Monday, April 30, 2007
I also found it quite interesting that they raided the boys' recycling bins as well. Amazingly enough, however, as the other pictures show, they seemed to realize that the newspapers were recyclable, so they left those, but they BAGGED and THREW AWAY all their other stuff (We got that out of the dumpster, too.) But can you believe it?! People we didn't even know! Renters for the weekend! I find it ironic that they clearly care enough about "garbage" to know that it looks distasteful, and want to keep the environment clean. And they didn't like the look of our trash out on our porches, to the point that they took it upon themselves to dispose of it. Yet when it comes to their recycling knowledge, out of all of our stuff, the only thing that they visually recognized as recyling was newspaper...even though all the rest of the stuff was tossed in the same boxes as the newspaper (quite disgusting too, i might add). So they went through it, stole all of our recycles, and threw them in the dumpster. Amazing. Anyway, proves my personal take-home message from Royte's book--the public NEEDS to be better educated. If they were, obviously the motivation is there to keep the environment clean...they just need to be better informed of their options.
p.s. that exam was soo hard!! eek! have a great summer, everyone!
Sunday, April 29, 2007
Molly sent me a couple more photos to share with you (just click on this flickr photo).
And she has a great story to tell you about her recyclables; I'll let her tell you the story!
Saturday, April 28, 2007
1- Here I found pretty much any botttled water, juice, or soda (water: sam's choice, dasani, kroger, enon springs, ice mountain, aquafina, nestle pure life, fiji, Juice/tea: minute maid, lipton iced tea, Soda: sunkist, sprite, fanta, coke, sierra mist, gatorade, pepsi) and also any sort of common household cleaners (orange glo, windex, lysol) and a few other various food containers (heinz ketchup)
2- kroger grocery sacks, milk jugs, kroger yogurt smoothie, any anti-bac hand wipes container, cacique-drink up- Yonique yogurt, baby powder, 7-11 slurpee cup, the actual recycling bins and most trash cans themselves, lotion, coffee creamers, shampoo and conditioner bottles
3- I couldn't find any!
4- elmer's glue bottle
5- subway cup, food storage containers, ziploc microwave bowls, rubbermaid
6- dannon activia yogurt, client's medicine cups, 7-11 super big gulp cup, some trash cans, styrafoam cups, wendy's cup, plastic utensils,
7- "white out" correction tape, welch's orange pineapple juice bottle
I found absolutely nothing at all on many various wrappers, most of them were the snack sized food portions (any bread, candy in general, cheeses, granola bars, little debbie/hostess )
Then, after reading some of the non-conventional messages on various packages, I began to wonder what other sorts of interesting labels I would encounter on products outside the realms of plastic. The messages varied quite a bit from some that were very environmentally friendly, to some that were not so friendly. Here is a list of some of my more intriguiging "finds" on the "non-plastic" packages:
◦ Glade air freshener spray: "you can recycle this steel container in an increasing number of communities. Call 800-558-5252 for recycling information. It also had "contains no CFCs which deplete the ozone layer"
◦ Air Wick: "contains no CFCs which deplete the ozone layer" and "please recycle when empty"
◦ Pringles: "canister contains at least 50% recycled material, 15% post-consumer content. For more info call 1-800-568-4035"
◦ Eclipse gum: read "do your part" next to a little symbol of a stick figure throwing away trash into a canister
◦ Sam's choice root beer can "recyclable aluminum container if facilities exist in your area
◦ Kroger mac and cheese box: "carton made from 100% recycled paperboard, minimum 35% post-consumer content"
◦ Papa john's pizza box: "corrugated recycles"
◦ Comet: "package contains at least 75% recycled material(minimum 50% post-consumer), the surfactants in this product are biodegradable, contains no phosphate"
Lastly, I just wanted to list this website:
It is a concise, informative (and visually-pleasing) website mainly about recycling plastic. I liked it a lot because it isn't overwhelming with too much information and gets to the point quickly.
