Respect Our Mama - 5 Things You Can Do Right Now to Protect Mother Earth
Our mama is in need of some serious support. Just like us human mamas, Mother Earth provides, nurtures, cultivates and sometimes she just gets really tired of everyone's sh*t. If you're like me, the complex problem of climate change seems truly overwhelming and honestly that my small actions won't make a difference.
That is not the mindset that will solve our big problems.
We must all continually do the best we can and collectively we will make progress. As Vincent Van Gogh is attributed to saying: "Great things are done by a series of small things brought together."
Here are 5 things you can do right now to play your small, but mighty, role:
Buy a reusable water bottle. 8 million tons of plastic make their way into the ocean each year. 90% of sea birds have plastic pieces in their stomach (source). There is a plastic patch in the ocean that spans 1.6 million square kilometers and contains an estimated 1.8 trillion pieces of plastic (!!!) a great way to do your part to prevent this is to stop using single use plastic. Bottles, straws, bags, as little packaging as possible. I swear by Hydroflask bottles because they keep the water cold, but there are so many options. Buy one online, at Whole Foods, wherever and importantly, use it.
Say no to Plastic Bags. I put this one in here, because this is my personal initiative for Earth Day 2018 and this public proclamation will hold me accountable. I have let my plastic use get out of hand. I shop at Publix, which tends to dole out a lot of plastic bags per purchase. While pre-mama me would have said no, now I'm saying 'oh this will be great for diapers' or for 'doggie bags.' It must come to an end. My Earth Day action today was to purchase compostable garbage bags and doggie waste bags.
Support our National Parks - I am really thankful to have spent much of my childhood roaming the mountains of Rocky Mountain National Park. These experiences shaped my feelings about nature and the deeply important role it plays in my life today. National Parks were created to conserve the natural and cultural heritage, landscapes and ecosystems of select natural areas. Truth be told, they are some of the few places on the planet that you can enjoy nature relatively untainted by industrial and technological life. Parks Project has created a line of merchandise that directly support Park Conservancy programs like trail restoration, education, native planting and more. You can see a full list of their projects here.
Buy Sustainably Made Clothing - not so long ago I made the commitment to purchase sustainable and ethically made clothing. To be honest, it was and continues to be a challenging transition. But, I'm really glad I made it. Now every time I shop not only do I get a pretty thing to wear, I am also supporting businesses that are changing the world for the better and systems that are protecting our planet. Here are some of my favorite resources for finding eco-friendly garb + for those of you who love athleisure as much as I do, here is my own list of ethical and sustainable activewear.
Buy Local - It is estimated that an American meal now travels on average 1,500 - 2,000 miles from farm to plate. This is arguably an insane waste of fossil fuels (not to mention the implications for flavor and local economies). In my experience, local, seasonal foods just taste better. Plus, it's super cool to meet the person who grows your food and to teach your children about where food really comes from (not the grocery store shelf!). The best place to start buying local is at your local farmers' markets. Try this nifty USDA tool that will help you search local farmers’ markets by zip code.