Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Harvard, Yale and Plymouth State

My father-in-law has a favorite saying;

Harvard, Yale and Plymouth State

All the rest are second rest are second rate!

Since he is my father-in-law, I won't go as far to say that he is right. But I do agree that I love Plymouth State and was recently given a new reason to love it even more.

Plymouth State recently completed the construction of one very green residence hall. Not only is it a green residence hall, but it is the greenest state building in the state of New Hampshire. Langdon Woods received gold-level certification by the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership-Energy-Environmental Design program. Pretty impressive huh?

Back when I was a student at Plymouth State College (not as fancy sounding as today's "university"), we sent our food scraps to a local pig farmer. We recycled paper and plastic and never turned the heat on until well after the first snowfall. I could do without the last energy-saving measure. Brrrr!

My hope is that green colleges will become a real trend. Students will chose to attend a certain college just to keep their carbon footprint minimal.

Maybe fraternities will switch to organic beer? Sorority houses will install wind turbines to fuel their stereos (do college kids even have stereos anymore?). Gray water systems will be the norm. Cafeterias will buy locally and keep their own organic gardens. Professors will donate their used Birks to those less fortunate. The list could go on and on...

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Not Another Top Toys List

Oh how I detest this time of the year when all I seem to see on morning television, read in the paper and hear people talking about are the top toys of the holiday season. Does anyone really buy that junk? These plastic monstrosities are bound for the bottom of a toy chest or the top of a lead toy recall.

I have to lay my cards on the table and be completely truthful. My children are completely spoiled.

I blame the grandmummies. My munchies are the only grandchildren on both sides. Both of the grandmummies love to shop. Their aunts love to shop. They have way too many friends come to their birthday parties and give thoughtful gifts.

The kids already have their own sets of golf clubs, a playhouse large enough for me to move into, bookcases of books and all of the clothes that two little people could ever wear. What is a mummy to do?

A couple years ago I sat down with both grandmas and we hashed out a holiday plan that worked for everyone's pocketbook without turning my little ones into spoiled monsters.

Now, the kids receive an experience from their grandmummies for each holiday.

Over the last few years the kids have gone to cooking class, learned how to rock climb and attended summer camp. All of the experiences were greatly appreciated by all.

This winter they will be either cross country skiing or ice skating. Shhhh...don't tell.

Living in the suburbs can be tough when you are doing your best not to turn your kids into tiny consumers.

Stay strong mummies and grandmummies!

Monday, November 26, 2007


My family has a new mantra. $560.


I'm still in shock.

$560 is the price of the bill that the friendly propane man handed me a few days ago to fill my tank 80% full.

"Shut the front door! $560!"

"Why did you turn the heat up? $560!"

"You've been in the shower an awfully long time! $560!"

Even my four year old knows that the propane cost $560 this month.

This is once in my life when my thyroid disease is coming in handy. Fifty degrees in the living room. Bring it on!

I do have to think that the high price in heating my home and all of the other homes in the US may have a silver lining. People who may not have paid much attention to their thermostat for the sake of saving the planet are now helping the planet without even knowing.

A little off topic, but I recently read on Treehugger that President Carter installed solar panels on the White House only to have them taken down by President Regan in an attempt to prove to the nation that we had all of the oil that we could ever need.

What would this country be like environmentally speaking if Carter just had a second term?

Sunday, November 25, 2007


Everyone has a hypocritical moment here or there. Just because I can be self-deprecating, I thought that I would put my hypocritical moment of the day out there for all to see.

This morning Hubby, Girlie, Little Guy and myself all went over to the pool for some family fun and exercise. Afterwards we decided to go see the movie Enchanted. (The best movie I have seen in a long time!) Since there wasn't much time between the pool and the movie we headed toward Old McDonald's for lunch.

At home we eat mostly organically and don't eat red meat. I am also not a big fan of bringing licenced characters into our home. Still the Little Munchies get a new licenced character toy every time we hit Old McDonald's.

After we were done eating our meals I noticed that the kids hadn't touched their "toxic meal" boxes and we were just going to toss them. So I brought the boxes back up to the counter. "We barely touched these boxes and I don't want to just toss them. Maybe you could use them for your next customers?"

The two ladies behind the counter gave me two very vacant stares.

I'm guessing that I am the first Old McDonald's customer that tried to use one of the three R's and pulled out "reuse" in their restaurant.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

I'm dreaming of a Green Christmas

Now that Thanksgiving is over I can begin to start thinking about Christmas.

