Friday, June 27, 2008

July's Mini Eco-Challenge

It's time to sign up for next month's mini eco-challenge.  June is almost over and summer is in full swing. My tomato plants are full of yellow flowers (can't wait for actual tomatoes), school is out and my boys are getting along like brothers (that's how I answer people when they ask me how they get along with each other), we're getting ready for vacation, and here in the U.S. things are turning red, white and blue all over. Oh, and the farmer's market e-mailed yesterday and said there will be corn next week. Oh, yum!

Yep, all signs point to the beginning of July. 

If you've recently discovered A Little Greener Every Day, we have been doing one week mini eco-challenges at the beginning of each month for the past few months. They are small manageable environmentally friendly changes you can make that you only need to commit to for 7 days (although you're welcome to continue with them after the seven days are up).

Enough talk. Here are July's mini eco-challenges:

1. Don't buy any individual beverages in any form of bottle or cup. No soda, juice, iced tea, sports drinks, water, coffee or any other beverage in an individual bottle or cup whether it's plastic, aluminum, glass, paper or any other material. Now may be the time to invest in some reusable travel bottles and coffee mugs. 

2. If you are running central air conditioning in your house, turn your thermostat up two degrees. It's estimated for each degree you turn up the thermostat, you save 2% in energy.

3. Replace 10 regular light bulbs in your home with compact fluorescent bulbs. According to the Energy Star website, each CFL uses 75% less energy and lasts 10 times longer.

4. Take navy showers. I'm throwing this one from our first challenge back in the mix. Now that it's summer, perhaps some of you might be willing to try this one. A navy shower is when you get in the shower, soak yourself, turn off the water, soap up, then turn the water back on to rinse off. You only have the water running when you are initially getting wet or when you are rinsing off.  I actually started doing this recently. 

5. Wake up 1/2 hour earlier each day and go outside with a journal and write about going green, your thoughts about the environment, what you hope to accomplish environmentally, what you are seeing in the natural world while you are out, or anything else that has to do with this green journey you are on. Take a few minutes out to not write and just enjoy creation.

So those are your challenges for the month. Pick one. Pick all. Or anything in between. Me, I'll be challenging myself (big time) with #1 and #5. I've been doing #5 a couple times a week, but I'm going to commit to doing it for an entire week. As for #2, hubby runs the thermostat, so I'll suggest it, but I can't make any promises. 

So pick a challenge. I triple dog dare ya!
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Green Plan(t) said...

We're already in progress on 4 of the 5 challenges but the one that I would love to be able to do is #5.

It would be a great time to do a blog post since I seem to push my daily goal (and you see how rarely I post daily!) later and later. Plus, this time of year, early morning is the only comfortable time of day lol

Robin Shreeves said...

green plan(t) - thanks for joining the challenge. I'll put you on the side bar.

Allison said...

I will try to do the navy showers. I need to go to Home Depot and buy the special shower nozzle gadget that turns off the nozzle. Right now I have to turn off at the handle and when turned back on you are not sure if you will be blasted with hot or cold water! Yikes!
I told my husband about the challenge. He was in the navy and to challenge me he took a 2 min 41 sec shower. Show off!
I have to think real hard about the drink one. That trully is a challenge for me and my family. Not to mention we are going camping soon and really on quicker food, i.e. juice boxes, for easy and fast camping. I'll work something out for that.
I did the CFL's. And my blog is my journal. And I spend a lot of time with my tons of zucchini right now. Ha Ha. I am already cheap when it comes to A/C.
You're challenges are getting harder and harder. But I love it.

Robin Shreeves said...

Wait a minute Allison - the drink one was your idea!

There is a shower head that turns the water on and off? I need to look for that. Right now I have to turn it off from the faucet. When I turn it back on it comes from the spicket, not the shower head and it's quite annoying - especially if I have soap in my eyes.

I'm glad you going to try another challenge this month.

Cheap Cookin Mama said...

I'll go for one. Actually bought bottles for me and the kids for the pool instead of the individual drinks we did last year.

I'm thinking about the navy shower but not quite ready to commit. I think I'm addicted to my bathing routine as it grants me a few minutes peace:) Just read another post about it as well.


Anita said...

Hi! I found your blog through a "Google Alert" on Voluntary simplicity!
I love this challenge!
All our lights already have CFLs, and our AC is set at 82 degrees (which is as high as my dh will but I want to do 2 from your list - navy showers and waking up 1/2 an hour earlier for journaling outside...

Anita said...

Oh! I'm going to try #1, too, although my dh loves buying 24 packs of soda - breaking him of that habit will be interesting! Hopefully I can tempt him with fresh brewed iced tea instead! :)

Robin Shreeves said...

Cheap Cooking Mamma - I encourage you to give the navy shower a chance. It's really not so bad.

Anita - welcome! Glad you're joining us. I've been on a no diet soda kick for about a week now and I've been drinking a lot of fresh brewed iced tea with lemon in it or with fresh mint. I'm not putting any sugar in it and after a couple of days I got used to it. It's very refreshing and so much cheaper and except for some tea bags (which I'm pretty sure could be composted), there is no waste.