Recycling on Vacation Too

June 27th, 2008

I have a new suggestion for you when filling out comment cards at hotels this vacation season:

Ask the hotel to start including recycling bins in guest rooms.

Or at least in the lobby. And that leads me to this question — What do you do with items you’d normally recycle when you’re away from home?

While on vacation, you’re probably tempted to just throw those items away. After all, you’ll have enough to contend with when you get back. Sorting through recycling you took on the plane or in the car? Hmm, doesn’t seem like much fun, does it?

The easiest solution seems to be asking hotels or B&Bs to start including recycling bins for their guests. Some hotels already do this, and you can search for them at Environmentally Friendly Hotels.

What do you do with your recycling while on vacation?

Win Recycled Pooper Scoopers

May 27th, 2008

Enter a cool contest to win recycled Skooperbox doggie poo disposal for easier walks at the dog park or beach. The contest is sponsored by Paw Luxury, a green pet website, and is located at Tree Hugging Family where I co-blog with Jennifer. You have until June 12 to enter, so go!

Image via flickr.

Need a Push to Recycle?

May 26th, 2008

RecycleBank actually pays you to recycle.

Participating areas are equipped with recycling containers that have computer chips used in weighing your recycling. According to the weight of your recycling, you receive points redeemable at local merchants like Petco, CVS Pharmacy and IKEA.

Areas that have used this program have seen dramatic increases in the amount of people who recycle.

Of course, this program seems to have a few downsides. What about the extra paperwork involved with redeeming those points? The RecycleBank website shows a customer redeeming paper coupons, and their FAQ says that some participating merchants insist on mailing paper points. Also, I’m wondering if it’s possible that some people may be inclined to include non-recyclable items in their container just to get more weight.

Maybe I’m just being pessimistic. If it works, why criticize? Right now, the program is mainly in the Northeastern US, but will probably soon be offered in other areas as well. If the program isn’t available in your area, contact your city’s services department. Also, contact RecycleBank and they will let you know when they come to your area.

If you’ve used this service, please let me know what you thought.

Rachael Ray Garbage Bowl, huh?

May 9th, 2008

I saw something extra silly at Bed, Bath & Beyond a few days ago.

A Rachael Ray garbage bowl.

Well, I just had to read the box. Apparently she’s been promoting the use of a garbage bowl to save time while cooking. You throw your scraps in the bowl instead of making more trips to the garbage can.

Maybe it isn’t such a horrible tip to give on a cooking show, but do you really have to manufacture a whole new product with packaging for this? Why can’t cooks just use an existing bowl in their kitchen? This thing is nothing more than a large plastic mixing bowl anyway.

Rachael Ray’s garbage bowl struck me as extremely wasteful and a good example of consumerism. I don’t have anything against perky chefs, but she’s cashing in on her popularity in a bad way.

Send Organic Flowers for Mother’s Day

May 2nd, 2008

Flowers are lovely, but flowers grown using toxic pesticides take the fun out of it.

Pesticides pollute water and harm wildlife. Worker exposure to pesticides is also a great concern, particularly in countries where some pesticides that have been restricted in the US are still used.

The best way to stop the pollution caused by toxic pesticides is to create more demand for organically produced flowers.

So, give both Mom and the environment a hug this Mother’s Day.

Visit Organic Bouquet to order organic flowers.

Image via flickr.

Celebrating Earth Day

April 18th, 2008

How do you plan on celebrating the upcoming Earth Day on Tuesday, April 22?

Earth Day has come under attack by greenies who say you shouldn’t just think about the earth one day a year, but I don’t think that’s the idea. Earth Day started in 1970, and its principal founder, Senator Gaylord Nelson, had this to say about the very first Earth Day:

“Earth Day worked because of the spontaneous response at the grassroots level. We had neither the time nor resources to organize 20 million demonstrators and the thousands of schools and local communities that participated. That was the remarkable thing about Earth Day. It organized itself.”

The seeds of Earth Day were planted back in 1962 when Nelson persuaded President Kennedy to go on a conservation tour, which began in 1963. The conservation tour didn’t have a dramatic effect, but it put the wheels in motion for the first Earth Day, seven years later.

So, sure Earth Day may seem like an old, unnecessary idea to some, but we need to remember how it represents a time when environmental issues came to the forefront of national attention for the first time.

I’m not really sure what happened to cool the fire between 1970 and now, but we obviously haven’t done enough to protect the environment. Will your children look back and smirk at the idea of this Earth Day that accomplished nothing? What might another 38 years of nearly no change bring about? We don’t really need to find out.

Make some new green goals this Earth Day and celebrate them throughout the year.

Top Button Adds Eco Section

April 12th, 2008

Top Button, a consumer source for info on fashion and beauty trends, is adding a new green section — Eco-Button. The section officially launches on April 18, and you can visit it here.

Features will include:

  • Celebrity news and designer updates on who’s going green.
  • New eco-friendly products, boutiques and online shops.
  • The scoop on exclusive industry and trade events.
  • TOP Green Tip of The Week

It’s really a nice site. I would have never known that JCPenney is adding The Simply Green Label due to consumer demand. I’m not exactly a mall person, but I do plan on checking out the new label.

Sign up for Eco-Button for free here.

A magical video about skipping the bottled water

March 30th, 2008

tap-water.jpgLivan left a comment on My SIGG bottle about a magical, educational video on the wastefulness of bottled water: What’s Tappening? Seriously, Livan and Liberty are magicians. And if they aren’t, they fooled me.

Here’s what they say on their YouTube page:

This video is for educational purposes. We are not making any money from this video and we are not sponsored, we made this video because we truly believe in the message of Tappening and because we love Magic.

Check it out, and please think about giving up bottled water if you haven’t already. I think this video will help inspire you.

Doggie Dooley for composting dog poop

March 26th, 2008


I’m categorizing Doggie Dooley under “Green Products,” but I’ll let you decide.

Since my only pet Choco is a cat, I don’t have to contend with piles of dog poop in my yard. He’s nice and always goes in his litter box. I don’t have to poop hunt.

The Doggie Dooley from Gaiam is an underground steel bucket with a foot pedal for opening the lid. You put the hunted-down and scooped-up poop inside. A natural enzyme and bacteria formula that you add breaks the poop down into an odorless liquid that is supposed to be harmless to lawns. I guess that means it’s harmless to people too.

The product costs $76. A one-year enzyme replacement supply costs $18.

Gaiam lists the Doggie Dooley with their composting products. And they promote it as saving plastic bags. You just scoop the poop and place it in the Doggie Dooley.

What do you think? Would you use this product?

Photo from Gaiam.

Green spring links

March 21st, 2008
Happy first day of spring!


Roll about in rattan. I don’t know. That’s really what it looks like you’d do in this expensive wicker-bag that ecofabulous is writing about. I do like that blog though. But not sure about this rattan thing. Rattan is sustainable and springy though.

Tree Hugging Family co-blogger Jennifer wrote about 60 Eco-friendly Ways to Celebrate Spring. It’s like a nice spring breeze. Really, the ideas and the images are all so springy. Can you tell I love spring?

Put some spring in your step with SoyJoy. Or at least enter for a chance to win a full month’s supply at Pretty by Nature.

I’m going to shamelessly promote my own post at Tree Hugging Family now: Ten Ways to a Greener Easter Basket. Also, a cool contest for free and adorable kid shopping bags from Envirosax.

A neat case for reuse: a Walkman soap dish at Junk Creations. I can’t tell if it drains though. That’s important.

Green Living Tips is talking about Avoiding mosquito bites. Hmm, something that comes with warmer weather, but I still love spring anyway.