Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Happy Earth Day!

Honestly, I never cared much about Earth Day, the whole "Going Green" issue, eating organic food, or saving energy and water when possible. However, since becoming a mother, I do think of it more and try my best to do better.

If the cleaning products I use in our bathrooms are so strong I will only use them while Jackson and Garrett are in bed, then clearly they are too strong...for any human. (This was GREAT when I was pregnant! Aaron was in charge of the bathrooms for nine months!!!)

Jackson's whole asthma issue (which hopefully isn't an issue at all) got me interested and more aware of products we use and options available since some products can trigger asthma.

Seeing Garrett's face after eating a can of ravioli the other day, made me realize that I want to start cutting back (avoiding wouldn't be possible) on things with preservatives. Although Garrett enjoyed his lunch, his face just wasn't normal....
Wouldn't you agree?

In honor of Earth Day, here are some helpful tips from various sources to Go Green!
Eco-Friendly Cleaning Supplies
Consider replacing toxic cleaning solutions with an all-natural, homemade alternative. Using inexpensive items like lemons, vinegar, vegetable soap, water and baking soda, you can create an effective cleaner.

Green Window Cleaner Recipe

3 Tbsp. vinegar
1/3 tsp. pure liquid vegetable soap (like castile soap)
2 cups water

Pour each ingredient into a recycled spray bottle, and you'll be cleaning green in no time!
Reusable Cloth Dishtowels
If you're constantly reaching for a paper towel, it's time to replace those rolls with cloth or microfiber towels.

At-Home Water Filtration
By investing $30 in a water-filtering, reusable pitcher or faucet attachment, you'll save about $300 a year on bottled water

Smart Power Strip
Many models even come with remote controls that let you turn your appliances and lamps on and off—without moving a muscle

LED Light Bulbs
Lighting accounts for 11 percent of your energy bill, and there are now more money-saving bulbs on the market than ever. They will save you $740 over the life of the bulb

Programmable Thermostat
A new programmable thermostat may run you $40 to $70, but you'll start seeing lower energy bills immediately.

More Ways to Save -

Leave it there! Instead of bagging your lawn clippings leave them on the lawn. The clippings will naturally fertilize your yard.

Go Native Texan! Use native plants for landscaping. They require less water and are more tolerant to our climate.

Water sparingly! Only water your lawn when it needs it, on average 1 inch every 7 to 10 days. Watch for signs of stress. Bermuda will turn a bluish color or leave imprints when you step on it. St. Augustine blades will begin to roll.
Install timers on sprinklers to prevent excessive water usage. It’s even better to schedule the sessions for the early morning or the evening when the sunlight is less intense and water won’t evaporate as quickly.
Call 214-718-1784 to get a sprinkler system inspection! :)

Tune-ups and tires. Keep your vehicle in tune, get it inspected, and check the air pressure in your tires. An under inflated tire will cause your vehicle to get poor gas mileage.

Install a low flow shower head, one that puts out less than 3 gallons per minute. They still have great pressure but conserve gallons of water from each shower.

Unplug it!! Appliances and equipment that are plugged in are still sucking power even though they’re off (think cell phone chargers, toasters, lamps).

Replace your air filter at least every 3 months. A blocked filter can cause higher energy costs and system damage.

Seal it up to avoid intruding air. Replace weather stripping. Seal windows seams. Add
extra insulation in attics and in walls.

Turn your hot water heater down to 120 degrees. The water will still be hot but your energy bill will be much lower.

*Federal Tax Credits up to $1,500 for Energy Efficiency Home Improvements
Click here to learn more

Here's a good excuse for a yummy treat...
Sprinkles Cupcakes: Eat a cupcake and help plant a tree!
From April 20-24

Whole Foods
Get a lunch tote—for free! Click here for a coupon to redeem in a store near you.

Get a deep clean. Save green. Tide Coldwater provides a deep clean in cold water, so you can cut down on energy costs and save money .

I have been using the Green Works All Purpose Cleaner, but after reading Marla's Blog the other day, I was encouraged to buy 3 more Green Works products today at the store being that it is Earth Day.
I feel better after using these! I used to find myself washing out the bathtub really well before putting Jackson and Garrett into a freshly cleaned bathtub due to the chemicals. (Cleaning out a cleaned bathtub....hmmmm....something is wrong with that!) Now, I feel like it truly is naturally clean and safe for them. If only I could make it magically cleaned. :) Click here for a coupon for Green Works products.

Happy Earth Day!


Mom said...

Your blog (and your house) has gotten me in the spring cleaning mode. Thank you for inspiring me!

Justin and Shelly said...

Somebody watched Oprah yesterday...