Any Oprah fans in the atmosphere? On last Friday’s show, Oprah’s show featured: Going Green 101 where she shared many tips and insights on how individuals and families can join the fight to save our earth. Feeling inspired, I wanted to provide my own list of simple and easy ways to Go Green this upcoming year. Some of my favorites from Oprah’s show are also shared.

Bathroom

1. Turn your water off in between brushing your teeth.

2. Unplug straightener, shaver, blow dryer, etc. when not in use. When items are plugged in, they still use up to 40% power.

3. Buy a shower timer to conserve water.

4. Use tissue and toilet paper sparingly.

Kitchen

1. If you’re making a picnic, choose plastic over paper plates. They can be reused and recycled.

2. Buy energy saving appliances to help global warming. Look for the blue Energy Star label when purchasing or visit www.energystar.gov for more information.

3. Use reusable containers to put away leftover rather than plastics wrap or foil. Also, in the same line of thinking, use rags to clean up messes when possible to conserve paper towels.

Cleaning

1. Instead of adding yard waste or lawn clippings to landfills, use a mulching mower. Not only is it healthier for your yard, but its healthier for all of Earth.

2. Use healthier cleaning products. Good clean doesn’t have a smell and are safer for our bodies too. Good companies to look into include Shaklee and Method.

3. Remember to inflate your tires about every two weeks. This allows your tires to last longer, meaning more rubber is conserved.

House

1. Turn lights on and off when entering and exiting rooms.

2. Caulk your windows to get the most out of your heating and air conditioning. This will save energy and money. Double bonus!

3. Use energy strips. This helps save power and cuts down on your energy bill. When something is off, but still plugged in, it still uses power.

4. Use GE energy smart light bulbs. According to Oprah.com, GE Energy Smart bulbs use 70 to 75 percent less energy than incandescent light bulbs and last up to 10 times longer than most bulbs.

5. Donate books and magazines to public libraries.

6. Use rechargeable batteries instead of throwaway ones.

Food

1. If you haven’t heard about the questions surrounding bottled water, go no further. Bottled water is more expensive…to our pocketbooks, bodies and our world. Save all three. Invest in a Nalgene water bottle or an aluminum water bottle that can be reused, is safer, cost effective, healthier and saves the earth.

2. Buy less packaged food. Read the labels and packaging to see if food is healthy for your body, but also take notice if wasteful materials are being used to sell the item.

Shopping

1. Paper or plastic? Neither! Eco-friendly canvas bags are the new ‘it’ item to have at the supermarket. Check out these places for your very own: eco-chic shopping bags, Delight.com or Skeeda.

2. Donate old clothes and items you no longer use to The Salvation Army or the Goodwill.

3. Do not throw away leather shoes. Leather takes 50 years to decompose. Donate them.

4. Resell or donate your old, used cellphone even! Lots of companies buy back phones, spruce ’em up and then resell them at lower rates. Green mobile is one such company.

5. Just say no…to receipts. When an ATM or a gas pump asks if you want a receipt, say no. This will save many precious trees.

Activities

1. Visit a landfill. As Oprah’s show told us, throwing something away, doesn’t mean that it goes away. It goes somewhere else.

2. Plant trees. The more CO2 we can create, the better.

3. Adopt a cause and become an activist. Green is the new pink everyone. Just check out Matt Damon’s favorite organization Greendimes, Stop Global Warming!, or Gwenyth Paltrow and Cameron Diaz’ organization ‘act green’ that works to reduce dependence on oil and for energy conservation.

4. Use newspapers as wrapping paper.

5. TreeCycle 2008. Recycle your now old Christmas trees.

6. Take up Shard Art. Also known as Pique Assiette mosaic art. Use pieces of broken glass to create wonderful new pieces of art.

7. Visit and shop at your local farmer’s market.

Entertainment

1. Beg, borrow or buy Al Gore’s documentary: An Inconvenient Truth.

2. Read The Green Book by Elizabeth Rogers and Thomas M. Kostige.

3. Watch the television series Planet Earth.

4. Attend a Drive-In movie, according to Eath911.org.

5. Carpool. This web service helps you connect with others looking to carpool in your area.

6. Catch Leonardo DiCaprio’s film The Eleventh Hour, about the growing dangers of global warming, set to come out soon!

And lastly, one way to recycle I would not recommend….using old condoms as hairbands. True story.

And on that note, hope this was enough to get motivated. Feel free to leave your favorite recycling tips below too!

Eco-Friendly Websites for further information:

Green People
Greenpeace
Idealbite
Global Green USA
TreeHugger


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