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#1 of 101 Old 01-26-2009, 03:09 AM - Thread Starter
 
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After a few searches I didn't find this tribe, so redirect me please if it already exists.

This tribe will be a space for mamas of diverse backgrounds (cultural, spiritual, religious, etc.) who are committed to striving for a more just and sustainable relationship with the Earth-- in the way we raise our children, the way we manage our homes, the way we eat, the transportation we use, etc.

It should be a place of hope and inspiration, where we share what we are doing mentally, physically, and spiritually to protect our earth and all of life for our children and future generations, as well as how we might be contributing toward advancing the public discussion and ultimately the transformation of society toward Earth Community (also known as The Great Turning). I would love to choose a monthly book to discuss if others are interested; currently, I would propose David Korten's book just released this week called Agenda for A New Economy. Other suggestions?

But, first let's introduce ourselves and our stories of how we became (are becoming) motivated and empowered to live in a more caring relationship with the Earth.

I am a 31-year-old mother of two boys (David 7 and Eli 4). I'm a social worker and my family and I recently lived and worked in Rwanda for a year. I think that transformed me in many ways. It helped me view community as more central to life and also opened my eyes to sustainable agriculture, sustainable food systems, and sustainable livelihoods and economic systems. It definitely inspired me to live more simply and help me to realize more deeply how out of balance our world is in terms of Americans consuming so many resources beyond what we truly need. But its amazing how I've gotten sucked back in to so many of many old ways here (my downfall is my love of long, hot showers).

I love to shop at farmers' markets, bring my own bags, make our food from scratch, and compost. We're hoping once again to start a small garden in the spring (we hit power lines, cable lines you name it when we tried in the fall). I still struggle to remember to turn off the lights, I hate washing plastic bags, and still have light bulbs I need to relace, plus we live in an old drafty house, and I have a weakness for turning up the heat a degree or two. I am a contemplative, peace & justice Christian/Catholic, but also interested in other sources of spiritual inspiration like Eckhart Tolle. I am currently interested in emergent consciousness and The Great Turning, and how we need to create new narratives in order to build an earth community. I am also interested in the shift from an industrial-growth, corporate-finance-capitalist economy to a life-sustaining economy and what we can do to help it along.

Here's hoping for some other green mamas to introduce themselves!
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#2 of 101 Old 01-26-2009, 07:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
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bumpity bump
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#3 of 101 Old 01-28-2009, 12:12 AM
 
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I'm going to move your thread to the Green Living forum.

Flowers, fairies, gardens, and rainbows-- Seasons of Joy: 10 weeks of crafts, handwork, painting, coloring, circle time, fairy tales, and more!
Check out the blog for family fun, homeschooling, books, simple living, and 6 fabulous children, including twin toddlers

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#4 of 101 Old 01-28-2009, 04:57 AM
 
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I am a green-mama. My husband recently had a change of heart and is gung-ho about being green now too, so we are making some big changes.

*eta more of the story*

I have been interested in reducing my footprint on the earth, and living more in harmony with it for a while. Hubby has recently started to recognize his spiritual connection with the earth and how important it is to him to take care of the nature around us.

I have done away with paper towels in our home, and we clean about half of the time using natural ingredients (vinegar mostly).

We reduce, reuse, and recycle. I thrift shop instead of looking for new things, and I like to DIY/Re-fashion items to work for us, rather than putting them straight into the garbage and buying new.

I sew, spin, knit, crochet, and a host of other crafty-skills, which I use to help us cut back on store-bought items, and to provide myself with inexpensive and constructive entertainment.

I made a set of reusable grocery bags that we use to shop with.

We will continue to make positive changes as well I want to get a CSA membership this year and plan to do a lot of our own canning and dehydrating for winter food storage. I want to learn to forrage as well.

Its nice to meet you
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#5 of 101 Old 01-28-2009, 07:40 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Nice to meet you too! That's great about making so many things for your family. I'm hoping to do more of that. In fact I was planning to get some handspun wool from my farmer's market this weekend to start with. And canning! Let me know how that goes. I just got a canner for Christmas, but haven't tried to use it yet:
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#6 of 101 Old 01-28-2009, 11:18 PM
 
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I guess I am green, I am vegitarian about 70% raw. I use CDs and cloth wipes. I buy used items when i have to buy at all. I use baking soda and vinegar and essential oils for everything. I take the bus or walk.
but...
I don't garden. I don't line dry clothes. I don't wear all organic clothes. I would do those things but I can't afford to now.

