4Rs Tips for May 14 – This Mother’s Day Choose Planet-Friendly Actions

Ways to avoid contaminating Mother Earth with items we no longer want.

Happy Mother’s Day to All the Moms of the World

Moms know how important it is to fight for a livable planet for our children. We all do or we wouldn’t be here learning how to eliminate our disposable habits.

But first…

Tips for Mother’s Day Gifts

This Mother’s Day, instead of buying Mom fresh cut flowers, give her a plant or native seeds for her garden. Indoor and outdoor plants naturally purify the air, and adding plants to your home or garden increases natural carbon sequestration.

See more resources in the Take Action section below.

And now… down to the house cleaning (Yes, most moms are probably doing it, even on Mother’s Day).

How to Dispose of Unwanted Items – Think Reuse and Recycle

I’m moving (again) and found there is a huge benefit to it. This will be the fifth time since I moved to California four years ago. Yeah, I know, sounds crazy! But, I figured out the benefits. One is that there a lot of things in boxes I keep moving and never open. So while packing, I’ve taken time to sort through a few boxes to get rid of stuff rather than hauling it to my next home. And, I’ve found an abundance of resources to sell or give away items.

  • I didn’t know about this until my brilliant daughter told me she got most of my granddaughter’s baby clothes for free from her neighborhood FaceBook Market Place Buy Nothing group.
    • I was able to give away boxes of craft materials I don’t use anymore.
    • My favorite part, it only advertises your giveaways to people in your neighborhood. Someone picked up my craft supplies in about an hour.
  • With more people getting into reuse, there are a number of online marketplaces where you can sell your used items.
    • Poshmark is great if you are into brand names. It’s a way to buy or sell fashion, home decor, beauty, and more.
    • Offerup is a way to buy or sell items in your local community. 
    • EBay is a way to sell anything you need to get rid of. They even have a separate marketplace for cars and car parts called Ebay Motors
    • Decluttr brands itself as “The Smart, Sustainable and Trusted Way to Buy and Sell Tech.” I think everyone has some of that to get rid of.
  • Half Price Books buys used electronics, games (video and board games), movies, music, comics, and collectibles. Visit this link to locate a store near you.

But what about items that are too worn to sell or giveaway?

A like-minded woman I met at a Bay Area Earth Day Event shared her tips for reuse and recycling. Here are some great suggestions from Sara Barber owner of Eeviee.com.

  • Old garments and textiles are a serious problem in our landfills, but we now have a way to solve this. ReTold Recycling has diverted 65 tons of clothing from landfills so far. Unfortunately, almost 2 million tons are estimated to end up there each year.
    • They take any type of textiles, clothes, towels, drapes, and just about any material you want to get rid of. Check out the How It Works section on their page.
  • Do you have good-condition bras or unused underclothes to get rid of? The Bra Recyclers is an awesome resource that will get them into the hands of women and families getting out of bad situations and back on their feet.
    • You can ship them gently used bras and unused panties. Go to their recycling form to learn how it works and get a shipping box.
    • I wish I’d known about this when I bought bras that I didn’t like the fit. Though I donated them, I know the thrift store would resell them. I would have preferred to send them someplace like The Bra Recyclers which gives them to victims escaping domestic violence or women who have been rescued from being trafficked. 
  • The shoe retailer Zappos is a big supporter of reusing materials for a cause. Their Soles4Souls program was developed to fight poverty through donations of shoes and clothing.
    • Their Zappos for Good program recycles jeans that are over 90% cotton, as well as other apparel. Check out their recycle page to learn how it works. 
  • Check out GotSneakers? A sneaker recycling company. They pay you to send them your old sneakers.
  • Have old sporting goods to get rid of? Check out Colorado Ski Furniture which started out repurposing sporting goods to make chairs. Now they’re making all types of furnishing with skis, golf clubs, hockey sticks, and more.
    • Learn more about what they do and how they’ve evolved with repurposing sporting goods here on their About page
  • Nowadays a lot of people have old laptops lying around they don’t know what to do with. If this is you and you like to contribute to doing good in the world, check out CEWS Tech for Good.
  • Bye Bye Mattress is a resource that recycles old mattresses in California, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. They’re part of the Mattress Recycling Council that was formed when laws were enacted in those states to prevent dumping of old mattresses, or having them end up in landfills. 
    • While there are a few mattress recycling programs in the UK and the US, it’s an ever-mounting problem, as this article in The Guardian spells out for us.

Thank you, Sara, for sharing these great resources. Visit her resources page for more ideas.

Take Action

In addition to the tips at the top of planet-friendly gifts for moms, here are some resources for growing a garden that will help fight climate change.

Use your time and talents to do what you can to help our planet.

Why It’s Important

The biggest cause of climate change is carbon emissions. Since all life is carbon-based, some of these are natural but the largest amount is caused by human activity since the industrial revolution when we started using excessive amounts of fossil fuels. 

Carbon emissions don’t only come from vehicles and power plants. A large amount come from waste in landfills. When we continue to dump truckloads of garbage into Mother Earth each day we contribute to increased carbon emissions. They continue to rise and have yet to start going down, despite the actions being taken. We are fighting corporate profits, so we need to work harder in reducing how much we as individuals waste if we’re going to win this battle and save the human race.

While it’s critical we move away from our reliance on fossil fuels, it’s equally important that we fight to suck those carbon emissions back down to the planet and get them out of our atmosphere where they’re causing the planet to heat. Natural sequestration, like from a climate garden, is one of many ways to do this.

With Much Gratitude

That’s it for this issue. I hope you found it helpful.

If you like this post, please forward it to every earth-friendly human you know. If you’ve been forwarded this post, you can subscribe by signing up for my mailing list below.

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Thank you for reading these tips and subscribing. Pat yourself on the back for doing your part. Remember, everything helps.

We’ve got this!

All my best,

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