In case you didn’t hear the latest 50 Shades of GDs podcast, Optimism in the time of corona, here ya go…
But first, a few words about toilet paper…
According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, each person in the United States consumes about 50 pounds of tissue paper (including toilet paper) per year, which adds up to about 15 billion pounds of tissue consumed per year by the entire country. That equals to about 20% of the entire tissue paper products supply in the world. For context, Americans only make up about 4% of the world’s population.
Here’s a counter estimating worldwide TP use… yikes!
Why use toilet paper made of recycled paper?
The difference between using new toilet paper and toilet paper made from recycled materials is 400 million trees, 660 million tons of water, and 45 million tons of oil!
Who Gives a Crap – Here is a brilliant Non-Profit that makes sustainably made, soft to the bum, comparably priced TP from recycled paper with no harmful chemicals, it uses the money from selling toilet paper to build toilets and improved sanitation where needed. These guys from the UK started a go fund me project in 2012 where Simon sat on a toilet in a drafty warehouse for 50 hours until they raised $50,000 (see the video).
They give 50% of what they earn toward building toilets where needed after they learned that:
- 2.3 billion people across the world don’t have access to a toilet.
- That’s roughly 40% of the global population and means that
- around 289,000 children under five die every year from diarrheal diseases caused by poor water and sanitation.
- That’s almost 800 children per day, or one child every two minutes.
So, while we have time to re-think how we value toilet paper, let’s also consider it’s impact on the environment (and get a little perspective).
Here are a few things we are doing while hunkering down here @ GD PonderRosa Studios …
Get out in nature (if you can)
We are very fortunate up here to have 10 acres to roam around on plus 28 miles of amazing nature trails. We’ve been able to get out on the trails every day and visit Mr. & Mrs. bald eagle who have a nest that is far enough away that not everyone can find it. We’ve seen so much wildlife up there. We counted 44 swans, we’ve seen a variety of hawks, an early bird turtle, a busy beaver and all kinds of other birds and water fowl. The signs of spring are everywhere and they do offer hope.
Just say NO to ticks!
However, if you do get to go out on a hike or into the woods at all, please take care not to get lyme disease! Don’t need to add that to what is going on. Try GD Meg’s awesome bug repellent spray — it really works AND it doesn’t smell bad at all!
Food NOT Lawns
Not a bad time to consider at least a few of the things our grandparents or great grandparents did back in the day! Given our current circumstances, growing any type of food, even if just a kitchen window herb garden will help to make you feel even a bit more empowered. For those that have gardens, maybe consider expanding a bit; for those that have considered it, but haven’t done it yet, NOW IS THE TIME! If you don’t have a yard, but have a deck, Green Diva Meg did a very plentiful deck garden for years.
We did a fun episode about Food vs. Lawns with Green (Devo) Dude Mike Nowak
Oh, have trouble with critters where you are? GD Meg’s got a remedy for that! Non-toxic hot pepper spray recipe and post here!
No more chicken envy for Green Diva Meg! She and hubby wayne finally did it. They are the proud guardians of 8 baby chicks that are destined to make eggs, not meat!
After many interviews with urban and suburban homesteaders and reading a lot of great books, GD Meg and Green Dude Wayne finally pulled the trigger and look forward to having eggs sometime in the next few months!
Other ways to up your homesteading game
Maybe you’ve been thinking about getting solar panels or implementing other energy saving projects around the house. Now’s the time to do the homework and do whatever you can!
Not a gardener or homesteader? We have literally hundreds of fun and easy DIY projects geared for non-crafty/homesteady types!
Stay in touch with family & friends
While it is always a good time to reach out and stay connected to loved ones and friends, now more than ever, we need to make those connections and check on each other. There are too many people sequestered alone out there, who are not well-equipped for this potentially long stretch of isolation. So, rather than just ripping off a quick text to check in, why not make an actual call and have longer actual conversations? Better yet, when was the last time you sat and wrote (or typed) a letter? Getting mail can mean a lot to someone that is lonely, and a heartfelt letter is a treasure.
