Happy Earth Day!

Today marks the 40th anniversary of Earth Day. To celebrate, Evelyn, Mack and I took a long walk to a lovely park on the Chicago River. Even though we live in a big city I still want my kids to connect with nature. Fortunately, Chicago is a very “green” city, with more than 7 million square feet of roof top gardens, extensive public transportation options, bike friendly roads and 11,860 acres of public parkland.

While its nice to acknowledge the Earth’s fragility and stunning beauty once a year, why not honor it every day?! I make an effort to teach Evelyn about ways we can reduce our impact on the environment on a daily basis. By including her in tasks like bringing waste to our building’s recycling bins and using cloth towels instead of paper she is learning to be a conscious steward of the Earth. I know the little things I do will become part of her daily routine as she gets older.

It is my hope that the world Evelyn’s babies grow up in is a healthier and cleaner one than where we are living now. In order for that to happen, everyone needs to start making thoughtful choices about how they use the many resources we are so blessed to have. We all know that switching to compact flourescent lightbulbs and recycling are some easy ways to reduce your impact on the environment, but here are some other easy things you can do to:

Reduce your plastic consumption:
Make your own laundry detergent
Give up bottled water
Bring re-usable bags into EVERY store (not just the grocery!)
Use cloth diapers
Make homemade yogurt
Make homemade liquid hand soap

Reduce the amount of chemicals you allow into your home:
Make your own dusting spray
Clean the bathroom using castile soap and vinegar
Giving up dryer sheets
Kick out any products with artificial fragrances
Skip liquid body wash and use a simple bar of soap instead

Reduce the amount of paper you use:
Make homemade wrapping paper
Choose the right toilet paper
Quit use of paper towels and paper napkins

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