Happy Earth Day

Today is Earth Day.

Here are some tips to Save Energy:

Reduce your carbon footprint. Leaving your car at home twice a week can cut greenhouse gas emissions over 1,500 pounds per year. Reduce greenhouse gases on the road.

Don’t idle. Don’t idle! Remind your school system to turn off bus engines when buses are parked to eliminate harmful exhaust pollution. More about reducing engine idling.

It’s electric. Check how much of your electricity comes from renewable sources, like wind, solar. Then find green power options available to you. Use the green power locator.

Tread lightly. Commuting without polluting! Use public transportation, carpool, walk, or bike whenever possible to reduce air pollution and save on fuel costs. Learn about reducing your carbon footprint.

Make the switch. Buy or switch to energy efficient lighting fixtures and bulbs. Look for the EnergyStar label to help save you money on energy bills and pollute less. Find more energy savings.

eCycle it. eCycle – take your old computer, DVD player, or other electronics to a recycling center. This helps keep hazardous substances out of the landfill. Find eCycling centers near you.

Make your home an Energy Star! As you start your spring cleaning, do a home energy audit and switch to EnergyStar products. More ideas for what you can do at home.

Here are some tips to use water efficiently:

Make it a full load. Run your dishwasher only when it’s full; use the rinse-and-hold dishwasher feature until you’re ready to run a full load. More about using water wisely.

Be sensible. Buy water-efficient fixtures and products. The WaterSense label helps shoppers identify water efficient products and programs. More about WaterSense.

Shower power. Shower power! A full bath tub requires about 70 gallons of water, while taking a five-minute shower saves water by using 10 to 25 gallons. More about using water wisely.

Don’t be a drip – fix that leak! Leaky faucets can waste thousands of gallons of water each year, like money down the drain. Repair or replace old or damaged fixtures. Find out more about saving water.

Fill ‘er up! Make it a full load. The average washing machine uses 40. 9 gallons of water per load. Buy a high-efficiency washer or save up for full loads. More about using water wisely.

Compost it. Allow grass clippings to stay on the lawn, instead of bagging them. The cut grass will decompose and return to the soil naturally. More backyard composting ideas.

Proper maintenance reduces waste. Maintain and repair products. Keep appliances in good working order. Follow manufacturers’ suggestions for proper operation and maintenance. More ways you can reduce waste.

Don’t trash it – reuse it! Be creative about reducing waste. Give pet hamsters or gerbils cardboard tubes to play with. Use an egg carton to plant seedlings. Other creative tips to reduce waste.

Just bag it. Take reusable bags on shopping trips. Keep them in your car or near your door to remember. You can also reuse paper or plastic shopping bags. Get more tips for shopping.

Wait for the storm to pass. Don’t fertilize before a rain storm. Your fertilizer – along with your money – washes down storm drains and can pollute rivers and bays. More on greenscaping.

Compost it. When properly composted, kitchen wastes can become natural soil additives for lawns, gardens, and even house plants. More on composting.

Here are tips to reduce/reuse/recycle

Compost it. Allow grass clippings to stay on the lawn, instead of bagging them. The cut grass will decompose and return to the soil naturally. More backyard composting ideas.

Proper maintenance reduces waste. Maintain and repair products. Keep appliances in good working order. Follow manufacturers’ suggestions for proper operation and maintenance. More ways you can reduce waste.

Don’t trash it – reuse it! Be creative about reducing waste. Give pet hamsters or gerbils cardboard tubes to play with. Use an egg carton to plant seedlings. Other creative tips to reduce waste.

Just bag it. Take reusable bags on shopping trips. Keep them in your car or near your door to remember. You can also reuse paper or plastic shopping bags. Get more tips for shopping.

Wait for the storm to pass. Don’t fertilize before a rain storm. Your fertilizer – along with your money – washes down storm drains and can pollute rivers and bays. More on greenscaping.