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#7 of 101 Old 01-29-2009, 05:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi sugareemama and greenmamato2,
Thanks for introducing yourselves. This thread is not about how green you are, but for those who want to strive toward a more caring relationship with the earth even if they are just starting off.

The idea of this thread (that I original placed in finding your tribe) is to be a group of mamas who want to get to know each other, share support and learning together, about the practical aspects of green living, but possibly some larger discussions about living economies, sustainable food systems, politics, spirituality, etc.-- sharing and learning from each other about the sources of knowledge and inspiration for a green lifestyle, and perhaps how collectively we can help bring about the Great Turning to save our planet and future generations. Perhaps we can discuss books, articles, post links etc.

What do you think? Any ideas for how we should proceed with the discussion?
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#8 of 101 Old 01-29-2009, 05:58 PM
 
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hello fellow green mamas!

i think i am just starting in my journey to being more "green" for my family as well as future generations on this earth. what my husband and i have slowly begun to do in the past year or so...

-bring our own shopping bags
-turn off lights when we're not using
-use energy efficient lightbulbs and any new device we might purchase is -usually energy star.
-we dont drive or own a car, by way of default really because we live in nyc.
-i use vinegar and essential oils for almost anything i can think of-its the best!
-try to buy local-we wish we could grow a garden, but not in our 1 bedroom apartment
-have cut out all chemicals from home

some things i would love to learn about/implement:
-making own laundry detergent and hand wash
-thrift shopping for clothes for family
-so many others im sure i dont even know about! but im open to trying new things that are beneficial for all!

i really came to this point for health reasons rather than bigger global reasons, but along the way i've learned the importance of it all and how it really all works together and makes more sense!

so, thank you for starting this thread, i look forward to further conversations!

jeanell
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#9 of 101 Old 01-29-2009, 07:47 PM
 
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*also, harmonymama: i meant to tell you that what you did and experienced in rwanda is fantastic! i would like to learn more about how their communities live as far as sustainable resources.

thanks again!
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#10 of 101 Old 01-29-2009, 09:45 PM
 
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I would love to learn more about sustainable living, but it just seems soo expensive. At least to get started with any amount of property that could support sustainability. I like the idea of only supporting local businesses that are sustainable. I wish there was a way to get eco-friendly electricity from the power company. I used to live in an area where you could request to have electricity that was either solar or wind. My parents have photovoltaic panels that they use for their own personal electricity, for their house and their diesel camper, but they live in CA so its not to uncommon there. I wonder if it would be economically logical for me to do something like that but I have such a small house and wouldn't know where to begin since the power company here doesn't buy extra power.
Thanks for listening.

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#11 of 101 Old 01-31-2009, 08:21 PM
 
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We're working on becoming more green! Right now, we're renovating our house to make it more green. DH sees it as a way to save $, but she's coming around to the green idea too! We just installed a new, efficient HVAC and a tankless water heater. My latest search is to find green drywall - so far, nothing looks good except for EcoRock, but it won't be available on the east coast until the end of this year and we need to install some in the next few months.

On the food front, we aren't doing so well - we have little sun, and although I'm trying to get a garden plot, most of what we buy is from the grocery store, and non-organic. Cost is an issue, as well as convenience.

I'm happy to be here!
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#12 of 101 Old 02-17-2009, 02:05 AM - Thread Starter
 
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How is everybody? Thanks so much for introducing yourselves. Did you hear the new stimulus bill that will create millions of new green jobs and provide incentives for renewable energy and fund a national rail system will be signed tomorrow! Can you tell I'm excited!?

Another thing, that I'm thinking about is that as important as it is that we all try to live sustainably, we all know how hard it is to do alone. There's been sort of a privatism of sustainability efforts in recent years, but I think we are entering a new era of collective (including political) efforts to save the earth. :

I just started about the movement for a new, just, green economy! Its exciting and fun.
http://reNEWeconomy.org

So nice to meet all of you! And congratulations on all your efforts. I still feel like there is so much more I could do, but I try to take it one day at a time. Would anyone be interested in discussing books? Or maybe we could all post our sustainability growth edge (you know the thing we are each working on, but not quite there yet); what do you think?
Celeste
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#13 of 101 Old 02-18-2009, 12:18 AM
 
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Hello new here (to this thread) introducing myself- I'm/we're on the road to living greener or for me just back to it.I grew up in a pretty green home- we recycled as much as possible, had a great garden in the backyard and at a community site, rode bikes, etc. I found when I moved out that it was too expensive to do a lot of the things I had grown up with being a single young mom to 2 los so over the years strayed farther and farther away but always feeling I was going the wrong way.Over the past few years I've had a very strong pull back to a more "natural" way of living and being closer to the Earth and doing better by her.