Note to my neighbors: It is NOT OK to put up your Christmas tree, Christmas lights, wreaths or assorted lighted reindeer until December 1st. Not mid-November. It looks like anarchy has come to our village neighborhood.

I like to think of myself as a very open-minded person. Your religion, ancestry or sexual preference will never matter to me. The rules of tacky Christmas do matter.

Christmas decorations may don your home from December 1st through January 1st. With the singular exception of your wreath. If your wreath is still looking healthy you may remove the bow and keep it up until February 1st. No exceptions. I will look at you funny and audibly huff as I pass your home if you break this simple rule.

On December 1st, my family will begin to decorate for Christmas. This year I purchased a strand of solar LED lights for the small bush outside. No remembering to turn the lights on and off, no additional electricity consumption and lights that won't burn out every year. Yea for me!

I also purchased an LED solar spotlight to shine on the front door and wreath. The solar panel is adjustable so I can aim it southbound to get the most sunshine. My house will look cute while being green. Double yea!

This is our sixth, or so, Christmas wrapping out gifts in reusable cloth gift bags. I must confess that I did not make these simple and cute bags, but I purchased them online, from work at home moms and from assorted little old ladies attending local craft fairs. My goal this year is to dust off Granmummy old sewing machine and try to make a few additional bags.

The first year of using reusable cloth bags I discovered my mummy was very upset that Girlie would not have the "experience" of ripping open paper gift wrap to get to her gift. While all I could think of was the poor trees that would have to be cut down in order for my Girlie to have a five second experience.

Mummy quickly changed her tune and now gets in on the act. Everyone gets excited to revisit the unusual bags that they have received in the past. Personally, I love seeing just how little trash we create and how I don't have to spend a penny on my gift wrapping.

Here is a wow statistic from Carnegie Mellon Green Design Institute; If every American wrapped just 3 gifts a year in recycled materials (funny papers, decorated brown paper bags, fabric, etc.) we would save enough paper to cover 45,000 football fields. Trust me as a girl who has as seen a football game or two. That is BIG!

Happy holiday season to all. Please be nice and follow the Tacky Chritmas Guidelines and we will all be merry and bright.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Bye, Bye Catalogs

A few posts ago I wrote about opting out of financial offers and just how much less mail I was receiving. An article in today's Hartford Courant mentioned a website that will make Casey the Mailman even happier. allows you to chose which catalogs you want to opt-out of. So basically you can keep recieveing your yearly Rosie Hippo and seasonal White Flower Farm while not receiving that weird grandma-gadget catalog.

Last week my family of four filled four brown paper bags with out paper recycling. That includes school notices, three newspapers, toilet paper rolls, junk mail and lots of catalogs. My hope is that when this catalog opt-out kicks in I will have two bags of paper recycling.

Birth Choices

Lately it seems that everywhere I look I meet pregnant women. It seems that all of these woman are due soon and "just have" to be induced early.

Generally, I can't keep my mouth shut when I meet women who are inducing early and bragging about it. Over the last few weeks I have absolutely strained myself to keep my mouth shut when all of these pregnant woman have talked about just having to be induced early by their doctors.

Now you should know that I am very shy. So when I open my mouth at inappropriate times it tends to surprise people at first. Maybe this foot-in-mouth disease keeps me on the shy side. I'm not sure.

Does anyone out there remember that a due date is just an estimate? Generally due date fall somewhere is a four week period. That's two weeks before your due date and two weeks after.

If you are due over Thanksgiving that does not mean being induced the day before so your doctor can have a big meal with his family.

If you are "feeling big" and your last two kids weighed in the seven pound range that does not mean that you have to be induced before the baby grows too big. 99.9% of the time your body will not grow a baby that is too big for your body to handle.

These woman are playing with fire. They are playing with their babies health. They are playing with their own health. They are adding to an already over medicalized system of birth.

The infant mortality rates in the US are way up. The solution is an easy one. Take the doctors and the hospitals out of the equation for healthy women.

Countries where midwives and home births are the norm have lower rates of infant mortality and c-section rates plummet. Higher rates of early mummy and infant bonding. Mummy can take care of her baby earlier because she hasn't been cut and shot full of heavy drugs.

Personally, I had two very different births.

