Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Going Green!

So the hip new thing today is going green. Well, I just have to say, Dave and I were thinking green before it was cool. Both of us, being nature lovers and avid hikers and campers, have always been huge advocates for the environment. But we can always do better.

Inspired by Earth Day and the Oprah special about earth day, I decided that, as a family, we can make a few more changes in our lives to become more earth-friendly.

For one, I am a paper towel-aholic. I use half a roll just cleaning the kitchen counters. A whole roll for the bathroom. Well, I've been feeling guilty lately that I am probably filling the majority of the Coventry landfill with my barely used paper towels, when the whole time I could be using a dishtowel or wash cloth.

But, the problem is my husband. And I'm not just saying that. I've tried to paper towel detox before by replacing them with dish towels. But this is what happens. Dave spills some raw chicken juice on the counter while making dinner (yes, my husband cooks, and he sews too) he grabs the first towel he sees in a drawer or hanging on the oven handle to wipe it up. Five minutes later, he wipes my son's hands with the same towel. So you see how that doesn't work?

But despite the risk of salmonella poisoning, I decided to give it another try. Now we have a "system". Green towels are for wiping things, red towels are for wiping people. Paper towels are limited to blood, chemicals, and salmonella and e.coli spills.

Then I heard another alarming fact. Plastic bags, like the ones we get at the grocery store, are not biodegradable. And there are so many in our oceans that there is actually a small island in the south atlantic made entirely of walmart bags and celebrities are now buying property to build vacation homes. Okay, that may not be a fact. But it is true that whales are choking on them daily and there are millions of them floating around Antarctica. Scary. Our grandkids will not have to worry about being stung by a jellyfish or bitten by a crab while swimming at the beach, they will have to worry about being suffocated by a plastic bag floating over their head. Keep out of reach of children. That's why we bought canvas reusable shopping bags instead of using plastic ones.

We can only do our best and even just a few small changes can make a difference. Wouldn't it be nice if we could afford to shop only locally grown organic, compound all our unused food, and drive a hybrid car?

Point of the story: Stop using plastic bags or you will be vacationing on one.

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