Friday, April 27, 2007
Per Amanda's direction, I was to tape several sheets of paper to the floor, each one with a number on it. Then I taped them to the floor in the proper, number line order. Then I would tell the kids to start on 0, and say, for example, "2"-which would prompt them to go stand on the number 2, and continue, "+4=", and the kids would walk 4 spaces forward, and look at the number on the sheet they were standing on, and yell out the answer. I then introduced subtraction and also incorporated negative numbers, which even the 8-year old hadn't confronted in school yet. I was nervous to see how they'd do, based on our usual experience with academically-based material, and the attention it demands. But the kids absolutely loved this!! We did it for about 35 minutes. And for each correct answer they got, I gave them an M&M. So the activity itself was intrinsically reinforcing, and they loved being able to move around, and the M&M's provided an added form of motivation. They started building mazes with the numbers, and both the 5-year old and the 8-year old gained proficiency in addition, subtraction, AND negative numbers!! It was so amazing! While the 2-year old didn't understand the concept, he stayed active the entire time, and jumped around on the numbers, and loved the treats, too!
Thank you, thank you, thank you to Amanda! It was so fantastic to see kids who typically struggle so much genuinely love an academically-based activity as much as they did this. If you babysit, you should totally try this!!
Thursday, April 26, 2007
A young boy comes to mind when I think about yesterday's tutoring. He was in seventh grade trying his hardest to understand algebra. He was working on the not so fun problems where you have to solve for x. At first I had to really think back on how to deal with these type of problems. I'm embarassed to say I had forgotten. There were also FRACTIONS in these problems that had completely scared me. However, I figured we would both suffer together because I truly wanted him to go home at the end of the day feeling confident about these problems. So, I started to read a little of his book and I looked at some practice problems and all of a sudden it came to me. I knew how to do these!!!
Now it was a matter of me being able to explain the steps and teach it in a way that would "connect" with him. By golly, this kid was as quick as a whip. He caught on so very fast to what I was saying. He made occasional mistakes and I would correct him. At the end of the tutoring he asked Amanda to give him any problem to solve. I was thinking, "Oh dear, Any?" I was hoping Amanda would be easy on him but she gave him a challenging question and he solved it with no problem. I was so proud of him and I could tell that she was also.
I was so encouraged by this. There are so many young children out there that are struggling with math and their parents aren't capable of helping because they might not have had much education. If we all give just a little bit of our time, it will touch many lives. I encourage my classmates to continue to reach out to others. The reward is priceless...
One of Royte's lines in our recent reading that struck me was: “It isn’t worth it, they said, to get worked up over paper versus plastic at the grocery store.” After this statement I responded pretty defensively, because I thought, wait we just had a whole BagFest over plastic bags and now they, the UCS, say it is not worth it to think about these “unimportant decisions.”
It raised a lot of questions for me, as far as the value, impact, and role of our BagFest. At this point I began to smile, I thought of the 25+ people that I spoke to while counting their bags. I thought of our impact, or footprint, that we made that day. I thought of all the things we learned and had fun with in class. And I think one of the best things was the relationships I built throughout this whole project. It was not about collecting 72,571 bags (that was awesome, though), but it was about the statement, the opportunity, the awareness, and the knowledge that came from BagFest.
Without BagFest in our community, who would have thought that in one day we could collect what Wal-Mart gathers in a month? If BagFest never would have happened, who would have believed that there is an importance in what we do as a community with plastic bags? Sure we all might only have 50 bags, but put them together and look at what our community has created. We recycled those bags that would normally either be thrown away or stuffed away. The community I think gained a lot of knowledge from this opportunity. It was not about collecting the bags, but rather taking the time to expand our knowledge of resources that are just waiting for the community. It was amazing and encouraging to see so many young children involved in this event. Also it was surprising how many people from all around the community cared.
Overall, I saw this event as bringing awareness to the community of the difference we can make when we all pull together, and what an impact that makes! I grew a lot through this experience. I found myself leading, teaching, and talking with people I never thought I would have an opportunity to. The relationships I built with my classmates were encouraging, motivating, and unique, because we were all going through an experience together. I do not think I have ever been involved in any other school activity that I felt so proud of and so self-rewarded by. So, is it worth it to get worked up over paper or plastic (or cloth)? I would say most definitely!
