Happy Earth Day!
I really don’t have anything revolutionary to say on this important day, so I thought I’d make a list of accomplishments and a list of goals instead. Maybe you’ll get some new ideas or be inspired to share some of own with me!
Things our family already does for a cleaner earth:
- Live Close to Work/Amenities. Someday, I’ll share the story about how we started building a house in the exurbs, experienced family identity crisis, and then backed out and moved to the city. But I really don’t have time for that today. Let’s just say it was the best decision we ever made! Instead experiencing an hour-plus-long commute, hubby now bikes to and from work when the weather permits. We live on the bus line and close to food co-ops, farmers markets, parks and bike trails. The only drawback is that we’re becoming somewhat inexperienced at freeway driving!
- Drive only one car. This, of course, would have been impossible if we hadn’t moved to the city. Kyle bikes/buses to work, while I drive kiddo to a nearby preschool before going to work myself. It’s been working for us for more than two years! And our gas fill-ups are few and far between.
- Support Local Farms. We’re regular co-op shoppers and consistently choose local meats, milk and cheeses. Local veggies and fruits are less available in the cold months, but summer brings a decent variety. And this summer, we’ve signed up for a community supported agriculture share. Each week beginning in June, we’ll receive a box of fresh vegetables (and sometimes fruit) grown by a local farmer.
- Avoid Using Air Conditioning. Old houses are drafty, have lots of windows and are typically surrounded by big old trees. This combination works quite well in the summer. Although we have central air, we almost never use it.
Things I plan to start doing:
- Composting. My friend Molly at The Snyder 5 recently started composting on a small scale. Seems to be just our speed!
- Line Drying Some Laundry. Although I don’t think I’ll be hanging up my intimates for the neighborhood to see, we could definitely line dry our sheets, towels and T-shirts. We have posts up in the back yard. We just need to string the line and get some good clothes pins.
- Avoiding Excess Packaging. We’re already fairly good at this, but I tend to use too many paper bowls, plastic cups, disposable forks and spoons, and napkins at work. I’ve also been eating out far too often lately, which always means more garbage. I’m planning to gather a small collection of silverware, and containers that I can keep at my desk. I’ll also bring my lunch more often (in a reusable bag and with reusable containers, of course). I’ll have lots o’ veggies to eat, after all!
Any other ideas? We have a tiny yard, so I’m thinking a rain barrel might offer a good way to water our plants and grass form time to time. I’ll have to do some research!