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Green-Living

Aetna

Ever see a child eating a bag of Cheetos and drinking a soda and wish you could do better for them? Ever wonder why the poor people are the ones who seem to be the most obese and the most unhealthily? It’s because hungry people eat what they can afford and when you are watching your money, fresh fruits, vegetables and organic are all just beyond your grasp.

Did you know that your zip code is a greater indicator of your health and longevity than your genetic code? Seriously, 23 million Americans live in low-income and rural neighborhoods more than a mile from the nearest supermarket, which means they have to eat what is near them geographically and affordable to them and that is not always what is good for them. Aetna is working to make sure that all children, all people, have access to healthy foods.

Poor nutrition poses a growing health challenge, particularly for those who have limited access to nutritious food, such as fresh fruits and vegetables. To help address this challenge and in support of its mission of promoting health and wellness for everyone, the Aetna Foundation has launched an incredible program.

49 million Americans, including 15.8 million children live in food insecure households. According to the CDC 9 in 10 children don’t eat enough vegetables. These are numbers are sobering and sad.

AetnaGraphic

I am thrilled to announce that Aetna Foundation seeks to fund the creation and expansion of innovative approaches to make community gardens, urban farms and farmers markets available to vulnerable communities in order to help all children get access to the healthier foods.

  1. To qualify for funding, programs must include one of the following:
  2. Nutrition education or cooking classes focused on the health benefits of fresh produce.
  3. Growth or distribution of produce that reflects the food traditions of the target area.
  4. Opportunities to learn job skills or entrepreneurship within the context of gardens, farms or farmers markets.
  5. Opportunities for community service or volunteer work with the project

Grants are open to new and expansion programs. All non-profit and community organizations with 501 (c)(3) status, and state and local government agencies are eligible to apply for the grant. Proposal deadline: May 6, 2015 at 5 p.m. ET to learn more visit www.aetnafoundation.org.

Aetna is trying to make fresh fruits and vegetables accessible to everyone, regardless of socioeconomic status. If you know of a non-profit or community organization in your areas that qualifies for this program, encourage them to apply for this grant and help save the children from being a victim of their zip code. Doesn’t every child deserve to be healthy?

Disclosure: This post is brought to you by the Aetna Foundation and The Motherhood. All opinions are my own.

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going green, nature, sponsored, tips, raising green children

Does your family practice green livingEvery parent wants better for their child than they had for themselves. I think that is the way parenthood is designed. Our legacy is that each generation wants better for the next generation. Only in order for us to leave the world a better place for our children, we need to make the planet a better, cleaner and greener version of what it’s become. Like I always say, be the change you want to see in the world and start by being that change for your children.

Here are 10 easy tips for green living

1.Set up a garden at home in the spring for growing organic vegetables.

Your kids can help plant, water, and care for the garden, watch the plants grow, and enjoy the results.

2. Recycle Water in Your Bathroom

Keep a bucket by the shower or the tub and fill it with the cold water that comes out before the hot water kicks in. Then use that water for your plants. Turn off faucets when not in use.

3. Compost
Use a compost bin to turn your food and lawn wastes into nutrient-rich mulch. It’s a great way to reduce your trash footprint.

4. Use High-Efficiency Lighting
Replace low-wattage halogen bulbs with LED versions. For landscaping, use solar powered lights. When you are not using lights inside them, turn them off.

5. Load Up the Washing Machines
Make sure you only run the dishwasher and the washing machine when they’re full. Washing machines are huge energy and water users.

6. Clean green.

Look in your kitchen cabinet for natural cleaning products like baking soda, white distilled vinegar and essential oils. Use reusable shopping bags whenever you go to the store.

7. Upcycle.

Swap clothes, books, magazines and DVDs with neighbors and friends instead of buying new. Check out books from the library rather than buying new ones. Videos can also be borrowed from the library, instead of buying new. Streaming them on your computer is also a great way to avoid waste.

8. Don’t buy bottled water.

You will use less plastic, create less garbage and save money. Buy reusable containers. Have your kids take a lunch using a planet box or reusable snack bags that can be washed and reused rather than thrown away.

9. Drive Smarter
Simple changes in our driving habits can improve fuel efficiency. Drive near the speed limit, keep your tires inflated, make sure oil and air filters are clean, and step on the gas and the brakes carefully. If you really want to be green, ride your bike or walk when possible.

10. Hang Clothes to Dry

My girls love to help me do the laundry and there is nothing quite as wonderful as clothes dried by the summer sun and wind. It’s also something the girls and I can do together.

By teaching your kids some ideas on living greener now they will grow up living greener and making this planet a better place for their children.

