April 22, 2010

Earth Day

Remember this post, about my Green List? Well, in celebration of today being Earth Day I wanted to re visit this list and see if there was anything else we could cross off our green list and see where we've improved. I'm happy to say that we've made improvements since then. 

I love all the "green" changes we've made in our lifestyle in the last two years. It all started with me trying to have a better diet and eat more organically and turned into something much more for our household that I ever imagined. 

For us, it's all been about making small changes here and there that have made the difference. So, check out the list, print it off and see where you can make greener, better changes to your lives. 

Happy Earth Day!! 


1. Plant an herb garden. It’s good to have a reminder around of where our food originates.

2. Switch all your light bulbs to CFLs (or at least switch a few). [one of the first things we did in our home]

3. Create a homemade compost bin.
4. Switch one appliance to an energy efficient model (look for the "energy start" label).

5. Stop using disposable bags - order some reusable bags, or make your own. [I got a ton of these for free at a local fair]
6. Buy a reusable water bottle, and stop buying plastic disposable bottles.
7. Wash laundry in cold water instead of hot.
8. Turn off lights when you leave the room.
9. Don’t turn on lights at all for as long as you can - open your curtains and enjoy natural light.
10. Drive the speed limit, and combine all your errands for the week in one trip.

11. Better yet, walk or ride a bike to your errands that are two miles or closer.

12. Support your local economy and shop at your farmer's market.
13. Turn off your computer completely at night. [saves energy & your computer life]

14. Research whether you can sign up for green power from your utility company.

15. Pay as many bills as possible online. [saves stamps and money]

16. Put a stop to unsolicited mail - sign up to opt out of pre-screened credit card offers.
17. Reuse scrap paper. Print on two sides, or let your kids color on the back side of used paper.
18. Conduct a quick energy audit of your home.

19. Subscribe to good eco blogs.
20. Before buying anything new, first check your local Craigslist or Freecycle.
21. Support local restaurants that use food derived less than 100 miles away, and learn more about the benefits of eating locally.

22. Fix leaky faucets.

23. Make your own household cleaners. [a lot of fun & cheap too]

24. Line dry your laundry.
25. Watch The Story of Stuff with your kids, and talk about the impact your household trash has on our landfills.
26. Learn with your kids about another country or culture, expanding your knowledge to other sides of the world.
28. Lower the temperature on your hot water heater.

29. Unplug unused chargers and appliances.
30. Repurpose something.

31. Collect rainwater, and use it to water your houseplants and garden.
32. Switch to cloth diapers - or at least do a combination with disposables.

33. Switch to shade-grown coffee with the “Fair Trade" label.
34. Use a Diva Cup your monthly cycles.
35. Make rags out of old towels and t-shirts, and forego buying paper towels.
36. Use cloth napkins daily instead of paper.
37. Read Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, and open your eyes to the way conventional food is processed.
38. Repurpose glass jars as leftover containers and bulk storage.

39. Five-minute showers - make it a goal for yourself.
40. Donate to - and shop at - thrift stores such as Goodwill. You’ll be recycling perfectly usable items, and you’ll be supporting your local economy.

41. Bring your own reusable coffee travel cups to the coffee shop.
42. Reuse paper products (like toilet paper rolls) for arts and crafts.

43. Use Bio Bags for your pet’s you know what. [our HOA provides these so it's easy]

44. Use covers or upside down plates when storing food in the fridge instead of plastic wrap.
45. Reuse the plastic containers food comes in (like yogurt) to store your own leftovers.

46. Keep your heat as low as possible [hello, you have blankets right?]
47. Open a window before turning on the AC. 

48. Don’t throw away anything before offering on FreeCycle.
49. Use half a dryer sheet.

50. Use reusable containers instead of baggies in lunch boxes. [hubby does this well]
51. Buy bulk.

52. Garden

53. See trash? Pick it up!
54. Volunteer

55. Make cloth sandwich bags.
56. Eat more vegetarian meals.
57. Can your own fruits and veggies.
58. Carpool.
59. Bring your own silverware to work.

60. Use a reusable lunch box. 

61. Ditch plastic freezer bags and go with reusable containers.

62. Turn off the water when brushing your teeth. 

63. Buy concentrated laundry detergent.
64. Go with a tankless hot water heater.

65. Eat out less. [this is easy for us, since we hardly eat out at all]

66. Use used coffee grounds as fertilizer
67. Place a brick in your toilet take to use less water

68. Never run your dishwasher if it’s not full.
69. Have cats? Try green kitty litter. [we don't have cats.]

70. Bring your own tupperware for leftovers at a restaurant.
71. Freeze leftovers.
72. Use yogurt and pudding cups for crafts or seedlings.

73. Air dry your dishes or turn off the heat cycle on your dishwasher
74. Recharge your batteries
75. Dispose of unrechargeable batteries with other hazardous waste

76. Cover your pots when cooking 

77. Use pressure cookers and steamers

78. Take a shower instead of a bath

79. Use a low flow showerhead
80. Buy smart - a 1.5 liter bottle requires less energy to produce than three 0.5 liter bottles

81. Buy recycled paper products

82. Plant a tree
83. Plant scrubs around your home to help keep your house cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter
84. Buy a programmable thermostat
85. Recycle
86. Stop food waste
87. Ditch the carpet for natural hardwood (sustainably harvested of course) or a natural carpet, like wool 

88. When painting choose low or no VOC paints and make sure the dyes used in the paint areVOC free
89. Unplug your appliances when not in use

90. Buy recyclable plastic only
91. Fill up your fridge and freezer - use bottles of water to fill up space if needed
92. Instead of drive through, park and go inside to save running the car while ordering
93. Insulate water pipes
94. Insulate your water heater
95. Insulate your roof space

96. Use cold water instead of hot to wash hands etc

97. Buy recycled glass


image credit: google.com

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