Saturday, August 21, 2010

Four Years. GO!!

Check it daughter and I were featured on the Four Years. GO blog.
This campaign is amazing!!!

A Campaign to Change the Course of History
FOUR YEARS. GO. is a campaign to catalyze and empower a fundamental shift in the direction of humanity, inspiring collaborative action, connecting individuals and organizations, and amplifying best practices and successes.

They are creating a global rallying cry to inspire an awareness of the urgency to shift humanity’s trajectory by 2014, before our destructive trends make that shift impossible. They are empowering individuals and organizations to set and reach goals that will cause a positive global tipping point by 2014, setting humanity on a new path toward a socially just, environmentally sustainable, and spiritually fulfilling future.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Rewind to Mid July

Wow, a crazy couple of broke down, decided to go back to school, looking for jobs, campaigns a goin', potlucks, potlucks and more potlucks.

So here is a rewind of the few weeks I missed.
The Little Activists-
A few weeks ago, an organization I volunteer with called Peaceful Uprising, received an invitation to go to a local summer camp and do an activity around climate justice. Having worked with kids for 11 years, and believing that kids are powerful activist, I immediatly volunteered to lead the activity.

Inspired by the book "When the Children Marched" and I came up with a great slide show showcasing kid activists all the way back from the 1800's to the present.

The day went pretty well, with games, art projects, dress-ups, and the making of a short film. It was my first time presenting Activism to kids and outside of deciding to take out a slide which showed a 6 yr old getting arrested for being a part of a peaceful civil rights protest march (the kids were pretty upset about that one); I really think the kids left feeling they had the ability to make a difference.
Recycled Night on the Town

My friend Becky invite me out for a night on the town. First we went to the Sugarhouse Farmers Market!! I love seeing people I know selling their own-grown produce. And I love love buying a bag of local cherries, sitting in the shade of a giant tree watching people go by. And then to look behind me into a vacant lot and see that a tree that I had planted as apart of a guerrilla gardening night was still there!! Wow it doesn't get much better.

But wait it did!! We then went to Tony Caputos downtown and sat outside on the patio and ate yummy Tiramisu, my favorite dessert. Afterwords we strolled the local gallery and saw some really cool recycled/reclaimed art pieces. Can you guess what they are made out of?

Bikin with Style-

I decided that if I was going to be riding my bike I would need a fancy basket/carrying thingy and being dirt poor at the moment, I jimmy-rigged an old crate onto my old rusted bike with a bungee cord and away I went!!
Thats right folks...going "green" is not always fancy! ;-) But it sure is super cool!!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Carbon Calculator

I have been getting emails from other pledgers asking how to determine their 50% reduction of use of oil and fossil fuels.
So I started scouring the web and I  found the Nature Conservatory's Carbon Footprint Calculator! And here are my results...

I was rather shocked to see that the World Average is more than 50% lower than my own carbon footprint which is roughly 50% lower than the United States Average. Wow :-(

I got a lot of work ahead but at least now I have a better idea of where I am headed and that feels great!!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

The power of kids

This is one of the most moving videos I have seen on YouTube. Having worked with kids for 11 yrs, I am amazed though never surprised at how powerful they are!!!

Inspiration from others

Today while reading the Huffington Post online, I ran across a great article about a couple in Dallas, Oregon - Amy and Adam Korst. They made a pledge on July, 6th 2009 to go TRASH-FREE for a whole year and they DID IT!!!

At our house we are pretty conscious about how much trash we create and....I am thinking that this may be a great companion pledge to our pledge to reduce our use of oil and fossil fuels!!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

One thing goes another takes its place

This weekend I will be turning off and draining our hot tub :-( I know that this may seem silly but it was a hard decision to make. I love soaking in hot bubbly water at night under the stars, especially after a long day in the garden pulling weeds or crouching by my computer working on projects.

However, as they say when one door closes another opens!!

This week we got a new SOLAR DRYER (as my friend Jenn would call it). Fully decked out with all the bells and whistles ;-)

I love the way my clothes smell, just like SUNSHINE, honestly they do!! ...though I have to figure out a way to help them retain a bit more softness. Don't need to scrub our skin clean each time we put on a clean shirt!!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Starting Point

I figured since we have pledged to reduce our use of oil and fossil fuel by 50% it would be helpful to know our starting point. So, I have taken a few photos to visually showcase this point until I complete a more thorough audit!

We bought our house in November 2008. It is in a great neighborhood within walking distance to two grocery stores, a library, parks, dining, plant nursery, and local shops. Its a modest house 3bdrm 1 bath, 1214 sqft (way bigger then my preference) with vinyl siding, an okay roof, minimal insulation, and older windows. It is East facing with some big trees in the front and in the back which provide nice shading in the summer.

We have a super old and inefficient water heater but our furnace is relatively new and a bit more efficient, though our ducts are not insulated so we lose a lot of heat that way.

Our kitchen appliances are older but work well.

I am a big fan of organic gardening!! One of the first things we did when we moved in was convert half of our backyard to gardening and backyard chicken (and two adorable ducks) space.

Here is a pic of our seldomly used lawnmower.

We recycle and compost much of our waste...

For transportation I have a 1996 Honda Accord badly in need of a new water pump and so we only drive it when absolutely necessary. We have used bikes...mine being the black single speed; which I got for $15, my daughter's being the smaller bike and the beautiful Schwinn 3 speed belongs to a friend (I am saving up for a Long Tail cargo bike!!).

I believe we are off to a great start!!!