I have always be concerned about the earth. When I was young, maybe 11 or 12, I made my parents buy these things for the toilet that helped conserve water. This is back when Seventh Generation was one of the only green companies around. I wanted my parents to use all of their products. My parents weren't exactly on board, but they gave in to some of the stuff. They started recycling because of me, and then the city caught on several years later. In high school, one of the first clubs I joined was the Environmental Club. My Senior year, I was co-president. I went to Earth Day rallies before people even understood what Earth Day was. I have always believed that one person can make a difference.
Now that I'm older, I've improved my green practices. We recycle, even though our city swears they pick through the trash and get all the recycling out. I don't believe that's effective enough. I actually start to feel guilt if I throw something away that could potentially be recycled. Just the other day, I took a new package of bubbles and blowers to a friends house and I brought the packaging home with me to recycle since I knew she doesn't recycle those things. Crazy, I know. Extreme? I don't think so. Other than recycling, I clean green. I use a LOT of vinegar and essential oils. I'm also still a Seventh Generation fan and like Method as well. I buy biodegradable trash bags. I try to buy local, organic produce. I don't use chemicals in my garden. I'm also raising tree huggers. Both my kids are very aware of their impact on the environment. Monster even has the terminology correct and lets people know that he's trying to reduce his carbon footprint.
The issue comes with my desire to rebel against trends. It seems as though everyone is jumping on the green bandwagon. When everyone jumps on is normally when I jump off. I am thrilled to see people being more concerned for our planet. At the same time, I don't think most of these people actually get it. I'll use my mom as an example (sorry mom). My mom takes her own bags to the grocery store. She recycles. She may even be more fanatical about recycling than I am. She donates unused items instead of throwing them away (but I don't consider that green, I consider that common sense). My mom loves her chemicals though. Up until a year or two ago, my mom used to put the super strong Lysol disinfectant in her laundry along with her detergent, a color brightener, and liquid fabric softener. Every cleaning product in her house is a super strong chemical. I also think my mom needs to buy stock in Ziploc. Even though my mom recycles, she also uses a ton of paper. She prints things left and right. Now, my mom is also 76 years old, and, she's gotten WAY better and she's not jumping on the bandwagon. A lot of the stuff she does is because I've talked her into it. I'm just trying to prove a point. A lot of people doing "green" things are doing them because it's now popular, but they aren't changing their other habits. In fact, even companies who claim they are going green still use a ton of packaging materials. For the same event in which I brought the bubbles, my friend had brand new sidewalk chalk. The chalk was in a box. Each row of chalk was wrapped in cellophane. Come on. You can't just stick the chalk in the box?
I am so happy to see the United States moving towards better environmental practices. It disappoints me though that we have to sell the public on these practices by making them seem "cool". It disappoints me that the public is jumping on a bandwagon they know nothing about and most don't even care about. At least I know I'm still doing my part and raising kids who aren't just jumping on the bandwagon. They are the future of environmental trendsetters.