All posts by valorie

About valorie

Inspired by 30 Days to a Greener You, I've decided to "green" my life. Hope you enjoy 'My Path to Green'

My Path to Green: Episode 7 – Become A Green Pet Owner

Hello friends,

So with this last episode, my path to green officially comes to an end. In the past few weeks I have learned a tremendous amount and have taken so many small steps to become a greener me, thanks to ‘30 Days to a Greener You‘. My very last step is becoming a Grene pet owner. My inspiration for this was Doreen Pollack’s Curb Your Pet’s Carbon Pawprint! She says that we are not the only ones who can benefit by going green:

"Our pets can benefit as well.  Since they often live in the same environments as we do (same house or yard) they are also affected by the decisions we make about cleaning products for the home and body, and the quality of water and food we provide." – Doreen Pollack

So I took her advice about pet food and did the following:

  • Buying in bulk
  • Making your own pet food

I found a great vegan dog food recipe on the Internet from Yummy for Dogs and here it is:

Ingredients:

  • 1 can     (40.5 oz.) kidney beans
  • 1 can     creamed corn
  • 1 can     diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup     shredded carrot
  • 1 can     peas
  • 1 teaspoon     garlic
  • 1 pinch     cumin
  • 1/2 tablespoon     olive oil
  •  supplements as desired


Directions:

  • Rinse beans and peas.
  • Mix all ingredients in a large bowl.
  • Serve with whole wheat bread or tortillas, if desired.

Yummy For Dogs and many other great sites on the internet have DIY recipes. Of course all pets are different so PLEASE consult your vet before trying something.

Hope you have enjoyed my journey and good luck on your own Path to Green./p>

Just joining me? See My Path to Green from the beginning.

I am taking small steps in my life to to help our planet. If you are too, then share your stories with us. SunChips® brand and National Geographic believe in the power of the Green Effect. If each of us takes one small step to make our community greener, we can create big change for our planet. To get the movement started, they are awarding $20,000 grants to five people or groups with compelling ideas for green change. Submit your green idea between April 22 and June 8, 2009. For more information visit: www.greeneffect.com

 

My Path to Green: Step 6 – Green Gift Giving

Hi again. I can’t believe it is already Step 6 in My Path to Green. Though, I have definitely learned a tremendous amount and am maker greener choices each day no matter what it is. This is a busy time of the year for me — practically everybody I know has a birthday/anniversary etc etc coming up, so why not give them a gift that keeps the environment in mind?

Tommy Rosen in his blog Giving a Gift? Increase Its Impact by Choosing Green says:

When you give someone a “green gift,” it means you went the extra distance for someone and for everyone.  It means you have taken the time to consider the environment.  It means you have given a gift that shows something about you, which can also serve to inspire and educate others.  It means you have created a ripple effect whose final result is too significant to calculate.

That was all the convincing I needed. So I followed Tommy’s advice and picked 6 green gifts for my friends and family.

1.) For my Boyfriend – I made him something from scratch – a painting
2.) For my Sister – I gave her a plant, a gift that will have a lasting element to her life
3.) For my Father – I made a gift to Charity Water
4.) For my Mother – I gave her a stress-reducing gift – Yoga classes
5.) For my Brother – I got him an educational present – a book
6.) For my Best Friend – I got her a virtual gift – an iTunes gift card.

Hope you have been enjoying my journey and have embarked on your own paths to green. See you next week for my final step to becoming a greener me.

Just joining me? See My Path to Green from the beginning.

I am taking small steps in my life to to help our planet. If you are too, then share your stories with us. SunChips® brand and National Geographic believe in the power of the Green Effect. If each of us takes one small step to make our community greener, we can create big change for our planet. To get the movement started, they are awarding $20,000 grants to five people or groups with compelling ideas for green change. Submit your green idea between April 22 and June 8, 2009. For more information visit: www.greeneffect.com

 

My Path to Green: Step 5 – Green Dating Tips

Hello everyone,

This week using Alex Blackwell’s blog 9 Green Date Ideas, I planned a nice green date for my boyfriend using 3 of his tips:

  • Exchance cards or notes made of recycled paper
  • Go to a zoo
  • Have a green picnic
  • Walk instead of taking the car

One thing to keep in mind before going to a zoo – Alex advises that Not all Zoos are animal friendly. Visit Zoos that allow animals to roam in their natural habitats, like the San Diego Wild Animal Park. 

