Monday, November 26, 2007

Recycle burnt out bulbs and more!

Earth 911 updated their site!

Here are all of the things I can take to my local Household Hazardous Waste facility.
Don't just throw these items out! Take them to your HHM!

Accepted Items
Typical materials which you should bring to the HHM drop-off facility include:
home, lawn and garden chemicals used for pest, insect and weed control
compact fluorescent light bulbs
automotive fuel
windshield wiper fluid
brake fluid
transmission fluid
gas additives
gear oil and most car care products
car batteries
flammable cleaning solvents such as kerosene, turpentine, varsol, mineral spirits, parts cleaners, floor strippers, rug cleaners, and spot removers
lamp and heating oil
fluorescent tubes
corrosives such as muriatic acid, and oven or drain cleaners with lye
swimming pool additives
photo chemicals
thermometers, thermostats, and barometers containing mercury
oil and latex paint, varnish, stains, polyurethane
propane tanks (small hand held type; please take the larger propane tanks from grills to your hardware store for recycling).

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Jitterbugs sited in national park

Who knew you could dance green.

I was looking for a neat way to celebrate a birthday and I thought, "Where is a good place to go dancing?" I was searching for ballroom dancing, which I learned much later, will mostly turn up dance lessons.

Last year I went to the Swamp Romp which is a Zydeco music festival held at Wolftrap each year. There is a group of people that have a great time dancing and I found out they all take lessons together, some are dance teachers, and they all like to dance at a place called Glen Echo.

Now fast forward a year or so later and I am sitting on my bed at 11 at night trying to find a place to go dancing and that pops into my head. So I Google Glen Echo, MD and I find the Spanish Ballroom.

So we drive to this National Park and get to a small parking lot. There are no signs and two lighted walkways, a wooden bridge and a cement path. We have no idea where to go, but as I look around for signs a few more cars drive up and park. I watch as the people head for the wooden bridge. It's about 40 degrees out, pretty cold, so we scurry after the people...past a sign for a Children's museum, and a sign for pottery. Some people veer off to the right... but I see a sign for the restrooms so we plug ahead. Then I see a sign for bumper cars and wonder where the heck we are, and we come upon a lighted building. Yes, it's the Spanish ballroom and no heat But, that is okay because within minutes the place is packed with about 80 people learning to Lindy Hop and Jitterbug. Within an hour we are jumping like the best of them to the Tom Cunningham Orchestra. (The have great ties.)

So national parks are not just for hiking and camping, but they are also a place to jump, jive and wail.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Think globally...Vacation locally

This year's vacation was a trip to Eco-groovy Vermont.
I got to see the leaves in their glory and experience a lot more than I expected there. Who knew there were so many small farms. Well, I didn't. See what else is there in my picture link:

Monday, November 19, 2007

Eco-Groovy Award

This award is for websites that promote environmental issues in a positive and inspiring way.

Your site inspires people to think and to act with nature in mind, promoting sustainable living, ecosystems, sustainable design, renewable energy, recycling, conservation, organics, non-toxics

Thank you for dedication to the environment! You get it! You go green!

The goal is to focus people's attention on environmental factors which in turn can reduce pollution, disease, overpopulation and crime.

Award Winners

1. Nov 07 - The Inn at Weathersfield LINK
2. Nov 07 - Stonyfield Farm Organic Yogurt (my favorite yogurt) LINK

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Renewable Energy

Why do we need to switch to renewable energy? Not just because it's better for the planet and will cause less pollution. The world demands oil and it is part of the reason for the wars in the Middle East. The need for natural resources is a big reason why people go to war.

I recently went to the Middle East and saw what the US and coalition forces are doing first hand. I went to Bagram and saw the wounded soldiers and civilians. I learned how careful our troops our despite the bad press. I felt what it was like to stay in trailers, some are not so lucky and live in plywood huts called B-huts.

The armed forces and state department need your help and support.
We need to get our industry and homes converted to using renewable energy sources now, not 20 years down the road.

The troops living in the forward operating bases know how to conserve. Clean water is hard to come by. They shower in 3 min. Wet down, turn off the water...lather up...and a quick rinse. 3 min. When was the last time you spend only 3 min in the shower? A lot of people take 20-30 min in the shower. You used about 5 gallons per minute in the shower. 15 gallons is a lot of water! Imagine carrying 15 - 1 gallon jugs. A 10 min shower takes 50 gallons of water! What a waste!
A bath takes about 50 gallons of water. Save water by taking a bath as a treat.

In the desert there is so much sand and dust that my eyes were constantly irritated. I had to drink a couple gallons of water to stay hydrated and my skin got very dry. Lotion was my constant companion! We will all live in arid lands like the Middle East if we are not careful now.

Dubai was an incredible site, but I kept wondering where will they get all of the water for the city they are building? How are those islands messing with the ocean's ecosystem. How will this effect their fish populations? Are those buildings running on oil or renewable resources. I don't see solar panels! Are they thinking waste=food? I am sure I was driving my travel companions crazy.

But I am not alone in thinking that much is being lost with the rapid building of Dubai. With all of that money, why can't they build a city with electric rail and low emissions? They can build solar buildings and keep open spaces to capture the beauty of the desert. Don't make it all look like LA or New York!
Why can't all of it's buildings be built like this one:

How will they deal with all of the sewage? They need buildings that treat their own waste!

I hope more people jump in and invest in these systems that will not destroy and may improve the environment in the middle east. The businesses and the rich can afford to try the latest in technology. The rest of the world can only benefit from the way they build this new city.

This trip renewed my energy!

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