Mark Your Calendar for National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day

September 5th, 2013


Unwanted or expired prescription drugs don’t just take up space in your medicine cabinet, they’re also a danger to have around. After all, you, or someone else, might accidentally take the wrong drug. Or someone may abuse your drugs.




You may have heard that it’s a bad idea to flush drugs, so what are you to do?

Participate in the DEA’s National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on October 26, 2013.

If you can’t participate in the take-back day, there are other options, such as safe trash disposal. Learn more about that, and other ways to protect yourself and the environment: Visit the FDA’s guide for how to safely dispose of drugs.

How do you dispose of unwanted drugs?

Back to School Recycled Style with Treesmart Supplies

July 31st, 2013

I’m going to let the pictures do most of the talking in this case. Treesmart makes some awesome recycled pencils, colored pencils and rulers. Do check them out for your back to school shopping.

Second life for newspapers

The ruler is made from recycled newspaper and recycled plastic, while the pencils and colored pencils are made from recycled newspaper.


Have you tried pencils made from recycled newspaper? They have some character to them, though that may be difficult to see in my photos. You do see letters, and the eraser works really well.

Note the super cute packaging for the colored pencils! And, uh, the cat foot…


These are hard, just like wood. (No jokes, people.) So, don’t worry about a flimsy product. They feel just like colored pencils that are made from wood. However, do note that these are mini colored pencils.


Look at the pretty colors.


What else from Treesmart

Treesmart also makes mechanical pencils, pencil cases and supply boxes from recycled candy wrappers and potato chip bags!

Are you shopping for recycled school supplies?

Disclosure: I received these pictured items at no cost from Treesmart.

Kid-friendly Alternative to Paper Mother’s Day Card

May 1st, 2013

I was out walking my puppy Stella when I saw this sidewalk art. It’s a tribute to a mother, and so sweet!

It occurred to me that such sidewalk art would be a great alternative to a paper Mother’s Day card.

Yes, Mother’s Day is May 12!




So, Dads and kids old enough to read this, hope for no rain, and get your hands on some chalk!

The neighbors will know how much mom is loved.

What other ideas do you have for nontraditional Mother’s Day gifts?

Living Wall at Charles de Gaulle Airport, Green Rooftops of Paris

May 1st, 2013

I was about to leave Paris, nibbling on my last macaron bought on a whim at the airport, when I saw this awesome living wall near my gate at Charles de Gaulle. Maybe it’s called a living panel though.


The French really know how to make things beautiful, don’t they? I won’t even begin to describe the airport bathrooms! Anyhow, besides this spectacular living wall, I also spied some green rooftops.

This Paris green rooftop photo was snapped from the top of the Arc de Triomphe. Let it never be said I don’t exercise. That was a tough climb up those nearly 300 stairs, but the view was worth it, even in the ever-present April drizzle.


There were other great, multi-level green rooftops as well, but the lighting was a bit of a challenge, and those images are grainy. However, I will leave you with the Eiffel Tower on a grey day.


And PS, it did rain on each of my five days in Paris, but that was just all the more excuse for a noisette!

Adventures in Reusable Bags, Things People Say to Me

March 2nd, 2013

For your reading pleasure, I present a collection of quotes and happenings from my adventures with reusable shopping bags in a city not particularly known for being green.

Of course, this isn’t meant to discourage anyone from taking their own bags to the store. The post is purely for entertainment purposes. Taking bags is worth it!


The funniest thing any cashier has said to me:

“You’re my first bag lady of the day!”


The biggest mess I made:

Machine washed a whole bulb of garlic inside one of my bags.


Most common misunderstanding with cashiers:

“Are you buying these?”


Most common question from cashiers:

“Do you want your meat in one of these too?” (well, yeah.)


Most annoying thing any cashier has said:

“It sure takes a lot more time to put stuff in these bags.” (no one was in line behind me.)


Question from puzzled cashier:

“So, you must really hate plastic, right?”


Most embarrassing thing a store manager said loudly:

“These bags look like lingerie!” (he was referring to my Chico bags.)


Please share some of your adventures with reusable bags.


(image via flickr Kanu Hawaii)

Clorox Green Works Makes Strange Advertising

February 21st, 2013

Is this Clorox Green Works digital ad insulting? Check yes or no!

I think you know my response.

Pawcademy Awards! Adopt Your Own Celebrity

February 20th, 2013

Before you watch The Oscars 2013, stop by the ASPCA Adoption Center on East 92nd Street in New York City to take home a star.

To get you in the Hollywood spirit, ASPCA has named 10 of its adoptable dogs and cats after this year’s nominees!

Celebrate the ‘Pawcademy Awards’

Beginning this Friday, February 22 through Sunday, February 24, adopters who take home one of the special pet nominees will receive a free gift. On Monday, the adoption fee will be discounted by half for any adoptables whose namesake actually took home an award the night before.

Here are the special pets waiting for you:

Bradley Cooper as Pat in Silver Linings Playbook (f.k.a. Spike), a dashing and charming 2-year-old pit bull mix who is looking for someone to love him for who he is.

Robert De Niro as Pat, Sr. in Silver Linings Playbook (f.k.a. Johnny), this 4-year-old may look rough around the edges, but he’s a real sweetie with a big heart.




Hugh Jackman as Jean Valjean in Les Miserables (f.k.a. Tori), didn’t get the best start in life, but is ready to move on from his rough beginnings and know the meaning of family.

