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#266 turn off your air conditioner

27 Sep

Okay…probably most people don’t have A.C’s like this anymore….but I like the picture because it reminds me the cranky, broken AC in the cartoon movie The Brave Little Toaster, which is a movie my mom loves and one that I do as well too. Anyway, on to the deed- turning off the a.c.!

I am usually pretty good about this for a few reasons:

  1. I am not home enough to benefit from leaving my air on
  2. I am cheap/poor.
  3. I have ceiling fans both in my living room and my bedroom.

The author suggests turning off the AC for a week- not only will you save money (veryy important nowadays) but it will also benefit the earth’s atmosphere. Yay! Now, I realize for some of my fellow west-coasters (LA hit its record high for the day today- 113 degrees) this may not yet be feasible…until like November (sad, yet true), but hopefully you can partake! For my mid-west and east-coasters- its just a week! Or, start small…maybe turn it off every two days. Believe me, it won’t be thaatt bad!

In pen-pal news, I finally was able to catch up with Megan (yay!!!) and she’s going to email me her kiddo’s names tonight.  I can’t wait to start this project with my kiddos this week. The quote for today I found on a fellow bloggers site (http://finishsomething.wordpress.com/2010/09/27/the-age-of-innocence-not-hardly/) and I am stealing it because I really like it. It’s very thought provoking. And it’s by Stephen King, whom I used to be OBSESSED with the summer before and then during my sophomore year of high school. I think the first book I read by him was It. I was pretty scarred by Cujo and hated Misery– but I diverge. Anyway, I like this quote! Until tomorrow…

“No one can tell what goes on in between the person you were and the person you become. No one can chart that blue and lonely section of hell. There are no maps of the change. You just… come out the other side. Or you don’t.”

 – S.King (Shawshank)

#258 use a lunchbox

29 Aug

I haven’t been a very good blogger this past week. I’ve been pretty busy with preparing for school; tomorrow is the first day back! I am pretty excited to go back, even though summer went SO QUICK.

What kid doesn’t love lunchboxes?! I remember it was such a big deal when I was little to have a cool lunchbox. Lunchboxes, my friends, are not just for little kids anymore. They are for grown adults who want to save the planet and reduce waste!!

My first year of teaching I did pretty well using my lunchbox; I reused my TFA lunchbox (the one from Institute…which was filled with subway sandwiches, raisins, chips, 2 cookies, and 2 cokes- Shay and I mastered the art of sneaking an extra of the latter two) which lasted about half way through the year until it began smelling/getting stained (just googled Teach For America lunch box, hoping an image would come up but none did). I then started reusing my plastic Target bags to carry my lunches in.

When I moved into my new place, I received a little goody bag. The bag all my goodies came in,  is actually a Whole Foods bag so I am going to use that as my lunch bag. 🙂 Target sells lunchboxes, which actually keep the items chilled- which is really awesome, especially if you don’t have a refrigerator at your workplace.

Not only should you use a lunchbox, but I also recommend the following: utilize a water bottle. I bought one today at Target for 5 bucks. I also bought a recycled travel coffee mug. This will benefit me and the planet: no more spending money on Starbucks coffee and no more throwing away cups. 🙂 The tough thing here is REMEMBERING to use my purchases!!!  Until tomorrow (which I promise will happen, so I can talk about my kiddos!!).

“if you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy, and inspires your hopes.”

-Andrew Carnegie

#279 pick up trash

6 Aug

hey litter bugs: STOP LITTERING!!!! There is nothing more annoying than seeing trash on the ground…especially when the trash can is merely five extra steps away. This past school year I got into the habit of picking up the trash I would see in my classroom or in the hallways. There were too many times when I would ask a student to pick something up and throw it away and he/she would reply, “It’s not mine”. Well yes, I know its not yours but (1) throw it away because its the right thing to do and (2) throw it away because I’m your teacher and I’m asking you to.

For those of you germ-phobics, there is an easy alternative. Go to your nearest bookstore, walk to the magazine aisles, and look at the floor. Observe how many order forms are lying on the floor because they’ve fallen out of their respective magazine. Now bend over and pick them up: putting them either into the garbage or into the magazine racks. Check! You’ve picked up some trash.

Even if you don’t want to pick up others trash, make sure you at least pick up your own. If you miss the garbage can, don’t leave it there! Walk over and put in the bin. And please DO NOT spit your gum out..unless its directly into the wrapper or garbage can. There is nothing more aggravating than unknowingly stepping into gum and ruining the bottom of your shoe…which you know is ALWAYS gonna be your favorite pair. The author mentions a man nicknamed Rob the Rubbish who travels through England picking up litter; I found a news article about him http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/1527987/After-Snowdonia-Rob-the-Rubbish-heads-for-Everest.html

“First say to yourself what you would be;
and then do what you have to do.”

-Epictetus

#249 take off your shoes at the front door

27 Jul

sandals!

my favorite sneakers…Chucks (and my kids sneakers of choice too)

Growing up my mom always made us take our shoes off at the door. I always thought this was because she was worried about the cleanliness. The habit of taking my shoes faded when I went to college (as did making my bed, putting away clothes…) and carried through when I moved to Las Vegas. However, now that I have my own place completely by myself, the second I walk in my shoes come off…I think because its carpet.

Anyway, the author states that wearing shoes inside will cause eco-damage and expensive cleaning of carpets. Simply by taking your shoes off inside will help to protect the environment. For me, I think if this were to become a universal idea it would save that awkward moment when you enter someone’s house for the first time and you never know if you should take your shoes off or leave them on. At least I don’t think I am the only one who encounters this weirdness!

Happy birthday to my mom! Until tomorrow…

“I think the environmenet should be put in the category of our national security. Defense of our resources is just as important as defense abroad. Otherwise, what is there to defend?”

-Robert Redford

#158 Join the asthma walk to help find a cure

6 Jul

So technically I didn’t do exactly this deed- but I did something related. More than 20 million Americans have asthma (including me!) and nearly 4,000 people die each year. Pollutants in the environment pose increased health hazards to asthma sufferers. The deed said to check out www.lungusa.org to help participate in the local Asthma Walk.

I logged on, but unfortunately couldn’t find anything that dealt with the asthma walk. There was a volunteer sign-up, but I didn’t sign up. There are a lot of volunteer opportunities in the book and I don’t want to go volunteer crazy and over-tax myself. Luckily, there was a deed I could do- hello, Clean Air Act Amendments of 2010, s 2995.

This Amendment has been introduced into the Senate and aims to strengthen the Clean Air Act already in place.The Amendment aims to clean up sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide and mercury from power plants. The bill will dramatically reduce air pollution across the country.  Each year, fine particles and ozone (which are created by nitrogen oxide and sulfur dioxide) lead to thousands of premature deaths and illnesses.  EPA estimates that the bill could prevent between 12,000 and 30,000 premature deaths each year.  This important legislation will provide significant public health benefits that will lead to less asthma attacks, emergency room visits and even fewer premature deaths.

Simply by filling out information about yourself and hitting send, a letter is sent to your local senators (hello Mr. Ensign and Mr. Reid) asking them to support the Amendment. This is similiar to the Child Soldier letter in that it takes maybe 3 minutes to do!

Updates:::

  •  In regards to post #995 rooting out ambivalence, I have done it. I have made my decision and stuck with it even though it hurts my heart…The hardest decision I’ve ever made, definetely not the easy one, but the right one for the time being….
  • And for #800, I chose to apply to volunteer with Shade Tree. I filled out an online application and am waiting to hear back. I think I may give them a call later today or tomorrow.

Until tomorrow…

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.”

-Margaret Mead