Compost it. When properly composted, kitchen wastes can become natural soil additives for lawns, gardens, and even house plants. More on composting.

Travel green. When you travel, stay at hotels that use less water or energy. Before you go, unplug your VCR or other electronics that use electricity even when “off.” More ways to save when you travel.

Travel green. When you travel, stay at hotels that use less water or energy. Before you go, unplug your VCR or other electronics that use electricity even when “off.” More ways to save when you travel.

For are you MAC Cosmetics lovers, remember that MAC has a recycling program called Back To MAC. Bring in 6 products in primary packaging to a MAC counter (i.e inside of department store), you will receive a free lipstick (Viva Glam products not included!) If you take the 6 products to a freestanding MAC, you can receive eye shadow (not palette pans), lipstick or lip gloss.

Do You Believe The Children Are The Future?

Hey Pumps and Gloss-ers,

Mr. Maven and I were watching a program on C-SPAN, which featured US House Representative Danny K. Davis giving a speech at The City Club of Chicago. He stated that more male teachers are needed in early childhood development and elementary education. He said that boys often think learning is for girls because most, if not all, of the teachers are women.

So I suggested to Mr. Maven that he could do some in-kind contributions, i.e. reading, to local Headstart programs and elementary schools. I ran the idea by Mama Maven, a HeadStart teacher. She thought the guest story time reader was a great idea, so we set up a date for Mr. Maven to go to the school.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008 was the date that was set for Mr. Maven to read to the students, ages 3-5 years old. He selected, Do Not Let The Pigeon Drive The Bus!

Do Not Let The Pigeon Drive The Bus

The children were very excited about the book and Mr. Maven made the book quite fun and interactive for the children. He asked the children several times, “should you let the pigeon drive the bus?” The children screamed, “NO!!” The reading was too much fun for teachers, students and guests.

Mr. Maven will make more visits to the HeadStart to read to the children, our future!

I recommend that you nudge all your male loved ones (especially those who are making positive contributions to the society at-large) to participate in this type of in-kind giving. Bear in mind that interested parties will need to have background checks, BUT the process is well worth it.

Find Your Strength In Love,

Mix Maven

Iventory Time

Hey Pumps and Glossies,

I hope the holiday season is going well for you. I know that many of us celebrate different holidays around this time, so remember that we live in a multicultural and multi-ethnic society. Happy holidays, everyone!

Ok, ok the new year is fast approaching and the time has come to do a personal year-end checklist. The checklist can include goals from 2007 that have been attained, goals you want to attain in 2008, financial data (monthly and holiday budgets), annual tasks/projects e.g. purchasing real estate, preparing for a new baby, finally working on the scrapbook and self-improvement, which could also fall under the goals category.

checklist.jpg

Really take the time to do this checklist and monitor your progress weekly or monthly. In the past, instead of making resolutions during the new year i.e. January 1, I would make monthly resolutions. Definitely helps to better track the progress.

When setting goals, think big! I think by writing down those big dreams, you will/may find a way to achieve them.

When doing your financial checklist, you will need to consider your estate, insurance coverage, investment accounts and taxes. A few years back, Mr. Maven and I tweaked our financial checklist. We thought about our short and long term goals and needs and how we could get those items taken care of. (Sidebar: insurance coverage for renters – Please oh please make sure you have rental insurance. The cost is quite nominal a year. When we were renting, we always made sure we had rental insurance, especially living in wood-framed homes of New England.)

Keeping accurate records is a must. Mr. Maven has been very fortunate that he was able to telecommute cross country from the corporate office. He kept all relevant bills and such, so he could claim his business expense on our taxes. If we had this stuff floating around, who knows what would have happened.

I wish everyone a happy new year. May 2008 bring you peace, love, joy, wealth, and many more blessings. I am looking forward to the time we will spend with you, our readers, in 2008.

Live Triumphantly now and in the ’08,

Mix Maven