Wednesday, April 25, 2007
Oh my Lord, I thought. If I drink 3L of water everyday, I'm going to spend most of my day in the bathroom. Good grief.
But, I reasoned, this is good for my health. So I decided to drink more water, that is, 3L of water each day. And yes, I spent more quality time in the bathroom! But my body adapted to this change, and now, it's a daily habit. My body actually feels deprived whenever I don't drink my usual 3L of water.
Anyway, my jaw recently dropped on another occassion. This time, it was at BagFest. I was gleefully following along to Elizabeth Royte's talk, when suddenly she raised a plastic bottle to make a point about the dangers of plastics. Now, this was no ordinary plastic bottle: It was MY plastic bottle she was publicly condemning! Oh, for the love...how I embrace public shame is beyond me. I think I actually cowered when I saw that bottle raised in contempt.
But point well taken. As I recently learned, disposing plastic bottles is a dirty business. Toxins and dioxins are released when incinerated, so torching them is out of the question. In landfills, plastics can last for thousands of years, leaching toxins as they disintegrate. (Ok, that's not a good solution.) And recycling plastics creates poorer-quality plastics. (Great, we're three for three here. Folks, that's a strike-out!)
As Tony asked, "What on Earth are we to do?"
For me, the answer was simple: Stop using plastic bottles. So now I'm the happy owner of this SIGG bottle. It's a 1L bottle made from aluminum, which I purchased from www.reusablebags.com. I also got a 1/2 L SIGG bottle for easy travel.
So, goodbye plastic water bottle. Hello SIGG! :0)
Tuesday, April 24, 2007
Recently, I had the opportunity to submit a research paper regarding the issue of water diversions out of the Great Lakes basin. It seems that as denizens of this region, not many people (myself included), were really inlcined to know much about the Lakes, so I decided to do a little bit of investigating. After reviewing some scientific literature, the inferences that I was able to procure were quite alarming. In lieu of trying to summarize all of my findings, I would definitely encourage you to do a little bit of surfing around. A great website for learning more about diversions and the immense capabilites that the Great Lakes system provides is available at the following:
The information was compiled by the Great Lakes Water Institute and I found it to be very insightful.
To tie this all back to Royte and sustainability, one very interesting fact that I was able to glean from my research deals with bottled water. Due to the seemingly vast amount of fresh water right next door and looming concerns over the issues related to water scarcity, some proponents of diversions see it as an opportunity to exploit the water and sell it as a commodity; even ship it overseas. Fortunately, there is some legislation to protect this from happening, but loop-holes do indeed exist.
According to some information from the GLWI website, "The 2005 Annex Implementing Agreements regulate new diversions and exports of water out of the basin in pipelines, canals, and containers larger than 5.7 gallons." Current legislation does not, however, contain a mandate on shipping water out of the basin in smaller containers, and the implications of such could be disastrous for our region. What we're talking about is the complete loss of habitat as the lake levels decline. This could ,in turn, play host to a number of malignant scenarios, any of which we would not wish to come to fruition.
To make matters worse, the U.S. alone has witnessed a marked rise in the consumption of bottled water. The GLWI provides that, "Americans drank 6.8 billion gallons of bottled water in 2004, compared to 15.3 billion gallons of soda. The Beverage Marketing Corps. predicts that bottled water will soon be Americans 2nd most popular beverage (soft drinks rank 1st)." The fact that the water is "bottled" only confounds our current plastic footprint. What on Earth are we to do?
So read all about it for yourself. And feel free to post your thoughts about this issue on the blog.
Here are some highlights I gathered from reading the manufacturers' letters:
- There is a US $60/ton paper increase on copy paper
- This increase will raise prices to $1,020/ton
- Laser paper printing will increase 5.35%
- Inkjet paper printing will incrase 5.55%
- Printing on 30% recycled paper will increase 7.8%
Why the price increase?
According to Domtar Co., this increase is due to tight markets in the U.S. and to price increases already implemented in Europe.
So, what should we do?
According to Tom Westerhof, Staff Member of Purchasing and Contracts, we should, "please keep this increase in mind when reviewing your paper needs for the near future." In other words, it's time we conserve paper, too.
