Thursday, April 22, 2010

Happy Earth Day!

I love this day. I think it's a day that helps more people stop and consider their role in caring for our world and all of creation.

When I read God's word, I think it's pretty clear that God created the world and all that is in it, and that He loves all of His creation, not just us humans. We see in the gospels, that Jesus says that God clothes the flowers of the fields and feeds the birds. We also learn that all of creation is longing for Jesus' return and they wait with groaning for that day. It is clear to me that God has a special relationship with His creation, even though we cannot see it and that as with the other gifts He entrusts to us we are to be good stewards on this earth.

It is important to me to be a good steward of all God has given me, I often fail miserably at this, in many different areas, but especially in caring for His creation. However there are some things I've learned to do to better reduce my impact on this physical world. Below I listed some of the things we do that I hope are a little unique, I know these days we are overwhelmed with articles on living green and most of them say the same ideas over and over. Bonus, they'll all save you money too!

*I use dryer sheets two times, they work just as well the second time around, cutting down the number of dryer sheets I use by half.

*I use less detergent than recommended by the manufacture, it will clean just as well. And of course use concentrated detergent and never use more than recommended, it will NOT help clean your clothes any better.

*I got this idea from my friend Shannon, stop buying envelopes, instead use the ones that come in the mail with your bills. This of course only works if you pay your bills online, which I hope by now you are doing, it not only saves paper but about .50 per bill payed, that adds up! You get so many free envelopes in the mail, you could never use them all.

*I use cloth napkins, keep the same one assigned to the same family member and you can use them for up to a week before washing.

*I use washcloths to clean off Jack after eating, not wipes. Saving about 3650 wipes a year.

*We print on scrap printer paper from Kyle's office, just turn it over and print on it, this works for 99% of things we print. We also choose the "use black cartridge only" feature when printing, so as to not use up the more expensive color ink cartridge.

*We don't buy new printer cartridges, but instead have them refilled.

*We think before we shop, what is it I actually need or even want from the store, make a list, check to make sure I don't already have apples or a white shirt, and then put it off a day, maybe by tomorrow you'll have found a good replacement or decide you don't need/want it.

*Use to give and get free items people no longer want. Or pick up things people put out for the trash, we have so many items in our house that we got from people's trash, you would be shocked! I'm not kidding you, people put out great stuff by the curb just because they got something better and are too lazy to call Salvation Army to pick it up.

*Share. Not everybody needs to own a baby swing or a punch bowl or a yogurt maker or maternity clothes. I am a part of a great community where we are always sharing and there are so many things that I don't need to buy because I can borrow it during the times I need it.

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