Friday, August 24, 2012

My "Green" Failures

I've been doing my best to incorporate eco friendly ideas into my household and a lot of them work...but some of them don't.  For example-we thought it would be great to grow an herb garden.  It saves money, you can taste the difference between fresh and dried herbs, and it gives anyone who doesn't have a green thumb, a sense of accomplishment each time you use something from your garden.  I've had parsley, rosemary, and spicy basil going strong since the spring, and I don't know why, but the basil has yucky brown spots all over it.  It started off on just a few leaves...and now it's all over.  We decided to chuck the basil and keep the parsley and rosemary, which is still flourishing.  But it leads me to the question of why?  Why the basil and not all of the plants?  Mind you this isn't the first time we've tried to grow basil, and I'm sure it won't be the last, but gosh darnit-it's always the basil!

Notice the gaping space where the basil used  to be

My next idea was to line dry laundry instead of using the dryer.  We have a small drying rack on our wall and it gets filled with as much as I can load on there and the rest goes into the dryer, but the majority of the clothes that get line dried end up in the dryer anyways because they are so wrinkle ridden.  I know this completely goes against the reason for line drying in the first place-to save energy.  I've ended up only hanging underthings and sweaters and tops that clearly state "lie flat to dry" or what-have-you, but it disappoints me and my willingness to try to be more energy conscious, that this isn't working out for me.

I will say we're pretty good at recycling-paper, aluminum, cardboard, but I've gone into crazy "recycler" mode and almost feel like I'm becoming a hoarder.  "No you can't throw that away!  It can be recycled!  But not in our curbside pickup, it has to go to the recycling center.  We have to drive there and drop it off."

Things to be recycled OR things I think can be recycled (still doing some research)

My husband just looks at me like I'm crazy.  And 1/2 of our garage has items large and small that need to be driven over to the recycling center.  Which we'll eventually get day :)

Old hood range that our county recycling center will accept.  Some old wooden pieces that I figure can be reused or recycled...I won't throw them away and they've been in our garage for eek!...almost a year :(

With all that being said-sure you're likely to have a failure or two or even slip up-yes you threw some junk mail away in the trashcan instead of the recycling bin.  The point is you're trying.  And yes, you ARE making a difference.

Did you know:

Recycling one aluminum can saves enough energy to run a TV for three hours -- or the equivalent of a half a gallon of gasoline.

Recycling a single run of the Sunday New York Times would save 75,000 trees.

A single quart of motor oil, if disposed of improperly, can contaminate up to 2,000,000 gallons of fresh water.

Source- (Check out this website for more great tips)

So think about starting small.  Even if you start off only doing it half the time, maybe you can make it into a habit...and maybe you can teach your family...and then you'll be doing your part to make the world a little better one green step at a time.

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