Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Happy Earth Day.

Tomorrow is National Children's Day in Turkey.

Today is Earth Day. Not in Turkey. At least I don't think so.

So, in honor of earth day, I decided to write all the "green" things we do around our home, thanks to last week's "hump day" suggestion by Julie Pippert.

We don't recycle. There are people who sort the trash out in big containers, take out the recyclable stuff and sell them, so no need for that. I don't want to hamper someone else's livelihood. This is not my usual "I am shallow" confession, I truly believe that there is an actual market for container pickers. We do have a recycle bin a few blocks from where we live for glass and plastic containers, and I have been planning on using that for some time now. It could be a good plan to follow weekly, and the boys would learn to be responsible for the environment, yes. I know my brother recycles, I have no idea how, but I shall ask. We used to when we lived in the US, and we meticulously followed the green trash bag - red trash bag - or whatever color trash bag sorting rules. There is no such thing here in İstanbul. People actually hurl their trash from balconies in my apartment. Really. I have nice memories of picking fights with them.

We turn off the lights when not in use, does that count?

We turn off the faucets when brushing teeth, and conserve water by using well (you know, well?) water for the lawn (which is littered with my obnoxious neighbors' trash anyways). Oh, and I haven't gotten the car washed in 11 months. That's a bit of laziness as well. But more to conserve water.

What else.

We encourage the boys to paint on the back of used papers and printouts (they usually do not mind). Our fridge and washing machine are energy efficient (though I do not whether that means I pay less for electricity or.. or what?). We "air dry" our laundry. We don't throw bottles in the ocean (believe me, take a walk by the seaside where I live, and you are bound to run into a minimum of 5 people chucking beer/water/soda bottles in the water - we try not to shoot them with bb guns).

We support TEMA - The Turkish Foundation for Combating Soil Erosion, for Reforestation and the Protection of Natural Habitats (my goodness that took forever to type!) by planting trees instead of sending holiday gifts to business associates (I know, not very original, but TLs spent for a good cause).

Short list. But at least not as puny as I thought it would be.

Merry National Children's Day. And a happy Earth Day as well.

Edit: After reading "50 Ways to Help the Planet" I realized we do 34 of the 50 suggestions. Yey.

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