June’s Weekend Challenges

Hi everyone! The weekend is almost here. I am looking forward to enjoying the weather and visiting with friends.

While you’re out this weekend, I have two quick challenges for you to try. I will be trying them myself. I believe living a more eco-friendly lifestyle starts with small steps and everyone can contribute something. Are you up for the challenge?

Drinks

Skip the Straw

If you’re enjoying a summer cocktail this weekend (like these beautiful lemonades), ask the bartender to skip the plastic straw and sip from the glass instead. Bring a reusable straw if you have one, or maybe order a bottle of beer or a glass of wine. See if you can go the entire weekend without using a disposable straw. It’s a very small change that will make a big difference.

Unplug Electronic Devices

Many people are traveling out of town this weekend. Before you go, do a sweep of your home (or office) and unplug any electronic devices that you aren’t using. These could be phone chargers, microwaves, electronic air fresheners, etc. According to 1 Million Women, an Australian anti-climate-change movement, if every home in the United States unplugged devices when they’re not being used, it could save 8 billion dollars, and 44 million tons of carbon pollution, every year.

Well, there are the challenges! Two quick and easy things to try this weekend. I’ll be trying them as well. It’s these small steps, multiplied by many people, that can make a big impact.

Have a wonderful weekend!

A Spotlight on StrawSleeves

Hi everyone, hope your week is going well so far! I recently had the pleasure of speaking with Cheri from StrawSleeves, an eco-friendly company that is working to alleviate the world’s plastic pollution problem. I learned a lot and I am very excited to share this post with you.

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My glass straw with my new denim StrawSleeve!

One of today’s major environmental concerns is the overuse and disposal of plastic. Plastic does not disintegrate or biodegrade, but instead lingers for centuries in landfills and oceans. Marine animals are especially affected by plastic pollution: They can become entangled in plastic waste or mistake small micro-plastic pieces as food. According to the Plastic Pollution Coalition, a mere 8% of America’s plastic waste is recycled. Unfortunately, these are only a few of the issues caused by our dependency on plastic.

The Problem With Drinking Straws

A large contributor to the plastic waste epidemic is the use of drinking straws. Did you know that Americans use over 500 million plastic straws daily? Unfortunately, the vast majority of these straws are discarded in the trash. StrawSleeves is an innovative company looking to change these statistics!

Sustainable Solutions

A love of nature is nothing new for Cheri, as she comes from a family of conservationists and many of her relatives work in biology fields. As a child, she camped in the mountains, fished the streams, and picnicked at the beaches.

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Cheri began making StrawSleeves back in 2009 after she was approached by a major glass straw company. Her high-quality sleeves are made of sustainable hemp fabric, or other reclaimed materials, and provide protection and style for reusable straws and utensils. Each sleeve is designed to be beautiful and strong and is triple-stitched to ensure durability. By encouraging people to bring their own bottles, cups, utensils and straws, StrawSleeves is helping to keep single-use plastic out of landfills and encouraging the reusable movement.

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Over the years, Cheri has expanded her business to add reclaimed denim sleeves (as pictured above) and many types of reusable straws to the inventory. Although StrawSleeves’ sales are mostly business-to-business, interest has grown from the general public through Instagram and Facebook. In response to the demand, Cheri opened an Etsy shop in 2015 where individuals can purchase the sleeves in smaller quantities.

StrawSleeves3Tips for Sustainability

I also asked Cheri for her best sustainability tips. She encourages others by example, because no one likes to be “preached to” or feel like their own actions cannot match up to someone else’s actions. The eco journey, she believes, starts with awareness. We all have a responsibility to the well-being of our planet, and once everyone realizes that, the mindset will shift.

She encourages others who seek a more sustainable lifestyle to start small and not get overwhelmed. “The direction of how you think of waste will take you to new heights if you let it. Start with one thing like a reusable bag or a reusable bottle. Then be open to make other discoveries along the way that embrace the practice of “reuse” and lead you away from accepting plastic items, especially single use items. Follow some of the many “beach cleanup” types of accounts on social media. A picture tells a thousand words and it is hard to “stick our heads in the sand” while others literally go out and pick up trash for those who carelessly leave it behind. It changes how you think of your own daily habits!”

For More Information

If you’re looking for a stylish and practical way to carry your reusable utensils, look no further than StrawSleeves. For more information, please visit http://www.strawsleeves.com.

Until next time, and thanks for reading!

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