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Day 139 - Life Cafe

Life Cafe Brooklyn

I am not going repeat what I already wrote here. A quick synopsis, starting August 1st, 2010 I will publish a picture I take that day everyday for a year (well to be exact I will do this everyday until July 31st, 2011). This is the 139th of those photographs. Also, there is a Flickr collection called “The Awesome Leftovers” where I put the daily shots (if any) that didn’t make the cut.

Life Cafe in Brooklyn and some bowling in Queens.

-Cara

Help get the word out about my favorite company Be Nice’s super fresh, eco, original, organic, sexy, soft, handmade in Manhattan t-shirts by “liking” them on Facebook.

Spread the love by being nice.

:]

-Cara

Day 127 - These Two

These Two

I am not going repeat what I already wrote here. A quick synopsis, starting August 1st, 2010 I will publish a picture I take that day everyday for a year (well to be exact I will do this everyday until July 31st, 2011). This is the 127th of those photographs. Also, there is a Flickr collection called “The Awesome Leftovers” where I put the daily shots (if any) that didn’t make the cut.

Denise, Sammy and I hanging out at the Shake Shake and Barnes and Noble, keeping it real. Here are some extras, Day 127 – Books Are Cool.

-Cara

Who Stars Diva Close Up

Who Stars Diva Close Up

I am not going repeat what I already wrote here. A quick synopsis, starting August 1st, 2010 I will publish a picture I take that day everyday for a year (well to be exact I will do this everyday until July 31st, 2011). This is the 105th of those photographs. Also, there is a Flickr collection called “The Awesome Leftovers” where I put the daily shots (if any) that didn’t make the cut.

This is Be Nice’s newest design by me entitled, Who Stars. This owl is not only wise, but also a super hero in disguise. Who is the one who stars in the night? Who never takes flight from a fight? That’s right it’s the unknown hero of Be Nice. Stay tuned for more on this story…

Good times.

-Cara

What a great time for Who Stars and Homosapien Friendly to debut in the midst of three gift giving holidays. You’re welcome! Pick yourself up one or two or all of Be Nice organic t-shirts here at ubenice.com. If you’re not sure which Be Nice super fly, organic tee to get your friends why not get them a Be Nice gift card instead?

Since it is “The Season” we would like to offer our super fans a sweet deal on our fresh threads till the 26th of December. Use the promotional code, Holiday for 15% off your “Tis the Season” order!!!

We have also redone some of our more popular shirts’ screens. One example that is already up on the site is Robot Girl aka Fem Bot to some. Robot Girl’s screen has been updated and she is now bigger and more beautiful than ever before. You to can have your very own fantastical, organic cotton, handmade in Manhattan, inspired by my very own marvelous mind, super soft, ONLY $40 t-shirt if you’d like, just click here. Technology can free us and Robot Girl is here to show us the way.

I will keep people updated on the other screens we have redone as we list them on the site. FYI the next re-design is Wind Turbines!

Don’t forget to “Like” us on Facebook to get the 411 faster or follow Be Nice’s super important tweets here. :]

Spread the love.

-Cara

Who Stars Chic

Who Stars Chic

That’s right Be Nice is launching yet another amazing design, Who Stars, by me. :] I love owls. I have been slightly obsessed with them, super heroes and the stars at night forever, which is how this shirt came together. The question remains who is this owl in disguise? What is the story behind the mask? Stay tuned to find out more.

What a great time for Who Stars to debut in the midst of three gift giving holidays. You’re welcome! Pick yourself up one here, http://ubenice.com/shirts/girls-guys/who-stars and sign up for the newsletter to find out more on this awesome owl. You can also like Be Nice on the book of face here.

Spread the love.

-Cara

Fem Bot

Fem Bot

I am not going repeat what I already wrote here. A quick synopsis, starting August 1st, 2010 I will publish a picture I take that day everyday for a year (well to be exact I will do this everyday until July 31st, 2011). This is the 84th of those photographs. Also, there is a Flickr collection called “The Awesome Leftovers” where I put the daily shots (if any) that didn’t make the cut.

Again, I am doing some self promotion. This is an amazing reprint of Robot Girl and watch out world, she’s bigger and better than ever before. That’s right, I said it. You too can have your very own organic cotton, made in Manhattan by my very own hands, inspired by my very own mind, super soft for only $25 dollars t- shirt. Here’s where you can find her amongst other cute tees.

Rock the robot.

-Cara

Day 57 - Homosapien Friendly

Homosapien Friendly

I am not going repeat what I already wrote here. A quick synopsis, starting August 1st, 2010 I will publish a picture I take that day everyday for a year (well to be exact I will do this everyday until July 31st, 2011). This is the 57th of those photographs. Also, there is a Flickr collection called “The Awesome Leftovers” where I put the daily shots (if any) that didn’t make the cut.

Today’s photo of the day is an obvious bit of self promotion for Be Nice, my organic cotton, hand printed, unique designs t-shirt business. I printed up two new designs for Be Nice this last weekend. One being Homosapien Friendly, a design by Marine Boudeau, which is today’s picture of the day. The second new addition to Be Nice’s repertoire is Who Stars, a design by me, Cara Reynolds. There are also the two slightly altered-for-the-better tees, Binary Queer and Wind Turbines. To check out all these new additions go to Day 57 – Be Nice.