The Cliffs Notes version has me first pregnant with Little Girlie. I was young, working around a ton of nosey women in a school. Everyone shared their horror stories. I had no one to look-up to. I went to an OBGYN and a hospital looking for guidance. My labor looked like a three-ring circus with standing room only and nurses leaving my door open and inviting others in to see the "lady who can't push." My Girlie and I almost didn't make it through. I had a host of post-birth medical problems. Hubby and I decided to stop having children because it wasn't worth the risk.

With my Little Guy I was a little older, better connected with other mummies and much better read. I decided that if I could have a birth my way then I would try for another child. No interventions, no medications, no doctors, no hospitals. I had my son in a comfy bedroom at a freestanding birth center. I was allowed to get into a birthing tub in a dark, quiet room.

I gave birth to my 12 pound, 23 inch Little Guy peacefully in the water the way my body told me to. Within the hour I was up and around heating-up lasagna in the birth center's kitchen. Five hours after Little Guy's birth I decided that I was ready to go home.

Hubby, myself and my new Little Guy all dove home together at five hours old. The three of us slept the day away together. Never apart even for a second.

On days two and three the midwife came out to my house and visited us. Over the second week my mummy came to stay and help with my Girlie, myself and the house while I took care of Little Guy. On week three I had a postpartum doula come visit and help out for twenty hours.

Gradually I was on my own and the was OK.

To all of those pregnant woman out there, please listen to your bodies. Your mummy gave birth, your grandmummy gave birth, her mummy gave birth and their bodies all knew how to do so. Be strong and have your experience.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Today I Am Cinderella

Today, I am pretending to be Cinderella.

Not the beautiful, mice scurrying, riding in pumpkins, dancing with handsome men Cinderella. I am the toiling away at the hearth Cinderella.

Luckily we don't have a real hearth. That would just be one more thing to clean. We do however have sticky floors, ringy tubs, grungy counters and an entire mountain of dirty clothes. All of these things and more need to be cleaned before the family begins to arrive for Thanksgiving tomorrow.

All of this cleaning made me think about how I used to clean.

Things began to seem off with me when I was pregnant with my Girlie. Hubby had to take over all of the cleaning because my gut told me that I shouldn't be inhaling all of those strong smells while being pregnant. Then, after sweet Girlie was born I would clean when she wasn't in the room. Why would I expose such a sweet little thing to toxic fumes?

By the time I got pregnant with my Little Guy I finally smartened up. Something wasn't right.

After a ton of online research and talking to lots of people in the know I discovered that I didn't need gross smells and powerful white bottles to get my home clean. Things like vinegar, baking soda and lemon juice all had disinfecting properties while being safe enough to eat. Anything that was safe enough to eat was certainly safe enough to clean my home.

The changes in my cleaning cabinet came slowly. First a bottle of Dr. Bronner's. The website said that you could wash your floors, brush your teeth, wash your hair and clean lots more with this one little bottle. I stared simple with my floors. The Dr. Bronner's cleaned my floors so well that I told my friend Kim.

Kim had two very sick kitties. The kitties were regulars at the vets office. The vet couldn't figure out what was wrong with them. A few days after Kim got rid of her harsh floor cleaner she noticed the kitties getting better. A month later, the kitties were perfectly fine.

Kim's kitties are enough proof for me. Why would I let my human children crawl and play on a floor "cleaned" with toxic chemicals?

For my next purchase I bought an all-purpose cleaner. The 365 Brand makes a great cleaner. I could finally spray my counters clean without my eyes watering.

Then, came lemon juice and Borax to clean the toilets. No more opening the window to clean the bathroom.

Today, my house has 100% safe cleaning products. You could lick my counters if you were very brave. You could roll on my floors naked if you were very, very brave.

My advice to everyone out there including Mary, my new-to Whole Foods friend, my parents who are trying to green-up for their health, my neighbor who is ditching her bleach bottle and everyone else out there is to START SMALL.

Just change one product in your cleaning routine with an homemade product or safe alternative. As you get used to it, you can remove something else. Then, pat yourself on the back for cleaning the air in your home, the groundwater in your community and the air and water near the large cleaning chemical manufacturing plant.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Smoke in the Fire Station

Picture walking by your local fire station and seeing smoke pour out of the front door....

My family is lucky to live in a small village in Connecticut. It is part of a larger suburb, but our village has it's own small town idenity.

Twice a year our Hose Company hosts a community breakfast as a fundraiser for fire fighting equipment. They pull the fire trucks out of their bays to set-up large round tables and lots of chairs. The firefighters all help by either cooking or taking tickets. $6 for adults and $4 for kids.. What a deal!