Monday, April 23, 2007
Having already established my own set of issues about how commercialized the holidays have become, I became curious about how much we Americans were really spending during the holidays. According to the U. S. Census, Americans mail 1.9 billion cards to family & friends every year and receives 20 billion letters, packages, and cards between Thanksgiving and Christmas (USPS). In December 2004, we spent $31.9 billion at retail stores and in 2002 we cut down 20.8 million Christmas trees! So, who's birthday is it anyway?
Sunday, April 22, 2007
Instead of continuing the same, tired debate (cloth vs. disposable), gdiapers gives us a third option: flushable diapers.
Skeptical? Read more about their product here.
I'm impressed by the fact that gdiapers are compostable (only the "wet" diapers, poo poo not allowed in the compost pile).
Anyway, knowing this information does give me hope. (And if I ever become a parent, I'll buy my diapers from this company.)
It also reminds me of our project. The media have done a fantastic job raising the "paper vs. plastic" issue. But they fail to discuss a third option: cloth bags. It's as though we only have two options, with no clear solutions. Yet, if you consider the third option, that's when the glimmer of hope arises. Too bad the media won't air my response when I've been asked this question.
DIY Paper Recycling:
Also, I found this other really interesting news clip about a new material, made from recycled paper, that is being used to build homes. I'm not sure if it was mentioned on the blog already, but the video is only a couple minutes long so be sure to check it out!!
Saturday, April 21, 2007
Wow, I've got to wake up and smell the coffee.
I must admit, when I first read Royte's chapter on composting, my reaction was, "thanks, but no thanks."
But I'm warming up to this idea. And in the spirit of trying something new, I will definitely attend the free composting seminar on May 2nd (see also blog calendar down below). And I'm determined to venture into the composting world once I know what to do. (Stay tuned, I have a funny feeling that my personal experience with composting will resemble a comedy of errors!)
So, is there a compost revolution in South Bend? I'd really like to know. Please feel free to post your composting practices (and any tips!) on the blog. :0) M
The more I read, however, the more disappointed I became on how our nation deals with garbage, recycling and the environment. However, I also recognized that exposing an ugly truth lends opportunity for change—which is the beauty of it. We all have the opportunity to change our behavior, the way we think about our world and how we interact with our environment.
Personally, I have become much more conscientious about what I buy or throw away and also what I recycle. I have a long way to go and still have some bad habits (e.g. buying bottled water and using plastic bags) but I am working on these and am committed to changing my behavior one step-at-a-time. My biggest problem will be in remembering to bring reusable bags with me when I go shopping! :)
Friday, April 20, 2007
I have been recycling my plastic bags for years, largely because I knew there is an outlet for them. In essence, I had a false belief that I was not damaging the environment because I was recycling. The question that begs to be answered is, "Does recycling decrease the use of natural resources or does it only decrease the amount of waste going into landfills?" On one hand, recycling prevents "waste" and compilation of materials in landfills; on the other hand, recycling increases the demand for materials to be recycled. Hmmm...somewhat of an oxymoron.
Elizabeth Royte made a statement during her lecture on campus last Saturday that puts this issue into perspective. To prevent mis-quoting, I am going to paraphrase the statement. She was discussing "Zero Waste" and told us that in order to have zero waste, there needs to be a Paradigm Shift. I took that statement to mean that we need to change how we view our world, our environment, our behavior and how we live. Recycling isn't the only answer and it does not solve all of the problems. Reducing the use of natural resources combined with recycling and reusing should be viewed a collective process rather than as options from which to choose from.
Thursday, April 19, 2007
Also, the dinner was such a wonderful way to end the Bagfest. The discussions were lively and interesting. And, Michelle's "thank you" speech was wonderful. She was able to describe the process of pulling the planning of the Bagfest together along with thanking each individual who helped bring the event together. The speech was informative as well as touching. And, she hand wrote a thank you note for each person at the dinner- so very thoughtful. Thank you Michelle.