He had great other tips like planting a tree, snuggling up under a blanket and turning off the heat and more.

Just joining me? See My Path to Green from the beginning.

I am taking small steps in my life to to help our planet. If you are too, then share your stories with us. SunChips® brand and National Geographic believe in the power of the Green Effect. If each of us takes one small step to make our community greener, we can create big change for our planet. To get the movement started, they are awarding $20,000 grants to five people or groups with compelling ideas for green change. Submit your green idea between April 22 and June 8, 2009. For more information visit: www.greeneffect.com

My Path to Green: Step 4 – DIY “Green” Beauty

Hello again,

This week I continue My Path to Green by "greening" my beauty regime. I checked out Angie Provost‘s blog "When It Comes to Beauty — It Ain’t Being Green" and the first thing she said is cut yourself some slack! Not everybody has the time or money to green their entire beauty regime, it is all about taking small steps. Angie had great suggestions for greener beauty products – lip balm, hair care, skin care etc, but what I was most excited about was the D.I.Y products. Here is what she had to say:

"Do It Yourself pampering recipes are becoming increasingly popular with today’s need for cost-effective personal care that is not only eco-friendly but guaranteed pure.  And what’s more pure than combining a few easy to find and fresh key ingredients to create the ultimate in luxury right in your own bathroom?"

I tried 2 recipes — one that Angie suggested and one I found online. When I was doing research I was amazed by the amount of D.I.Y recipes there are out there on the internet. If the ingredients in the two I made are not really your thing don’t worry, I’m sure you’ll find something that suits you.

Here are a couple of other sites to get you started:

So next time instead of spending big bucks on facial cleansers and scrubs that come in hard to recycle containers, I am going to whip-up something in my own kitchen.

Just joining me? See My Path to Green from the beginning.

I am taking small steps in my life to to help our planet. If you are too, then share your stories with us. SunChips® brand and National Geographic believe in the power of the Green Effect. If each of us takes one small step to make our community greener, we can create big change for our planet. To get the movement started, they are awarding $20,000 grants to five people or groups with compelling ideas for green change. Submit your green idea between April 22 and June 8, 2009. For more information visit: www.greeneffect.com

My Path to Green: Step 3 – Green Alternatives to Toxic Cleaning Products

Hello everyone,

This week on My Path to Green, I made some non-toxic cleaning products from things I already had in my kitchen (well I had to get the lavender oil). My guide this week was Annie Bond and her "5 Simple Alternatives to Toxic Cleaning Products". At first I was not sure that these would be as effective, but Annie’s article really helped me let go of some of the myths I believed about cleaning.

I tried my hand at 3 of the cleaners she suggested:

  • Baking Soda
  • White Vinegar + Lemon Juice
  • Mold Killer & Disinfectant

These were super easy and I especially love how the lavender smells after I’m done cleaning.

Just joining me? See My Path to Green from the beginning.

I am taking small steps in my life to to help our planet. If you are too, then share your stories with us. SunChips® brand and National Geographic believe in the power of the Green Effect. If each of us takes one small step to make our community greener, we can create big change for our planet. To get the movement started, they are awarding $20,000 grants to five people or groups with compelling ideas for green change. Submit your green idea between April 22 and June 8, 2009. For more information visit: www.greeneffect.com

My Path to Green: Step 2 – Vegan Cooking & Cookies

Hello everyone,

I am continuing my "My Path to Green" this week by learning all about Vegan and Vegetarian cooking. I was inspired by Mark Reinfeld‘s Go Green with Vegan Cuisine, he had some crazy statistics about the difference between a animal based diet vs. a plant based diet:

  • A UN report entitled “Livestock’s Long Shadow” indicates that livestock production contributes to more greenhouse gasses than the entire worlds transportation industry combined.
  • The average carbon emissions from an animal product based diet are 11 tons per year per person. The average emissions on a plant-based diet are 6 tons per year.
  • It takes approximately 3 ½ acres of land and 2500 gallons of water a day to support an animal product based diet. A plant-based diet utilizes only 1/6 of an acre of land and 300 gallons of water a day.
  • According to the USDA, 1 acre of land can produce 20,000 pounds of vegetables. This same amount of land can only produce 165 pounds of meat.

