1. My family only owns one car, which is fairly fuel efficient. This has forced me to plan my errands better. Helps me buy less too, since I can’t go out and spontaneously shop.
2. I walk my daughter to preschool. It’s only a few blocks, but it amazes other parents that I walk it. I know from watching my neighbors drive their kids to school that the time difference is about a minute. We left at the same time once, so I got a really good feel for that.
3. I’m slowly converting my husband over to organic gardening. He’s used to buying fertilizers and such, but I’ve got him more interested in composting now.
4. I’m also working on adding vegetarian fare into the regular rotation. It will be a challenge, as my husband is a devout carnivore. But with great patience I weaned him off most deep fried foods, to the point that he can barely stand them now, and I think I can get the amount of meat we consume down too if I go about it the same way.
5. I love living in Southern California. Except for the occasional rainy days I can just open the blinds to get enough warmth in to heat the house in winter, as well as sufficient light for most activities.
6. In summer I make sure to wear light clothes, keep the blinds shut and use fans rather than the air conditioner. It only takes a few weeks to adapt to where warmer temperatures aren’t bothersome.
7. I work at home. This wasn’t initially intended as a green measure, but it means we can get away with one car and I don’t have to commute.
8. I’m trying to learn to make more things such as bread for my family. Healthier and cheaper and better tasting.
9. One of my challenges in going green is my in-laws. Wonderful people most ways, but they don’t understand the need to think more about the environment. Unless I feel like hearing about eco-Nazis I know better than to bring the topic up. But it doesn’t stop me from doing things my way in my home.
10. My mother and I have a lot of fun talking about environmental topics. We share a lot of interests in that area.
11. I only use warm or hot water in the laundry if I absolutely must. Most clothes seem to come out smelling just fine with cold water.
12. One of the things that can drive me nuts is trying to figure out which solution causes the least damage overall. I can look at light bulbs, for example, and know that incandescent ones are responsible for more of my carbon usage in my home than compact fluorescent ones. But which is less polluting in manufacture and disposal?
13. I love buying fresh produce for my family but still get frozen too, even though I know it takes more energy to store. I’m not sure how that balances with how it enables me to go to the store less often. Plus I would have the freezer anyhow.
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