45 Earth Day Resolutions

Flowers are blooming, birds are chirping, and the air smells brand new. It’s Earth’s promise of fertile prosperity, her reminder of new beginnings. Earth Day represents a time to reflect and find more ways to give back, above and beyond the good habits we’ve already adhered to for her benefit. Let’s think of it as Nature’s New Year and set Earth Day resolutions!

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This Earth Day, let me plant some seeds. We need to be thinking of our impact on Earth every day. It really is up to us to support her health. Our health is dependent on hers and vice versa. Here are some excellent things we all can do this year:

 

1. I will plant some of my favorite veggies in a garden or pots.

2. I will keep clean reusable produce bags in my grocery bags.

3. I will keep shopping bags in my purse or car and use them when I shop.

4. I will only use safe, biodegradable cleaning products.

5. I will teach my kids to read labels.

6. I’ll just get the economy car instead of the SUV.

7. I will stop buying single-use non-biodegradable trash bags.

8. I will replace all the incandescent light bulbs with high-efficiency bulbs.

9. I will cook more foods from scratch, in order to use less packaging.

10. I will take a walk or hike at least once a week to connect with nature.

11. I will not buy another “bottled water” again, ever.

12. I’m going solar!

13. I will keep my air conditioner set 3 degrees warmer.

14. I will keep my heater set 3 degrees cooler.

15. I will choose organic cotton instead of conventional or synthetic material, at least once.

16. I will plant a tree and nurture that tree.

17. I will look for locally produced items before buying imports.

18. I will not use chemical fertilizers, herbicides or pesticides on my property.

19. I will purchase organic foods whenever my budget allows it.

20. I will start composting kitchen scraps.

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21. I will use reusable containers instead of plastic zippy bags.

22. I will sign those land-saving petitions each time this year.

23. I will ask a friend to sign those petitions too.

24. Instead of party favors, we’re doing planet favors.

25. I will consume less meat.

26. I will turn in a “litter bug” if I see one.

27. I will drive 5 mph slower on the freeway.

28. I will consciously slow down at times to take in Earth’s beauty.

29. I will buy more food in bulk in an effort to create less waste.

30. I will shop at farmers’ markets at least once per month (seasonally).

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31. I will focus on buying produce when it’s in season.

32. I will ride my bike to work/school at least once a week, because it’s only 2 miles.

33. I will never use chlorine bleach or ammonia again. Ever.

34. I will read the label of every garment of clothing I buy this year – where it was made and what it was made with.

35. I will not buy any more synthetic body care items. Ever. Because it is body pollution, it goes down the drain, and my body is her body.

36. I will turn my water heater down.

37. I will not buy a plastic one if there is a glass or metal one.

38. I’m just going to go ahead and get that hybrid or electric car I’ve been thinking about.

39. I will volunteer at my local watershed cleanup.

40. I will pick up random trash when it is within my passing reach.

41. I will subscribe to a new media source for Earth news.

42. I will take shorter showers.

43. I will eat more organic raw foods.

44. I will kick my big-box store shopping habit.

45. I will drop-kick my dollar-store habit.

Dad’s Tofu Tacos

Growing up, I was fortunate enough to have parents who not only believed in an organic and holistic lifestyle, but lived one as well. My sister and I grew up without jarred baby food or baby formula. My parents would use a hand grinder wherever they went, and we would eat straight from their plates. Goat’s milk and kefir were staples, as well as tofu and homemade bread. My parents shopped for organic produce at the local co-op or grew it themselves. We hand-raised pigs, and bought a steer from a local farmer each year. It was a healthy, sustainable childhood.

My upbringing taught me to believe in a natural and organic lifestyle. I eat organically, use natural remedies, and always recycle. One area I never thought about until I started working at Lifekind, however, was my bedroom. I never knew the potential hazards of something so seemingly trustworthy as a mattress. I’ve learned so much at Lifekind, and have unearthed a new dimension in my strive for purity.

My goal is to have an organic mattress made without chemicals as soon as possible, but in the meantime I’ll work my way up through pillows and mattress toppers till the money tree can shake a branch free. This in turn has prompted me to start trying harder in the areas of my life I already consider to be organic, and where better to start then to re-create some of my parents’ dinnertime dishes from when I was growing up?

One of my father’s most notorious and loved dinner recipes is for Tofu Tacos. Not only is it a great option for vegetarians (a.k.a. my sister Ashley), but it’s also a much leaner choice than typical beef tacos. Hopefully sharing this recipe will show how easy it is to make a small change to a healthier lifestyle.

Ingredients:
1 or 2 packages of firm tofu (I like to use two for leftover taco salad)
1 small yellow onion
Salt and pepper
Chili powder
Garlic powder
Paprika
Grated Pepper jack and/or cheddar cheese
Sliced olives
Chopped tomatoes
Cilantro
Chopped lettuce (Romaine is best)
Avocado
Sour cream
Corn tortillas

Drain tofu and squeeze out excess moisture, then chop into roughly 1/4-inch squares. Coat a large non-stick skillet with olive oil and turn the heat to med-high; add tofu. Meanwhile, dice the onion and add it to the tofu. Once the tofu begins to brown, you can add the seasoning: a healthy dose of garlic powder and chili powder, then a lighter dusting of paprika. Add salt and pepper to taste. Turn down the heat and continue cooking until the tofu is crispy on the outside.

While the tofu and onions are cooking, prep the rest of the fixings: Chop the lettuce, dice the tomatoes, pick the cilantro leaves, peel and slice the avocado, drain the olives, and grate the cheese. Fill a small skillet with about ½” of vegetable oil; turn to med-high heat until the oil is hot. Place corn tortillas one at a time in the oil for 10-15 seconds, then using tongs, fold in half into a taco shape. Cook on each side about 30 seconds, or until the shell turns golden brown, and place on a plate lined with paper towels to drain.

For extra “yum” factor, dust the tortilla shells with parmesan cheese while they’re still hot. Build your taco with all the fixings you prefer, and you’ll have Dad’s Tofu Tacos.

Enjoy!