Blog: Making Green Work for Us

Going green ain't easy. On the fence or just not that into it (all the time)? You're not alone.

The largest sustainability event in the world is coming to LA. The Green Festival will be held downtown to show us a thing or two about living a greener lifestyle.

I'm no ambassador of green-- at least, not yet. Parts of my life are much greener than the rest of it. I'm a frequent Metro passenger and I ride a bicycle, but I still drive my car to the grocery store. You can say I'm greenest when it's most convenient for me, but I want to change that. In what different ways can we make green living work for all of us all of the time?

The festival hasn't started yet, but I've already begun thinking about my goals for sustainable living. Thanks to the Twitter world and #GreenFest chats, I picked up some tips for the event and hot topics to look forward to. I made a list of all the workshops and sessions to attend, and here are a few of my picks:

  • Easy Composting -- So there's a better bin for my banana peels and coffee grounds?
  • Gluten Free and Lovin' It -- I tried a gluten-free diet for two weeks, spent a chunk of my paycheck at Whole Foods and didn't enjoy the benefits much.
  • Fair Trade Fashion: The Agony and the Ecstasy -- Enough said.
  • Fighting Food Deserts -- I just found out my hometown is considered a food desert. I want to change this. Check the food desert locator.
  • Deep Relaxation of Yoga -- Anyone in LA could use a little bit of this. After all, we're the most stressed out city in America.


Everyone has the opportunity to attend for free by arriving via Metro or bicycle. Visit the official website for other event details or join the Twitter activities nightly this week for additional information, to meet other participants who can inspire you to be part of something new or to keep you in the loop even if you can't attend the event.

By now, most of us are semi-green and making some effort to control waste, conserve energy or reduce our carbon footprint. How about taking a step beyond eliminating plastic water bottles from our lunch bags? Are you ready to commit to more than just shortening your morning shower routine? I am.

I've said many times before to friends and family that I don't have a green thumb, but I'd like to grow something. I'd like to make a greater contribution to the green effort without having to spend a lot more money than I do now. That's really the only way green living could be a large presence in my every day routine. I'm taking small steps, too. That's what it takes.

For me, going green doesn't mean spending three times more for an organic, fair trade sweatshirt. Though it would be nice to support eco-friendly fashion and replace my closet, I'm not ready to make that switch. What I can do is limit myself from buying the same polyester-blend sweater in three colors at a big-box retailer and instead shop second-hand to slow down "fast fashion". Is this more practical? Yes. At the market, I can buy some organic, but not every item on the shelf. I can select organic strawberries and lettuce but skip the organic onions or pineapples because I won't be eating the peel. I can actually remember to bring my reusable bags to the grocery store to prevent trash like plastic bags from suffocating wildlife on the LA River. Gradual adjustments can help me make large strides later. What about you?

I'm looking forward to seeing Patch readers this weekend! Follow my tweets @ahealthydesign.

If you have any hacks for green living, please share.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.


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