So we are trying as best as we can to go "green" for me again and for the kids into a new way.I am trying not only to teach my children how but to be more in touch with the Mother.Sometimes I feel cheesy saying it that way but in my heart that is who she is.

I am excited to be on this thread may not have alot of ideas to share as of yet but can't wait to learn from you all.We are planning to palnt a garden this year (raised beds) and I want to hang a clothes line besides the little things we have already started doing- like eating healthier and buying only at 2nd hand stores and passing on things we no longer need instead of just tossing them!

We are also starting to celebrate the seasons as holidays so the children can learn that each time of year is of special importance and has it's reason. We are also getting out into nature more often and hope to camp at least a few times this summer so we can explore "new" places.

Great to be here!:
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#14 of 101 Old 02-18-2009, 06:14 PM
 
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Originally Posted by harmonymama View Post
Or maybe we could all post our sustainability growth edge (you know the thing we are each working on, but not quite there yet); what do you think?
I vote for this one!
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#15 of 101 Old 02-19-2009, 12:35 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Welcome Fairymom! And thanks for the vote Koofie! Other votes?
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#16 of 101 Old 02-19-2009, 10:19 PM
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Hi! So glad you started this thread.
I have been going green for quite a few years now and it is all starting to come together! We do all the typical green things...CD, hemp napkins, recycle, compost, eat organic....etc
One thing my family did last year after Earth Day was to not buy anything for a month (we had our exceptions and rules, but it went very well). We are thinking of doing this again as it really makes you aware of what and where you are buying things.
I haven't had a chance to look through pp yet, but just wanted to stop in and say hey! :
Suzy

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#17 of 101 Old 02-19-2009, 10:27 PM
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Would anyone be interested in discussing books? Or maybe we could all post our sustainability growth edge (you know the thing we are each working on, but not quite there yet); what do you think?
Celeste

I was on a group a while back where once a month we posted a topic and we all discussed it. By the end of the month we all realized that we could have been doing more and then we were able to discuss what we did to make a difference.

For example..one month we discusses bringing your own bags to the grocery store (this was before it is now where most places sell their own bags and like you to bring your own). By the end of the month several of us had purchased reuseable green bags and were bringing them with us to the grocery store. There were a few mamas in the discussion who already brought bags with them to the store and they were able to contribute to the discussion, but they also made changes that they may not have had it not been for the discussion. One mama started carrying the small zip up bags in her purse so when she had a quick stop and didn't have her regular stash with her she could use that bag...one started bringing her own produce bags..etc. etc.

So anyway, I am up for any kind of discussion that will help in any way. Discussing books and possibly having a book club would be fun.
Thanks!

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#18 of 101 Old 02-20-2009, 02:57 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Welcome mlh!
I like the new idea of creating a topic list, and doing one a month together (see mlh above). So I think that is a third option.

We've gathered a great group. I can't wait to begin getting to know each other better, and really becoming a circle of support as we pioneer a sustainable culture.

Here are our three ideas (we might even choose to do two at a time, say one related to personal sustainability efforts, and one more collective/political like a book discussion or activism issues).

sustainability growth edge
Monthly topic (like bring bags shopping)
Book discussion

So, those of you who haven't chimed in. Please share your vote. I'll compile them and we'll figure out how to begin.

My vote is for combining a monthly topic list (we can all contribute ideas, and perhaps eventually archive them for others' benefit), and a book discussion, so those who want to read and discuss it can, and those who'd rather focus on personal efforts (or who don't have time to read books!) don't feel left out.

