4.22.2009

earth day, every day

As you may know, my family is striving to live more sustainably. I've been somewhat of an environmentalist for the past few years in my efforts to reduce, reuse and recycle and save water & electricity. Last year, I was inspired by Sophie Uliano's Gorgeously Green: 8 Steps to an Earth-Friendly Life to make more changes in areas I hadn't thought of. In fact, I really wasn't all too aware of the concept of sustainability in a verbal sense. I just knew it was right to recycle and couldn't bear the thought of ALL our waste going to a landfill. Think about it: plastic bottles designed for one use take at least five of the average human life spans to decompose! What a waste. My efforts have snowballed since last year, as I've made some permanent lifestyle changes. So what else can we do short of living off the grid? We do everything we can, within our means, in the name of sustainability. I'm waiting for the day when products made from recycled materials don't use the fact that they're recycled as a marketing tactic to get us eco-nerds excited! Wouldn't it be nice if companies used recycled materials without thinking twice? Seems like a no-brainer to me. As I was checking out at my last Target trip, I noticed that almost everything I picked up was either organic or made from recycled materials and I was pleased. I even got a free reusable tote to carry it all. :) l Such little things make my day.

I really wanted to do something special for Earth Day in addition to what I already do every day, so I decided to spread the green gospel to my students. Today, I read them a blog on what sustainable living meant to one woman and we discussed the meaning in full. Then I asked them to draw a comic strip or cartoon on what sustainability means to them or how they can adopt a sustainable lifestyle. Hopefully, I at least planted a seed and got them to think. I intend to incorporate sustainability more at work and be a good example of a good steward without being a granola-eating-hippie (even though I'm a huge granola fan, and my mom calls me a "modern day hippie")!

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