Archive for March 27, 2008

Few things

1. Earth Hour.

This Saturday (March 29th) between 8 and 9 p.m. It’s a bit like e-day, except it’s only an hour and I’m actually going to do it this time. Here’s a bit about it from the website:

On March 31 2007, for one hour, Sydney made a powerful statement about the greatest contributor to global warming – coal-fired electricity – by turning off its lights. Over 2.2 million Sydney residents and over 2,100 businesses switched off, leading to a 10.2% energy reduction across the city. What began as one city taking a stand against global warming caught the attention of the world.

In 2008, 24 global cities will participate in Earth Hour at 8pm on March 29. Earth Hour is the highlight of a major campaign to encourage businesses, communities and individuals to take the simple steps needed to cut their emissions on an ongoing basis. It is about simple changes that will collectively make a difference – from businesses turning off their lights when their offices are empty, to households turning off appliances rather than leaving them on standby.

Even if your city isn’t taking part (surprise, surprise, mine isn’t) you can still take part yourself and find something fun to do in the dark. I’m torn between a candlelit supper and a candlelit bath, both of which will require energy to heat the oven or the water, though, which seems to defeat the purpose. Hmm. Candlelit salad?

2. Today I am going to plant some seeds. (I know some of you started ages ago, but I have no propagator, no greenhouse, a cold house and only limited amounts of indoor space anyway.) I’m sick of winter. Sick, sick, sick of it. Sick of cabbage and parsnips, sick of the house being cold, sick of having to wear tights and I want to wear my new skirt that I made! It’s a little bit sunny outside, so, dammit, I’m going to pretend it’s spring. March this year came in like a lion, stayed like a lion, got more liony and is now looking a teensy bit lamblike outside. In fact, in my weekly missive from the veg box, the Italian lady who half runs it said that when she first arrived in England she couldn’t understand why English people talked about the weather so much, but she now realises that if anywhere else had weather that was half as interesting as ours, they probably would talk about it more too! (We had dinner with the bf’s dad at the weekend, who lives in Spain, and he was complaining that it was ‘only 14 degrees in Malaga’.)

3. My shampoo soap arrived this morning and I have used it for the first time. My hair is currently covered in avocado oil and a large towel, so I can’t report back on it yet, but I’ve cracked and decided to pour the nasty, chemical-filled stuff down the sink and recycle the bottles anyway. I know, such a waste, but I just don’t want it on my hair any more!

4. I’ve made a starter for sourdough bread. I love sourdough bread, and I suddenly went into a baking frenzy last night. We’ve run out of salt, so I was experimenting with herb mixes in my normal bread dough (had some for breakfast, it tastes slightly tomatoey, and still in need of salt… hmm….) and was clearly seized by rampant bread enthusiasm. Anyway, there is a small lump of flour, milk and water in a bowl by the radiator, where it will remain for another two days. I shall keep you posted. I’m not expecting to get the hang of it immediately though.

Going to make some saffron buns today. Saffron stems been soaking overnight – I’m clearly going for ‘things that take a long time’ atm. Slow living, an antidote to the day-job….

5. I’ve ordered some reusable pads. My Mirena has made my periods so light, I’ve been wearing pantyliners instead of using my Mooncup a lot of the time, and now I’ve finished my stash of bog-standard Always ones, I’ve decided to get some washable ones. I hear you can use the water you soak them in on the garden – anyone care to suggest that to the bf? 😉 (The same bf who refuses to pee on my compost heap, even though it’s great for the compost heap AND apparently a rat deterrent.)

And tomorrow, I really will write about getting rid of the chemicals in the kitchen and why sewing isn’t as scary as you think it is. =)


March 27, 2008 at 10:43 am 2 comments

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The Heritage Crafts Network

Rob Hopkins, Transition Handbook

“Environmentalists have often been guilty of presenting people with a mental image of the world’s least desirable holiday destination – some seedy bed and breakfast near Torquay, with nylon sheets, cold tea and soggy toast – and expecting them to get excited about the prospect of NOT going there. The logic and the psychology are all wrong.”

Barbara Kingsolver, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle

"Food is that rare moral arena in which the ethical choice is generally the one more likely to make you groan with pleasure."

Carlo Petrini

"A gastronome who is not also an environmentalist is an idiot. An environmentalist who is not also a gastronome is, well, sad."

Sharon Astyk

"I am, of course, firmly opposed to consumerism and corporatism in all its forms, and I believe that we are deeply confused about material needs and wants. Now let me explain how books and yarn are totally different than the material things that other people want ;-)…."

Raj Patel, at Slow Food Nation

"Biofuels, which is the preposterous policy that we should grow food not to eat it but to set it on fire."