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Life is Green

Green is the "it" word. If you're not making an effort to live a greener life, you're not in vogue. And we all know how cool it is to be in vogue.

Now Twittermoms and LighterSaferGreener are offering bloggers the opportunity to share 3 green living tips for a chance to win some green stuff (in the form of Amex gift cards)! I could always use some of the green stuff to put towards my green routine. So, here I go...

My family, thanks to my 7 year old daughter Emma (aka the Green Queen), has been making an attempt to live a greener life for about 2 years. Last year when she learned about the 3 R's, reduce, reuse, recycle, as part of Earth Day awareness, she was hooked. Since we had already instituted several types of green initiatives, we took on the challenge to add a few more.

1. Cut your weekly trash load
In our case, we aimed to cut it in half. We normally put 2-50 gallon trash cans at our curbside each Wednesday. Our goal was to put 1 trash can out.

How we did it:
Since we were already recycling all of our plastic, aluminum, glass, newspapers and magazines, we had to assess our trash situation. We discovered that we were throwing away a lot of paper and cardboard that was recyclable. We set up a station with 2 boxes, one for school papers, advertisements and junk mail and one for cardboard. It's amazing how much paper we are no longer throwing away. Plus, the upside is that I no longer have to pull the extra trash bin to the curb! Love that!!!

2. Make the switch from conventional to eco-friendly cleaning products
This switch serves 2 purposes. First, not only are eco-friendly products healthier for our planet, but they are also healthier for you and your children. What mother doesn't want her children to be healthy and thriving? A little research taught me that conventional cleaning products are full of toxins, which overtime are responsible for a host of health problems. Ick! I've got enough to keep me occupied with H1N1 and seasonal flu. Who needs another culprit?

How we did it:
It's difficult in this economy to be wasteful. We phased out conventional cleaning products slowly. As one bottle was used, we replaced it with an environmentally friendly counterpart. If you follow this approach, there's no need to throw away unused products. Use them until the supply is depleted, and vow to never purchase conventional products again.

3. Recyle, or better yet, eliminate the metal dry cleaner hangers

How we did it:
I tried to wash and press my husband's dress shirts. But my workmanship pales in comparison to the dry cleaner's. We couldn't rule out the dry cleaner completely. We both have articles of clothing that require dry cleaning. So, we compromised. I found a dry cleaner who uses eco-friendly cleaning agents, and he gives a 5% discount when the customers return the metal hangers. It's huge!

I could offer so many tips from using canvas shopping bags to using cold water for washing dishes and clothing. There are so many ways to create a green life, and most are surprisingly simple and within any one's reach.

The key is to start somewhere and to start small. Small changes reap big rewards. So, go, get your green on!!

1 comment

Robin G said...

Great tips. Sounds like you managed to find an excellent dry cleaner.