Tag Archives: earth

Keep Your Clothes Chilly to Save CO2

Pounds of CO2 is how much you’ll save per year by washing your clothes in cold water.

“Not only does cold water get your clothes clean enough, but according to a new guidebook, The Environment Equation, putting your machine on this setting lowers your carbon footprint dramatically. (If you have allergies, you may need to wash your bedding in hot water to kill dust mites.)” — Shape magazine, August 2008

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Filed under Eat, July 2008, Pray, Run

Bicycle Co-op Programs Near You!

Hey, just in case you are interested I did a little research on bicycle co-ops in other communities for a Greenzone post, and here is what I found through a quick search on the Internet:

The Durham Bike Co-op in Durham, NC

Third Hand Bicycle Co-op in Columbus, OH

Mt. Ranier Bike Co-op in Mt. Ranier, MD

The Hub Bicycle Co-op in Minneapolis, MN

Mobo Bicycle Cooperative in Cincinnati, OH

Fort Collins Bicycle Co-op in Fort Collins, CO

Charleston Bike Co-op in Charleston, SC

Sopo Bicycle Co-op in Atlanta, GA

All of the groups listed above offer different programs, but each one looked like it had something great to offer. If you don’t see your community here, try looking for “bicycle co-op” on Google or a similar search engine, or on a green Web site.

Have fun riding!

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Filed under Eat, July 2008, Pray, Run

All-Night Road Trips and Giant Turtles Mixed with 25 Years of Love

I apologize for the mild hiatus, but vacation means unplugging and, hence, I have been trying to avoid the virtual world as much as possible. Of course, I do, however, love writing, so that can only last so long. (:

So, how about a brief run-through of the last few days?

Lunch on Monday was a bowl of homemade pasta salad made by my sister, Amanda. She used a mix of whole wheat and regular pasta, — a good way to trick the kids into eating the wheat kind! — and topped it with light Italian dressing, seasonings, cheese crumbles, chopped cucumbers and black olives. I had a bunch of grapes on the side.

Dinner was tuna with light mayo, cranberries, and a few mixed in sliced almonds and pine nuts, on hearty Italian bread with melted pepper jack cheese. I had a few Cool Ranch Doritos on the side. After dinner, the boys built a fire and we had s’mores.

I made mine with 2 squares of Hershey’s Special Dark chocolate each. I had four — definitely way too many! But they were so, so, so yummy Photograph by Luke Shannonand I figured, “Heck, it’s vacation!” The photo just doesn’t do them justice.

Tuesday started off with more time in the car. Dan and I went to see Jack Johnson in concert, a gift from him for my birthday. The one “problem,” however, was that the concert was scheduled during the same time we were planning to go on vacation. So, what was supposed to only be a short drive to Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio (about three hours from home) turned into a seven-hour drive from upstate New York.

But we were on vacation, so what did we care? We hopped into the car and made it a day, and arrived at the Blossom Music Center around 5 p.m. The concert was preceded by plenty of green-thinking vendor booths that you could visit and learn about various Earth issues, such as recycling, political point of views and worldwide corporations’ standpoints on green efforts.

It was so cool, and this is one of the fabulous things — besides his music — we love about Jack Johnson. All of his musical endeavors are backed by his need to make everything as earth-friendly as possible. The concert T shirts are made from organic cotton, you are asked to bring reusable water bottles to the show, his CD was made from solar energy, and the list goes on and on. If you are interested in learning more about his Earth efforts, check out Jack’s All at Once community, a new social action network where you can discuss issues and events, explore non-profit groups, and learn how to make positive changes in your local and world community.

A nice bonus was that at each booth you could earn a stamp on a ticket that was entered into a drawing where you could win a spot on the stage while Jack performed. I would of visited the booths anyway, but I thought that was a great way to get people to stop by and learn about important issues. We didn’t win — and I was so sure we would!