I’ve learned to take in small chunks, and I do enjoy and try to remember Royte’s great sense of humor alongside looming global catastrophe. I realize it’s important to make one decision at a time and stick with it. I will never buy anything but 100% post consumer recycled toilet paper again, I never thought I would feel so proud simply wiping my you know whats. I use my canvas bags, it’s easy and I can clearly see the difference that makes after our 72,000 some odd bag round up. I ask myself if I really need it before I buy it, and I avoid ridiculous packaging. I talk my son out of happy meals. And I talk to other people about zero waste, virgin paper, the whole thing because like me, most people just don’t know about this stuff. And I try to remember I am a work in progress, and I am excited to imagine where I’ll end up. I may even compost this summer.
Wednesday, April 18, 2007
I'm slowly but surely recuperating from BagFest. I was very pleased by the turn-out, the talks, and the number of bag donations. In four hours, volunteers counted over 72,500 bags. Wowza! BagFest was indeed a success.
In addition, folks have been kind enough to send me their pictures, which I've uploaded onto flickr. So feel free to click on this picture to see more BagFest photos.
This weekend, I'm going to organize the data we collected on Saturday. We have four excel files that need to be collated. And Kim was a go-getter: We have 100 completed surveys! So I need to organize those data in order for us to begin analyzing that information.
Just thinking about these data brings a smile to my face. Yes, I'm a veritable stats geek!
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
Dane Blue contacted me this morning and asked if I would help him spread the word about tomorrow night's candle vigil, which will pay respects to the families and friends of the victims killed at Virginia Tech yesterday.
This is Dane Blue
I am putting together a candle light memorial to remember those lost in the shooting today at Virginia Tech. It will be open to the public - please tell everyone!
Near the library at the Peace Pole
Looking for people to speak, there will be a sound system and podium - open to conversation afterwards
Most of all, looking for people to show support to the families and friends of those lost by being present
For more info contact me.. Dane Blue Purdueblue@hotmail.com574 849 7306
Monday, April 16, 2007
Out of six finalists, Melissa's speech was the only one that conveyed a message of hope and personal empowerment. As Melissa put it, we can make simple changes to our daily routine, like purchasing 100% recycled toilet paper, which can make a big difference...one sheet at a time.
The other five speeches, which included topics such as drunk driving, teen driving accidents, and human trafficking, left me feeling a bit hopeless and depressed. (And well, one speech was bizarre; I'll just leave it at that.)
So congratulations, Melissa, on a job well done!
P.S. I'm still decompressing from BagFest. Once I've mentally and physically recovered from this event, I'll share my thoughts and personal experiences with you. :0) M
Sunday, April 15, 2007
Also dinner was great in having the experience to talk with Elizabeth Royte, that was definitely the top highlight of my semester! I do not think I realized how much I would gain through BagFest, and I am very grateful all that I did gain! Thanks again to everyone who made this possible :)
We all have something to gain from public awareness events, such as Earth Day and BagFest and if I had to select one 'take-home-point' for myself it would be to change personal behavior and habits that promote reducing the use of natural resources. Recycling is a tremendously important component in promoting positive change, however, it is not the solution. Solutions involve identifying the source of the problem and incorporating ways to eliminate the problem (in this case, reduce the use of natural resources and find ways to replenish the ones that we can(e.g. planting trees, etc).
Saturday, April 14, 2007
Friday, April 13, 2007
As you can imagine, after several meetings and coordinated efforts, we're ready for BagFest!
To check out some pictures I took this afternoon, simply click on this flickr photo.
I can't believe tomorrow's almost here.
Let's just hope lots of people come with their plastic bags!
The BagFest is going to be a total success!
Thursday, April 12, 2007
I love that site! I just had to grab a couple of photos for everyone to see:
"The Bag Man"
And here's one more:
"Pretty in Paper Cups"
Nice!! In case you're wondering if these folks have indeed lost their marbles, the purpose of this fashion show was to support the Thailand Water Project. The models are actually students of Gordonstoun School, which is located in Scotland.
The school's motto is Plus est en Vous. In plain English, "There is more in you (than you think)."
Gordonstoun School elaborates on this point:
"This means each of us, in order to make a real contribution to life in our community and to gain a true sense of fulfilment, must move outside our comfort zone and develop that awesome potential that lies - sometimes deeply buried - in each of us. We need to be passionate about the things that matter and pursue them in a practical way. In this way the Mission is given life and is achieved by embracing the Motto."