You may pre-order the new designs if you so desire. :] Please send an e-mail to info[at]ubenice[dot]com for this special promotion before they are released on the site to all. Be Nice shirts are only $25. Send the email and we’ll get the ball rolling on delivering your new, soft, hand printed, organic cotton, super fly tee to you asap.

Much love.

-Cara

Upper East Side

Upper East Side

I am not going repeat what I already wrote here. A quick synopsis, starting August 1st, 2010 I will publish a picture I take that day everyday for a year (well to be exact I will do this everyday until July 31st, 2011). This is the 38th of those photographs. Also, there is a Flickr collection called “The Awesome Leftovers” where I put the daily shots (if any) that didn’t make the cut.

Money walks through the Upper East side. Here are the rest of the shots, Day 38 – Four More.

-Cara

Some Sauce

Some Sauce

I am not going repeat what I already wrote here. A quick synopsis, starting August 1st, 2010 I will publish a picture I take that day everyday for a year (well to be exact I will do this everyday until July 31st, 2011). This is the 26th of those photographs. Also, there is a Flickr collection called “The Awesome Leftovers” where I put the daily shots that didn’t make the cut.

Okay, I am back on track. I like these shots. Michelle, Joanna and I had just had dinner and I needed soy milk, so we hit up the Sunshine Mart by St Marks Place, because it is fun times!

Here are the extras, Yo Day 26.

-Cara

Downtown Brooklyn

Downtown Brooklyn

I am not going repeat what I already wrote here. A quick synopsis, starting August 1st, 2010 I will publish a picture I take that day everyday for a year (well to be exact I will do this everyday until July 31st, 2011). This is the 10th of those photographs. Also, there is a Flickr collection called “The Awesome Leftovers” where I put the daily shots that didn’t make the cut.

This is Downtown Brooklyn where I work as the IT Phenomenon for a few community organizations in the area. This photograph is of a banner promoting  Downtown Brooklyn for its great shopping experience in front of the many empty storefronts for rent. Except for a tax center and a hair braiding place that are thriving downtown businesses.

The silhouette of the bike rider is implying that Downtown it is bike friendly I presume. I will admit that hey have put up more places to lock up your bikes, but then the street vendors don’t let you use them. They installed these newly art designed bike racks and the vendors lean or sit on them and no one stops them,  so it’s pointless. This not unlike the bike lanes on the street side always blocked by Lincoln Town Cars. Bike paths should always be between the sidewalk and parked cars for the safety of all. Come on!

If you’d like a better understanding of Downtown Brooklyn you can also check out the runners up for today at, Day 10 – Getting Down(town).

-Cara

FairTradeCertifiedCoffee

I forget sometimes how important buying fair trade is. I don’t want small children working, picking my cocoa beans to survive, and possibly being abused at the same time. I want kids to be kids, to play, laugh and just be. I want a responsible world where people who have the power to make a huge difference do just that. We have the power to, in astronomical numbers, change how companies operate in this world. We can support fair trade products and if they don’t carry them in your local store, ask them to. We live in a world where distributors can get you anything you’d like. It is not much more money to buy fair trade.  I would rather pay more and buy fair trade chocolate than to pay a cheaper price to support a company that allows families to not receive a fair wage (i.e. – contributing to the poverty of cocoa farmers) and where children have to work for a living instead of just living.

You can take a minute to take action by sending a letter through Green America to Todd Stitzer, CEO of Cadbury, http://www.greenamericatoday.org/takeaction/cadbury/.  Here is a bit from Green America about what is going on with Todd and Cadbury.

England’s leading chocolate bar, Cadbury Dairy Milk, has announced plans to begin using Fair Trade cocoa in summer 2009. The significance of this fantastic news is that Cadbury is the first major chocolate brand to go Fair Trade with one of its main product lines, one of the goals Green America has been striving towards. Cadbury’s announcement proves what Green America has been saying for years: it is viable for a major chocolate bar to go Fair Trade without passing a significant cost increase to consumers. Congratulations on this important victory to all of you who have taken action by buying a Fair Trade Certified™ chocolate bar or writing a letter to bring us to this moment!

The deal, which will bring the Fair Trade label to 15% of the chocolate sold in England, is welcomed by Green America and our allies on both sides of the Atlantic. Increasing the amount of chocolate sold on the Fair Trade market is an important step to improve the lives of farmers around the world.

That doesn’t mean that Cadbury is now a model of sustainability. Here in the US, Cadbury’s chocolates are not Fair Trade Certified™.

Learn more about Cadbury from Green America’s Responsible Shopper.

By contrast, Green Business Network™ members in the confectionery industry like Sweet Earth Chocolates, Equal Exchange, Alter Eco, and Divine have been pioneering Fair Trade and sustainable practices for decades, and are 100% Fair Trade.

As we all know, it is critical to write companies to pressure them to improve their performance on human rights and the environment. But it is just as important to thank companies when they make a change for the better, so that company executives can bring an outpouring of positive feedback to their boards, shareholders, and employees to sustain their new, responsible practices and promote more change.