Jack was great — more than great . . . he totally rocked! We had such a good time. He played almost all of our favorite songs — he forgot “Better Together”! — and the concert just reaffirmed our love for Jack! (:

The only downer: We decided to be superheros and drive the whole way back to vacation — at 11 p.m.!! Looking back, the smarter decision was to just get a hotel room and rest. But my parents’ 25th anniversary was the next day and we wanted to get back to celebrate. It is all still one big haze, but I know there were two sugar-free Red Bulls and a few Starbucks’ Double Shots involved, and, of course, lots of Twizzlers. After hitting some construction traffic, we arrived at the cottage at 7:30 a.m., dazed, confused, sleepless and ready for some of the home fries my mom was cooking.

A quick view of food on the road and the following morning:

*Before we left I had a bowl of Barbara’s Bakery Shredded Oats with about 1 cup 1% milk. I also had a cup of coffee — duh!

*Lunch was a nice sandwich Dan had packed me the night before. It was the same sandwich I had for dinner the previous night, except this time it was on two slices of whole grain bread. I also shared some pasta salad with Dan and had a Synergy to accompany it all. Look how cute this cooler is! And I even got a message on my banana (PG is Dan’s nickname for me) which I decided to save for later. I have the best fiancé, right?

*I followed up lunch with a handful of peanut M&M’s from a bag I was sharing with Dan. It must be a car thing, huh? Later, I had a few Twizzlers from the bag I was saving for the car ride home — oops!

*At the concert, Dan and I shared some very pricey chicken fingers and fries. I knew I would regret it — not just because of the $8.00 price!!!! — because fried food always makes me nauseous. But I was hungry and, at the time, chicken sounded good. Note to self: This type of chicken never really tastes good, especially, for eight bucks! We had two fingers each and split the handful of fries that came with it. That “meal” was topped of with a $5.00 bottle of water. We should have listened to Jack and brought along our Sigg water bottles! He sets up water jugs, like the kind you see in offices, and you can refill as many times as you want. Good thing to keep in mind for next time. But, ultimately, no complaints because Jack was well worth the $13 refreshment and snack.

*The car ride home started off well — I had my banana and some 2% Fage Strawberry Greek-Style yogurt. But as the night/morning continued, my eating habits went a bit downhill. Like I already said, I had a sugar-free Red Bull, Starbucks’ Double-Shot espresso drink, Twizzlers, and some cheddar cereal, pretzel and cracker mix — kind of like a Chex Mix type-o-thing.

*When we arrived at the cottage, I had a plate of home fries, scrambled eggs, 2 mini pancakes and a piece of whole grain toast.

I would have liked to have passed out right then, but I had a little work to do, so I got busy. Around lunch time, I watched The Bucket List with my family and munched on Trader Joe’s cinnamon grahams – I love these homemade-style graham crackers! I wasn’t in the mood for lunch after a big breakfast, so the graham crackers were a good keep-me-awake snack. The movie was great, and a must see; it is based on the theme of the book, The Bucket List: Things to Do Before I Kick It by Justin Zackham.

My parents went out for dinner for their anniversary, so that meant the kids were on their own. We had some rigatoni pasta with sauce and salad. Our snack was anniversary brownies with my parents when they returned from dinner. My sister made them paper hats for them to wear while they ate — it was a pretty funny site to see! Congratulations, mom and dad, on 25 years of marriage — you guys rock.

In between dinner and brownies, my brother, Isaac caught a humongous turtle! He was out fishing, spotted this guy and actually managed to scoop him up with a net. He was not very happy, so we let him go ASAP — we didn’t to make this guy too mad! Isaac named him Bubba, and then we all said farewell to our river friend.

Breakfast this morning was Barbara’s Bakery cereal, again, with 1 % milk. I know, it’s like, get a new cereal, girl! But I love this stuff.

I was doing so many things during the day that I kind of forgot about lunch. Not a good thing at all — when my mom and I returned from our 4-mile walk, I was kind of thinking, “Hmmm…what is this feeling in my stomach? Ahh, lunch!” So, I had some hummus and Triscuits, along with small square of last night’s brownies. (; Dinner is almost ready, so I did not want to overdo it. Mahi mahi, salad, grilled veggies and brown rice are on the menu! Mmmm — I cannot wait!

Speaking of, I think I smell something yummy … I gotta go!

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Filed under Eat, June 2008, Pray, Run

If You Do One Green Thing Today…

Use less dryer time! Make a simple investment in a drying rack or washing line, and you will cut back on the loads — no pun intended! — of energy that are being used by a dryer.

I am guilty of wasting electricity by using a dryer, so this is one green to-do that I need to start incorporating into my everyday routine.

Check out the Whitney Design Wall Mount Telescoping Indoor Drying Rack, Versaline SlimLine Clothes Line, Whitney Outdoor Clothes Drying Umbrella, Mrs. Pegg’s Handy Line or Polder Chrome Accordian Clothes Dryer. Some of them can be a bit pricey, so it just depends on your budget.

The point is that there is an option for everyone — and that is what makes being green just so gosh-darn fabulous!

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Filed under May 2008, Pray

Save Paper, Save a Tree, Save Your Sanity!

A word to the treehuggers out there: Junk mail is the result of more than FOUR MILLION TONS of paper waste each year. What’s more, it costs $320 million of taxpayers’ money to dispose of that unsolicited mail each year (Source: Gorgeously Green)!

Now, surely there is a better way to put our money to use, don’t-chya think?

Check out these sites for information on how to stop wasting paper à la junk mail. A few simple steps really can make the Earth a better place, and help you to stop getting so dang excited when you think you have received mail of the good kind — come on, you know you do :

  • JunkBusters — This site provides you with example letters that you may print out and send to direct marketers to tell them to not send you junk.
  • Exuberance — A post on this site links you to the Direct Marketing Association which requires you to fill out a form and pay a dollar to get your name off junk mail lists — It’s well worth a buck, if you ask, me.
  • GreenDimes — A cool site that pays you a dollar to stop junk mail from coming to you home. You can have your dollar sent to you in the mail, or you can use it to plant a tree or receive a free issue of a green living magazine. GreenDimes has you enter your address information, and then choose which catalogs and other mail you would like to stop receiving. The service is free and, in case you really want to go all out, there are a few options to choose from that involve a bit of moolah. I went with the basic (’cause I don’t have much moolah to mess around with) and got rid of the 80 hundred catalogs I receive from Victoria’s Secret every week (the green effort was clearly lost on this company) and a bunch of other mail that I think I need, but really do not. It felt good to purge!

A few other key points:

1.) If you are not a computer guy or gal, you can send a postcard to the Direct Marketing Association and it will stop most national mailings from coming to your house. The address is: P.O. Box 643, Carmel, NY 10512.

2.) You can also give credit card offers the ol’ heave ho by calling 1-888-567-8688 and an automated system will take you off all major credit card bureaus for five years. YAY! Like I always say, if I want a credit card, I’ll let you know!!!!

3.) Got a bit of time? Call your bank and credit card companies and tell them not to release your information (name, address, social security number, email, etc.) for marketing or promotional purposes. The federal privacy law says that they have to honor your request.

Whether you choose to make a couple changes or several at a time is really up to you. The point is that you are making a difference — and that is what really matters in making this Earth livable for years to come. So, go on with your bad self and stop all that excess mail! You don’t need most of that stuff anyway, right?!

Recycling one ton of paper saves 17 trees, 6,593 gallons of water, 380 gallons of oil, 587 pounds of air pollution, 3.06 cubic yards of landfill space and 4,077 kilowatt hours of energy.

(Source for all statistics: Gorgeously Green)

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Filed under May 2008, Pray

Putting Junk Mail Back Where it Belongs

Hey, all . . . I am running, running, running out the door. But later today I have tips for you about how to get rid of junk mail and save the Earth!

Now that’s a win-win situation!!

Talk to you soon, and Happy May!

♥Caroline

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Filed under May 2008

Just Make One Small Change, You Greenie!

“If I make one tiny positive change today, I consider myself green. It can be as simple as flicking off a light switch or buying an organic apple. My motto is one change makes a difference, and if you can make two, that’s even better!” — Sophie Uliano, author of Gorgeously Green: 8 Small Steps to an Earth-Friendly Life

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Filed under April 2008, Pray