Been a while since you visited your local library? It’s a great way to cut costs and keep your mind humming, while saving trees. Yes, there’s still the wacky dewey decimal system and people hunkered down all day (some drooling, I might add), at least at my trusty, musty Cleveland Park library. But now, instead of leaving empty handed when you can’t find that hot new tome, you can be added to a waiting e-list for books that are checked out.
I’ve been itching to read Michael Pollan’s “The Omnivore’s Dilemma” and “In Defense of Food.” When I went to find them last week, the nice librarian informed me that all of their copies were checked out. She then asked if I’d like to be added to the wait list. Well, here it is not even a week later and an email arrived telling me that one of the books is waiting for me. Sure, we all love Amazon and Kramer Books, but if you want something for free and a trip back in time, the library is where it’s at.
1. Renovate your home and build using eco-products, energy-saving appliances, VOC-free paint, recycled flooring. Learn more at The U.S. Green Building Council or stock up on supplies at the Amicus Green Building Center.
2. Lose weight and get healthier by limiting how much you drive. Even better, ditch that old gas guzzler and sign up for a car-sharing service like ZipCar so you’ll have wheels only when you really need them.
3. Keep your home tidy and free of toxins with a eco-friendly cleaning service and opt for environmentally safe cleaning supplies such as Seventh Generation and Method. In a pinch, good old-fashioned diluted vinegar works well on glass and countertops.
4. Get serious about recycling. Outfit your kitchen and office with bins that help you sort paper, plastic, and other materials. For really big items or stuff you’re not sure how to recycle, contact Junk in the Trunk. Their ECOVERY Box lets them recycle or donate your items safely and efficiently. Plus, you get receipts for any items they donate.
5. Eschew chain restaurants for lunch and either pack your own or check out a local, organic lunch spot such as Java Green.