Do you make a difference? You can. So what are you waiting for? I know I know. Earth Day is one day and our efforts just today symbolizes our short attention span. We should be making lasting changes in the way we consume, purchase and proceed in our lifestyles, right?
So here goes, just 5 Ways for you to EASILY add a couple of little steps to your lifestyle to make positive change.
1) STOP DRIVING! okay so this isn’t always realistic especially in CA (unless you live in glorious public transportation defined San Francisco) BUT just take a look at your driving habits and commit to change a small degree.
- Can you walk to coffee in the morning/weekend instead of driving?
- When you go to a strip mall for coffee/groceries/stop in to the cute boutique/grab a bagel, do you drive from one end of the center to the other? Couldn’t you really just walk? It wouldn’t hurt to consider. I’m just saying.
- As the recession hit and gas prices sky rocketed, many people started thinking about the route they drove in a day to maximize their gas consumption. You haven’t gone back to your old ways, have you? I didn’t think so. Good Job.
2) CLEAN YOUR HOUSE! I am not suggesting you don’t keep a clean house. I just think you could consider some alternative WAYS to clean your house. For example:
- Use White Vinegar. Smell goes away as soon as it dries and it kills germs, mold and bacteria. Not to mention it is cheaper and non-toxic. HELLO!
- Baking Soda is a great substitute for Febreeze (hate the smell of this stuff) and Comet. It absorbs stench & can scrub for you! Don’t forget to shove a little pouch of baking soda into your kids’ smelly sneakers. You will be HAPPY you did.
- Lemons and baking soda together! What a combo. Clean your counters or pans. So simple.
3) TURN OFF THE LIGHTS! You can hear your dad’s voice in your head, can’t you? Well, this is one of those things we can all be better at but let’s take it one step further.
- Schedule Earth Hour twice per week. What is that? Check it out here. Decide on one hour twice a week that you are going to shut off the electronics, lights, phones, everything and just hang out and do something that does not require energy output except by YOU. Like what? Play a board game with the family. Have that much needed down time and read a book (it can be daylight out or uh… candles) or meditate, yoga, go for a walk. Whatever, come on you can think of SOMETHING.
4) DON’T THROW THAT OUT! We have gotten so accustomed to throwing things out once their original purpose has been spent that we create a RIDICULOUS amount of waste. For many of us, if we just thought for a moment about when we were kids, you could probably think of many ways that a generation before once were master “re-purposers”.
- Turn those expensive home-made artisan jam jars into juice glasses or flower vases next to a guest bed.
- Those size 2 jeans you haven’t worn in 15 years can remind you of better days regularly (and maybe inspire you) if you just turn it into a tote for your next market run.
5) GO SHOPPING! You LIKE that one, huh? I don’t mean just go shopping for the heck of it. That would waste gas, energy & money! And that is NOT what we need more of. Just remember that when we do shop, we ALL can take a sec to really examine if there is a greener alternative for whatever we are in the market to buy. Look at these companies for ideas:
- Recycled Paint by Metrowallworks: This company is owned by master venetian plasterer, Ayn Riggs. She has vowed to save 50k cans of paint from the toxic waste landfills around CA. Ayn was disgusted by the immense waste she saw at building sites from the contract work and TOOK ACTION. She just launched a product line of high quality recycled paint that uses EVERY part of the old left over paint. Pretty amazing. For details, CLICK HERE. BTW… It’s cheaper and better quality than most paints you will find at any Home Depot. Go ahead, beautify your home this spring with a fresh coat.
- Eco Couture with Linda Loudermilk: Linda Loudermilk lets you express yourself in beautiful, edgy clothing that will stop anyone in their tracks to gaze. The clothing is beautiful and fresh with a dash of guilt-free. The designer is committed to only using exotic self-sustaining plants for textiles. Follow your urge for style but consider your options and break out of the mold.
- Go Vintage: Posh Girl Vintage in Southern California is recycling a past generation of great clothing & accesories for all of you eco-friendly fashionistas online. No brick and mortar for this gal. http://www.poshgirlvintage.com/ Give a new life to an old dress.
- Party Planning with Green in Mind: Events are big wasters. So much goes straight for the trash and dumps after a big or small event. If you are hiring a planner or your organization is doing it internally, choose wisely. Paula Rae of Rae Florae is a floral designer who understands the need for thoughtful decor. Have a gala or large reception for say… a wedding (YAY), call on Laurel McFarlane’s team at McFarlane Promotions to go green and fab.
- Shop Local: Certified Farmer’s Markets, coops, local farms… there is such an interest in local that you can throw and stone and eat at a restaurant that uses locally grown produce, shop a certified market who only allows vendors from within a certain range, or purchase organically grown eggs from an urban chicken farmer. All you have to do is plan a little and make it a habit to think for a moment before you head out the door.
A few links for you to Give back to those dedicated to the environment full time: