As more and more of the nation turn away from homeownership, the number of people renting has increased greatly. Many of those now living in rental homes were once homeowners. Some are no longer able to own their own home due to foreclosures and bad credit reports, while others are unable to purchase a home due to more restrictive credit standards.
Make no mistake; there are benefits to renting a place to live.To begin with, as a renter, you often do not have to worry about maintenance and repair costs. If something breaks, the landlord or superintendent is usually the one to repair and replace it.Along with this, there are those rental options where some utilities are included.Credit requirements are also less strict for those who rent as opposed to those who purchase a home.
With renting on the rise, finding the right place to rent, and to live, can at times be a lengthy process.Perhaps the most important part of this process is finding the right landlord.It is important to recognize the signs of what a bad landlord might look like.Continue reading →
I am never five minutes into stripping the clutter from my life before I start running into
the clutter that is my life.
It’s funny how our home space says so much about our brain space. For some, the clutter in their brain is the opposite of their spotless home. For others, the exact opposite. For still others, the clutter they feel is exactly the picture you discover when you enter their living space. Sometimes the overwhelming feeling can feel very debilitating. Sometimes it’s the weight that keeps you from feeling like you can dive into something new. There is something important about the practice of deciding what needs to move forward with you and what needs to be let go that extends beyond just getting rid of stuff. Either way, cleaning house figuratively and literally is a great task to take on as you prepare for a new year!
With the lightning speed that everything is happening these days, are we alone when we say that our families usually end up with the short end of the stick? Because we come home to them, we assume that time will naturally happen but this isn’t always the case. When our family gets the in-between time as we rush from event to event and task to task, we end up communicating that they aren’t a priority more than they are. Our intent of the day is to put family first. We want to be intentional in protecting our calendar, making space for the unscheduled and slowing down enough to enjoy our time because the time spent with the people who matter most is what will be the most valuable in the long run.
Many people around the world are concerned with the real impact of global warming, but they often think in terms of large-scale energy users such as factories or municipalities, ignoring one of the biggest factors in energy use: the Internet.
As a growing percentage of people conduct business, shop and communicate online, companies must be mindful of building a “greener” Internet, and those who are concerned with saving the planet must be aware of which companies are working to power their services and websites with renewable energy.Continue reading →
In years past, only the richest individuals could afford to own multiple sets of clothes to switch out depending on the day or activity. The rest of the world made do with one suit or dress for formal occasions, and perhaps a handful of humble garments for day-to-day life. That traditional approach to clothing has changed steadily for the past several decades as modern technologies and garment factories have driven down prices. Today, we live in a world of fast fashion, with a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it transition from the catwalk to the store to the consumer and then quickly to the donation bin as styles fall back out of fashion. The cheap prices we enjoy today don’t really cost less than past clothing did, though – it’s just that rather than paying in money now workers are paying in suffering. Nothing is truly free, not really, which is a topic being explored by the new documentary directed by Andrew Morgan, The True Cost.
The True Costholds a mirror up to the practices of an out-of-control industry, practices which are not only devastating to workers but also have a huge negative impact on the environment. Air pollution, water pollution, and deforestation can all be laid at the feet of the garment industry, though of course not exclusively. Alberta Energy states that about 10 percent of the total greenhouse gas emissions come from this overproduction of apparel and textiles. Fossil fuels are being consumed at all ends of the garment process, from the farming machinery to the factories themselves to the huge container ships used to bring the finished clothing from the third world countries where they are produced to the first world countries where they are consumed.Continue reading →
Laura Ling is an amazing journalist who has partnered with Discovery Digital Networks and ONE.org to bring awareness to stories and issues from across the globe include this most recent story of the energy crisis happening in Africa. Interestingly enough, with access to cell phones, the middle class has exploded on the continent, but the ability to do simple things like charge a cell phone (much less, have consistent lighting in clinics, businesses or even homes) continue to be a struggle as a result of blackouts, shortages and a reliance on “dirty forms of energy.” 7 out of 10 citizens in sub-Saharan Africa still do not have access to electricity. This means expectant mothers, business owners, students and everyone in between are doing their best to move forward and continue developing thriving communities without being able to simply turn on a light.
I will not let the darkness hold me back
-Hussein Mwende, student
You’ve decided to take the plunge into parenthood but you are unsure of what measures you can take with your nutrition and lifestyle to make sure your baby is healthy.Often would be parent’s are not given clear directions on proper nutrition before and during conception because, even today, nutrition is often an elective in medical school so your doctor may not be well versed in nutrition. Here are 10 things you can do to ensure you give your baby the best chance to be healthy? Continue reading →
Have you heard? World leaders are committing to the Global Goals for Sustainable Development to achieve three extraordinary things by 2030:
End extreme poverty.
Fight inequality and injustice.
Combat climate change.
The Global Goals for sustainable development could get these things done in ALL countries for ALL all people. But to achieve these goals, everyone needs to know about them. Join us in offering your intention for our brothers and sisters around the world. Ours is a world without hunger by 2030.
Many are joining the move to inform and bring awareness to these goals! Pope Francis recently composed Laudato Si’, a letter urging everyone to recognize the crisis state of our planetary health: Continue reading →
Long have we told stories about, shared our tears with, sought freedom in the sea.
Returning to those waters is simple with 72% of our earth being covered by water, but do we take this massive, silent treasure for granted?
June 8th is recognized as World Oceans Day and the opportunity to remember our responsibility to our oceans and those residents of the sea is one we shouldn’t take lightly.
Some of our greatest minds remind us what the ocean means and represents: Continue reading →
Whether it’s the pressure of bathing suit season or all the beautiful tropical fruits out at the grocery store right now, we like to think of this as Smoothie Season! Strawberries, bananas and some ice cubes will get you there but why stop with the basics when the internet has so much more adventurous recipes to offer? Here are some of our favorite smoothies on the internet today! Continue reading →