What are your best tips for teaching your family green living?

Photo Christian 

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post on behalf of AGL solar energy but all opinions are my own.

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Earth Day 2011 is almost upon us. What are you planning on doing with your children to save our planet? Can’t we all stand to be a little greener? I KNOW we can in my house. Sure I take steps to be kind to the earth but when I get too busy or things get “inconvenient” all the “Green” goes out the door. So this Earth Day, I am committing to taking some steps ( with my children) to be kind to the earth. Are you? I partnered up for an  exciting Earth Day project with Nickelodeon, the National Wildlife Federation and The Motherhood.com. I signed up to be a B Kind 2 Earth Day leader for my state. You can be one too.  Just sign up here. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

 

www.motherhoodthetruth.com

Photo courtesy of Google

Water

1. Use only the water you need, and reuse when possible.
*Rain barrels can be used to collect rain and then you can use it to water a family garden.
*Bathe together. Put the kids in the tub together. Shower with your kids or your husband. It’s saves water, creates memories and nurtures the bond between siblings.

2. Dispose of solid and liquid wastes and medications safely.
*Take advantage of medication take-back programs or household hazardous waste collection programs that accept medications, pharmaceuticals, oil, paint and other liquid wastes.

3. Protect your local water source from pollutants, excess pesticides and garbage.
*Everyone lives in a watershed — the area that drains to a common waterway, such as a stream, lake, estuary, wetland, aquifer, or even the ocean — and our individual actions can directly affect it. For example, watch the weather and apply necessary chemicals when the rain won’t wash them away, and dispose of livestock or pet’s waste appropriately or litter off the ground.

 

www.motherhoodthetruth.com

Image courtesy of Google, View Courtesy of Mother Nature!

Air

1. Pass on gas! Take public transportation, carpool, plan your day to reduce trips and vehicle emissions.

2. Make sure your home’s air is healthy, learn about indoor air pollutants from indoor energy use and toxins.

3. Reduce your potential for exposure to mercury.

4. Plant a tree. Or plant many trees! Plant a garden. Plant a vegetable garden.

5. Prevent additional air pollution by finding alternatives to burning your waste.

 

The air we breathe, the life we live

Land

1. Use pesticides safely! Reduce or eliminate where possible.

2. Learn about composting, try it out!

3. Learn about ‘Greenscaping’! Try it out at home and promote it in your community.

*By simply changing your landscape to a Green- Scape, you can save time and money and protect the environment.
*Save time by landscaping with plants that require less care
*Save money by eliminating unnecessary water and chemical use
*Protect the environment by:
*Conserving water supplies.
*Using chemicals properly and only when necessary to keep waterways and drinking water clean.
*Reducing yard waste by recycling yard trimmings into free fertilizer.

4. Learn about the native species and the negative effects of non native plants and animals in the environment. Plant native species in your gardens, encourage important pollinators such as bees and birds by planting gardens full of their favorite plants. Join a team in your community that removes non-native species.

 

www.motherhoodthetruth.com

Photo Courtesy of my Brother in Law

 

Energy

1. Save energy at home Choose energy-saving appliances if they’re available. Look for Energy Star!

2. Hang dry your clothes.

3. Go renewable! Create your own power from wind, the sun, water, or biofuels.

4. Find alternate ways to reduce use of diesel and other fuels for transportation, production and energy.

Waste

1. Reuse. Upcycle! Take something that is disposable and transform it into something of greater use and value.

2. Recycle metals, plastics and paper

3. E-cycle Recycle and/or properly dispose of electronic waste such as computers and other gadgets

4. Don’t litter! Properly dispose of trash and waste

 

www.motherhoodthetruth.com

Photo courtesy of Google

 

This Earth Day, my family will spend the day outside and unplugged; being mindful of our footprint. We will be staying around our home,  working in our garden. I also think it’s time to teach the girls about how to separate the recyclables. On a daily basis, my girls are mindful of their footprint and the older they get the more I will explain. For now, they can help by turning off lights, separating recyclables, not wasting, bathing together, buying locally grown organic foods, helping Mommy hang the clothes on the line and remember the reusable grocery sacs. Life is good. Let’s help it stay that way but raising responsible, socially and environmentally aware children.

www.motherhoodthetruth.com

The world is a beautiful place and we are allowed to marvel and enjoy her on a daily basis! Please take care of her! Recycle. Reuse. Reduce! Happy Earth Day 2011! The link I am including is a link to great ideas for Earth Day activities to do with your children. Go to a National park, the local farmers market, just go outside and enjoy the marvelous planet of ours! And remember to be #kind2Earth!

https://holidays.kaboose.com/earthday-activities.html

 

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