Jessica Chastain as Maya in Zero Dark Thirty (f.k.a. Julie), this 1-year-old beauty knows what she wants, and will stop at nothing to get it. She is extremely intelligent and has a real go-getter attitude.

Jennifer Lawrence as Tiffany in Silver Linings Playbook (f.k.a. Lady), at 8 years old, Lady has been through some serious tragedies and has come out the other side as a stronger woman. She can be a great dancer for some treats, and will love you forever if given the chance.

Daniel Day-Lewis as Abraham Lincoln in Lincoln (f.k.a. Engert), this 3-year-old cat is sensitive, and stays true to himself despite tough circumstances. He is selective with who he lets in to his inner circle, but is devoted to those he chooses to confide in.

Anne Hathaway as Fantine in Les Miserables (f.k.a. Snowy), this 6-year-old domestic shorthair plays hard to get, but once she trusts you, she can be an amazing companion. Her complexion is unmatched, and those big eyes are impossible to resist.

Pi (f.k.a. Clementine), only 1 year old, this orange-striped stunner can sometimes be mistaken for a tiger! She is very active and lives to explore her world. She can be a bit rough when she plays, but when given interesting toys this wild cat will pounce on strings all day.

Argo (f.k.a. Bart), this 5-year-old is the cat you want in your corner if you are in a pinch. This cat may seem unassuming, but when given the opportunity, he can really shine.

Quvenzhane Wallis as Hushpuppy in Beasts of the Southern Wild (f.k.a. Belle) is wise beyond her 10 months of age. Don’t let her size fool you, this brave little girl is fearless and is not afraid to speak her mind.

Have you found your next best friend and star?

Change “Our Plastics Nightmare”

December 28th, 2012

Plastic Infographic

This infographic is courtesy of Education Database Online, a website devoted to helping people the best online schools for their needs. Embed the plastics infographic on your own site to help others gain a fresh perspective on recycling for the new year.

Perfect Trees for Small Spaces

November 19th, 2012

If you live in an apartment or other smaller space, but still want your place to be festive, no worries.

There are plenty of merry options for Christmas trees for small spaces! published my post called Five Christmas Trees for Smaller Spaces.

In the post, I reveal the wonders of paper trees on walls, real Charlie Brown trees, wall trees made of eye candy, and more.

Please do check it out.

And please have a fun time decorating!

How do you decorate your space for the holidays?

Blog Action Day 2012: The Power of We (Bloggers)

October 15th, 2012

This post is part of Blog Action Day, which is today (October 15). Even though I’ve participated in Blog Action Day each year since it began in 2007, I waited until the last minute to register this year because of the rather vague theme: The Power of We.

Then, I saw this great post from Successful Blogging: Your Blogging Influence and the Power of We. The author, Annabel Candy (what a lovely name), reminds us that bloggers must be careful with how they use their influence when blogging. She also discusses how bloggers work together to promote change. The post made me think about my goals for this blog, which was started the same year as Blog Action Day!

Am I using “The Power of We” when I update this blog? A big part of this blog’s mission is helping others (and myself) be more environmentally responsible. While you’ve likely seen fluff on this website, I do often write from the heart. And most importantly, I try to write honestly about topics that are important to all of us. Yet, it’s easy to get lost. I don’t always choose my post topics as carefully as I could, or put as much effort into them as I should.

To help hold myself more accountable as a blogger and hopefully inspire you to do the same, I’m suggesting a few guidelines for using “The Power of We” in your everyday blogging life. It’s my hope that these guidelines can serve as reminders that help us be more focused bloggers who do some good online by promoting positive, meaningful messages.

First: Share the important news.

I’m a bit disgusted by the amount of pure garbage that’s available for reading online, even from well known news sources that are now apparently trying to entertain rather than inform. I’m not saying we can’t have fun, but too often we veer off topic, away from our own personal missions as bloggers.

Some examples from my blog: My post entitled “Free Yourself from Endless, Annoying Credit Card Offers” is more in line with the mission of my blog than, say, the post entitled “Let’s Build Cat Nooks Like Frank Lloyd Wright.”

Though I tried for a green angle with the cat nooks post, the post informing readers how to make their mail boxes more lonely (with fewer credit card offers) is surely more valuable and more likely to promote positive change and save paper.

Second: Be honest, doubly.

You owe it to your readers to be honest, but you also owe it to yourself as a blogger. Why waste time writing about something you don’t personally believe in? Most of you know where I’m going with this. Public relations professionals are focused on connecting with bloggers like never before. It’s easy to let yourself get talked into writing about something you later realize isn’t that great a fit for your blog.

Third: Make yourself clear.

Nah, not transparent (though you shouldn’t be hiding relevant stuff either). What I mean is to write clearly focused blog posts that hopefully give the reader the information they were searching for when Google directed them to you. I can’t stand to read three paragraphs and still not know what the blogger is trying to get at. Or worse, I have to read way too much unrelated personal info to get to the juice promised by the headline.

Fourth: Do it 100 Percent. 

Similarly to there being too much garbage online, there are also too many well intentioned blog posts that only give half the story, and may not even direct you to the rest of the story. For example, in my post “Should You Ban Girl Scout Cookies” (because they contain palm oil), I failed to compile a list of alternative treats.

Fifth: Be positive.

I’m guilty of complaining a lot, but I try to stop myself. And I especially don’t want to subject readers to negativity. There’s another side to everything, so when you’re feeling really down about a particular topic, turn it around and write the kind of post that would really inspire you.

Do you make time to write the blog posts that are meaningful to you and helpful to others?