Several months ago, blogger EcoCatLady left a comment on this blog about how she had avoided buying new plastic when her kitties needed a climbing tree by figuring out how to build one herself with all secondhand materials. She wrote:
My most recent success was that I wanted to get my kids (meaning kids of the feline variety) a scratching/climbing kitty tree for Christmas. I initially was going to buy one, and I found them online pretty cheap… but the more I researched, the more I discovered that anything which cost under $400 was made from plastic PVC pipe. So instead of bringing more plastic crap into the world, I made a kitty tree from scrap lumber I had in my garage and some carpet scraps that I got on FreeCycle. I know in the broad scheme of things it’s not much, but it’s something… and something I probably wouldn’t have thought twice about before reading Beth’s blog.
Being the mom of a couple of fun-deprived kitty… Read the rest
As many of you know, I spent most of last year and the first few months of this year researching and writing my book: Plastic-Free: How I Kicked the Plastic Habit and How You Can Too (Skyhorse). The Kindle version of the book is available NOW, and the hardcover edition can be pre-ordered.
Plastic-Free Book is Beautifully Plastic-Free
From the very beginning, my editor at Skyhorse, Joseph Sverchek, was committed to producing this book without plastic. There were some challenges, but he thinks he has succeeded. Check out the Editor’s Note inside the front of the book:
Did you notice that this snippet from the book is blue? That’s because the book is a beautiful 4-color design with photos and tip boxes and highlights in various colors. I am so impressed with the layout of this book, and that’s not bragging because I had nothing to do with it. All the credit belongs to the designer at Skyhorse, who worked to make this book not only useful … Read the rest
One obstacle to carrying our own water bottles can be the difficulty finding water fountains or other sources for refilling those bottles when we’re out in the world. Since today is World Water Day, I thought I would give you a rundown of some of the strategies I use, as well as tell you about an awesome new Android app.
WeTap Water Fountain Mapping App
WeTap is a project developed by Evelyn Wendell, one of the inspiring activists profiled in my upcoming book, in conjunction with the Pacific Institute. One of the project’s goals is to create a database of the world’s water fountains, including their locations and operating conditions, and to provide the information to the public and relevant decision makers. To that end, WeTap has created a smartphone app to allow users to search for nearby water fountains and also–and perhaps most importantly–add water fountains to the database.
The app is super easy to use. … Read the rest
It’s frustrating when electronic gadgets break, and not just because you have to go through the hassle of fixing or replacing them but because in doing so, a lot of waste is created. So when the headphone jack on my phone stopped working intermittently, I put off doing anything about it for several months. But finally, it got so bad that I could no longer use my headset, which meant an extra dose of radiation from putting my phone right against my head to talk (and of course, also not being able to listen to music and podcasts, but that’s a personal problem), so I decided it was time to do something about it.
I called CREDO Mobile, my phone provider, and was told I’d have to send it back to them for a replacement phone. I wondered if I should scout around for someone to open it up and try to fix it for me (as I did with my hair dryer, rice cooker, kitchen scale, and other appliances, with varying degrees of success), but when CREDO told me that opening… Read the rest
One of the most frequent requests I get is for a list of wines with natural cork stoppers because most of the time it’s impossible to see what kind of cork a bottle has without opening it up. When I first started this project, I began keeping a list of wines and what kinds of closures they had, but I quickly realized how futile that exercise was. There are so many brands of wine, using different closures for different varietals, and sometimes changing their packaging with new bottlings.
So I was beyond excited when I received an email pitch this week about a new website and app — okay, not actually an app but a mobile site you can access via any smartphone — called CorkWatch that lets shoppers look up specific wines to find out what kind of stopper they have.
There are several ways to search. If you know what kind of wine you want to drink, use the “Wine Type” drop down menu to choose among varietals and styles … Read the rest
Mascara. It’s been the downfall of many a plastic-free blogger. For Envirowoman, the very first plastic-free blogger who inspired me back in 2007, mascara was the one thing that made her break her plastic-free pledge. Taina Uitto of Plastic Manners, on the other hand, discovered the joy of going without mascara. Personally, I have never been a big fan of mascara in the first place, but I know that many women (and some men) won’t leave the house without it. So I was psyched to learn (via several readers of this blog) about the lash tint from T.W.I.N.K. Beauty, a cake mascara that comes in a metal tin.
03/28/2012 UPDATE: Special Offer from T.W.I.N.K. Beauty to MyPlasticFreeLife.com readers: If you are ordering for the first time, use coupon code “noplastic” to get 10% off your first order. If you have already ordered from T.W.I.N.K. Beauty in the past, use coupon code “noplasticagain” to get 15% off your… Read the rest