Happy Earth Day 2011 - 11 in '11- Simple things we can all do to make a difference

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We aren't the greenest family around, but that doesn't mean we don't try to do our part to make the world a better place.

Here are some really simple ways that we try to help the earth- some are new for us, some are an ongoing process, and some we have done since the girls were babies and probably my mom did with me. *Hi mommy, love you. Thanks for raising me to try to be a responsible citizen.*

*Even when the kids were in strollers, we'd take along a bag on our walks and pick up trash wherever we were walking- side of the road, park, wherever.

*Take reusable bags shopping- get the kind that store neatly in your purse/diaper bag/whatever or keep them in your trunk so you always have them handy- they aren't just for grocery stores, use them everywhere you can.

*Buy products with as little packaging as possible, and if the packaging is recyclable so much the better.

*Always leave a place nicer than when you got there- pick up extra trash in picnic areas, simple things like that.

*Recycle as much as possible- we have plastic, cans and cardboard/paper here and even though we have to take them in ourselves, it is worth it until the middle of nowhere gets curbside pick-up.

*Buy good reusable water bottles and to-go cups. Even your fave coffee shop will be happy to fill it up for you if you ask. (If using plastic be sure it is bpa free etc- we like stainless for the water bottles and ceramic for the mugs when possible- obviously Ian is a little young for a ceramic mug unless we are staying home.)

*Invest in reusable lunch containers (again, making sure they are safe from toxins) whenever possible.

*When replacing appliances (they really don't last like they used to) invest in energy saving models- you won't regret it.

*Combine your errands into as few trips as possible, carpool if you can and offer to pick up a few things or bring your family/friends/neighbors with you to save on gas.

*It is not always feasible or possible, but whenever we can we like to buy organic and support local businesses (or even those far away that help others to help themselves- think fair trade).

*We are trying to get our yard (which is rocks on top of more rocks on top of more rocks) to where we can plant our own garden - we've had some success with container gardening in the past and are considering raised beds as we can afford them, but ideally we would love to have a wonderful, organic garden full of fresh veggies, some fruit trees and berry bushes and of course flowers for the pretty factor.
~~~We've been told that planting potatoes will help bust up the yard, move the rocks etc so we have planted several *eye* pieces and hopefully will have more usable space next year. If you have any other ideas (REALLY CHEAP) please please share, we're desperate.~~~

Are you environmentally friendly? What do you do to make a difference? Inquiring divas want to know.

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