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Love Lunch Again

By Chantal O'Keeffe
March 28, 2011
File under: Family, Food

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Photos by Sophie Constantinou

Do you have 3 to 6 minutes to spare? Ready for your world to get knocked off kilter and brim with possibility?  Through a series of websisodes, Lunch Love Community—a documentary through webisode essays –brings us a snippet of the food reform movement, using the pioneering Berkeley School Lunch Program.

What began over fifteen years ago with a group of citizens who shared the same vision, has now morphed into a thriving program that provides nutritious, tasty, healthy meals to students, and is inspiring citizens in cities and towns across the nation.

The Berekely School Lunch Program didn’t just provide healthy meals to students, but rather provided systematic changes in the way our children eat, how they think, and how they learn. The webisodes offer a glimpse into what is possible not just in this northern California bohemian mecca, but in inner cities and rural locations all over the country.  …read more of Love Lunch Again here

 
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A Lot of Bang for a Little Buck

By Chantal O'Keeffe
December 22, 2010
File under: Holidays

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What’s the perfect gift for your friends, family, employees, teachers and everyone in between? The Charity Gift Card, an interactive gift that keeps on giving, and one that comes accompanied with a challenge, the Just 51 Bucks Challenge.

After a cry for help from the charity community—donations are down this year 11%, the worst decline in 20 years — TisBest joined forces with several other organizations (CharityGiftCertificates.org, JustGive.org and NetworkForGood.org) in a challenge to Americans to spend 10% of their holiday gift budget on Charity Gift Cards.

Since the average American spends about $510 on gifts this season, 10% becomes $51.

How far can $51 really go? Turns out, 51 bucks can make a huge impact. …read more of A Lot of Bang for a Little Buck here

 
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Book Review: The Environment Equation

By Chantal O'Keeffe
December 22, 2010
File under: Books

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Sometimes I find the news to be downright depressing, especially when it’s about climate change, dwindling habitat, or devastating environmental mishaps. Throw policy in the mix (or lack thereof) and I have to resist the urge to grab a shovel and start building my apocalypse bunker.

It’s easy to absorb all of the information that’s out there and then feel completely overwhelmed by the state of affairs. I find it refreshing to come across information that acknowledges the importance of small changes, and The Environment Equation:
100 Factors That Can Add To or Subtract From Your Total Carbon Footprint
takes on these small changes with step-by-step guides to reducing your carbon footprint, one change at a time.

What I like about this book is that it provides the reader with mathematical values for being a good environmental citizen, including 100 factors that illustrate just how much we can improve, or worsen, our individual impact on climate change through our own carbon footprint.  And your individual carbon footprint matters, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. …read more of Book Review: The Environment Equation here

 
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The Wind Beneath My Junk

By Chantal O'Keeffe
November 27, 2010
File under: Eco-Friendly Activities, Eco-friendly Decorating, Projects

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For years I’ve been dreaming about a wind chime, and from time to time I find lovely ones that are usually out of my budget.

But recently, while driving through some back roads in Virginia, I came across an amazing wind chime made of antique, mismatched silverware, and it got me thinking: Wind chimes can be made, they don’t have to be bought. And they can still be totally amazing. So I got to work.

First, I found a few pieces of leftover silverware, gathered together some wire, and began thinking. What could I use to hang them from?I knew I wanted something cylindrical, made of a material that was tough enough to not bend. …read more of The Wind Beneath My Junk here

 
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Be a Homemade Hottie

By Chantal O'Keeffe
November 18, 2010
File under: Personal Care, Waste Reduction

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I read articles all the time about household items that can do double or triple duty as repurposed beautifiers. I’ll be the first to admit, my interest in using items in new and unexpected ways, coupled with my desire to be a better environmental citizen makes me an easy target, and an even easier victim of bad ideas.

I once made shampoo from mushed up bananas and grapefruit juice, only to spend an extra two hours trying to get pieces of banana out of my hair. I was in high school, so I’ll claim inexperience, but even at my “more mature” age, I’m still easily influenced by pretty photos, good writing, and outrageous ideas.
I saw this article in The New York Times and knew I’d found my next great experiment.

Lemons as deodorant? I was immediately smitten. I’ve been dying to find something that kept my armpits fresh, and have tried everything from natural deodorants, to creams, to the crystal rocks. I’ve been impressed by none of them. But lemons? Heck yeah. Turns out, it’s a pretty fresh alternative to deodorant—I haven’t exactly tried running a marathon with my newly minted lemon deodorant, but for walking the dog, it’s perfect. …read more of Be a Homemade Hottie here

 
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Go green with new ideas to simplify your life, ecomii inside stories on ways to live healthier, shop smarter, reduce spending, live toxic-free and use less with more.

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