Please join Green America and Fair Trade advocacy organizations around the world in generating as many letters as possible to:

* congratulate Cadbury on the Fair Trade certification of their Dairy Milk bar in the UK

* ask Cadbury, Hershey (Cadbury’s US manufacturer) and Green and Black’s Organic (owned by Cadbury) to expand their commitment to Fair Trade in the United States by introducing more Fair Trade Certified products.

Then, commit to seeking out Fair Trade chocolate for special occasions, such as Easter eggs from Green Business leaders like Sweet Earth Organic and Divine Chocolate, instead of buying Cadbury’s Crème Egg.

Here is the form letter below. You may alter it to say what you want as well. This is the link where you are able to send and alter said letter.

Subject: Thank you for your fair trade commitment!

Dear Todd Stitzer, CEO, Cadbury:

As a conscious consumer and as a member of Green America, I would like to congratulate Cadbury on your plans to earn Fair Trade certification for the Dairy Milk bar in the United Kingdom. Thanks to your company for taking the leadership role among major chocolate brands in earning Fair Trade certification for an iconic chocolate bar with wide distribution and broad public recognition.

Through your leadership, Cadbury will transform the lives of cocoa farmers and their families, while contributing to a higher standard for ethical sourcing among major chocolate brands. Grassroots activists have been pressing major chocolate brands for years to become Fair Trade Certified. I regularly purchase chocolate from companies that offer Fair Trade Certified products in the United States because with each pound of Fair Trade cocoa purchased a fair deal is made with small-scale farmers in Ghana and other cocoa-producing countries. I am appalled at the existence of abusive child labor on cocoa farms in West Africa and do not want to buy chocolate picked by one of the hundreds of thousands of children working under “the worst forms of child labor,” as the US State Department reported. I choose to support companies that source Fair Trade because I believe that farmers should earn a price for their cocoa that allows them to meet their basic needs and have the right to participate in democratic organizations to decide the use of community development funds. Cadbury’s Fair Trade certification is a significant leap forward in resolving these issues and is a landmark for corporate social responsibility.

I look forward to the day that I will be able to buy Fair Trade Certified products from Cadbury in the United States. I am pleased that Cadbury Green and Black’s Organic has one Fair Trade bar and I encourage Cadbury to work with Hershey as your US licensee to extend Fair Trade certification to your entire range of Cadbury and Green & Black’s products.

Families in my community seek out Fair Trade Certified chocolate for special occasions like Easter. Expanding Cadbury’s commitment to Fair Trade in the United States by introducing more Fair Trade Certified products, such as Cadbury Creme Easter Eggs, Mini Eggs, Dairy Milk, and multiple types of Green and Black’s bars would give families in my community a reason to purchase more of Cadbury’s products.

I hope that Cadbury will join with communities like mine across the US to denounce forced and child labor, support small farmers and expand the selection of Fair Trade Certified products available in the United States.

Sincerely,
Your Name
Your City and State

I make the commitment to only buy fair trade, organic chocolate.

I said it!

-Cara

the market nyc

I know all my stalkers like to know when they can catch a glance of me from a safe distance of 20 to 30 feet, well tomorrow is your lucky day!  Marine and I will be selling our cute, handmade, organic, soft shirts at The Market NYC for the first time. This all courtesy of our green little company, “be nice“. If you would like to learn more about it, you can on the “be niceblog!

Hope to see some non-crazy peeps there as well.

:]

-Cara

Nerds Are Cool

Nerds Are Cool

I remember back in the good old days of this blog I’d do a lot of eco-shopping entries. I’ve since been trying to shave down what I already have. I have always been a pack rat and love to buy stuff. If it wasn’t for the fact that each time I move I am more lazy than obsessed with hording stuff, I’d be one of those guys, you know on Clean Sweep or Cops.  See lazy sometimes is good. I donate stuff to the Salvation Army, or those clothes boxes sprinkled throughout NYC, or drag stuff to swap meets in Queens, or bring them to my job and leave them on a counter outside my office, eBay, etc… Someone, somewhere wants my stuff.

I do have a point to all this. I now find I need to do some shopping for a new backpack. I may document this journey further, but for now I just wanted to share some resources I am using to research said bag. By the way, for those interested, my perfect bag would be an eco, fair trade, non sweatshop, sustainable, long lasting, locally made, recycled, durable, solar energy source, super fresh, comfortable, user friendly, big when it needs to be back pack. I am sure I am missing other specs, but you get my point.

For company ratings on social and environmental issues, see Co-op America’s sweatshops.org.  The Fair Trade Federation also lists companies committed to “fair wages and good employment opportunities to economically disadvantaged artisans and farmers worldwide.”  If they meet these guidelines I have completed part one of this journey.

OK, let me get started, my backpack is almost in pieces.

-Cara

paris-france

Here is a collection of pictures from my first trip to France (the one in Europe).  Marine (who is French from France not Canada) and I traveled together.  We were in Praz-De-Lys for 7 days (March 7th to the morning of the 14th), then spent two days in Paris (March 14th and 15th).  A shout out to Marine’s mother Suzanne for hooking us up with her superb Air France connection, making it possible for us to travel in a more bourgeoise fashion than usual.

