Simple tip: You don’t need an electric iron… ever.

wtr spray bttlSome people find comfort in ironing… I happen not to be one of those people. But who hasn’t pulled something out of a closet or drawer and thought “okay, if I wear this ‘as is’, someone will think I slept in it!”

Well, electric irons happen to use an extraordinary amount of energy to power, but I have a simple way to never plug-in an electric iron again… all you need is a simple sprayer bottle filled with water.

Depending on the garment or item all you need to do is the following:

  • Place the item on top of a flat surface, mist each side with water, smooth with your hands and give it about 15 minutes to dry. You can also hang the item and do the exact same.  On the fly, I’ve actually done this while WEARING the item!
  • For really stubborn wrinkles, saturate the area with water a bit more than a simple mist, smooth with your hands and give a bit more time to dry… and voila, goodbye wrinkles!
  • (For items that must be dry cleaned, remember these tips, but this will safely work even for dry cleaned items that get some wrinkles!)

Sure, it won’t save the planet, but truly, give it a try… it WILL save energy and you, too, may never plug-in another electric iron again!

Five tips to “go green” for “back to school”!

The sumback 2 schoolmer is dwindling… it’s the countdown to the “end”… sounds dramatic, doesn’t it?  But this is truly my least favorite time of year.  Sure the weather is wonderful and there is so much fun to be had, but I get this feeling in the pit of my stomach when I have to send my kids back to school.  I actually happen to be a mom who loooves to have my kids at home!

But school time is looming and it’s time to prepare. So, while you’re prepping your list (the long list!) of everything they need, keep these tidbits in mind to help keep it on the green side:

  • Check your “stock” – you may already have supplies at home; some may even be leftover from last year, so check carefully before you buy.
  • Look for recycled content – notebooks, pens, pencils, folders, binders and even backpacks… there are lots of options out there made from recycled content, so be wise when you choose. Also, choose paper, paperboard or canvas over plastics.citiznpp kit
  • Waste-free lunches – plan to pack your kids’ lunches with reusable lunch kits like those from Kids Konserve or Citizen Pip.  Also, opt for reusable containers, bottles, real silverware and cloth napkins over anything single-use or disposable, and make sure everything is BPA-free.
  • Backpacks and totes – as exciting as it seems to purchase new every year, convince your kids that if it’s still functional, it’s still usable.  If you can, also steer them away from something “character” based, so when they outgrow the character you don’t feel forced into a replacement. And when you do need to replace one, consider donating the outgrown version and make sure the new one is PVC-free.
  • Clothes – we all know how quickly kids grow, but the bigger they get the slower they grow.  Take a little time for a “try-on” session.  If it’s not outgrown, no need to replace it just yet.  When it no longer fits, be sure to donate everything to organizations that provide clothing to those in need.  Even consignment shops and sales or swaps are great resources for giving or getting items that still have usefulness.

Whether yoschoolbusu get teary-eyed at the idea of sending your kids back to school, or the first day couldn’t come soon enough (I will be a teary-eyed one!) be sure to earn a “green star” for your efforts before they go!

Another green-ish vacation and Mother Earth bonding!

So, Mom Goes Green just returned from a nice, long vacation at the OBX with my fantastic family! There is nothing like fresh ocean air each and every morning, noon and night.  We experienced everything again this year… from dunes to surf, to sun to moon…

Surely I didn’t leave my green principals behind. We conserved (lights off, no waste), we recycled (more on that in a moment) and simply enjoyed the purity of a beautiful environment.

Truly, after evaluating our trip, I feel no guilt.  We were honestly conscious not to be wasteful (especially three minutes after arriving in our condo and experiencing a power outage!). We made sure not to waste energy or over-consume — from lights to waiting for a full dishwasher — and even purchased all of our usual organic food and earth-friendly products.

We recycled absolutely everything too. This ended up being much to the dismay of my dear husband who was sent to deliver our recyclables to the local recycling center on the morning of our departure and, as he approached with an ENORMOUS industrial-sized bag of recycling, was informed that “they must be sorted”… ewwww, (*heavy sigh*) … he had to pick each and every item from the bag and place it in the proper receptacle… and for me (*smooch, smooch*) he did it, and nothing met the trash can!

I could go on and on about all of our practices but, for me, the shining moment was when I took time to sneak to the beach in the late-night, moonlit hours while everyone else was fast asleep and stood there, awestruck.  How amazing and peaceful.

With the risk of sounding incredibly cheesy… I felt so lucky that this planet actually ALLOWS us to live here. Really… everything we need, in perfect harmony, supplied by this beautiful planet (see, I told you it would sound cheesy!) but the moon and the waves… just me and an empty beach… truly, I invite you to take a moment, stop, and just think about it.  It’s pretty incredible that LIFE can be so generously sustained here.

THAT is why I do what I doI refuse to abuse this “gift”… thank you, Mother Earth…