Reserve, Conserve, Enjoy.

I work very hard to try to raise my children to be socially responsible, environmentally conscious little people. I’d like to think it’s rubbing off. I guess the evidence is when E nags her father to “take care of Mother Earth” if he leaves the water running while brushing his teeth. My little tree hugger…

In all seriousness, epic disasters like the BP Oil Spill and the Great Garbage Swirl in the Pacific Ocean honestly keep me up at night. Am I a freak? Maybe so. As a mother, I want for my children and grandchildren to enjoy the beauty of this world, so I will so everything in my power to make sure that they will be able to do just that. Below are my favorite personal green initiatives that have made it onto Kiki’s List.

1. Large Recyling Bin– FREE. In most counties, you can call your waste management company and request a larger bin. Ours is 65 Gallons. I must say, we fill it each week, and in doing so, we have significantly eliminated the trash that will be put from our home into a landfill.

2. Envirosax $8.50. I have plugged these before but they really are the best. Extra Large, super-sturdy and they roll up into little lipstick-sized bundles.
3. High Efficiency Bulbs $16.39. Help your wallet while helping Mother Earth. You can also save up to $80 a year with these puppies.
4. Cupco Tumbler– $6.49. I just bought two more of these today because Mike and I always fight over them if one is in the dishwasher. He drinks his iced coffee and I drink my Crystal Light Arnold Palmers each morning.
5. Apple Battery Charger– $29.99. Comes with six reusable batteries that last up to 10 years.
6. Decline Junk Mail– FREE. You can also sign up here.
7. Steel Water Bottles– $3.94. Water is so much better for your kids than juice boxes. Remember to use metal bottles instead of plastic, especially if you keep them in your car.
9. Decline Receipts– FREE. After reading this article, you may want to do it for your own health as well. For small purchases or gas, I always decline a receipt. Why even bother?
10. Reusable Sandwich Containers– $2.50. Eliminate the need for plastic bags whenever possible.
11. Turn Off Water– FREE. When you don’t need it. Turn it off.
12. Return Dry Cleaning HangersFREE. Bring them back to your neighborhood dry cleaners. More than 350 billion hangers reach landfills each year, amounting to 200 million tons of steel that could be put to new use. Since the cost of imports from China has more than doubled in the past two years, many dry cleaners may offer incentives to bring yours back.