  • bought some furniture from Ikea – their EU standards are more environmentally friendly than ours are here in the US

  • trying to be better about turning off lights and unplugging unnecessary items when not in use

  • keeping our thermostat pretty low during the winter (ridiculously low, as some members of my family might point out)

  • started bringing our own bag to the store (an awesome LL Bean hunter’s tote that fits a ton of groceries in it)
There you have it – a few little things that we’ve done. And I’ll be honest, there are things that I’ll never do (A 4-minute shower? Ummmm, no thanks….that ranks right up there along with driving only 25 mph in the impossible-for-me-to-do category.). And there are other things that we do where we weren’t motivated by the environmental impact but by the financial impact on us (Because let’s face it, Ikea furniture is relatively cheap and taking the bus into downtown beats paying for parking any day!) … but even so, I like to think that we are at least trying to make better decisions.

There are lots of other things that I wish we could be doing – like installing a rainwater collection system for use in watering our yard, replacing all of our appliances (and windows) with Energy Star rated ones, driving hybrid cars, buying only used or locally-produced goods and installing solar panels on our roof – but that will all take time and money (that we don’t currently have). In the meantime, I try and educate myself as much as possible so that when we do have the time and money we can make well-informed decisions.

Happy Earth Day!

1 comment:

philnjill said...

Home Depot is giving away one compact Flourescent bulb to each family. Picked mine up today. They are giving away 1 million of them, I think.