Friday, April 22, 2011

Happy Earth Day!

Today is Earth Day and while I think it is wonderful that we have this day to celebrate, it's also important for us to be stewards of the earth every day. So, here's a list of things we try to do in our house to be green. I know there are many more and hopefully this list will continue to grow throughout our lives!

Being Green, Barlow Style:
1) We compost all vegetable and fruit leftovers, rinds, peelings, shells and cores, as well as some biodegradable trash.
2) Carpool with our ONE car. I drive Jim to work and pick him up at the end of the day. It is almost on my route to school.
3) We try to limit our trips into town by having our date night and grocery-shopping trip on the same night. I don't think we necessarily planned this for "being green" purposes, but it works that way!
4) Jim uses scrap paper leftover from work and school to create his study guides. He likes to write study guides for tests and uses the back of printed, white paper leftovers.
5) Jim made a "aquaponics" lab in which the water from our aquarium serves as the water and nutrient provider for some spinach plants that are growing. We don't have to constantly use new water to water these plants- it's reused! He liked this idea because it is self-supported.
6) We recycle EVERYTHING we can! The recycling place is just a couple miles from our house and on my back-way to work! Leif, our puppy, gets most of his play-toys from our recycling bin. Fortunately, he just likes to bang them around and make loud noises and rip them up a bit
7) We never use plastic ziploc bags when we pack lunches. We have a wide assortment of different tupperware and pyrex containers to use to transport each element of our lunches.
8) We try (this being the key word!) to bring our own bags to the grocery store, but I often forget. We do always return the bags to the recycling box at Walmart or Kroger.
9) We use Nalgenes and other water bottles to hydrate ourselves every day. We never purchase plastic water bottles.
10) We attempt to reuse jars and containers for different purposes, if possible. Right now our compost container for inside is what used to be a pretzel container and Jim stores nails and screws in old jars.
11) We keep the thermostat low in the winter, to save energy and costs by bundling up under heavy blankets and warm sweaters.
12) We're attempting to grow our own vegetables this year!

That's all I can think of right now, but we will hopefully continue to improve :)

What are some things that you do in your household? What could we be doing?

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