So why am I writing about Earth Day today? Because there's so much hullaballoo about the one day. The other 364 days, however, need a little help.
To keep the Earth Day feeling alive, pick a single, small, Earth-friendly thing to do today. Then try hard to do it for the rest of the year.
Make it small and not too difficult, so you'll stick to it. Just pick one, and after it's second nature, the next eco-loving thing you do will be that much easier to accomplish. Here are some suggestions.
Suggestion #1: Put a basket or bin next to where you open your mail. Toss all the junk circulars and envelopes right in, and once a week or so, recycle the contents.
Suggestion #2: Dedicate one more day per week to a vegetarian meal. Meatless Monday, perhaps?
Suggestion #3: Put a bunch of cloth grocery bags in your car, and one on your car seat. The one on the seat will help you remember to grab the cloth bags every time you shop. Remember: cloth bags are for EVERY time you're at a store--book store, hardware store, drug store. Not just the grocery store.
Suggestion #4: Switch over from using paper napkins to cloth napkins. Even though cloth napkins use water, soap, and energy to wash and dry them, most experts agree they're better for the environment than throwaway paper napkins.
Suggestion #5: For most spills and clean-up jobs, switch over from using paper towels to cloth rags. You can find nice, clean, white toweling, called "Bar Rags," at most major grocery stores. Usually they're found on the kitchen-stuff aisle.
Suggestion #6: Do you already recycle your plastic milk jugs and soda bottles? Good! Now step up to recycling all your other plastics--empty jugs from cleaning products, pill bottles, shampoo bottles, dry-cleaning bags.
Suggestion #7: If you already recycle your newspaper, push yourself a little more. Recycle home-office papers, kids' homework, cardboard or paper from packaged foods, etc. And don't forget the magazines from the living or family room.
Do just one of these things all year long, and Mother Earth will thank you.
--Marion Wright Edelman