I have been interested in Raw Food, if not necessarily being on a full Raw Food Diet for years. As with any other change in one’s diet, switching to Raw Food would have to be done carefully, with the help of a health professional. I guess it’s an offshoot of being mostly Vegetarian for so long (now half of my life) that I’d look for even more healthy opportunities. But, as someone who needs good stores of energy, not only for running but also for having such a full schedule of work/family/house, I’ve hesitated to go too far into anything that strays from the path for me. But I have remained interested, and will occasionally try some Raw Food bit, if I’m somewhere that it is sold.
That said, I have found a pretty cool online resource on Raw Food that is somewhat changing my mind.
The site, BeautifulOnRaw.com has more than just information on what it would take to maintain a Raw Food diet. If you’re looking for personal insight on Raw Food, as well as recipes, books and testimonials, the site owner also has a frequently updated blog that is an ideal place to keep current on new ideas around Raw Food.
In addition, they also offer a line of natural skin care products. What might seem incongrous, is actually anything but. This is more my wife’s domain that mine, but these natural skin products are dedicated to natural ways of restoring and improving one’s skin. One of the benefits of a Raw Food diet is the body’s reaction to what are considered to be the toxic effects of cooking. Skin care goes hand in hand.
simple + green finds this to be an interesting resource on Raw Food, so check it out!
In her 5 Simple Steps to Make Any Home a Green Home post, Maura Judkis notes things that many of us know will improve our carbon footprint:
Eliminate vampire power
Install a low-flow shower head.
Reduce amount of water being flushed by your toilet
Install a gray water system in your bathroom
Replace your conventional thermostat with a programmable one
There are obviously many more things one can do, but bite-sized changes can and will add up to a greater whole. Kudos to Maura for continuing to put the good message out there!
As more people branch into working remotely from main offices, companies will find ways to further reduce costs. I predict that the rate of people working from home will continue to rise, not only due to costs, but also by choice.
Working from home, if you couldn’t already guess, is a green way to go, too! But how do you effectively run a home office without a separate phone line for business? VoIP (Voice Over Internet Phone)! This way of doing calls via your computer is still pretty new, but it is also hugely popular for people to call overseas cheaply, which makes it attractive to me.
I found a site called ConsumerVoipCompare.com, which is dedicated to reviews and comparisons of the top VoIP providers available. They actually rank the providers and offer current customers the opportunity to submit their own reviews. Which is a great place to start comparison shopping for VoIP services.
The PhonePower deal is one that I would consider. The price is reasonable and the feature set is rich.
OK, something for me to consider and I gradually work towards doing my day job remotely. The idea of working green is one I welcome!
It’s official: Ford has entered the hybrid sedan fray, with its Ford Fusion hybrid.
General Motors and Chrysler are on the ropes — they are teetering on the edge of bankruptcy and have already been given billions in bailout bucks.
Ford, however, despite its $14.6 billion losses in 2008, is not bidding for a bailout and, instead, is forging ahead with what may be a winner of a car.
The Fusion is Ford’s midsize car, in the same class as a Honda Accord or Toyota Camry, and now, according to Green Car Journal, it is developing a 2010 Ford Fusion hybrid, which is supposed to get 41 mpg highway and 36 mpg city. It would retail at around $27,000.
This may not be the time in our economy for most folks to buy a new car, but the tax break may make it easier overall.
Also of note: Honda is debuting its 2010 Insight hybrid, with retail price starting around $18,000. Rumor is that it will get about 40 mpg.
Both are supposed to be in showrooms this spring.
Choosing a web host is one of the big decisions anyone has to make when setting up a blog. I made a choice when setting up simple + green, and have stuck with it. That said, I often think of making a switch to different hosting. Not that I’m unhappy with where I am. But I feel that I should be on a more green web host (considering the subject matter of the blog!).
I found a pretty cool resource for comparing hosting plans, called WebHostingReport.com. They offer a bunch of great comparison tools. A great place to start for beginners is their how to select the best web hosting company report.
Here are two things that were of the most interest to me:
1. A list of the best green hosting
2. Super Green Hosting. Through this site, I found out about Super Green Hosting, which offers carbon-neutral hosting and also support tree-planting projects.
For me, the idea of green Dell servers running my site, and my subscription costs going to trees that will absorb carbon dioxide, and make the world’s air a little cleaner is very attractive.
From here, I’ll keep thinking about my decision. But at least I now have some good information to go by!
On this day of all things green, USNews.com has a list of 5 Things That are Green on St. Patrick’s Day.
Here are the five:
The good thing? They add a green note to each. St. Patrick’s Day has become sort of a pre-Earth Day, due to its color association. And the fact that cities have made attempts to host St Patrick’s Day events that are more environmentally aware.
The bad? The point may not be all that well taken. See what they say about rivers:
Rivers (literally, yes; environmentally, kinda). The Chicago River received its annual dose of green dye this weekend, and though the formula is kept secret, the Chicago’s Journeymen Plumbers Union vow that the dye is nontoxic and environmentally
friendly. Notes the , “40 pounds of dye is a proverbial drop in the bucket compared to all the other stuff that’s in the Chicago River,” which is known to contain mercury and polychlorinated biphenyls.
