Happy Earth Day! Today is the day we celebrate all the creative ways that we can leave less of a footprint on this planet we call home. Wasn't it Kermit the Frog that said "It's not easy being green?" I've seen many blog posts today that have shared about all the things we "should" be doing, so that we don't add to the landfills and, in turn, it is supposed to give us peace of mind for our future generations. The hope that they will be able to enjoy endless supplies of clean water, clean air and green pastures (like we do) is motivation for us to make changes in our daily living. Frankly, I'm with Kermit.
It's not that I DON'T want my great grand-daughter (in fifty years) to enjoy a lungful of fresh air and clean drinking water, but on some days when the clock is moving faster than it is supposed to and the day has brought its complex web of trials and tribulations, an extra long hot shower is just what the doctor ordered to keep this mama sane. I'm just not willing to give that up.
I also don't want to give up paper plates. Sometimes they save me time and energy and that is almost always better for everyone in my family. I will probably never make my own shampoo. A compost bucket is not in my near future. And what is up with those CFL light bulbs? Do they save energy because the light is so bad and glaring that it would be better just to leave them off anyway?
Does this sound selfish to any of you? Am I being rude to future generations? Are you on this page with me or are you far more organized and able to deal with stress in much better ways so that you have decided that you will never purchase a paper plate again? I wish I could join you.
Not that I wish I could give up the convenience of paper products. But I do wish I could be more organized and have more creative ways to deal with stress so I wouldn't mind doing extra dishes. Will that ever happen? I know I could simplify and have more down time but will I ever really not mind doing extra dishes after a long and tiring day? Let's just say I never would have made it during the pioneering years.
Now, before you write me off completely as someone who is sending the future environment to Hell in a hand-basket, let me tell you what I do to contribute.
I DO walk to school everyday with the kids. We turn off lights that are not in use. We try to run the dishwasher after 4pm (but sometimes it's earlier and it can't be helped). My kids are good about turning off the sink water while brushing (they remind me). We do our best to recycle. I recently found out that you're not supposed to put the cap of your plastic water bottle in the recycle with the bottle...sorry about that, I just never thought about it...it's all plastic right??
We will try to do better. That's really my learning point today. We will do our best to improve, but please don't judge my Zip-lock bags and NORMAL light bulbs. I agree, we each have to do our part but we also have to know we can't do it ALL. I am also aware that we live in a society of convenience and I am grateful for the choices I have. I know many live with no choice. I promise that I will work harder to not take those choices for granted. I promise to live in a way that bears in mind the others that I am sharing this Earth with. So, my kids will walk home from school and empty the recycle bin when they get home. I will pick up trash when I see it to keep our neighborhood clean. I will try not to take a long hot shower EVERY night. But don't try to talk me into using those "other" bulbs and I promise you won't find a compost box on my porch any time soon. If you can live with that then maybe it won't be so hard to be green after all.