No time like the present to take a few deep breaths and work on your chill. If you aren’t a meditator, might be a good time to consider starting. There are so many known benefits for mind and body.
Here’s an interesting catalog of 141 benefits of meditating!
Green Diva Meg did a really nice guided meditation that is excellent. Give it a try!
Yoga & Exercise
A few of our own yoga teachers have started zoom yoga classes, which we love because it is nice to have your own teachers. But there are also many videos and apps out there! So, if you have wanted to start or restart a yoga practice, now is an excellent time to make it happen! It will definitely help your body AND mind!
Of course, whatever exercise you can do will help with sleep, anxiety and of course in general to keep us in better physical condition.
We are foodies here on the studio compound. Not everyone loves cooking as much as we do, but even if you don’t love it, it’s not a bad idea to take some time to cook some large pot meals to freeze in batches or do some pickling or any kind of food preservation.
You may have things in the pantry that you can make use of. Maybe a few things you’re not really sure what to do with. There’s an app (or two) for that! Check out Magic Fridge and Super Cook for some creative ways to utilize what you have on hand!
It’s always a good time to NOT waste food, but now perhaps more than others. Here’s one of many articles on this blog about ways to minimize food waste!
We literally have hundreds of fun recipes right here!
Clean, but try not to poison yourself with toxic cleaners!
We are all upping our game and being more vigilant about cleaning right now. This is a great time to learn about non-toxic, but effective cleaners.
Here’s a good post about alternatives to toxic common household cleaners, and why we need to pay attention!
Watch the fun video of GD Meg talking about all of it on an international TV morning show a few years back!
Raise your hand if you have a desire to get to a creative project, but just haven’t been able to find the time! Um, no excuses now kids. Of course, there are many professional artists like musicians who are not able to make money gigging. It’s stressful for them, but I see that the music community is finding ways to support each other and get some wonderful music out there.
Up here at GD PonderRosa Studios, we are launching a new podcast designed to help shine some light our amazingly talented clients during this otherwise, unproductive (in terms of recording) time. Please visit GDPonderRosaStudios.com to learn more and give a listen!
Whether you are a professional artist or a wannabe, here’s an opportunity to really work on your craft, maybe learning some new aspect of it, taking those lessons (virtually) you’ve been putting off, or writing that book that has been on the back burner. Do it people. We expect to see some fabulous creative work at the end of this time!
Don’t forget to wash your hands!
We’ve never seen so many great memes, videos and celebrity songs about washing our hands. Our client Gloria Gaynor, who was up at the studio recently, did a fun TikTok, hand-washing challenge using her hit song, I Will Survive…
Obviously it is vitally important right now. We love foaming hand soap, but so much of it has triclosan and other icky ingredients that aren’t good for us or the planet.
So, here’s GD Meg’s awesome foaming hand soap recipe that is effective at killing germs, while not loading you with hormone-disrupting or cancer-causing chemicals!
Try to keep positive despite the news
We’re finding it best to minimize the news and social media. It is scary out there and the media is just oozing with terror. It’s probably important to check in periodically (not all day) on local news and know what is happening in your community and what you need to do, etc. Here are a final few thoughts…
- Above all, be kind, patient and try to practice compassion. Some folks are really vulnerable in many ways and there are a lot of stressed and anxious people out there.
- Be considerate of others. You may not be vulnerable to this crazy corona thing, but others around you may be. Please stay home and help minimize the spread. Please.
- Take excellent care of yourself. Eat as healthy as possible, minimize things that weaken your immune system, INCLUDING STRESS!
- If you are alone and freaking out, please reach out for help. Here are some excellent suggestions from Healthline.com.
- If you get sick, try not to panic. Here is a link to CDC recommendations for what to do if you think you are sick or someone in the family might be sick.
Be good. Be safe. We’ll see you on the other side!