Posts Tagged ‘environment’

Japanese maple

In The Man Who Planted Trees, a solitary shepherd brings life and hope to a desolate region by planting a hundred acorns a day for thirty years. This beautiful, inspiring short film is available online, and I invite you to take half an hour to watch it.

It may inspire you to plant a tree yourself in some corner of the world:

– In the Atlantic Forest of South America, through the Nature Conservancy’s Plant a Billion Trees campaign

– Or in Kenya and throughout Africa, through Nobel Prize laureate Wangari Maathai’s organization, The Green Belt Movement

The Greenbelt Movement

– Or in urban Los Angeles, CA, through the TreePeople‘s effort to plant a million trees.


Or you may want to reduce your paper usage by opting out of unwanted catalogs. I recommend Catalog Choice’s free service, which allows you to choose specific catalogs you want to decline. You know the ones you didn’t even sign up for but somehow receive? The ones you never look at anyway? It only takes a minute or two to decline them and save printing, shipping, and disposal costs.

Catalog Choice

Check out what others are doing, and consider sharing your own Earth Day story on Google’s Earth Day map.

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Bloggers Unite - Blog Action Day

Today is “Blog Action Day,” in which bloggers around the world are invited to write about a single important issue. The chosen topic: the environment.

Sometimes we face something so enormous that anything short of miraculous seems inconsequential and pointless. Caring for the environment, for example. It’s a woolly mammoth of a topic. How do we get to where we’re actually making a difference? Realistically, we can’t all drive hybrids, eat only locally-grown food, install solar panels, and buy exclusively fair trade and green products (though these are all admirable actions). But we can all choose to do something small, and that’s what I want to write about today.

I’m a believer in the significance of small actions and baby steps. Large changes are made cumulatively through small, everyday actions.

Helen Keller:

I long to accomplish a great and noble task, but it is my chief duty to accomplish humble tasks as though they were great and noble. The world is moved along, not only by the mighty shoves of its heroes, but also by the aggregate of the tiny pushes of each honest worker.


Here are, in my opinion, the simplest three baby steps that can make a difference for our environment:

  • Recycle plastic and glass bottles.
  • Use reusable grocery bags. (Many stores will give you a cash discount for bringing your own bags.)
  • Replace incandescent light bulbs with compact florescent light bulbs.

Herman Melville:

We cannot live for ourselves alone. Our lives are connected by a thousand invisible threads, and along these sympathetic fibers, our actions run as causes and return to us as results.

Caring for the environment is an act of magnanimity toward the world that will carry on after we are gone. It’s our gift to give, and it’s our responsibility.

Jean Giono’s story, The Man Who Planted Trees, illustrates this beautifully. (Though it is available for purchase as a printed book, I’m including a link to an online version, because Giono’s wish was for this story to be available free to all in order to cultivate a love of planting trees.)

Today, Blissful readers, I encourage you to think of something you can do in your everyday life to honor the environment.

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