Wow, what a compelling school motto!
Wednesday, April 11, 2007
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
Elizabeth Royte informed me about Step It Up, which is a non-profit organization rallying for climate change on April 14th. Here's the link to the site: www.stepitup2007.org. To see the poster, click here .
I've asked the Environmental Justice League to hand out literature about Step It Up at their booth for BagFest. In addition, Step It Up is trying to get folks to send letters to Congress; their goal is to have 80% carbon reductions by 2050.
Anyway, I wanted to let you know that BagFest will be counted as one of the rallies for climate change. Thanks, Elizabeth, for bringing this program to our attention. And guess what else? Colin Beavan (i.e., No Impact Man) talks about Step It Up on Comedy Central. See the footage for yourself! :0)
To learn more about Mrs. Bella and her creations, please read the blog post entitled, "Guest Blogger: Sue Inwood." As I mentioned before, Sue Inwood is a former student of mine, and Mrs. Bella is Sue's mother. Mrs. Bella is an incredible woman, so I hope you get the chance to hear her story, which is posted on the blog.
In the meantime, please enjoy these pics! :0) M
Monday, April 09, 2007
I remember growing up with my younger siblings who used cloth diapers. We called them "Nepi" in Swahili. These diapers were rewashable and money saving. I was very happy to hear the story about these nappies again. I will be spending about $1500 at the end of this year only in diapers, so I am seriously thinking about these cloth nappies. I am afraid that it will be such an inconvinience to wash & dry them and keeping them clean; however, it will be both planet and money saving. For those who have children in diapers, lets think about it. I think it will be worth to invest in these nappies.
Diana Mendelsohn, Representative of the Arbor/Earth/Herb Day Festival on April 21st, contacted me this morning to help her spread the word about this event.
In addition, she is looking for two models to sashay some clothes for the “recycled-content” fashion show! Please let me know if you're interested in participating with the fashion show and/or the event.
Here's more information. I've also added this event to our blog calendar (see below).
Arbor/Earth/Herb Festival for Saturday, April 21st at Howard Park
Last week, I re-potted herbs into larger pots at the Potawatomi Greenhouse; we will sell the plants to benefit the Potawatomi Greenhouse Botanical Society.
We are having a “recycled-content” fashion show that day for fifteen minutes beginning at 10:00 am and are looking for two models. Would you pass this opportunity along to your students?
Mike Keen, a Prof at IUSB, will be bringing his car to the celebration and speaking.
Any way you and your students wish to share with or be a part of the April 21st event we would welcome.
Thank you for this consideration. Feel free to let me know of any questions.
I wanted to know more about this incredible woman. And so, Sue told me more about her mother. Anyway, I didn't want to keep this story to myself, so I asked Sue to share her story with you.
I sincerely hope you enjoy the story as much as I do. And if you're interested in becoming a proud owner of one of these bags, please let me know. I'm still accepting tax-deductible donations to financially support this project! :0) M
The term Bag Lady once referred to the poor homeless woman seen on the street who carried all her worldly possessions in one or more bags. Today, that term can be applied in another, much less negative light.
A local organization called “Busy Hands,” which is associated with Catholic Charities, provides volunteers an opportunity to put their sewing, knitting, and quilting skills to work, for a variety of good causes. In order to support IUSB’s Bag Fest, one volunteer has graciously donated eight handmade shopping bags to the cause….but her story goes further.
Now 75, Suzanne Bella has been sewing and quilting for many years. She never duplicates the same creation, so everything sewn is truly one-of-a-kind. She has donated quilts to Riley Children’s Hospital in Indianapolis to be given to sick kids. She has appeared in the maternity wards of local hospitals at Christmas anonymously donating baby quilts to new mothers, saying only that it was a gift from “Mrs. Claus.” She has sewn countless numbers of bags to be given to discharged hospital patients so that they have something bright and colorful to take home their belongings in after their stay. She is now embarking on making bags that have little slots for crayons on the outside and include a new coloring book on the inside for little hospital patients or other needy kids.
