Not only is today Earth Day, it's FRIDAY!!! What a great combo :)! Each year on Earth Day, I try to look at what I'm doing in my home, my businesses, and my life, and see how I can give more to the Earth, or at least take less. Personally, I have a black thumb, so planting anything is always a risky adventure (even though I still try at least once a year).
I think most people want to do something, but feel like they can't do enough, or what they're doing won't matter, etc. It's important to keep in mind that, by us all doing something small, it usually adds up to something big. You don't have to make some grandiose gesture; do what you can. In that vein, here are some simple, no-nonsense ideas for things you can do to celebrate Earth Day:
- CHANGE OVER TO ENERGY-SAVING LIGHTBULBS. These are more of an initial investment than the typical lightbulb, but they've come a long way in pricing. I went to flourescent lightbulbs over 5 years ago. Since then, I've only had to replace two, one of which was broken in a move.
- RECYCLE. This sounds like a no brainer, and is really easy to do when you live in a city that offers this service. But some smaller areas don't. So, you can "recycle" in a different way. Save your old shoeboxes, etc for craft projects for the kids. Turn your old water bottles into small planters, or to make your own cleaning supplies. There are always lots of ways to recycle, including simply reusing or repurposing.
- COMPOST. What I wouldn't give to have a house so that I could put in a large compost area in the back. Luckily, I live in a large city and have a great alternative, in that the city has compost pickup, so even though I'm not getting to use it (see the black thumb comment above), at least it's being used and not going into a landfill. There are also lots of compost bin designs, many that work well to keep the smell in, so it doesn't draw bugs or animals. If you're a planter, this is some of the richest soil you'll ever get.
- GO MEAT-FREE. I feel strongly that making the choice to go meat-free is very personal, and I wouldn't want to tell others what to do. But consider going meat-free just for the day. Production of dairy products and processing of meats takes an incredible amount of energy and involves alot of water waste. (Most of us could use the extra veggies anyway.)
- CLEAN UP A PARK OR PUBLIC AREA. I'm a big believer in giving back. You don't have to think of it as giving back to your community; think of it as an act of gratitude to the Earth for everything you have to eat.
- ENJOY NATURE. Go to the beach, for a walk in the woods, whatever works for you. But get out and appreciate the natural beauty around you.
These are just a few of the things you can do to honor Earth Day. What other things would you add to this list?