Monday, April 27, 2009

Earth Day, thrift shopping, and water hauling (again)

Last Wednesday was Earth Day and I didn't post, because I wasn't able to do what I wanted to do for it until this weekend.

For most of my adult life, I scorned environmentalism, because I mistakenly thought it was about saving the whales or the trees, but not people. I was never an animal lover either; my parents never let us have pets, except for goldfish, I'm allergic to cats, and I've been bitten on several occasions by dogs.

It was only when I was pregnant and learning about the environmental threats to fetuses, babies and young children, that I began to realize that caring about the environment IS caring about people. Humans reap the consequences of environmental damage just like the rest of nature.

A next step in my journey, I think, is to care as much about the rest of nature as I care about people. I'll never become one of those environmentalists who think that humanity should just die out to save the rest of the planet, but I am growing in my understanding that the rest of creation is valuable in its own right and worthy of concern.

I'd like my daughter to have a greter appreciation for nature than I did, so I decided that I wanted to buy a bird feeder so she could watch birds in our yard. I was partly inspired by catching sight of a blue jay in our yard last week, which flew away before my daughter was able to see it.

I was able to purchase a bird feeder for $7 at Value Village (cue my plug for the National Thrift Store Month petition!). My daughter had a ball playing with the wild bird seed we purchased and pouring it into the feeder, and her dad helped her tie it to a tree. So now we're just waiting to see if we get any visitors. The bird food bag says to be patient, it may take a few weeks for the birds to realize it's there.


Update on water hauling: Dear Daughter no longer uses her hamper (also purchased at Value Village thrift store!) for her dirty clothes, since she discovered that she can turn it over and use it to climb upon and reach for things. (She now uses a cardboard box instead). So I left her bathwater in the tub last night, and this morning, I took her hamper, filled it with the tub water using the bathroom wastebasket, and carried it outside to water the trees, shrubs and flowers in the front yard. It took me three trips and about a half hour. Hubby saw me and said, "That's weird. Cute, but weird!" :) But hey, if it helps save water and helps our plants, it's worth it. I just have to stay motivated to do it, because I could easily get lazy about it.

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