Happy Earth Day!

April 22, 2010

Everyday is Earth Day in my household, and life, but I still like to celebrate a bit on the actual Earth Day of April 22nd.

This year, Earth Day is the same day as my first day not working at my oldjob. Because of the lack of running around this morning, I was able to start some planting for an edible summer in our backyard.

YIP 2009 | 4.15.09
[germinating seeds, from last year]

What do you plan to do to celebrate the planet, having less of a negative impact, and increasing your positive impact?

YIP 2009 | 8.7.09

A handful of things that Kasy and I currently do in our lives:

1. Wash all clothes on cold and line dry everything. We don’t have a dryer and wouldn’t ever think of getting another one.

2. Keeping the water heater temperature low.

3. Unplugging things when not in use.

4. Bicycle everywhere! We have 2 bicycle trailers, one small and one 6 foot trailer, and have used them for so many things — going to the hardware store, moving me from West Philly to South Philly, bringing donations to the thrift store, etc. They are amazing and transform your abilities on a bicycle.
March 20, 2010
5. Buying food that isn’t processed and comes in less packaging than others. One new thing we’ll be doing this year is to start using a local CSA buying club to purchase a lot of foods. The one we’re looking into is Lancaster Farm Fresh.

6. Use the local library system! We are big fans of the Philadelphia library and use it as our go to for books and movies, before looking elsewhere.

7. Use the local thrift stores! We are also fans of thrift store shopping (and donating) for many things around the house. We try to not bring new items into the house but occasionally a need does pop up — a new lamp for a room in the house, jars for dried beans and rice — and there are surprising delights to be found at thrift stores. Instead of buying new, trying buying used/donated.

8. Reusable water bottles and coffee cups. We are always with metal bottles. Our metal water bottles are stainless steel and unlined Klean Kanteen. While I wish I had the awesome new colored ones, we bought ours before KK started making those (during the Nalgene BPA freakout a few years ago). These bottles are awesome. Our coffee cups are also unlined stainless steel. Mine is from a trip I took to China in 2001 and is made by Thermos. Unfortunately in the years since, I have no been able to find it online or locally in the U.S. The closest I’ve found is the one I bought for Kasy for a Christmas gift a couple years ago (Zojurushi Tuff Slim vacuum bottle).

9. Keeping the house cold in winter. We keep our house very, very cold in winter (avg. of 54F, unless it’s insanely cold outside, and we’ll bump it up a few degrees), and have found that it (obviously) uses less energy, keeps the bills low, and keeps our bodies acclimated to the natural seasons outside. That, and I can wear handknits all the time! We also don’t have air conditioning.

I would love for you to share some things that you’ve been doing in your life!


2 Responses to “Happy Earth Day!”

  1. Marie Says:

    I don’t think I do very much, but I do what I can:
    -I walk my daughter to the bus stop to take public transit to school
    -I make my own yogurt
    -I use re-usable water bottles and mugs for tea (and I use loose tea leaves)
    -I use canvas grocery bags

    I can’t ride a bike (back injury) and I live in the burbs so I drive more than I like, but I don’t see any way around it!

  2. Debby Says:

    Thank you for sharing some great ideas!

    My husband and I like to ride our bikes, but our location isn’t the best for commuting (once in a while he rides to work, but it’s 40+ miles each way).

    I use cloth tote bags for all of my shopping, grass clippings as mulch for my garden, and biodegradable wheat cat litter. It’s flushable even with a septic tank and relieves me of having to carry nasty plastic bags of used litter around the house. It’s soft on the cats’ paws and they seem to like it pretty well.

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