Archive for the ‘christmas gifts’ Category

All I want for Christmas is safe drinking water

Today I will join thousands of bloggers across the world in a global discussion of water and the issues it  faces.  The purpose of blog action day to get as many people as possible talking about this issue and bring it to attention.

There are 2 quick topics I would like to cover, one local and one global.

GLOBAL

I’m all for charities, but with my *limited* income I really can not support all the causes I would like to. What I challenge all of you to do is in lieu of a Christmas gift this year, consider shifting one of your gifts to a donation.

In honor of Blog action day I am suggesting charitywater.org as something to consider. I won’t go on too much about this, if you are interested in learning more please click on the link above. Charity: water directly funds sustainable water solutions in areas of greatest need. Did you know that 90% of the 42,000 deaths that occur every week from unsafe water and unhygienic living conditions are to children under five years old. Ahh I hate hearing things like this, it  really breaks your heart especially when you consider many of these diseases are preventable.  On their website charity:water states that “the UN predicts that one tenth of the global disease burden can be prevented simply by improving water supply and sanitation.”

I know most of us are counting our pennies these days, but please consider my challenge to shift 1 gift to a charitable donation this year!!

LOCAL

Although there have been a few free tap water tests happening in my community over the last few years, I was never able to make it to one or have my water tested. That’s why when I heard about the community groundwater monitoring network I was super pumped to sign up! Through this free program I will learn how my water is doing in respects to levels of Nitrates, Phosphorous and Coliform.  Stay tuned to find out how my results compare to other areas in the world!

 

Groundwater testing at BBEMA

 

 

The Bedeque Bay Environmental Management Association is who is putting on the groundwater program, if you live on PEI (yes on, not in) and haven’t checked them out before, check out thier website. They do all kinds of great stuff like this weekend they are hosting a build your own wind turbine workshop!

 

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What is a Big Green Purse? I’ll give you one! (review and giveaway)

Win a copy of BIG GREEN PURSE by DIANE MACEACHERN, just leave a comment. ( Open October 14-28 2010)

So the basis for me starting this blog was to write about my One in a Million Challenge (recently I’ve fallen a little behind on this, updates are coming…)

The One in a Million Challenge is an idea that Diane MacEachern came up where she encourages women to shift $1000 of their existing budget to environmentally friendly products.  Since women control 0.85 cents of every dollar spent, this adds up to a lot, like  ONE BILLION DOLLARS we’re talking.  That is enough money to make any manufacturer take a second look at their product and ask “how can I make this a better environmental choice?”.

Skeptical about the importance of buying eco-friendly products?

In her book, Big Green Purse, Diane explains why it’s important to choose the greener options. Diane touches on many subjects in the book, in fact pretty much anything related to living, from beauty products to cars to food.

In her chapter “CLEAN AND GREEN: CLEANSERS SCRUBS, POLISHES AND FRESHENERS”  she points out the health hazards we are facing today . For example 6.1 million kids in the U.S. have asthma, making asthma the #3 reason kids are hospitalized. She points out pretty clear links between what you use in your house on a daily basis with these risks. She then goes on to explain how to make simple easy shifts to healthier options. She makes it pretty easy too, with a thumbs down list of things to avoid, go green cleaning tips and even a where to shop guide.

Diane also has some pretty smart thoughts like “When buying a new appliance, light or computer to remember:  it has 2 price tags- what you pay to take it home and what you pay for the energy it uses” This book is so handy because she then goes on to list the top 10 ways to save energy and money.

It’s pretty clear that I’m a fan of the book, and that it is totally required reading for every woman, no matter where she is at on the going green scale.

One thing I did miss from the book is more info on eco-travel, a follow-up book is in order perhaps?

 

GIVEAWAY!

Want your own copy of the book? Great, cause I’m giving one away! Leave a comment and your e-mail address. Also if you feel the need to tweet or facebook or like Big green purse on facebook about this contest let me know and you’ll get 2 extra entries!!  (Open to US and Canada residents, over 18 please)

Use your big green purse

Hey, if you don’t win you should still totally pick one up. I mentioned where in my Greenie Deals post.  I love having mine around for reference!  You should also check out her big green purse website which is packed with all kinds of great info! As is the big green purse facebook page.

Greenie deals – 1st edition –

I’m going to start trying to do an update every few weeks on green deals, worth talking about eco buys  as well as contests and giveaways!

**PEI readers see comments section for easy eco buys**

Lee Valley

Free shipping until September 27th- Get some new gardening tools and do your fall clean up sans carbon emissions!

Chapters

Big Green Purse Book($4.99)72%off or E-Book ($12.99)32% off

Eco S.O.S. , kids book ($19.10) 34%off

Well.ca this week

Nature Photo Contest- Submit Pictures to the Nature Conservancy Open until October 4th 2010.

Bamboo Towel Set Giveaway open until October 12th 2010.

Envirobottles, no sale here just great water bottles. Figured I should post it as I did mention Stainless steel bottles.

Compulsive early Christmas Shopper

When September rolls around I usually start to prowl around for some deals on gifts for Christmas, more specifically toys.

With 3 kids I spend hundreds maybe even thousands of dollars a year on toys for birthdays, holidays and sometimes bribes.
This made me start to think of how disposable these toys are. Besides throwing the toys themselves in the garbage, how much packaging do we have to get though to get to these toys, that usually goes into the garbage too! I personally have spent 15 minutes getting a Barbie set out of its package! I’m still trying to find out exactly how much tons of waste  toys produce a year in Canada, but just to get a broad idea Mattel sells approximately 3.4 million Barbies a year. That’s just Barbie! If they changed to eco-friendly even in their packages imagine the waste it would save!
Don’t even get me started on the toxins in toys, craft supplies and children’s apparel. We’ve all heard enough about that, if you feel like refreshing your memory however, check out Green Phone Booth.

I decided to do a little organic Christmas toys shopping at http://www.raspberrykids.com/, first of all pretty much everything on this website is so cute I would literally buy at least 90% of what they sell. They have decent shipping rates and if you spend enough money then shipping is free! I also have a promo code good for 15% off (type in savvymom15 at checkout), as far as I know this coupon is good until the end of September. There are a ton of online sites that sell items  similar to these. I like this site for 2 reasons 1) It’s Canadian 2) I had a 15% off coupon.

Right now my kids are still at an age where I can influence their Christmas wish list, so why not teach them quality is more important that quantity? I understand that they will still want what they want, so I keep a small amount of my Christmas budget for last-minute-non-eco-friendly-gotta-have-it-toys.

Here is  great green idea: make your own  toys. If you can get the kids involved all the better!! I am a horribly un-crafty person but I could at least put together a play first-aid kit, with things I have around the house (syringe for baby medicine, gauze, plain button up white shirt for lab coat etc.) or a food set (tape up boxes, glue the lid on to jars and put pastas into it etc.) Bonus you get to REUSE what you already have = free and eco-friendly!(oh and I can bribe the kids with them)

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