So, are they saying that it’s OK to pollute a little, since there is so much pollution already in there? What kind of message does that send? Should we think: “go ahead and drive everywhere, there’s already a ton of cars on the road anyway, so your emissions are just a drop in the bucket”?
I think that type of thinking and writing are irresponsible. What do you think?
As the snow vacation thought has now drifted into my consciousness, I’ve found a few more places that we may be interested in visiting. Other than Stowe, Vermont or going back to Taos, we keep thinking about places like Colorado. We “accidentally” drove into Colorado while visiting northern New Mexico, and have laughed about it ever since. But because Colorado is so pretty, and reasonably close (also with the requisite friends throughout the state), we occasionally bring up visiting.
I found a site that talks about Breckenridge CO vacation rentals which struck more for two reasons:
1. renting vacation accommodations rather than getting a hotel room is one of the better ways to use your money when traveling: think Kitchen, privacy and other amenities that aren’t always available when staying in hotels…
2. having a home base, with all of the space and comforts of home, in a new town could be a great way to craft a visit
Plus a place like Breckenridge, near so many great places to ski, seems like an ideal place to spend time. For other vacations, there are also Ocean City Maryland vacation rentals.
So, we’re getting closer to our ideal vacation in the snow. But simple living means taking the time to explore a place on your own time. A vacation rental makes it all the more efficient to do so.
Interesting news in the article, Local Food Makes a Comeback: according to the a recent report, locally-grown food is benefiting from the global recession as people are motivated to support the local economy and preserve jobs in their region.
Although it’s worth noting that this report comes from a news source in the UK, I wonder if the premise doesn’t have wider implications.
IGD’s Shopper Trends 2009: Food Shopping in a Recession report found 27 per cent of people bought food produced in their local area in the last month, up from 25 per cent in 2008 and 13 per cent in 2005.
At the same time, the same growth is not being seen in the organic food market
The report found spending on organic food dropped this year – 19 per cent of people purchased organic food in the previous month, down from 24 in 2008, suggesting consumers may be thinking about preserving local jobs.
Ms Pickford said: “Jobs definitely come into the equation. It is more about supporting the workforce as well, as organic is not necessarily local – it could be imported. People know by buying locally it’s affecting jobs in the local area.”
The main point is that people living in the areas included in the report feel more strongly about supporting the local farmer/food producer than they do about the source of said food (organic, transitional, etc.).
I can sympathize with this idea, but I can’t say the rationale is one I would follow completely.
Do you have any thoughts? Comment away and we can discuss!
I’ll admit it - after a few years without a real vacation, the prospect of going to the snow is really appealing to me. The rain is really falling here in California. After a severely dry winter, we’re seeing record rainfall over the last 3 days.
Tahoe is packed with snow, but we’re thinking of doing something a little different, for a little longer. We have friends in the Northeast, and have been thinking of finding ways to get out there for awhile now. So, as I dream, I poke around the web for ideas.
I found out about a place called the Green Mountain Inn in Stowe, Vermont that offers both Ski vacation packages and Family vacation deals, not to mention Romantic weekend getaways. We’re a family of four, so cost is always in our decision process. This place lets kids under 12 stay and ski for free! Even after that, the rates are really reasonable.
Plus, they offer everything from an old-fashioned New England sleigh ride, to a dog sled ride to a snowmobile tour. Pretty much any snow-related activity for kids is there for the taking. We had done snow-shoeing several years ago in Taos, so seeing that as an offering also got my interest.
With the cost of airfare also within reach, this deal is exactly the kind of push we would need to justify the trip. Our lives are hectic. We haven’t had a vacation in over 4 years, and we’re really ready to show our young kids a little more of the world… or at least the US!
Winter means enjoying the fresh air, snowy mountains and time with family. If everything goes well, we’ll find the means to vacation at a place like the Green Mountain Inn.
Can Google give us insight into how homes use our energy, allowing us to know when our usage is peaking? They think they can.
The Google PowerMeter was unveiled today, according to Computerworld.com, among others. Designed to show consumers their home energy information in nearly real time, right on their computer, the tool is already being tested by Google employees.
The PowerMeter aims to provide people with detailed information about the electricity they use at home — how much they use at different times of the year, how much their appliances use and what’s wasting the most.
Google is also working with manufacturers and utility companies to create pilot programs for consumers.
Prius owners will recognize this monitor as the meter they have in their cars, allowing them to monitor acceleration, deceleration and the composite affect on mileage and fuel consumption.
To me, this is the key quote from the article:
“In a world where everyone had a detailed understanding of their home energy use, we could find all sorts of ways to save energy and lower electricity bills,” Lu wrote. “In fact, studies show that access to home energy information results in savings between 5% and 15% on monthly electricity bills. It may not sound like much, but if half of America’s households cut their energy demand by 10%, it would be the equivalent of taking 8 million cars off the road.”