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Archive for February, 2009

Today, I received the SERRV catalog in the mail. The website for SERRV is http://www.serrv.org.

This catalog has the most amazing items! From $8 fair trade coffee and $5 chocolate, to $12 salad bowls and handwoven baskets, to $10 earrings and wall art! Amazing items!

I am adding this site, as we speak, to http://www.greenlivinganddesign.com/living_green.aspx
so it can be included in the “Living Green” page.Feathered Drop Earrings from SERRV.ORGZebra Candle Holders from SERRV.ORGCau Vong Bowl Set from SERRV.ORG

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Check out the White House blog for more details:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/09/02/18/Help-for-homeowners/

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Rolling Rock Tumblers from The Green Glass Companyhttp://www.greenglass.com/store/home.php?cat=27

They are made from recycled Rolling Rock bottles. How cool!

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1. Turn off your lights! (Remember, Mom & Dad used to tell you to turn the lights off when you leave a room? Well, there was good reason! Especially¬†if you are still using incandescent bulbs–you could wasting a ton of money lighting rooms that are not in use!)

2. Shut the vents in empty rooms! If you rarely find yourself using that third bedroom, take a moment to shut the vent!

3. Let your dishwasher breathe! Instead of using the drying feature on your dishwasher, simply choose the air dry setting, and open your dishwasher door overnight or while you are at work! Voila–energy-free drying!

4. Use more of your electricity at night. Many utility companies have already started using “time of day” metering to produce your bills. Energy is most highly demanded during the mid-day hours, so if you can avoid using your dishwasher and washer/dryer during those peak times, you may save some extra dollars on bill. If your area does not have “time of day” metering, you will at least be reducing the amount of energy needed to satisfy the excess demand (which unfortunately often comes from coal-powered plants and other polluters).

5. Use a power-strip, and turn off your electronics. Contrary to what we were told in the 90s, it actually costs more money to keep a compter “on” in energy-save mode than to just turn it off! If you have the printer, modem, speakers, and computer all on one switch, it’s pretty simple to just turn them on when you want to use them, and turn them off when you go to work or to bed.

6. Wash closthes in cold water. Newer washing machines produce the exact same results with warm and with cold water washes. Why not give it a try? Check out this tip and more at http://c3.newdream.org/.

7. Line dry or hang dry your clothes! Though this might not work for every load, it certainly will work for some! Dryers use up a lot of energy, and you often BAKE your clothes in heat that is too-hot! Why not go for that fresh, air-dry smell? Try hanging your sheets and linens on a line to dry. Not only will you be protecting many of your finer fabrics, but you will be saving dollars, too!

8. Perform your own draft test–use a candle to see if cold air is seeping through your windows and around your doors. If you find that you are having trouble staying warm inside your home in the winter, light a candle and carefully watch the flame as you hold it inches away from your window frame and door. Is there a draft? If so, try no-VOC caulk from AFM Safecoat (www.afmsafecoat.com) or visit http://www.gaiam.com for a DIY window-insulating kit.

9. Add an insulating cover to your hot water heater. This is so much easier than it sounds! Most hardware stores carry “blankets” for water heaters. On electric heaters, you can just follow the instructions and easily slip it on. For oil or gas heaters, you may wish to hire a professional plubmer to help for a couple of minutes. Either way, you will save money by helping your heater keep the tank warm.

10. Prepare for your Spring gardening by choosing native plants and organizing by water needs. So much extra water is needed to keep non-native plants alive. Plus, putting plants that need watering daily next to plants that need only weekly watering can cost you plenty of $$ on your water bill. Why not consider “going native”? Visit http://www.plantnative.org to find nurseries and contacts to help you with your garden planning!

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Greetings GLD lovers,

I’m excited to report that the National Association of Realtors has caught on to all of the buzz. Last week, I went to one of the first training seminars ever offered for the NAR Green Designation. It was encouraging to see how many Realtors were there! Perhaps soon we can all agree on a nationwide green MLS?

So, very soon, I will one of the first Green designees in the Washington, DC metropolitan area. That makes me very happy!

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