Sunday, November 28, 2010

Getting Greener

I'm a good girl. I ride my bike to work* at least once a week when the weather is decent. I try to combine trips in my car. I always bring reusable bags to the grocery store. I'm a die-hard recycler. I sponsor the environmental club at the high school where I teach (a brand new LEED building). I'm even a volunteer speaker for a program through the Chicago Department of the Environment.

But. BUT.

I use Cascade. I have a zillion different cleaning products, and I'm fairly sure most of them are toxic. I buy too many prepared foods. I eat meat. I work pretty far away and I do drive plenty of the time. (Its Chicago. It gets cold. I do my best here, people.) Some of those are things that probably aren't changing anytime soon, like the driving and the meat. But I want to make some changes in the cleaning supplies and eating department sooner rather than later.

I can't bear to throw anything out, so I'm currently using up my cleaning supplies, and then I'll start buying green. But what? My mom gave me some Trader Joe's detergent, so I'll start by trying that, and I also hear Seventh Generation has a good detergent (and its available at Whole Foods, three blocks from my house!). I'm definitely not a clean freak--just ask my sister--but I know many people are afraid to switch brands because the new one may not work as well. So we'll see how this goes, and I'll let you know as I start picking new brands. Oh, and another bonus? Many of the green products are multi-taskers. Hooray for taking up less space under the sinks!

What behavior are you trying to "green" up?

*I work 13 miles from home. My route includes the jail (actually one of my favorite parts and, if you think about it, perfectly safe), crossing under two different highways (90/94 and 55) and several industrial areas.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Hi Mom!


I started a blog!

I've been thinking about doing this for awhile, and with an empty long weekend (thanks, thanksgiving!) it seemed like a great time to get started. I'm excited to write about living better, both for my wallet and the environment. I'm not into personal finance, but I'm all for saving money wherever I can, as well as the environment.

Thats not all I'm about--I'm involved in my church, volunteer organizations, I ride my bike whenever I can (including my crazy long commute!) and I love to bake. I bought my condo a year ago and filled it up with (nice and high quality) hand me downs, which I'm finally trying to give my own look. I'll touch on those things a little, but mostly its all about saving money and the planet.

Here's hoping this helps me (and maybe you) develop some good ideas!