We traveled from New York City (our home) to the Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport, then off to the Geneva Cointrin International Airport, next a bus to Taninges, then a cab to Praz-De-Lys, France. It took over 24 hours to complete the trip (March 6th).

We slept most of Saturday and Sunday we truly began our snowy, winter wonderland trip in the French Alps. A week later,  we flew to Paris to spend our last two days in France. It was awesome. :]

Here is the link again of this amazingly fresh vacation.

-Cara

Living in NYC, it is strange to wrap my mind around all that nature and chimpanzees swinging around everywhere. I think any of those jobs would be cool. The coffee sniffing, the chimpanzees studying and the farming, but maybe not on such a large scale. I’m more of a fire escape gardener than coffee farmer.

I love organic coffee, chimpanzees and fair trade!!!

-Cara

It has been forever and a day since I wrote a green shopping review. I have been getting a little too political and musical lately. I need to bring this blog back to its roots. :] Let’s start with this super fresh bag by Green Chic Bag Co.
Green Chic Bag Company

Natalie Bag

Green Chic Bag Company was kind enough to send me one of their bags, the Natalie to be precise. First off, I enjoy the softness of the bag’s stylish exterior fabric. It has a really nice feel that you just need to experience to understand. The interior lining of the bag is waterproof, dark and smooth. I posses multitudes of bags I take shopping, and this is my favorite size-wise. I especially like the depth of it. The straps are very sturdy. I have filled it up a couple times and it is no worse for wear.

I also adore the logo…

green-chic-bag1

Cute Logo

My only issue with the bag is if I have a big sweater and heavy jacket I can’t really throw the bag over my shoulder. When it gets really cold here I may not use it as much, but come the three other seasons, it is my first choice.

It really is a fabulous bag.

-Cara

It doesn’t so much matter what you feel about the war, America, corporate advertising, etc. The point of the matter is there are a lot of young men and women and a few adults far away from home, fighting this crazy war, that feel forgotten, homesick, crazy, sad, confused, whatever it may be and these boxes of products make them happy, they represent home, America. Who doesn’t love a bag of Skittles…come on, show your humanity and help out.

Here’s How You Do It!

Step 1: Write A Letter

Write a letter to the soldier that will receive your package. You may decorate your letter however you’d like. Do something artsy. You don’t need to put a stamp on your letter, as it will be included in your package.

Step 2: Make Your Care Package

Here are some of the things you can put in your care package:

  • A Letter
  • An awesome book
  • AA Batteries
  • Crossword, Puzzle or Sudoku Books
  • Baby wipes or hand wipes
  • Ziplock bags
  • Playing cards, Cool games
  • Writing notebooks
  • Pens
  • Stationary/note cards
  • Beanie Babies
  • Packs of Gum
  • Organic Cookies
  • Lip Balm
  • Socks
  • Tooth paste and toothbrush

Please do not include anything perishable or any home-made food. Sometimes, it takes a few weeks for packages to get to the troops. All goodies should be new and fully sealed.

Step 3: Send Your Care Package

Operation Gratitude is an organization that works with the military to find soldiers who need a care package. Please send your package to Operation Gratitude and they will get your package to a soldier.

Operation Gratitude
16444 Regugio Road
Encino, California 91436
USA

I believe in peace through knowledge.

-Cara

jeffe-me

That’s right a year ago, on January 10th, 2008, “The Day After An Inconvenient Truth” was formed. When I first started this blog it was to have a voice in the world that differs from mainstream television, radio, satellite, newspapers, etc.  I was inspired by the movie, “An Inconvenient Truth“, drawn into the meaning of an “inconvenient truth”, the fact that you might not want to hear what the problem is and what can be done to solve said problem, but here is the truth and now that you know, what are you going to do about it?

In the beginning, what I primarily wrote about was eco, environmental “inconvenient truths”, following in the footsteps of the film, but as time went by I began to find “inconvenient truths” in other areas as well, be it the issue of gay rights, human rights, animal rights, freedom of speech, freedom of art, whatever is going on in the world that mass media does not cover or covers up, these were the pieces I exceptionally enjoy writing about. Then there are the “recycle stuff” ones, just there for some information of what extra steps you can take to make a better world, the D.I.Y. projects using recycled materials, or just how to make something green and cool for your everyday life.  Throw in a few organic recipes, cool green events, green product reviews, games, petitions, stories of amazing people who inspire me, beautiful photos, and sometimes just a funny video to relax and you have, “The Day After An Inconvenient Truth“.  :]

What I am getting at with all this is to say, “The Day After An Inconvenient Truth” has evolved from when I began to where it is at now. I went from doing blog entries everyday from January, 10th, 2008 to October 13th, 2008, right around when I got an official 9-5 job, to now where I may not blog everyday, but no more than a few days go by without me throwing one out there. I needed to find a balance in my life and for now this works for me. I’d rather have good ones than just have ones. :]

