Reflecting On The Best Of 2008

As the end of the year draws near, we all get inundated with the “Best of 2008” programs, lists and commentaries.

Well, as I am a junkie for montages that reflect on what happened over the past year, and how it impacted one’s daily life, I thought I would share my own!

The Best Eco Friendly Changes I Made In 2008:

1. Used Miracle Mulch (eco-friendly coconut)
2. Added weather stripping to conserve energy.
3. Used motion sensors for outdoor lights to save energy. Turned off the porch light whenever we could.
4. Installed ceiling fans throughout the house. Never turned on the AC in 2008!
5. Unplugged electronics when they weren’t in use.
6. Purchased new furniture items second-hand whenever possible.
7. Used CFLs throughout the house.
8. Purchased a bundled holiday tree that we will plant after the holiday season instead of cutting a tree down or purchasing a fake tree.
9. Used LED lights on the holiday tree.
10. Eliminated printing from the computer whenever possible.
11. Purchased art using recycled materials from Dolan Geiman.
12. Turned down the thermostat by 3 degrees for the winter season, and even lower when we could.
13. Used recycled paper and print on both sides whenever we have to print.
14. Recycled printer cartridges.
15. Purchased most clothes second-hand at Cynthia’s Consignment Boutique.
16. Purchased new clothes at Pivot Boutique.
17. Purchased bedding from A Cooler Planet and Healthy Green Goods that uses 100% organic materials.
18. Recycled any items we cannot reuse or compost. (We shred used paper for packing materials and use paper for crafts before shredding.)
19. Composted all foods except breads, meats, dairy, and sugars.
20. Purchased the majority of our food at Green City Market for locally produced organic foods.
21. Used all eco-friendly household products.
22. Became a Chicago Method Maven spreading the word on how to be eco chic when you clean.
23. Eliminated paper towels and instead used rags made of recycled fabric scraps from clothes we could not use or donate.
24. Used cloth napkins everyday.
25. Ran the dishwasher only when full.
26. Used our convection oven whenever possible.
27. Eliminated all plastic storage bags by using glass containers and reusable containers made of eco-friendly materials.
28. All party supplies we used were all either reusable, or recycled and 100% biodegradable.
29. Replaced PVC shower liner with fabric liner that zips off for easy cleaning and reusing.
30. Used toilet paper made of recycled paper. (Softer than you think!)
31. Eliminated using facial tissue by making handkerchiefs from fabric scraps.
32. Purchased all organic personal products.
33. Reduced water consumption with shorter showers.
34. Turned off the water whenever we brushed our teeth.
35. Wrapped the water heater to conserve energy, and turned down the water heater temperature.
36. Washed clothes in cold water whenever we had a full load.
37. Added a rain barrel outside to capture water for landscaping.
38. Added energy saving film to second floor skylights.
39. Used VOC free paint for touch-ups and crafts.
40. Eliminated all plastic bags by using canvas bags wherever we go.

When I see my recent eco-friendly changes listed like this it gives me such a sense of accomplishment.

Sure, I know I still have a long way to go, but at least I can feel satisfied looking back on 2008 with a sense of pride, and that encourages me to keep making changes that create a positive impact in 2009.

An Original 5 Minutes for Going Green post. Read more about Jen’s goals for 2009 at her blog The Eco Chic Organizer. Picture from a recent Eco Chic Event.

2 Responses to Reflecting On The Best Of 2008
  1. Susan (5 Minutes for Mom)
    December 23, 2008 | 5:41 pm

    I love this!

    Your successes can become a to-do list for the rest of us.

    Fantastic. Thanks for sharing!

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