We haven't missed one of these firefighter braekfasts since we moved to the village. Actually, we went to our first breakfast just before we closed on our house.

Today the Family bundled-up in our coats and mittens (thanks to hubby's grandmother for making us all new mittens this year) and walked down to the firestation. By eight a.m. nearly all of the tables were occupied. At the breakfast we saw our friendly crossing guard with her family, our neighbor whoos family has lived in the village for generations, a school friend of my girlie and our neighbor with the jumpy dog. We all ate together in the smoke-filled fire house.

The friendly firefighters will cook you eggs any style. You can also get french toast, homefries, ham, sausages, rolls, coffee, orange juice and grapefruit juice. The food is really good. Like, I would eat there every weekend if I could good. They even nailed my "over medium" request.

Thank you to our village hose company for hosting another great breakfast for our family and our community. We are counting the days until your next breakfast in May

Saturday, November 17, 2007

The Gym

Yesterday morning I dropped my girlie off at the bus stop and headed toward the gym with my little guy. I make the trip three to four times a week in the colder months.

But yesterday I started thinking about my trip to the gym and the impact it has on the earth.

I chose the YMCA first, because there aren't many options around here. They also have a beautiful zero-entry pool for the kids to get some exercise and have fun in the colder months. They have an amazing gym with tons of equipment and friendly people. They have a certain kickboxing class that I love and spinning classes that I aspire to try someday. The best gym perk for a mummy with little ones is the childcare room that my little guy actually likes.

Over the summer I suspended my Y membership because I was hiking, biking and swimming both with the kids and when they were both in camp. Now that 40 degree temperatures are here and my little guy is with me all of the time, with the exception of a few nursery school hours, the gym is the only option.

For the first time yesterday I timed my drive. 14 minutes. That's 28 minutes round trip. If I visit the YMCA three times a week, that's 112 minutes per week. 504 minutes per month. 5040 minutes or 84 hours of driving over the school year.

84 hours of driving!?!

I can picture 84 hours worth of emissions spewing from my station wagon and I'm beginning to feel ill.

Yes, I walk the three minutes to the dentist and give myself a pat on the back. But now I DRIVE 84 hours in a year just to use the elliptical, kick a bag and lift a few weights.

You may say just buy a workout DVD or run around the block a few times. Trust me when I say that I have tried and failed. Trust me when I say that my blood pressure and other assorted old lady-type problems are finally in control now that I joined the Y. Trust me when I say that my kids are more active and happy in the winter now that they can swim and rock climb instead of staying home coloring or watching TV.

Do I put my body and health before the earth's health?

What is a girl like me to do?

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Family Meeting

Late yesterday the mail came as it always does. My friendly letter carrier, let's call him Casey, parks his mail truck at the beginning of the neighborhood and walks the block every day except for Sundays and Mondays. Casey wears shorts for much too long in the season and appears to be some sort of medal-winning speed walker.

Anyway, Casey and myself have been much happier since I opted-out of financial offers. My mail was cut in half after those tree-eating financial offers stopped coming. Friendly Casey's bag must be almost a pound lighter each day.

The monthly electric bill arrived yesterday. This bill, like the others, stresses me out. Last months bill was lower than usual. Our family's monthly usage was nearly 30% lower than it was last November! This great news called for a Brady-style family meeting.

We gathered around the kitchen island so I could share the good news with the family.

Thank you to Little Son for turning off his overhead light at night and for using his solar nightlight.

Thank you to Little Girlie for turning off the lights when she leaves the room.

A special thank you to Hubby for giving a little cheer and for being truly excited that I was excited.

Let's aim for 35% next month!

Monday, November 12, 2007

I'm too old for this

So I arrived back in Connecticut early this morning. What a trip it was!

I sat on the tarmac waiting for the airshow to finish. A very large, bigoted man from Montana sat next to me and talked to me for five straight hours. Well, he really didn't sit next to me. He sat on me. On my left arm and leg for five hours, with the exception of his three minute bathroom break.

Then, my "nonstop" flight made a landing in Nashville to pick-up more passengers and thankfully drop-off the man from Montana who described himself as "somewhere to the right on Hitler and the left of Cheney." Seriously, that is a quote. My mum told me that if I don't have something nice to say then I shouldn't say anything. I did not reply to that comment or many others like them.

Now that I have visited Vegas Baby, I thought that I should pass along a few suggestions to others who may be traveling there.