I really like writing this blog, even when I can’t think of what to write about, or when I’d rather be playing PlayStation with Ms. Marine or web 2.0 out on the million social networks. This blog makes me more accountable.  It is something I started and am still doing a year later (see Tony). Listen, for someone with absolutely no attention span to anything (besides computers and all things tech), I am pretty amazed that “TDAAIT” is still going. What is crazier is when I started this blog I was surprised if I got 10 hits a day, to now where I get on average over 300 unique hits a day from all over the world. Though businesses like MSNBC and other corporations that I do not have any respect for, ask me to place their advertisements on my site, I refuse. I was not working a real job when I started this blog and could have used easy money like that. Instead, I was insulted that they would even ask me, so much so I responded that they obviously had not looked at my blog, because if so they would never have asked me! In retrospect, I am sure they would have asked me anyway. In their minds people are just a herd of non-thinking cows who when they see a blinking ad, inevitably they must click on it. That goes against what I am trying to achieve here. I really hate ads everywhere. I am blessed in  many other ways through this blog, so it doesn’t need to monetarily support me as well.

What else have I gotten from writing, “The Day After An Inconvenient Truth”? I have learned about a lot of bad stuff that goes on, and I have learned about good people, things and ideas, living and growing here on this Earth (I liked it when Alice Walker called humans “Earthlings” in this interview.). I maintain hope and an awesome faith that things will only get better if you do good.

Something I keep in the forefront of my mind is, what each of us does affects the other. It is not just the huge things necessarily, even our smallest thoughts affect the world. Also, we can as one person change things; who you touch in turns will touch others. You may not get the gratification of seeing the change you bring to the world directly, but if you do it, you may see the world itself change. I search for happiness and peace, by going inconveniently through its sorrows, untruths, truths, and ugliness. I also keep the faith. Faith is the most important thing, without it you are lost. I guess that is what, “The Day After An Inconvenient Truth” is to me, a way to not lose hope and to maintain my faith during the era that is the beginning of the end.

This year I have learned that humanity is not as bad and hopeless as it seems, so that’s cool.

-Cara

General Motors are at it again, but this time they are loaning out their “green” Chevrolet Equinox Fuel Cell electric vehicles to the United States Post Office. I guess that way they’re not people’s personal automobiles, so possibly in GM’s mind, postal workers will not get so attached and protest the destruction of said electric cars. Well they will have no claim to them anyway.

GM better think this one over, I’ve heard some people who work for the postal service may be a bit sensitive, anxious, stressed and easily annoyed.

The chosen citizen test drivers are only allowed to have the car for three months. I guess that it the limit before attachment begins to set in by their test subjects.

The technology is interesting to the nerd in me.

I don’t trust them.

-Cara

January 1st, 2009

January 1st, 2009, NYC, NY

It’s the New Year (shout-out to 2009) and Marine and I were searching for what’s next. On the 1st of this New Year we ended up at La Palapa Cocina Mexicana in the East Village, eating really fresh Mexican food with some fantastical margaritas (good times). It is in this magical place that we came up with a plan. Our plan is to become real life educated consumers (time frame one year), in our own way. What that means is whatever we buy we need to know before we buy:

1. Location of business in regards to our Spanish Harlem apartment (we just learned yesterday that our neighborhood’s nickname is SpaHa. I really don’t like the way SpaHa rolls off my tongue).

2. Who owns the company

3. Company’s philosophy

4. Are they green? How so?

5. How the employees are treated

6. Where does the company get their inventory

7. Price

8. Product review (by the people and the industry)

9. Company review (by the people and the industry)

Exceptions

1.    Medical Prescriptions

2.    Cigarettes

3.    We Know, you don’t need to know everything

4.    Eating out, Delivery, and Pick-Up

5.    Rent

6.    Bills like ConEd, Phone, Mobile, Web Hosting, etc.

Exceptions does not mean we do whatever we want. It is just places where we indulge somewhat, it is a freedom of sorts. Who knows where this year will lead us, but I know for myself if I try to control all my elements I fail. I need to have some leeway to breath.

Today is the 3rd of January and here is the list of things we have purchased under this new regime.

1.    New York Cake and Baking Distributor, 56 West 22nd Street, NYC, NY – $8.99, tax – $0.75, total – $9.74 -Fox Run Kitchens – French Bread Pan – Made in China, Fox Run Craftsmen Ivyland, PA 18974, Concord, ON L4K 3V4, tinplate – Cara

2.   Poland Spring Natural Spring Water, 700mL, Poland Spring Water Company, Division of Nestle Waters, North America Inc. , Greenwich, CT 06830, Mood Building Vendor, 225 W. 37th Street, NYC, NY 10018, $2.00, #1 PETE plastic bottle, blue flip top – Marine

3.    Mood Fabrics,  225 W. 37th Street, NYC, NY 10018, $100 gift card – Cara

4.    Supercuts [Regis Corporation], 460 3rd Ave, NYC, NY 10016, $19 hair cut, $5 tip – Marine (It was Marine’s first time going to a Supercuts. She had said she was going to go there before the 1st of January to experience the true American less than $20 haircut. It is something everyone should experience once.)

