A Little Greener Every Day

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by Wendy Gabriel

Robin Shreeves
is a work at home mom and freelance writer. A believer in writing Robin Shreeveswhat you know, she started writing about her family’s journey while going green on A Little Greener Every Day and eventually she found that people would pay her to write about what she was learning. She now has the best job ever, writing about being green for various websites including Mother Nature Network and Green Options Media network.

How do you make your day-to-day life a little greener?

My husband and I both work from home so almost every aspect of making my day-to-day life a little greener centers around our home. The first steps I took in going green were easy ones – changing out conventional light bulbs to CFL’s and replacing paper napkins and paper towels with cloth napkins and rags. Then I moved on to the more time consuming, possibly less convenient things (yet often quite enjoyable and fulfilling) like walking or riding my bike when possible, preparing meals from ingredients instead of buying convenience foods, growing some of our food, and hanging my laundry out to dry. It’s really become a process of looking at the things I do every day and seeing if I can find a way to do them in a way that does less harm to the earth. I don’t always succeed, but I have come a long way.

You are a self-proclaimed “locavore wannabe.” Can you explain why being a locavore is important to you?

How our eating habits affect the environment never occurred to me until I read Barbara Kingsolver’s Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. After I read that book, it occurred to me that I needed to change what my family eats for our health and the planet’s health. We do a lot of organics in our house, and whenever possible I buy from local, sustainable sources even if they aren’t certified organic. I call myself a “locavore wannabe” because where I live, eating local all year round is very difficult. I doubt I’ll ever do the amount of work it would take to be 100% locavore. But I do what I can, and I started South Jersey Locavore to help others in my region find sources of local food beyond the farmers market season.

Being a locavore isn’t just important to me for the environmental benefits, though. I’m finding that as I focus on local, sustainable foods, my family is eating a larger variety of foods than we used to. I find that I have more pride in what I place on my table. Even though I don’t announce that “these burgers I’m serving you came from grass fed, free-range happy cows” when I have a cookout, I seem to enjoy serving local foods more to my family and friends. There’s a sense of community and providing that comes along with it that I’m still trying to figure out how to articulate properly.

What have you found to be your biggest challenge as you create an eco-friendly home for your own family?

Honestly, the biggest challenge is my own disorganization. It takes a certain amount of planning and organizing to make sure we have enough time to walk or bike somewhere instead of jumping in the car. If I’m going to create meals from ingredients, I need to shop regularly to make sure those ingredients are in the fridge and pantry. I have to remember to actually get the laundry out of the washing machine early enough in the day to get it the line outside or it ends up going in the dryer. I’m not an organized person by nature, so I end up being my own worst enemy often in my battle to be more eco-friendly.

Not only do you have your own blog and write for a number of other green websites including an eco-friendly food blog for Mother Nature Network, you are a busy mom. Can you tell us one of your favorite fast recipes?

I’ve written about this recipe a few times recently, but really it’s one of my favorites. It’s called Yummy Honey Chicken Kabobs, and I found it one of my go-to recipe sites, allrecipes.com. It takes about ten minutes to chop everything up and then you let it marinade all day. While the grill is warming, you pop everything on skewers, and it only takes about ten minutes to cook.

It’s great for the kids because they like the chicken and they can pick and choose the vegetables that go on their skewer. No mushrooms need ever taint their chicken.

What makes this recipe even better is that in the summer, it can be a local meal. I made it just last week and everything but oil, soy sauce and pepper was found at my local farmers market.


• 1/4 cup vegetable oil
• 1/3 cup honey
• 1/3 cup soy sauce
• 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
• 2 cloves of garlic

Other Stuff:

• Whatever amount of chicken breast you want, cut in 1-inch cubes
• 2 inch vegetable pieces such as: mushrooms, zucchini, yellow squash, green peppers, red peppers, cherry tomatoes, onion

Mix the marinade ingredients together and pour over cut up chicken and vegetables. Marinate for about 6 hours and then pop onto skewers. Grill on indirect heat until the chicken is cooked through.

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As writers, we know that part of good stewardship is sharing information, but Save the World!even the most intelligent among us can not make change without DOING something.

So The Good Human & Twilight Earth, along with The Grass Stain Guru, Lighter Footstep, My Green Side, The Smart Mama, A Little Greener Every Day, Fake Plastic Fish, Allies Answers, and Natural Papa have teamed up to carry our message with one united strong voice. The message is that there are great organizations out there which are suffering in this economic downturn through decreased donations…and they need our help! So we have decided to give you, our readers, a voice and a choice. We have decided to take on a very simple fundraising mission, and we are asking you to donate just $1.00.

A single dollar; that’s all.

Who cannot afford a buck even in these times? We know you can spare a dollar to help out our fellow humans!

But how do we all decide which charities to give 100% of all monies raised to? Well, we are going to put it to a vote and let you guys decide. The 10 websites participating have chosen 5 charities for all donors to vote for, and we are going to let you guys choose which two of them will receive the all monies donated.

Our purpose in doing this is three-fold

  • It gives YOU a voice. As loyal readers and stewards of our environment, we want to offer you the opportunity to make a difference without breaking the bank.
  • It gives the two charities with the most votes some much appreciated funds to continue their mission
  • It allows all of us an opportunity to connect as a community of like-minded people working for the common good of ourselves, our families and our planet.

If the community of folks who care about our planet cannot come together to rise up to a challenge, who will? That is why we are asking you for a $1 donation. While $1 may seem insignificant all by itself, by pooling our resources together we really can make a difference in these tough economic times. $1 is less than the price of a candy bar and can usually be found under the seat cushions of your couch. Won’t you help 2 of these charities with your $1 donation? (Now, if you want to give more, please – feel free. We won’t stop you! And by all means, send this to everyone you know so we can raise even more!)

Clicking below will take you to the poll and a Paypal donation link asking you to choose which of the 5 charities your favorite is. We ask that you please donate a dollar to the charity pool if you are going to vote, and know that even if your absolute favorite does not finish first or second, all the money donated will be going to worthwhile causes. If everyone we know who reads our sites, our Twitter feeds, our Facebook sites, etc. donates just $1, imagine the impact we can have as a group. And please, spread the word!

The 5 charities that we’ve selected are Healthy Child Healthy World, Environmental Working Group, Sustainable Harvest, Kiva and Water for People.

Voting is now closed for this campaign. Thanks to all of you who participated!

Times are tough and our collective might can really help them out. The results will be tallied two weeks from today, and we will write another article detailing the amounts and the two charities who garnered the most votes and will be receiving the money collected. It’s only $1, so please donate!

Please take a moment to vote for your favorite and to donate just a single dollar to these charities.

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