Sunday, March 30, 2008

We Survived!!

We survived Earth Hour! DS loved it! He thought it was the best thing ever and told us over and over that he LOVES Earth Hour. DD (3) was scared and cried easily. She was fine after the lights went on.

We unplugged/shut everything off, I prepared some snacks, lit a few candles and played Trivial Pursuit. That is definately not a good game to play when it is dark, lol!

We talked about doing it more often, but we will definately be more prepared. We didn't have candle holders, our good flashlight broke and I bought the wrong batteries for the other flashlights.

I think it was a good idea and if people did it more often, it would send a message that even little things can add up to great changes. Each person is capable of making some small change. This earth won't last long the way we're going through it at our present rate.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Giving And Thrifting

I had enough. We have had bags of stuff to give away hanging around for ages. Today we finally gathered most of them up to drop off. We gave 4 bags of clothes and shoes to the Red Cross and 4 garbage bags plus 2 shopping sized bags of household things, books, toys and videos to the Salvation Army. It feels good to give!

Since the new year has started, we have given away more than a ton of stuff. In February alone we got rid of more than 800lbs of stuff. In the fall we gave 3 carloads of stuff to the community swap. In addition to this, I was putting bag upon bag of stuff in the boxes in front of the Salvation Army. Where did all this come from? Why did we have so much stuff??? Why do we still have so much stuff???

I have been trying very hard to simplify. This is easy for some things but others are impossible, like DH's clothes, books and the toys. The basement is pretty out of control too. In time I know things will come together. I just needed a longer period of time to get rid of stuff.

Now the thrifting part :). This is a favorite past time of many. I enjoy it but I don't get as much thrill out of it. I mostly went into the Salvation Army to use the washroom, but it was nice to look around. I saw a ton of things I had donated, lol! I picked up 4 metals bowls of varying sizes as I have gotten rid of all my plastic ones. I like metal as it's very versatile. I can even toss them in the oven or use them as double boilers. I also got a "new" crock for my utensils. I am using one now that I'm not happy with, so I will donate it. We also got 2 trivial pursuit games (we're going to play during the Earth Power Hour tonight :D ). Oh and I got an almost full bottle of Kiss My Face hair mousse! How much did all this come to? $2!! Wow! I got DD a dress there last week for that price. I guess it depends on who is working. Today was someone who used to go to my gym (which closed a few months ago) and I think she knows we're in a tight spot financially. Bless her heart!

I also returned a plastic blind I got for the kids playroom and exchanged it for a bamboo one at Zellers. I was going to get one for DS's bedroom but it would of been $35, so it will be much cheaper to just put his curtains up, lol! Bamboo is a great material to use as it grows fast and is very renewable. Plus there was a lot less packaging. It was a small change but if everyone made that change, it would make a huge difference.

Small changes result in big benefits to the earth :)

Earth Hour

From the NS Power Website:

Lights Out on March 29 for Earth Hour

Saturday, March 29 is Earth Hour -- Saturday, March 29 is Earth Hour. At 8:00 pm, millions of people and organizations around the globe will turn off their unnecessary lights for one hour to help save electricity and the environment. NS Power encourages all residents and organizations to support the WWF's global initiative and turn off their lights for one hour on March 29 from 8:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Earth Hour is a WWF initiative created to raise awareness about climate change. Last year, WWF-Australia pioneered Earth Hour and it was a huge success . More than 2 million people and 2,100 businesses participated , resulting in a 10% reduction on the electrical grid, saving 25,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide – the equivalent of taking about 50,000 cars off the road for an hour. In 2008, Earth Hour will be taking place in over 20 cities around the world. Nova Scotian residents and businesses are encouraged to show their support for electricity conservation by switching unnecessary lights off for the hour.

Sign Up Today

For more information visit the Earth Hour website at


I am often amazed when people post how much electricity they use. In one blog I just read, he *saved* 1205 kWh in two months, which was about a 9% saving on what he is using....and he claims to be extremely careful!! That's nearly 4 months of electricity use for us.

Here is what we use over the course of the past couple of years from our e-bill:

Your past electric use:
electricity during this
period was $1.47 Bill No. Energy kWh
per day before taxes. date days used per day
Feb 08 64 681 11 (bill covering Christmas)
Dec 07 60 647 11
Oct 07 59 587 10
Aug 07 62 496 8
Jun 07 63 487 8
Apr 07 62 554 9
Feb 07 62 805 13 (bill covering Christmas)
Dec 06 59 665 11
Oct 06 57 499 9
Aug 06 63 556 9
Jun 06 62 586 9
Apr 06 61 612 10
Feb 06 60 612 10 (bill covering Christmas)

As you can see, we use less over the summer, probably since we're gone more. We used less this Christmas over last since we used all LED Christmas lights this year.

We could probably get our usage down more. We no longer have a second computer (although the one we have is on 24/7) and we only have one TV now (which seems to always be on, lol!), but we also don't use the microwave anymore, so we will see how that balances out over time. We have all CFL light bulbs in use. We wash our laundry in cold water and don't use the dryer; we're actually considering selling it. We unplug everything not used but we don't really make a conscious effort to cut electricity use, especially our 3 and 5 year old.

Friday, March 28, 2008

My Baby!!

I thought I lost this blog, lol! For some odd reason, I thought it was attached to my other blogs about family, homeschool and diet and that at some point I deleted it. I'm so glad I didn't as I have been wanting to blog about our journey again.

Has it been nearly a year? So much has changed. I have to read back to see where we were and update about where we are and the progress we have been making to live a simpler, greener life.

I'm so excited!!