As you can see we haven’t done so well…so far… Keep in mind this is a learning experiment. :] We bought bottled water on the 2nd of January and I didn’t even realized we had failed until today. Marine and her SuperCuts haircut… What you have to keep in mind is we have stopped ourselves from buying multitudes of things from the 1st to today, to take the time to research. For real… I will be tracking our progress here to make myself (and maybe Marine) more accountable. I know at least one person in my family reads this on occasion… :]

Keep it real.

-Cara

——————————————

UPDATE [February 24th, 2009] – OK, I need to reassess this project as it was way more difficult than I thought. I am definitely more conscientious about what I buy, but that leave me little time to log it all. I will cover cool finds here and if it becomes easier, or I become more motivated I will track my consuming for more than one day. :]

begleys-natural-cleaners

I live slightly under a rock not having a TV with satellite, cable or any local stations broadcasting from it. Imagine my surprise when I came across Bagley’s Best products, by Ed Begley Jr. of course. I loved “Living with Ed“, when I had a TV, so much so it was one of the first blog entries I wrote about back in the day.

Bagley’s Best was started when a man named John Watts bumped into Ed Begley Jr. in Real Food Daily. It was this occurrence that created an eco Paul Newman like business, where most of the company’s profits got to charities, environmental causes and non-profits.

Live the life.

-Cara

pretty-snow

I think it is interesting that it is snowing tonight on the day Marine wrote this blog entry, and wore her Be Nice, “Pretty Snow” shirt. Don’t you?

:]

Cara

im-local

This design is printed with green eco-friendly ink on a natural organic American Apparel t-shirt. It was designed by Marine.

“I’m Local, talking to me will not increase your carbon footprint”. I think it is a little funny. This shirt is specifically recommended for single beings.

You can get it online at ubenice.com.

The occupation of Iraq will cost $3 trillion, America’s most expensive conflict since WWII.

This site, http://3trillion.org/, is about you having 3 trillion dollars and what you can do for yourself or the world with it. You are taken to a global shopping spree, you browse their on-line store, fill up your cart, click the checkout button, and send virtual gifts to others. I was surprise how it was hard for me to get 3 trillion dollars worth of stuff. If these numbers are correct this site is a great educational tool. It makes things seem less unknown, even if the numbers are approximations. I think anyone can add stuff so…it is still fun.  A tip don’t go over the 3 trillion dollar total as it has a bug and clears your whole cart. I learned that the hard way… :[

http://3trillion.org/

Spread the word.

-Cara

Non-Electric Water Distiller

Non-Electric Water Distiller

Above is a non-electric water distiller that uses almost any heat source to distill pure water anywhere, anytime. Look, I am not saying you need one, just letting people know what one of their water distilling, non-electric options are.

The tap water is heated to boiling point so the impurities are separated from the water, and the water then becomes steam. This is then condensed back into pure liquid form. The impurities remain as residue and are removed leaving 100% pure, pH balanced water. That my friends is how distilling water is done.

For $369 you  can buy the one pictured above at Real Goods Dot Com. According to their site the water distiller is, “…a high output stove top water distiller that operates on a variety of heat sources for daily and emergency use. Distillate capacity, based on a 2,600W electric burner: 3.2 qt. in 1.2 hours; up to 16 gal. per day. Stainless steel with no moving parts or fan; digital timer with alarm, 12″H x 12″ Diameter. 9 lbs. Three-year limited warranty. China/USA”.

Distilled water is literally water that has been boiled, evaporated and condensed – leaving all chemicals, toxins and waste behind and creating pure, clean water.  Distillation will remove bacteria, viruses, cysts, heavy metals, radionuclides, organics, inorganics, and particulates. However, it does not remove substances that have boiling points at a lower temperature than water. Some of these substances are oils, petroleum, alcohol and similar substances, which in most cases don’t mix with water.   Also, remember that substances removed from water remain in the boiler, so you’ll need to clean it up every once in awhile.

Zack Scott, makes a great video demonstrating how to make a mini solar water distiller.

I wonder if we’ll have any hot days left this year to try.

Hmmm…I might think of a way to build a real distiller. I may need to move to a tropical island to turn up the heat. You never know when you may need to distill mucky water in the middle of nowhere. Now at least you have an idea what to do.

Survivor!

-Cara

I feel a bit stuck in a rut with this blog lately and I’ve been thinking about why that is. What I came up with is themes. I think I am over the responsibility of theme days. I am going to just write whatever I feel like writing about each day. It will still be “green” and beyond, just the day’s writings will be whatever I feel like.

Like this one, instead of being about a heroine, it is about me giving up themes. I am, of course open to patterns developing..that’s different.  :-) It is also about me finding a bunch of coupons for Organic Valley Farms’ products. :-D

Nice.

-Cara

Cat and Dog

This is a great idea. I think I first saw stapleless staplers at the Whitney Museum. It’s fun and important to not waste staples and who doesn’t love to staple things?

Staple

Good times.

-Cara

g a

In previous Friday shopping entries I would list three items you could buy, but I have decided I would rather focus on just one product per shopping entry. The reason is it’s easier to focus and provide more information one one product, in comparison to three. OK, now that we have discussed the changes, lets move on.

Here is a really cool idea from Desert Sweet Organic.

In a pristine high desert farm in Arizona, 141,000 certified organic apple trees (Choose from Gala, Red, Golden, Granny Smith, or Fuji apple tree) are up for sale.

