Radishes - Photo by Kate Kaemerle
I’m a sucker for a good New Year’s resolution and this year my list is going green. Feel free to borrow from these and add share some of your own.
1) Eat Local/Grow Your Own – This year I’m growing some of my own food, however humble. My baby steps in the winter are growing bean sprouts in a jar plus some herbs on the window sill. When it warms up I’ll plant some leafy greens, tomatoes and peppers on the deck. And of course shopping for locally produced, organic food as much as possible. A weekly trip to the farmers’ market is a must for me.
2) Save energy/save money – I’ve already made significant strides in this area by installing a super efficient furnace, insulating my home (no insulation in the walls previously-yikes!) and using energy efficient bulbs. This year I’ll focus on using less energy and water through a couple of strategies – shorter showers, install a clothes line, lower the thermostat (yes, that’s me wearing the fleece jacket indoors – sexy!) and other fine-tuning around the house. I’m also unplugging the energy vampires when not in use. Except the computer. A woman has got to know her limitations.
3) Drive less/bike more – One day I’d love to get an electric or hybrid car. But my current car is paid for and I don’t want to give up that luxury for car payments. By parking the car and riding my bike for short trips (most of my trips are less than five miles) should save money two ways – less gas and also not buying a gym membership to work off that extra poundage. A twofer!
4) Bag it! – I have the canvas bags, I just need to remember to bring them to the store with me. Every time I walk or hike and see a plastic bag stuck in the brush or to a stately saguaro I curse the plastic bag! So I have a few extra canvas numbers and stash them in the car, the bike basket and hanging on a hook right next to the door to ensure my shopping bag green cred. Plus I need to remember to wash them – they do get gross after awhile. When the bagger makes a “ewwww” face when filling your bag, it’s time to throw it in the laundry.
5) Use less paper – What happened to the “paperless office”? We’re printing more stuff than ever. I’m working to get most of my bills and bank statements emailed to me instead of hard copies. I read the news online instead of getting the paper and I support their online advertisers. Plus, as a compulsive list maker I’ve switched to an online list manager instead of carrying a notebook. Check out Wunderlist – it’s free, easy to use and it manages your tasks online and syncs with your smartphone so it’s always with you. I have 16 lists going currently, from work to home to New Year’s goals (yes this list started there) and a dozen more. And yes, I love checking stuff off my lists so much that I’ll even write something on the list that I already did just to check it off. What can I say – I’m a list geek.
There you have it – my five green resolutions for 2012. Please share your green New Year’s resolutions with us in the comments. Have a Happy and Green New Year!