Green Gift Giving


Recycle? We Didn't Have the Green Thing Back in Our Day

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by a Selfish Old Person to a Smartass Kid

Checking out at the store, the young cashier suggested to the much older woman, that she should bring her own grocery bags because plastic bags weren't good for the environment.

The woman apologized and explained, "We didn't have this 'green thing' back in my earlier days." The young clerk responded, "That's our problem today. Your generation did not care enough to save our environment for future generations."

She was right -- our generation didn't have the 'green  thing' in its day. Back then, we returned milk bottles, soda bottles and beer bottles to the store. The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled, so it could use the same bottles over and over. So, they really were recycled.

But we didn't have the "green thing" back in our day.

Grocery stores bagged our groceries in brown paper bags that we reused for numerous things, most memorable besides household garbage bags, was the use of brown paper bags as book covers for our school books. This was to ensure that public property (the books provided for our use by the school) was not defaced by our scribbling and doodles. Then we were able to personalize our books on the brown paper bags.

But too bad we didn't do the "green thing" back then.

[Click Here for Full Revelation]


Green Cleaning with Garage Sales

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78457784 (1) When it comes to cleaning house, there's no more eco-friendly way to pare down than with a garage sale. The "reduce, reuse, recycle" mantra really rings true here, and allows you to get rid of some of your own self-declared junk while snagging a few extra bucks along the way. What could be better?

If you're feeling pinched under the amount of "stuff" in your home, consider organizing a summer weekend garage sale - or team up with your neighbors to peddle your unwantables in a block sale. (The more the merrier!) 

For a lesson in Garage Sales 101, we turned to pro-marketer and garage-sale diva Ava Seavey, author of Ava's Guide to Garage Sale Gold, who offered up the following easy tips:

  • Have clear, simple signs. They should be double-sided, have arrows and clearly state the date and time.
  • Put an ad in your local paper.
  • Write everything down. (Just like dieting.) Do this before, during and after the sale. 
  • Tag everything, unless they're grouped with other things likely to sell at a set price. (You want to be focused on exchanging money during hte sale, not haggling.)
  • Put everyting on tables, laid out neatly, if possible.
  • Categorize like items together.
  • Feel empowered when you negotiate - don't be afraid to say no. Don't feel intimidated; maintain prices that reflect a product's real worth.


Smart Shopping Tips for a Greener Lifestyle

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Grocery Shopping When it comes to green lifestyles, it’s true that the little efforts add up. While buying an electric car or carbon offsets for your vacation are admirable actions, there are also a million, tinier tasks you can easily add to your existing schedule – and budget – that will make a difference. Below, we’ve provided a checklist for you to serve as a remind during your next shopping trip!

  • Buy Fresh, Organic and Close to Home: Not only are fresh fruits and vegetables better for you, you eliminate the manufacturing, packaging and shipping, all of which strains the environment.  By seeking out fresh, organic, local produce you are doing both your body and local economy a favor.
  • Shop in Season:  If you are choosing an exotic fruit or vegetable in the dead of winter you know it comes at a high cost.  Think about the environmental price tag to fly that food to your doorstep and choose fruits and vegetables in season instead.
  • Eliminate Bottled Water:  According to the New York Times, Americans consume 30 billion single-serving containers of bottled water each year – plastic containers that will never biodegrade.
  • Shop Online – Instead of expending fuel and energy driving all around town take advantage of online sites that allow you to make multiple purchases and combine shipping costs.
  • Buy in Bulk:  Buying in bulk is smart on multiple levels.  You save money, time, energy and packaging. What could be smarter than that?
  • Go Vintage:  Rather than rushing out and buying the latest fads consider going vintage. Vintage boutiques are springing up all across the country. Not only can you be fashionable but environmentally conscious as well.
  • Ditch those Plastic Bags:  Opt for recyclable shopping bags whenever possible. Many stores now offer special discounts when you use recyclable bags for your purchases. According to recent estimates, 500 billion to 1 trillion plastic bags are used each year. Again, plastic will never biodegrade.
  • Reduce, Reuse, Recycle:  This mantra should be ingrained in every consumer's head.  If every American would recycle just one out of every ten #2 plastic bottles we could keep 200 million pounds of plastic out of our nation's landfills each year.

Source: MXEnergy. For more green shopping tips, visit Earth Tones.


All New for May 15, 2011 - 5 Frugal Tips for Living Green & Earth Friendly Oil Changes

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All new for May 15, 2011 - Our new issue sets its sights on for green-minded travelers, how earth-friendly is your oil change, 5 frugal tips for living green, and how to plan an action adventure vacation while treading lightly on mother earth. Visit EWP's Partner Website - Road & Travel Magazine now!!!


Creative, Green Gifts for Mother's Day

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Mothers-day This Mother's Day, why not treat mom to something special - and green? We've compiled some of our favorite ideas for the lady on your list, all of which give just as much back to her as Mother Nature. Customize one of the below gifts or create your own concept and leave us a comment divulging your creativity...

For the Gardening Mother
- In a terra-cotta planter, arrange a slew of gardening essentials to kick off planting season. Organic seeds, durable gloves made with natural fabrics, and homemade plant markers crafted from shaved sticks.
- Plan a day trip for you and mom to the local farmer's market (find one near you, here). In additon to quality time spent together, treat her to a few of her favorite, organic starter plants to really get this year's garden growing.

For the Spa-Goer Mom
- Pamper mom from head to toe with a gift certificate to one of these luxuriously sustainable spas. Rated Top 10 Green Spas and Resorts by Organic Spa Magazine, they're sure to provide pure indulgence for an hour - or a weekend.
-  Make it a DIY day when you whip up one or more of these sweet-smelling homemade body scrubs at home. Pair your pedicure-worthy treat with a set of eco-friendly nail polishes.

For the Hostess Mama
 - Brighten her eyes with beautiful dining accessories for outdoor, springtime dinners. These bamboo platters are sure to delight, as will these recycled glass goblets.
- Guests will oooh and ahhh over natural decor like this french herb wreath when it's hung on the front door. Surprise mom with something unexpected, but traditionally lovely.