You can send 10-lb gifts boxes that contain certified organic apples from your very own apple tree to whoever, for $11.50 plus shipping, plus the one time cost of the tree and yearly horticulture. Prices of the trees range between $200-$250 depending on the tree and yearly horticulture is $45 a year.

Simply send them your gift list and they’ll do all the work for you. They take care of your tree and send the apples to your gift recipients every year it produces fruit, for as long as it lives. These trees have approximately 20 more years of fruit producing life.

If anyone cares I love Gala apples. ;)

-Cara

Two eco-green-super fresh shopping entries in one week, stop it. It’s your lucky week. Well not really. I didn’t think it would be responsible of me to promote more consumption, so instead I will put together some tips on how to be more environmentally conscious when you do shop. Even better. :)

According to Earth 911,

A family of four [I wonder if this is a family of four people or two people and two cats or one person and three dogs…] can save $2,000 a year in the supermarket by choosing large sizes instead of individual serving sizes. Small sizes use more packaging for each ounce of product than larger sizes. So, if you buy large sizes, you save money, reduce waste, and help the environment.

Here’s some Earth 911 tips:

  • Buy cereal in a large box instead of in individual serving sizes.
  • Buy large packages of sugar and flour.

I think the best thing would be to buy local products, like at your Farmer’s Market. That way you may avoid any packaging and you’ll be supporting your local region and a small business. That’s a lot of good.

Another thing you can do to help out is make sure whatever it is you are buying, that the packaging is recyclable through your local recycling program. If you go to this link on Earth 911 you can find that information.

Do not buy disposable products. We do not live in a world that can survive all this junk filling landfills and polluting the earth. In fact take all the disposable products you have and invent something new. There’s a cool project. Then if you want you can sell it on Etsy, make tons of money, quit your job and work for yourself, protect the world, and enjoy your life…easy.

Here are some ways to do your part,

  • Use rechargeable batteries in everything that needs batteries [May I suggest purchasing solar powered products, or water powered or kinetic instead…]
  • Do not use disposable cameras [Unless you are at someone’s wedding and they give you one. I mean at that point it’s too late.].
  • Use cloth napkins, sponges, and cloth towels or wipes to clean up. [I’m working on that one right now.]
  • Use washable plates, cups, and silverware for parties and picnics instead of disposable products [Come on really who is still buying paper or plastic plates???].
  • Use an electric razor or hand razor with replaceable blades instead of disposable razors. [Whoops.]
  • Use a washable commuter mug for your morning coffee and eliminate a Styrofoam or plastic cup every day [Funny, I was walking around just the other day with my Starbucks’ disposable coffee cup in my hand, thinking just that. I’m embarrassed….tell no one.].

I hope you have enjoyed this Friday’s shopping tips.

Enjoy your weekend.

-Cara

—————————————————
Reason 77 from, 101 Reasons Why I Am Vegetarian:
The population explosion should not be thought of exclusively in terms of people–not when one considers the ecological footprint represented by the world’s 3.2 billion cattle, sheep, goats, and domesticated bison across the globe. About 20 percent of the world’s pastures and rangelands, with 73 percent of rangelands in dry areas, have been degraded to some extent, mostly through overgrazing, compaction, and erosion caused by livestock.

On Fridays I usually do a shopping or a recycled object making entry, then Saturdays a recipe entry and Sundays are a game or quiz entry, but two Fridays ago it was my 100th post, so I didn’t do the shopping/recycled entry until Monday. This Friday I was into tips, so I guess and forgot to do my regular entry. Today I will make up for missing said entry.

Here are three cool products I found. I mention places to buy the things I talk about, but I suggest trying to find products locally whenever possible.

On siliconsolar.com I found for $24.95 the Solar Battery Charger AA AAA C and D. It has the ability to charge AAA, AA, C and D batteries using solar cells. The company has one complaint in 36 months at the Better Business Bureau, which they resolved. I worked for the BBB here in New York City for about six years and that is a fine record for an online company…in my opinion. I think this charger is a great idea.

Alright, I am not sure how many people grill, but my dad does and smokes food. He makes me a mean, marinated, smoked portobello sandwich like you wouldn’t believe. Anyway, his grill light uses batteries I think, so I found the Maverick SOLAR LED Grill Light, Stainless Steel GL-04 for $48.99. Happy Father’s Day!!!

Last but not least, we were talking about brining your own water bottle to work instead of using disposable cups. I like the Switzerland company Sigg’s water bottles. They aren’t too big, and have a clean fresh look and feel to them. They are fashionable and sustainable.

I will update this entry with any reviews once I’ve tried any of these products. Please leave a comment if you’ve tried any of these contraptions, as I would love to know what you thought of them

Enjoy.

