Hello Eco-Friends! Long time no see! I'm sure you've been missing Eco-Friendly Fridays lately and so have I. When summer came this year, I just let all my responsibilities fly out the window. I was starting to wonder if anyone even noticed but then I had THREE friends in the past month ask me what happened to Eco-Friendly Fridays. One friend said she bought a box of plastic baggies at the store because I haven't been around to encourage her not to. Haha! So to her...and the rest of my loyal eco-friends...I've decided to return.
School is back in session!!
I wasn't sure where I wanted to start today, but I thought it might be nice to stick with a summer theme. Sadly, the only theme we have had this summer is HEAT!!! H.E.A.T!! But I realized that maybe a post on beating this crazy summer heat would be helpful for everyone. So let's get started shall we?
There is one plain and simple way to beat the heat.
Period. End of story. This is most important if you are playing and/or working outside. I read an interesting article the other day that said that drinking COLD water, as apposed to warm or room temperature water, can reduce heat-related stress on your body and thereby increase your performance if you are exercising or working outside. I know cold water certainly tastes and feels better, but I didn't realize that it actually does have health benefits.
So...if you need to keep your water cold outside, you certainly can't have it baking in chemical-laden plastic bottles. You need something that will keep your water cold (and chemical free) and SIGG makes a fantastic reusable wide-mouth bottle that allows you to add ice cubes.
It also fits perfectly into one of these GreenSmart NeoGreene Insulated Bottle Sleeves.
What's great about these is that they fit most reusable bottles so no matter which one you grab, this insulated sleeve will keep your drinks COLD!
And speaking of cold drinks, there comes a time when you just don't want another glass of water. For example, water does not get me moving in the morning. But what does get me moving is COFFEE!!! Iced coffee to be exact. I have been drinking iced coffees like they are going out of style this summer and even though I try to recycle the plastic cups they come in at DD, I realize that I am still creating a ton of waste. Luckily, I found that Reuseit.com sells a reusable iced coffee cup. SCORE!!! It's like they know me :-)
And do you know what's fabulous about this reusable cup? IT'S INSULATED!! No more watered down coffee when the ice melts. Dunkin Donuts I know will actually fill this cup for you instead of wasting one of theirs. So really friends...if you are an iced coffee junkie like me...you need one of these cups.
As you can see, the key to keeping cool this summer is insulation. Keep the cold in and the heat out (or vice versa in the winter). This was obviously the driving force behind one of Reisenthel's newest baskets. Come on...you knew I wouldn't get through a post without mentioning my beloved Reisenthel.
Their newest basket is not only cute...it's INSULATED!!! What a genius idea.
I've actually had the chance to use my basket two times this week. Once to the Splash Pad so I could keep our picnic lunch nice and cold. Here is a little sneak peak inside.
As you can see, this is no ordinary insulated bag. This is TOP quality insulation. It managed to keep ice cream cold in 90 degree weather! I transported the ingredients for banana splits to my SIL's farm today and the ice cream was still frozen when we got there!!! The condensation hand't even melted off. Amazing. And look how much you can fit? In this picture alone I have a bowl of pasta salad, a bowl of blueberries, 4 sandwiches, two LunchSkin snackbags full of snacks, 3 water bottles and I STILL had room! Seriously friends...you NEED one of these baskets. This will be great for picnics, trips to the beach and playdates in the summer. And don't forget...this basket also keeps hot foods HOT! Now you have a great way to transport food to the campgrounds in the fall or holiday parties this winter.
Obviously, staying cool this summer isn't all about food and drinks. We also need to find a way to literally stay cool, especially in our homes. How was everyone's electricity bill this month? Ours was frightening. I actually cried a little when I saw it. But what can you do when it's 120 degrees outside? Not running the air-conditioning is literally a hazard to your health. But it is also a hazard to our planet.
Did you know that:
Air conditioners can use up to 1/6th of U.S. electricity and, on hot summer days, consume 43% of the U.S. peak power load. According to the US Department of Energy, heating and cooling systems emit over a half billion tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere each year, adding to global warming. They also generate about 24% of the nations' sulfur dioxide, a chief ingredient in acid rain.
Kinda makes you want to shut off your air-conditioner right? But I know that's not realistic, especially with the summer we have been having. BUT...the Eartheasy website has some great tips for cutting down on air-conditioning by utilizing ceiling fans, using landscaping and proper window treatments to create more shade, using reflective barriers and of course...installing proper insulation. There are a ton of great, natural ways to cool our home and even if we make just one change...we will be doing our part to save the planet.
Well...that's all I have for this installment of eco-friendly fridays! It feels good to be back!! I would really like to do one or two EFF posts a month and since my next one will fall at the end of August, can you guess the topic?
BACK TO SCHOOL!!!