First, do not try to look cute and rock the 1978 large hoops, sunglasses and ponytail look while riding the roller coaster on top of NY NY. Your sunglasses will rise off of you, hit you in the face and proceed to fall somewhere on the Vegas strip. Probably smashing into a million pieces. You head will be tossed around like a baby doll's and your earlobes will rip. Fun huh?

Second, do not promise your kids wonderful gifts from Vegas. Personally I found a child-sized bedazzled shirt that read "bitch" and a pink princess shot glass. Stick with the snow globes. Ironic that it doesn't snow in Vegas.

Lastly, expect to see people drinking in bars at 8:00am. Coming from a state rich in blue laws, this one shocked me. Am I a real prude or does it seem fairly disgusting to anyone else to wake-up and instantly walk to a bar to grab a whiskey?

I'm home now. Kids have been snuggled all day. The smoke has been washed out of my clothes and hair. And I am sleeping in my own bed. Coming home can be the best part of the trip.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Viva Las Vegas

This is my first remote post. No, I'm not in my living room. I'm in Vegas Baby!

Hubby is on a business trip, so I thought that I would jump on the trip with him. Grandparents were lined up, extra meals were made and schedules were stuck on the fridge.

Now, you should know that I don't gamble. Don't really drink. Get grossed-out by massive amounts of food. Don't own any bedazzled clothes. But here I am. Having fun in Vegas!

We have seen two shows, Wayne Brady is the most talented person on earth. We have gambled a little, I'm even. I stood behind Debbie Reynolds (she is very tiny). We have eaten some good food. We have walked and walked and walked. We have held hands. It has been a relaxing trip so far.

Although, I really need to write a few letters. Where are the recycling bins? They could make the recyling bins gold, shiny, shaped like flying monekeys. Whatever would make them "blend in" in Vegas.

One and a half more days of vacation in Vegas. With all of the fun and relaxation I'm having, I can't wait to go home and snuggle my babies. I needed a break to be a better mummy, but I really miss them.

Off to my massage....

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Field Trip

Today I took my friend, "Mary", on a field trip to Whole Foods.

Last week Mary called me up talking was too fast. "Did you know that everything is bad for you? Food, water, cleaning products, air, your house!" She was practically shrieking.

I tried my best to calm her down and get to the root of this hysteria. "Book on tape. I borrowed this book on tape from the library and all I could could do was think of you," said Mary. I wasn't sure if i should be flattered that Mary thought of me as an environmentally conscious person or someone who was going to self-destruct by being exposed to the world.

Seeing as there was no school toady... Election Day? No school? A seriously lame idea... I invited Mary and her daughter to a little field trip to Whole Foods for lunch and a little shopping.

When we pulled up to Whole Foods she immediately oohed and ahhed. "It's a grocery store," exclaimed Mary! "Umm yeah" I responded.

Choosing lunch was easy. We started with a yummy lunch of pizza, soup and sandwiches. Drinks were a little tougher. Mary had to read the bottles since she had never seen any of the drinks. Our group ended-up with chocolate milk, water, lemonade and Vitamin Water.

After lunch we slithered through the aisles chatting about all of the different products. "Oohh. I never thought of that. They sell everything."

Over and over again Mary keep saying that she just didn't know where to start. Didn't know how to begin to make her family and home healthier. She was just plain overwhelmed.

I think being overwhelmed by options is a problem for many people wanting to "go green." They see these great stories on television and in newspapers about truly green people they simply become overwhelmed.

Mary made her first steps today. A bottle of natural furniture polish, organic popcorn and a better understanding on how to green her family.

Monday, November 5, 2007

I Heart Squash Pie

My mom was raised a Yankee. Her mom was raised a Yankee. Her mom was a Yankee. And so formed a cycle.

We are thrifty but enjoy our jewelry. We truly are hard workers. We wear loafers. We eat traditional New Englady foods.

One of my favorite Yankee foods that I simply cannot wait for each year is squash pie. Not pumpkin, too stringy. Only squash will do.

Since I do not enjoy cooking, I try to buy premade foods and jazz them up whenever I can. Case in point, One Pie brand filling made in West Paris, Maine.

One Pie Squash is simply squished squash and a label with directions on how to cook the pie. The label has looked the same for as long as I can remember. This year the cooking directions seemed a little different to me. "Bake 20 minute at 375 degrees F."