Again, everybody please chime in. Add topic and/or book ideas if you wish.
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#19 of 101 Old 02-20-2009, 08:54 AM
 
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ME, ME, I want to join : We are a vegan family that live on our little organic farm in a nice town of 1500. We have an organic garden, fruit trees and berry bushes. We can and freeze for the winter. EVERY light in my house has eco bulbs even though we rarely use lights and we unplug everything when not using it to get rid of the phantom usage. I take a lot of pride in my 60.00 electric bill for a family of four (one being a teen) in a four bedroom house. I keep the heat way low and bundle up : We use no chemicals, line dry, compost and lots of recycling and reusing. I knit and love to thrift store shop. We bring our own home made bags. I like the idea of a monthly subject. As for books, no time for me because I homeschool my 3 year old and it has gotten busier now that she is reading.

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#20 of 101 Old 02-20-2009, 08:51 PM
 
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I don't get much of a chance to read either - I teach Reading and have a hard time just keeping up with the kid's books!

My big want/need is a garden. We get very little "good" sun for veggies - most of my yard is shade. there are two community gardens nearby, but they both seem to have long wait lists - one told me two years for a plot. I'm still trying to figure out if I have any other options within walking or bike-riding distance.

In other news, we have now bought a new energy-star washer and a new (now gas) dryer. It was a V-Day present to me! Right now we are also re-doing the basement, and we will re-insulate it and the attic when we can. I've also convinced DH to get a solar tube for our hallway and recycled tire shingles, but those are down the road.
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#21 of 101 Old 02-21-2009, 12:01 AM
 
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I read but I don't read. I skim mostly and hit the parts that interest me most.So like right now I am "reading" i think 3 books- Table for 8, The Indigo Child and Birthing from within. I could do that with books here too.

I really like the monthly topic idea.As I feel I am "new" and don't know how much I can share but want to hear the How To's.

There's my vote!
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#22 of 101 Old 02-21-2009, 01:26 PM
 
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Hi everyone! I am waiting for my Zoe to wake up so she can nurse, so I have a few minutes ...

I am 42, married with 3 kids, living begrudgingly in a big city. I am beginning to despise the word Green and leaning more toward the concept of living Simple. I'm trying to figure out how best to teach by example ... my personal goal for my family is a Zero Footprint lifestyle, in every way. We fall off the wagon occasionally, but for the most part, we rarely buy anything new, we rarely throw anything away, and we are all about not being wasteful. (we do a LOT more than that, but I don't think this is the place to outline all the 'green' things we do)

I hate that it's so expensive to do the right thing. So, as a result, some of our other habits (resale) help us to save money to upgrade our food, for instance. We drive biodiesel vehicles and try to buy produce from a co-op or farmers market instead of the grocery store (because 'local' is the new 'organic'). We also try to make our own food as much as possible to limit packaging and crappy ingredients. I wish we could walk or use mass transit, but we live in a place where that's virtually impossible. And with a newborn, we can't ride bikes.

Our dream is to sell the house and buy an RV trailer and live on the road - with solar panels on the roof ... we'll have to go with a big truck instead of our little VW station wagon, but the overall gain will be worth it.

My exciting news for today is that we're getting chickens!!! We're getting a coop tomorrow, and getting 4-5 chickens as soon as we can. This is part of 'closing the loop' that we love. We already compost and have a minimal garden, but this has even more purpose.

--janis

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#23 of 101 Old 02-21-2009, 02:26 PM
 
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I just came across this thread. I am trying to do my part toward "simple living". I like that term jrabbit. Unfortunately, living in a small apartment in the city (right outside New York CIty) makes that difficult at times. I also have some physical limitations that make some things harder for me. Since we live in an apartment we are not allowed to use solar panels or have a clothes line or compost. Put over the last few months I have begun using homemade laundry soap, eco friendly dish soap, bring my own bags to the store, use mama cloth and family cloth, cloth "paper towels and kleenex". We haven't bought any paper products other than tp for the boys in a very long time. I sew most of my son's clothes and some of mine. I also sew reusable snack bags and sandwich wraps that I sell on etsy. I am vegetarian and try to buy organic as much as I can. Unfortuantely DH is not veg and does't really see the need for organic or even whole foods. He is the ultimate junk food junkie and would live on fast food and tv dinners. So we do a lot of double cooking at our house. Eventually I want to compost kitchen scraps but haven't gotten there yet. My car is 13 years old and gets 42 miles per gallon so I feel pretty good about driving it.

I am on my "do over" family. After raising five children, mostly as a single mom, I remarried. I have a beautiful 6 year old son that we adopted in Guatemala when he was 5 months old. We are homsechooling him. I have 8 grandchildren, three of them are also homeschooling.