-Cara

—————————————————

Reason 73 from, 101 Reasons Why I Am Vegetarian:
Grass-fed beef is more eco-friendly than corn-fed, but supplies of it could never sustainably meet current consumer demand. Several guides are available to help seafood consumers “eat with a conscience.” But the species that are recommended would quickly run out if everyone ate them. Legally, “free-range” and “cage-free” designations are dubious to outright meaningless. At least one humane certification program was officially debunked. “Organic” has gone strangely industrial and is rightly tagged “ethically challenged.” Ultimately, to “eat green” and to “be kind,” one needs to go vegan. [Opinion of Pamela Rice only. I feel that to not validate free-range and grass-fed animals/farming is to tell meat eaters, that their choice does not matter between industrial farming and free-range, when of course it does make a difference. -Cara]

Since Friday was my 100th post, we missed the weekly shopping entry, so thank you Monday, for picking up Friday’s slack.

Sometimes I commit sins against green. It is true I still sin. One example of said sinning is my desire to dry the counters with clean, pristine, white, recycled [:)] paper towels. I have a sponge for the counters, but it always seems to get dirty so fast, that I can’t bear to “clean” anything with it. Thus, the paper towel dilemma.

I decided to research this issue of mine and find a solution. Here is what I will try, the European Sponge Cloth. I think it might be a winner. I will let you know, and if anyone reading this has tried it, please review as I am curious.

Second sin…composting. I’ve done tons of research on composting…for whatever reasons, I will not get into now. Nevertheless, with all I know of what makes what type of compost, and what to do to keep out the bugs, how to make it not smell, plenty of room on my fire escape, food byproducts everyday, plants that need to be re-potted and fed…I still don’t compost. What I will do is buy these BioBags [100% biodegradable and 100% compostable bags and films made from the material, Mater-Bi. All of our products contain GMO free starch, biodegradable polymer and other renewable resources. No polyethylene is used in the production process. BioBag products meet ASTM D6400 specifications and California SB 1749 requirements.] and line this old wooden wine box

and compost away. Again, I’ll let you know…

And last but not least, to begin to make up for all the paper and whatever else I have done, I will give to The Arbor Day Foundation’s, Rain Forest Rescue Program.

I like having “to-do” lists.

-Cara

—————————————————

Reason 66 from, 101 Reasons Why I Am Vegetarian:
The meat industry doesn’t treat the causes of its problems, only the symptoms. When it imprisons massive numbers of animals in cramped stress-inducing cages, it provides the perfect breeding ground for deadly bacteria, which later infect the meat. Technologies to kill meat pathogens are now very big business. We have acidic-solution carcass misting, alkaline-solution sprays, steam/vacuum technology, high-temperature carcass washes, steam pasteurization, and chlorine applications, etc., ad nauseam. Some bug-fighting methods, such as food irradiation and sprays of antidotal viruses and probiotic bacteria, pose risks in themselves. And in the end, the meat still isn’t safe

Kiss

I have been dreading doing the reviews of stuff people have sent me. It isn’t that I am not opinionated, because ask anyone around…opinions I’ve got! I guess I feel pressure to say good things, because I received the stuff for free or maybe because I was raised to be thankful for whatever anyone gives you…or because it feels like….who knows what…it doesn’t matter because I need to do these reviews as I said I would, so here we go…

I’ll start with Eco Lips organic lip balm. I selected the vanilla flavored hemp 98% organic lip balm. The 2% that is non-organic seems to be D-Alpha Tocopherol [vitamin E] and the Rosmarinus Officinalis [rosemary] leaf extract. It is interesting that they can’t get organic rosemary leaf extract or organic vitamin E. I will see what I can find out about that. This product is also cruelty free, non GMO product, and petroleum free. Made in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. GBA! ;)

Let me give you a little bit of history about me and lip balm. I love it. I can’t get enough of it. I have tried a million different types of lip balms. I think it started when I was the Body Care buyer at Whole Foods for a few years. One of my duties as a Body Care Buyer was to sample all lip balms and bring in the best ones for our consumers. I feel as though my experience in lip balmery makes me an excellent candidate to review said lip balm. :)

I like the green label with the silver packaging of the hemp Eco Lips lip balm. It is a throwback to futuristic movies in the 70’s with a hemp leaf square in the middle. :D The vanilla smells like high end vanilla extract you use while baking. Then when you put it on your lips, it is a silky softness that stays. I am really impressed with it. Out of the three different Burt’s Bees lip balms I have and a plethora of other such brands right now Hemp Vanilla Eco Lips is my favorite and that’s saying a lot.

So of a rating of 1 to 5 I give this a solid 4 and it would have been a 5 but for the 98% organic shaved off a point.

OK, review one done and I feel good. Stay tuned…more to follow.

Best.

-Cara

UPDATE:

I have learned from an employee at Eco Lips after asking, Why do you all make it 98% organic instead of 100%…” that “Vitamin E can be extracted in a 100% NATURAL process, but not organic. This is very complex and has to do with chemicals and molecular bases, but it is just the way it is at this point in time.” and he also wanted to make sure I knew, “that Burt’s [Bee] is not at all organic, but only 100% natural.” I think both are important points, so I am sharing them here with you. You are welcome!

——————————-

Animal agriculture routinely mutilates farmed animals for its own convenience and often simply out of habit. Debeaking, branding, castration, ear notching, wing and comb removal, dehorning, teeth clipping, and tail and toe docking are ever-present tasks on today’s farm and ranch. Laborers, not veterinarians, perform the surgeries, employing restraint, not anesthesia.

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