After 20 minutes of cooking I still had liquid squash. So I did what any girl would do and called my mother. She didn't think that the directions seemed right, and told me to try cooking for 45 minutes. That didn't seem right either.

The I Googled the company. No website to speak of. So I looked-up the number and called the friendly folks in West Paris, Maine. The directions were in fact printed incorrectly. Too bad my pie was already in the over. Although I will be ready for Thanksgiving.

Just a side note; my grandfather was a big fan of a local Paris, ME golf course that had seven holes. The plan was that you would just play two of the holes twice. I love Yankees!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Fall Clean-up

Fall clean-up is a bummer. When you have a hubby with the back of a 96 year-old (but not the bank account) it is a serious bummer.

I have raked, mowed, weeded, fertilized (organic of course), trimmed back the perennials, brought in the umbrella, unhooked the hoses, picked-up too many black walnuts, mulched the new shrubs and emptied the rain barrel. Lots of work and lots of blisters.

Emptying the rain barrel before the hard frost really made me sad. It was completely full. There are people in Tennessee that only have water for fours hours each night. That's it. I have lots of extra water. I fell incredibly guilty just dumping my water on the lawn when it is clearly already green and happy.

Away go the gardening gloves, fertilizer (organic of course), mucky sneakers, rakes and snipers.

Here is to 11 months without fall clean-up!

Saturday, November 3, 2007

I'm A Gruppie

There. I said it. I'm a gruppie.

I may have made the word up, but I can't be completely sure of that.

The word comes out of necessity. On the outside you may look at me and say "yuppie." When you get to know me you may say "granola." So I live between two worlds.

My "yuppie" friends were grossed-out when they heard I was cloth diapering my babies. They were surprised to hear that I was firmly against male and female circumcision. They were puzzled to hear that I made my own cleaning products.

My "granola" friends balked at my love for high heals and cute purses. They shrugged at my golf hobby. They never understood my trendy clothes.

Just about everyone would stare in shock when I wore my babies in their tight slings while teetering in my 4 inch healed boots.

So here I am. Caught in the middle.

What is a gruppie like me to do?

There is a lightbulb stuck over my head

So there is this light bulb stuck over my head. It is a cute, squiggly little light bulb and I can't get it off of my mind. (Picture a cartoon character, in jeans and a v-neck sweater looking very cute, with an idea)

My little brother, who has been much taller than me for some time, brought home his first CFL in middle school. My mom stuck it in the basement in one of those sockets with a pull chain. That was maybe 1990. As of last weekend, my last visit the the old homestead, it is still working great. Amazing huh?

So what happens when those little Compact Florescent Light bulbs burn out and stop working?

My first CFL burned out a few weeks ago. Ever since then, it has been on my mind....

So I called the town highway department. They had no idea what I was talking about. They told me to take the CFL back to the store. I had to calmly explain to the nice man that light bulbs do in fact burn out and it really wasn't anyone's fault. He said he would call me back.

The friendly man did in fact call me back and left a message....To tell me that I would have to drive 45 minutes in each direction on my Saturday afternoon to safely dispose of my light bulb.


Is the energy I saved from that one little light bulb greater than the emissions my station wagon would be spewing over the hour and a half of highway driving? I am still fuming over that one.

Over the next few hours I got mad and annoyed and then realized that this problem is far greater than just mine. Over the next few years thousands of CFLs will be burning out all over Connecticut and the world. Are those people going to drive an hour and a half to safely dispose of their bulb? NO!

I have always promised myself that I would allow myself to complain only once about a problem that I have not tried to fix. My one rant was up, so now I had to find a solution. Brownies.

Not the kind you eat, but the kind you brainwash. Specifically my daughter's Brownie troop. While all of the other troops are busy apple picking and selling cookies I am methodically turning my daughter's troop of girls into independent environmental activists. I have personally witnessed two of my Brownies chasing down a seven year-old in the school cafeteria for not recycling her drink container. Got to love that!

Anyway, I gave the town a call back and explained the situation and what would happen to our own little Pleasentville if every house began tossing mercury-laden CFLs into the trash. I proposed that my daughter's Brownie troop would create collection bins to be placed in the town hall, library, community center or wherever that town wanted them to be placed. No response. No call back.

I'm wondering what my next step should be. A town meeting perhaps? That sounds completely intimidating. As for now I plan on creating flyers for the library letting people know how not to dispose of Compact Fluorescent Light bulbs. Hubby thinks I'm crazy...again.