Suzanne asks for no payment, and no credit for herself, although she has been honored in the recent past by Memorial Hospital for her work. All she requires is a few scraps of material, which she often receives through donations to Busy Hands to make bags. Her payment is the smiles and gratitude of those who receive them.
The “Bag Lady” has evolved!
Student, IU South Bend
Sunday, April 08, 2007
"1,000 Estimated number of years a plastic grocery bag takes to decompose. About a 100 billion plastic bags are distributed annually worldwide. 95% Drop in Ikea plastic-bag use in Britain since the chain began charging for bags last spring. On March 15, Ikea introduced a 5 cent charge per bag in its U.S. stores."
The source was the Progressive Bag Alliance, their website www.progressivebagalliance.com was interesting to view.
Thursday, April 05, 2007
Wednesday, April 04, 2007
So, anyway, my speech got selected (23 out of 450) to be presented on speech night!!!! So, I get to "redo" the speech in front of a much larger audience. I asked my speech prof how many people would be there, she shrugged and said the room holds 250. (YIKES) and if I make it to finals (it's a competition) that's 2x the audience! I'm one part excited, 5 parts terrified, and 10 parts grateful I get to pass on this very important information I've been given.
The speech is Monday the 16th btw 4-6 in the recital hall (NS 158) if any of y'all wanna come by and hear the whole spiel.
Today we have the pleasure of having Bruce Spitzer, professor of Instructional Technology in the Department of Education, submit his shopping story to the blog. Thanks for sharing your story with us, Bruce! :0) M
With the upcoming Bag Fest and a renewed interest in using permanent shopping bags, I wanted to share with you my most recent shopping experience at the Martin's grocery store on S.R. 23 in South Bend.
My wife and I have used canvas and net shopping bags for some time now, and it's habit that they are in the back seat of the car. So naturally, I took them in with me shopping last Saturday morning. This was our monthly "big buy" where we stock up on many items we use throughout the month such as canned goods, dry goods, and such.
After an hour of shopping, I had a loaded basket and headed to the check-out. I placed my 3 canvas bags and one net bag on the counter (and received my 12 cent credit!) and asked the bagger to "fill them up; no plastic please."
Believe it or not, $200 worth of groceries, canned goods, fresh vegetables, and dairy products fit in those 4 bags! Of course, I didn't bag the roll of paper towels, the large, packaged frozen salmon, and Martin's provided a reuseable cardboard 6-pack carrier for my 4 bottles of wine (which this time around also held a bottle of olive oil).
Not a single plastic bag left Martin's that day because of me and that means not a single additional bag in the landfill this week because of me.
It can be done: $200 worth of groceries in 3 canvas and 1 net bag!
Tuesday, April 03, 2007
Monday, April 02, 2007
One last thing: We had a supporter the other week interested in buying the coasters as a donation for the festival. The clients have offered to sell their 6 coasters for the donations to go towards the bag festival. So if there are any interested buyers out there, let us know!! It would be much appreciated.
Sunday, April 01, 2007
In 2003, Americans consumed 13 billion liters of bottled water! Unfortunately, I know that I am part of this statistic. Several months ago, I wrote a list of things I could live without to save money. Bottled water was one of them. Every week I was spending close to $6.00 on bottled water. Roughly that would total close to $290.00 annually. Seeing these figures down on paper really put things in perspective for me. Why did I actually drink bottled water?
For me, I grew up on it. Truthfully, I have never been very concerned about the impurities in our water. However, spending close to $300.00 a year on drinking water was a bit ridiculous. There was one substitute that I could think of and that was buying a Brita water filter. So I went to Bed, Bath and Beyond and found a pitcher that would fit very nicely inside my refrigerator. Along with that I bought a filter that would need to be changed every 3 months for $19.00. Being a bargain shopper this seemed very logical to me to stop buying bottles of water. If I kept using this pitcher of water, I could save close to $200.00! Honestly, at the time I was only concerned with the money issue. However, this chapter put light on the fact that I am not contributing to the astounding statistic anymore. No longer are my water bottles being burned or buried.
At the end of the day, it’s comforting knowing that I have helped save our environment and quite frankly, I didn’t even go out of way to do it. This just seems like something that everyone would be capable of doing.