Aren’t these insane. I don’t think I have it in me to go completely vegan or vegetarian yet but its all about small steps and starting small. When I saw Mark’s Vegan Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe, I knew I had to give Vegan baking a try.

Here is the recipe if you want to try with me 🙂

Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies
25 minutes prep/15 minute cook / 8 large cookies
 
Dry Ingredients
2 cups  spelt flour
1 cup vegan chocolate chips- try sunspire brand
1 cup walnuts – chopped
¾ cup rolled oats
½ tsp. sea salt
¾ tsp. baking soda
1/8 tsp. cinnamon
1 pinch nutmeg
 
Wet Ingredients
2/3 cup maple syrup
2/3 cup canola oil
2 Tbl. filtered water
1 tsp. peppermint extract
 
1. Preheat oven to 350 °F.  Place dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl and mix well.  Combine wet ingredients in another large bowl.  Add wet to dry and mix well.  Refrigerate for 15 minutes. 
 
2. Place 8 scoops on a well oiled baking sheet and flatten slightly with hand. Space evenly so cookies have room to spread.
 
3. Bake until golden brown, approximately 10 minutes. Allow to cool before enjoying
 
Mine were delicious and tasted even better because I knew they were healthy and good for our planet. Here are some more great recipes from Mark:

I hope you will all set an intent to cook something vegan this week! For more information visit www.veganfusion.com

Just joining me? See My Path to Green from the beginning.

I am taking small steps in my life to to help our planet. If you are too, then share your stories with us. SunChips® brand and National Geographic believe in the power of the Green Effect. If each of us takes one small step to make our community greener, we can create big change for our planet. To get the movement started, they are awarding $20,000 grants to five people or groups with compelling ideas for green change. Submit your green idea between April 22 and June 8, 2009. For more information visit: www.greeneffect.com

My Path to Green: Step 1 – How to Compost

Hello everyone,

So I began my first step in "My Path to Green" this week by learning How to Compost. I used Norma Hartie‘s blog as a guide for what to do. Of course, composting is far easier if you have a backyard but for those who live in an apartment (like me!) I made my compost in a small bin that I will be keeping next to my trash. That way all my organic waste can go in there instead of my trash can. Here is what I learnt about composting:

You want to save all your organic waste, things such as: vegetable and fruit parts, coffee grounds, tea, eggshells, brown paper products, grass and plant clippings. But absolutely NO animal leftovers, dairy products, oils or waste.

You compost in layers 1 green to 2-3 brown. Greens are things like fruits and veggies, plant clippings and browns are things like egg shells, newspaper clippings, brown paper bags, coffee grounds and dried up leaves. After you are done layering — add a layer of soil so the microorganisms in it will kick start the process.

Composting generates heat as a by product. The temperature and rate of the decomp will vary on how you build your compost pile. The hotter the temperature, the faster the decomposition. The compost will also need mositure and air to be successful.

So there, I tried mine and I hope you will as well and share your success stories. Here is where I learnt how to compost and additional resources that might help you:

 

Just joining me? See My Path to Green from the beginning.

I am taking small steps in my life to to help our planet. If you are too, then share your stories with us. SunChips® brand and National Geographic believe in the power of the Green Effect. If each of us takes one small step to make our community greener, we can create big change for our planet. To get the movement started, they are awarding $20,000 grants to five people or groups with compelling ideas for green change. Submit your green idea between April 22 and June 8, 2009. For more information visit: www.greeneffect.com

Starting My Path to Green

Inspired by Intent.com’s "30 Days to A Greener You" I am going to embark on a path to greening my life. I took the How Eco-Savvy Are You? quiz by Jeff McIntire-Strasburg and didn’t really do so well. Thus, I will be taking small steps in my life and I hope you enjoy my journey and I can inspire you in some way. Wish me luck!

Just joining me? See My Path to Green from the beginning.





I am taking small steps in my life to to help our planet. If you are too, then share your stories with us. SunChips® brand and National Geographic believe in the power of the Green Effect. If each of us takes one small step to make our community greener, we can create big change for our planet. To get the movement started, they are awarding $20,000 grants to five people or groups with compelling ideas for green change. Submit your green idea between April 22 and June 8, 2009. For more information visit: www.greeneffect.com

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