Happy Earth Day
I (sorta) remember the first time I celebrated Earth Day. I think it was 1974 (or 1975 or 1976) and I think I skipped school. It seemed a justifiable reason at the time, as justifiable as any other excuse I could come up with. I skipped school a lot, especially in high school. A few years ago, I ordered my transcripts in order to enroll in my Nutritional Consultant program and it really is a wonder that I graduated.
Anyway, I’ve been eco-conscious ever since, mostly by choice, partly out of personal necessity. Back when I had gutters on my house – before the roof caved in – I collected rain in a barrel and used it to water my garden. I never run the water while I brush my teeth. I never use power/electricity needlessly. I am fastidious about how I wash and rinse my dishes. I wash and reuse my Ziplock bags. I recycle everything, and I mean everything, which is why my garden shed was virtually inaccessible for years until Walmart started accepting plastic. I have collected empty water and milk bottles – and everything else that was packaged in plastic – from the first day I moved here, using them for plant cloches and watering jugs. Walmart started accepting plastic while I still worked there, and while I was still riding my bike to and from work (another eco-friendly action borne out of necessity), I would carry 2 bags of recyclable plastics with me every day, whittling away at the mountain. I still take bags of plastic with me every time I go shopping and I still rinse and recycle my tin cans, which earns me money at the scrap metal facility a mile from my house. In fact, while I’ve been cleaning up my property, I’ve collected tens of dollars worth of scrap metal, money in my pocket. I donate my egg crates and empty jars to my local natural food store, where they are given to local farmers and/or sterilized and re-purposed for bulk honey and nut butter containers. Food scraps are tossed in the garden, given back to the earth or – back when I still had a freezer – they were collected and used to make homemade veggie stock.
I do not buy chemical cleaners. I use vinegar and baking soda for everything. Recently I washed all of my windows using nothing but water, newspaper and elbow grease. Squeaky-clean, completely invisible, you would be tempted to walk right through. I power-washed the algae from my aluminum siding using vinegar, a scrub brush, elbow grease and the spray nozzle on my garden hose. I have always gardened organically, improving the soil each year with compost, locally-collected horse/chicken manure and vegetable scraps. I have the (very happy) earth worms to prove it. In fact, I till the soil by hand so I don’t harm those happy worms.
I could do better. I should be riding my bike (the one loaned to me by a neighbor) or walking to work. I really would prefer to use a reel mower rather than a gas-powered one. That would solve my (ongoing) mechanical issues (a subject for another day) not to mention the exponentially improved workout aspect. But, the important thing is that these habits have become a way of life for me. They are part of who I am and I will take them with me to the city.
One of these days. (More on that subject another time.)
If you’d like to see what I’ve been up to lately, visit this link and scroll down. Under the Portfolio heading, the top two rows are new logo designs I was just recently hired to do. These jobs came out of the blue after praying for a miracle (seriously) (thank you, God!), after my hours were cut at work a couple of weeks ago (from 35 hours to 28 hours, sometimes 21 hours). I really cannot afford a financial blow these days, but now – one day a week – I get to work at home in my pajamas. My freelance dream is coming true, a little at a time. All part of The Plan, no doubt.