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1 posts from June 2010

June 18, 2010

A Day in a Green(er) Life

Beth, who writes on living plastic free at Fake Plastic Fish asked us to capture a typical day and how we face our green challenges. It was a more difficult assignment than I thought and showed the power of being mindful of what's in me, on me or around me...

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5:45 / no need for an alarm clock, the sparrows outside of my window wake me up. 

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6:00 hit the shower (with low-water shower), tried out the Green Natura soap we from the Sustainable Brands conference last week. I really like the face scrub and can feel the difference on my skin. Organic coffee has arrived as Mr. Hand slips a cupo-joe onto the bathroom sink  (thank you sweetie...)

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6:30 figure out what to wear starting with what shoes I can walk in. One of the reasons I wear slacks to work is because dress shoes aren't walking shoes. (Settled for black sandals, black slacks and jacket, it is LA and anything brighter than brown is suspect) Actually I like black for the same reason my great, great grandmother wore it - it doesn't show the wear and tear like colors. the slacks are my new favorites, Royal Robbins found at REI, good for work or play / no wrinkles, dry instantly, pack tight, never shrink...

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Returned email to EcoMomAlliance.

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7:00 Drove the Honda Civic (33 mpg) to the train station where I'm writing this before the battery goes dead on my 'green' Mac laptop. The Metro train is a predictable 45 minutes until I catch the next link into downtown to my consulting job. I could walk to the train from my house, but then I'd look like a train wreck when I got to work.

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8:30 First meeting - finish the Touchpoint Handbook. The handbook is a new business model for groups who have to work together, but have no tight financial contracts between them to keep the job on task. The District has hundreds of architects and contractors working on almost $6 billion in building projects over 10 campuses. The Touchpoint chart helps bring groups and processes together during the critical phases. The buildings are going for LEED certification.

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11:30 didn't pack a lunch, so went down to the deli where everything comes in a plastic container. We have recycle bins in the office. I opt out of the plastic bag and just take the salad in its plastic container.  Used my bandana for a napkin and the real silverware that I have in my desk drawer. I never liked using plastic utensils.

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12:00 Listened to TED talks while creating binders for the Touchpoint Handbook, an organization way to operate when you have hundreds of companies working on the same project.  Listening to TED is a great way to pass the time while doing mindless work. I can recommend the following on what makes us happy (you'll never give people choices again), one on poverty and creating new ideas. 

http://www.ted.com/talks/dan_gilbert_asks_why_are_we_happy.html

http://www.ted.com/talks/hans_rosling_reveals_new_insights_on_poverty.html 

http://www.ted.com/talks/alan_kay_shares_a_powerful_idea_about_ideas.html

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3:00 Binders complete. Checked email / found a google alert hit on SMaRT and the presentation Forbo gave to the GSA this month. http://www.usgbc-stl.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/SMaRT-Denny-Darragh.pdf  

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4:00 Walked back to the Red Line,  8 minutes later I'm at the Union Station and catching the 4:30 Metro Link back to Orange. Finished up emails from work on the way home.

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6:00 Dinner: We tried the veggie/eggplant meatballs and gluten free pasta. We're finding that we feel better when we don't eat as much wheat products. Mike thought the meatballs were 'ok' then I told them they were made of eggplant and he was more impressed. We'll buy them again. Thanks to Beth's prodding, we're buying far less plastic wrapped items.

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We also buy the "Naked" brand of smoothies that are loaded with fresh veggies. They are expensive, but we use them as a base, add cold water and a sprig of fresh mint leaves and voila - an inexpensive and good for you beverage. We buy our main food at the Farmer's Market or Mothers Market. Both places let me buy without having to shop very hard for organic food. Mother's has a whole section dedicated to gluten-free food. That makes it easy to buy, I don't have to check every label, whatever is in that section is fair game. 

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7:00 Cleaned up the kitchen with 7th Generation dish soap. Watered planters containing flowers as well as spearmint, chocolate mint (fantastic tea), oregano, basil, chives, rosemary, dill and thyme. It's nice to grab fresh and free food. Finished off emails for the day, hung out with Mike and went to bed by nine.  

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It's not an extraordinary day, but that's the point. We're working so that doing everyday green things becomes so normal that no one has to think about it. I'd like to think that my little selections along the way are making a difference.