Earth Day is an annual event, held on April 22. It is meant to raise awareness of the environment and the various things we can do as inhabitants of this great earth, to preserve it and care for it. Earth Day is also a call-to-action to us all to be more vigilant in the way we live our lives to ensure we leave the planet in better condition that we received it. There are just so many ways to celebrate Earth Day with our families. Hopefully you will find the way that best suits your family!
Earth Day … it conjures either deep conviction in the Climate Change proponents or total disregard in the naysayers. I fall somewhere in between. I don’t deny it and neither do I embrace it. But, as an inhabitant and a parent, I believe, regardless of where one falls in the debate, we all should be great stewards of this amazing creation we call Earth. I believe that the duty to preserve and to protect it falls on each and every one of us.
My husband and I take this responsibility seriously and have found the best way to teach our children to respect the communities in which we live, the forests and mountains and deserts that we adventure in and the wildlife that graces every nook and cranny of our wilderness is to get them out in this tremendous world and show them!
As Earth Day approaches, I’ve taken the liberty of making a Top Ten List of things that families can do to help garner both appreciation and a sense of duty when it comes to this great big world that we all must co-inhabit.
Of course, this is the best way to instill a love of nature in yourself and your children and so, of course, it’s my number one thing to do on Earth Day. It’s not rocket science that we can’t appreciate something we never see, that we never utilize and that we simply don’t understand. Our society is plagued by obesity and a culture that worships smart phones and electronics above healthy living and family fun. This Earth Day, grab your kids and head out to a nearby trailhead, go biking or hiking. Go down to your local river or lake and skip rocks, play in the mud. Anything, just get them outside and encourage them to go wild. Let your kids get dirty and let them explore, run, climb and play. You’ll open their eyes to a whole new world. A world they will learn to love and therefore want to protect.
Bike, Don’t Drive
Channel the younger, more vibrant, energetic you of your youth and ditch your car for the day. I swear you will live and you may even love it. I mean, we travel with bikes on our trailer, alongside our plethora of Jackson Kayaks and I daresay we bike way more than we drive. Not only is it healthier for us, but it’s also way more fun, and there is no rush hour traffic on the bike paths! Today, it’s not only healthier, but it’s enviable to be a biker rather than a driver. And as such, urban areas around the globe are embracing the idea, allocating millions of dollars to build state of the art bike paths that are like labyrinths through their city! Fellow TMOM, Judy Antell tells of her biking experience in New York City.
No, no, I get it, I totally understand, who’s got the money for rooftop solar? Not me, that’s for dang sure. But there are so many options for solar from chargers to lights to small portable panels that you don’t have to be a gazillionaire to save some money and help the environment out a bit! We are converted solar lovers! We save a ton of money in gas by utilizing our solar instead of our generator to charge our laptops, phones and cameras. We light up the outside of our RV using solar lights, we use solar flashlights to guide our evening adventures and we even use the sun to cook via the All American Sun Oven! And let’s not forget, kids love new gadgets, so getting them on board using solar is super duper easy! So lets get cranking using the sun to help power some of our lives!
Give Up Bottled Water
This is something we did eons ago., not because of fossil fuels and not because of carbon whatever, but because of the number of bottles we saw piling up in the landfill. And, yeah, a lot of us recycle, but still, it’s not quite the same as using a reusable BPA free Nalgene or other brand water bottle. And besides, most of that water we are buying from the store isn’t filled with spring water from locations close to heaven as they would have you think. On the contrary, it’s from the tap, exactly like the water that flows from your kitchen sink. So do yourself, your budget and the environment a favor, buy a reusable water bottle for all your drinking needs!
Going paperless was a necessity when we hit the road as getting mail on the road isn’t as easy as one would think. But going paperless and opting for online bill pay, or automatic bill pay is something of a blessing. It single handedly cuts down on your workload and memory overload needed to keep track of every bill and when it’s due as well as reducing the number of trees that have to be sacrificed in order to send us those blasted bills. Our mail carrier and our climate, I’m sure thank us!
Grab the kids and head out to a local farmer’s market where you will not only get to meet and talk with local growers but also help support your local farms financially. In addition, you will be contributing to their ability to continue hiring local residents, while at the same time you’ll be keeping your money in your community! But that’s not all, locally grown food typically has less preservatives, it tastes better and is fresher and healthier! And of course, buying local cuts down on transport, which in turn is good for the environment!! It’s a win/win! Buy local!
Plant a Garden!
As full time travelers, this is one of the biggest things I miss, being able to grow my own food, or at least some of it. I can’t think of a better way to introduce kids to the concept of local and organic foods than planting one together. It’s chock full of hard work with a great payofff in actually seeing vegetables sprout from all that love and toil. And since we are talking about Earth Day … planting greenery helps to suck up some of that extra CO2!