~ illustration by Julie Bond Genovese
What if we treated Earth Day like Mother’s Day and it was important to offer Mama Earth a gift of appreciation and love for all she has done for us? Of course, those gifts would hopefully not be pesticide-ridden cut flowers, tree-killing paper greeting cards or Unfair-trade chocolate.
In anticipation of another Earth Day, I have to shove aside my tendency to be a bit cynical about the thousands of email pitches I get about ALL the groovy green products that will help save the earth. My instinct is to turn off my computer for earth month and just go be outside in nature, but of course, that isn’t very practical, my being a digital media green diva and all.
I wonder what gifts we could offer Mama Earth that might be meaningful or helpful, while not adding “stuff” that although perhaps sustainably produced and/or recyclable still adds to the CO2 problem in their very existence whether it be in the creation or the shipping or the packaging or the recycling process.
Here are a few gift ideas for Mama Earth this Earth Day
- The Gift of Water Awareness & Conservation ~ water is quickly becoming a serious issue for those of us living here at Mama Earth’s homestead. She’s doing her best to provide, but we are squandering a great deal of it. One of the things that makes Mama Earth’s place, such a great home is the water. Without it, we’ll have to go elsewhere. So, you can give Mama Earth the gift of water conservation—either by committing to be more conscious of your own water use, or by doing something to help those that are experiencing lack of access to clean safe water.
- The Gift of Gratitude ~ sit quietly and literally make a gratitude list of all the amazing things Mama Earth does for us crazy humans. It seems like you could just do this in your head, and you can, but for some reason, writing it down always yields surprises. Try it.
- The Gift of Less Stuff ~ As I mentioned above, I’m a bit obsessed with trying to simplify and live with less for a variety of reasons. When I do have to buy things, I’m really trying to be a more conscious consumer. We just don’t need to add to the burgeoning land fills or create more plastic packaging to slip into our oceans and water ways. So, maybe just for earth day, or earth week or even longer, make a pledge to Mama Earth that you won’t buy anything new. Go on a day-long stuff-fast. Who knows, maybe you’ll do it on a more regular basis?about 33% of landfill content is packaging, much of it plastic. buy less stuff! Click To Tweet
- The Gift of Eating Less Meat ~ You don’t have to go all vegan, but perhaps consider reducing your meat and dairy consumption for at least one day—Earth Day? Or on a regular basis like the Meatless Monday campaign suggests. The United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization estimates the meat industry generates nearly 1/5 of the man-made greenhouse gas emissions that are accelerating climate change worldwide—far more than transportation.
- The Gift of Sustainable Farm Support ~ It’s a great time of year to get out to your local farmer’s markets and seek out the best organic or responsible sustainable farmers in your area to support. Industrial toxic farming methods are stripping Mama Earth’s soil of nutrients and leaving some nasty stuff behind, much of which gets into the nearby water systems. Try to buy organic for the planet AND for your own health!
- The Gift of Love ~ Meditate on the things you love about this planet, the marvels of nature and maybe while you are in a space of awe and love, send some of that good vibe right back to Mama Earth. While you are busy raising your vibration, make sure to acknowledge Mama Earth’s other creatures too.
- The Gift of Service ~ This Earth Day, and pretty much every day or any day, consider how you can be of service to Mama Earth. Maybe take a walk in nature and ponder ways you can help minimize the negative impact we humans are having on our generous Mama. How can we be a bit less like self-centered tweens and more like mature adult children who are ready to participate in finding solutions.
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