1.What inspired you to adopt more sustainable practices in your life?
My kids! I’ve always been concerned about the environment and how we treat the natural world, but since having children I’ve become much more aware of what I’m teaching them through my actions. Frankly, the behaviors of the average American are not by any means sustainable (myself included)!
2. Can you give some examples of how you practice a sustainable lifestyle at home (either related to zero waste, renewable energy, or conservation)?
We recently started raising chickens since we eat a lot of eggs. We give them the majority of our food scraps (and with a 3 year-old and 5 year-old at home there are a lot!). I put the remaining scraps in our worm composting bin. I then feed the worms to the chickens and use the worm castings as fertilizer for my house plant addiction and futile attempts at indoor gardening. Mother Nature’s perfect design is amazing!
I also try to buy whole foods without packaging (e.g. homemade sweet potato fries instead of ones in a plastic bag) and things with packaging that I know I can recycle.
3. What do you think is the biggest roadblock for people trying to practice a sustainable lifestyle?
It’s overwhelming! It’s very easy to feel crummy about things, especially when it appears people in positions of power seem to care less.
I’ve found it really empowering to do the best I can. When we are authentic and make an effort to make a difference, that teeny tiny example can really be a big influence on people. That is to say, keep taking your reusable bags to the store because soon enough, the plastic bag folks will look around and say, “Hmmm, I guess this isn’t cool anymore.”
4. What have you done over the years to support EAS+Y and sustainability in the community?
I was hired as the Sustainability Coordinator for EAS+Y this past June. I’ve been charged with the task of keeping things moving along, from writing blog posts and the newsletter, marketing, coordinating volunteers, organizing events, helping support community organizations in their effort to become sustainable, managing our compost program with EDS, and diggin’ through trash (with a smile on my face!) 🙂
5. What inspires you on a daily basis to continue practicing sustainability?
My children, of course, but especially connecting to nature! One of my favorite poets, Mary Oliver, encapsulates my feelings about getting outside:
“Snow was falling,
so much like stars
filling the dark trees
that one could easily imagine
its reason for being was nothing more
― Mary Oliver
I believe our job on this planet is to enjoy it and take care of it, and it’s proven that we are more likely to do that when we connect to the natural world on a regular basis.
6. What words of wisdom do you have for people just getting started on their journey toward a sustainable lifestyle?
Like others have mentioned here before: take baby steps! Do what you can that day, celebrate it (yay, you!), and do a little bit better tomorrow 🙂