April 06, 2015

16 Easy Ways to Start Being Green

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April is Earth Month and Earth Day is coming up on April 22nd. As the wife of an Earth Science teacher, this day is something that is much talked about and is something that my husband gets excited for. We are always trying new ways to be green- partially to help out the environment and partially to help save money and be healthier.

16 Easy Ways to Start Being Green
Here are some of our easy tips to start being green:
1. Buy reusable beverage cups- Buying a reusable coffee mug and water bottle can help you save money and stop a lot of waste. When you drink a few water bottles per day, this savings can add up. When you throw a bunch of water bottles or coffee cups away, this creates a lot of unnecessary waste.

2. Use simple household cleaners- I am pretty new to this one but so far, we love using vinegar for cleaning. My tip is to clean the microwave, heat a mixture of water and vinegar for about 5 minutes and then keep the microwave closed for about 5 more minutes. This will make the stuck-on food come off quite easily. 

3. Use energy saving lightbulbs- When we first moved into our home, we switched out all of the lightbulbs with energy saving bulbs. Not only has this saved us money on our electricity but is also better for the environment. The only area in our home we don't have these are in the bathroom (the color of the lighting can make your skin look kind of funny.

4. Turn off lights- When you are not in the room, turn off the lights! This one is really easy.

5. Wash laundry in cold water- We always use cold water to wash our laundry and I have not noticed a difference in how clean the clothes are yet.

6. Plant a garden- We love growing our own garden each summer. Our favorites are tomatoes, green peppers, jalapenos, zucchini, spaghetti squash and lettuce.

7. Use energy efficient appliances- Our fridge and dishwasher have the "energy star" label. If you are buying new appliances, you might as well buy ones that are energy efficient.

8. Pay our bills online- We use automatic payments and online payments whenever possible for bills such as water, credit card and electricity. This helps save paper.

9. Walk to nearby errands- When Troy and I run errands that are nearby, we try to walk if possible. My parents live only 1/2 mile away and we try to walk most times to their house (exception: picking up Adalyn and dropping her off in the morning.

10. Use a reusable k-cup- We use a reusuable k-cup for our Keurig much of the time to cut down on the cost of coffee and to help prevent throwing away tons of those little plastic cups.

11. Use rechargeable batteries- We use almost all rechargable batteries for things like the remote, camera, Wii remotes, Adalyn's toys, etc. Batteries can be expensive and are terrible for the environment so using resuable batteries is a great idea.

12. Keep water heater temperature low- When we moved into our house, we realized that the water was quite hot and turned the water heater down. It is still plenty hot and we save money and energy to heat the water.

13. Use a reusable k-cup- We use a reusuable k-cup for our Keurig much of the time to cut down on the cost of coffee and to help prevent throwing away tons of those little plastic cups.

14. Turn the heater down- Our house was built in 1926 and is not very energy efficient. To save money, we keep the heat low at 63 degrees when we are home and 59 degrees at night. We don't mind putting on a sweater or cuddling up under a blanket.

15. Pack your lunch in a reusable bag- Instead of buying lunch out or packing your lunch in a paper bag, invest in a reusable bag.

16. Use eco-friendly beauty products- Beauty products can wreak havoc on the environment and it is a great idea to start switching over some of these products to eco-friendly options. I recently picked up some Tom's of Maine products from Walmart including the Silly Strawberry Fluoride Toothpaste, Antiplaque & Whitening Peppermint Fluoride Free Toothpaste, Whole Care® Peppermint and Spearmint Fluoride Toothpaste and Unisex Long Lasting Apricot Deodorant. These products work well and are a better choice for the environment.

The ingredients in the Tom's of Maine products are environmentally friendly and help support their belief in sustainable farming practices. They use quality, naturally sourced ingredients that have minimal processing. They have strict guidelines for having products that are sensitive to the environment.100% of the energy used is offset by investing in wind energy credits (So cool! My parents almost got to get a windmill on their farm and we love seeing windmills used for energy).

Tom's of Maine also uses energy-saving light fixtures. They recycle many products including cardboard, paper, toothpaste tubes and more.They use vegetable based inks on printed materials and packaging. These are just a few of the things that Tom's of Maine are doing to help out the environment. Click here to get $1.00 off any Tom's of Maine product purchase at Walmart.

These are some of the things that my family does to help us be green. What are some of your favorite tips for being green?

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  1. There's nothing like homegrown fruits and vegetables. Your tomatoes are beautiful! #client

  2. I didn't know about the water heater tip! That would also help with saving money. I need to go and see the heat on it and see if I can turn it down. Thanks for the green tips! http://plumbingandair.com/emergency-repairs


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