Well, this gives you a general idea of who I am. Glad to meet all of you.

Kathi

:::Mom to 5 adult children and 8 year old, Dakota "Why do they call it homeschool, we're never at home?"
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#24 of 101 Old 02-22-2009, 02:15 PM
 
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I have a story. Yesterday I went to the grocery and had forgotten my shopping bags at home so decided to buy new ones (I never seem to have enough anyways!) instead of breaking down and using paper. In line I grabbed my two bags and put them on the belt. The guy in front of me then grabbed one for his groceries! He hadn't been intending to buy one but just the act of sseing someone else do it inspired him to do so! I made me feel good to pay it forward kinda in this way! I hope it happens agian.

I konw not a big deal but made me feel good!:
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#25 of 101 Old 02-26-2009, 11:55 AM
 
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How's everyone doing? Have we decided on what we are going to do yet?

Don't want this to get lost!Soooooo......



Bumping!:
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#26 of 101 Old 02-26-2009, 05:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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This is such a great group! Thanks for all the votes. I'll be compiling them shortly.

I had to come here and share that the biggest rally and civil disobedience ever to stop global warming and climate change is happening this Monday March 2. Check it out!: If you're on the east coast, go! This'll definitely be in the history books.

http://www.capitolclimateaction.org/
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#27 of 101 Old 02-26-2009, 09:14 PM
 
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This is such a great group! Thanks for all the votes. I'll be compiling them shortly.

I had to come here and share that the biggest rally and civil disobedience ever to stop global warming and climate change is happening this Monday March 2. Check it out!: If you're on the east coast, go! This'll definitely be in the history books.

http://www.capitolclimateaction.org/
That sucks - I'm in the DC area but have to work and am nearly out of sick days for the school year! Why can't they do more of these things on weekends!
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#28 of 101 Old 02-28-2009, 10:29 AM
 
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Hi I would like to join this group also. Somethings my family does to preserve this precious place we call earth.
-Turn off lights when not being used
-Use CFL light bulbs
-Compost
-Recycle all that we can
-Buy second hand
-Cloth diaper
-Use reusable menstral items
-Make own laundry/dish washer soap
-No chemical use
-Work for a chemically free cleaning products company out of Canada
-Use reuable shopping bags
-Carpool as much as possible or don't drive
-eat organic/local
-Line dry laundry, when possible
-Started recycleing program at church

glad to have found this tribe, Peace, Love and Recycle to all my fellow Tree Huggers!:

 Yoga loving momma to DD, Eden Raine 8/04 , DS Brett Edwin 2/08, DS Brantley Albert 12/12 and wife for more than a decade to Jason 
~Living to preserve Gods green earth~

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#29 of 101 Old 02-28-2009, 01:37 PM
 
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I just found this group. I'm 30, married, mother of 3 girls. Every year, we try more and more to lessen our carbon footprint. We limit our buying, keep lights off, don't heat rooms we're not in, winterize, etc... There are also things that I'm not ready to do, like family cloth. Maybe someday I'll change my mind. Maybe someone on here will change my mind.

I noticed that a few people have mentioned it being expensive to be green. I've found it to be the opposite. Some green products are expensive, but do we really need all of those products? It would be great to be totally off the grid and still have our luxuries, but we can also start doing other things that save our planet and save us money. I'd like to see some discussions on being green without breaking the bank. Maybe links to DIY resources.

Wendy - mom to dd1(11), dd2(7), dd3(3)
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#30 of 101 Old 02-28-2009, 01:46 PM
 
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When I think of it being expensive being green, I think of the replacement of items, such as our HVAC. The one we replaced wasn't super old, but we found out it was way oversized and very inefficient. We were wasting so much $ and gas to power it. When We decided on the model we bought, it was quite a bit more than the less efficient models, but it saves us a lot of money and gas, because it is 3 stage - it can run basically on low medium and high, depending on out heating and cooling needs.

Being green is cheaper in instances when we buy from the thrift store or go no poo, or clean with vinegar and rags.

Right now, we're spending a lot to make our new-to-us house greener and more efficient, but the expenses now should save us a ton of energy and $ in years to come.

I'm hoping being green will get lots less expensive for us in the next two years, once we finish our major improvements.
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