Thursday, November 14, 2013

Greening Our Cleaning

Just start.  Make a wiser choice.  Little changes.  Inspiring and motivational words heard at last night's event.  The Dracut Garden Club had a fun and enlightening meeting as we listened to guest speaker, Kristi Marsh, founder of Choose Wiser, and author of Little Changes:  Tales of a Reluctant Home Eco-momics Pioneer.  Kristi took us on a roller coaster ride of emotions as she told her story:  a busy stay-at-home-mom of three young children who suddenly finds herself battling breast cancer, the research she did while she was recovering, and the result of her findings-- choosing wiser.

An audible gasp was heard from the audience when she told us of the American Cancer Society's statistics:  

1 in 3 women will develop cancer in her lifetime

1 in 2 men will develop cancer in his lifetime

Kristi Marsh had no family history of breast cancer.  There are many reasons why one may develop cancer, and environmental exposure to carcinogens in our air, food, and many products we use, is certainly one of them.  When we expose ourselves to chemicals in large or small amounts, and in various types of products, we are creating a "toxic stew" as Kristi refers to it in her book.  "[Consisting of] repeated, cumulative, and interacting exposures."

Kristi and her organization encourage us to start making changes- no matter how small- and wiser choices when it comes to our cleaning products, personal care items, and the foods we consume.  She recommends choosing organic foods when possible, and personal care items that do not contain parabens, phthalates, or fragrance.  Many major retailers now sell items that are free of these harmful chemicals (e.g. Target, CVS,, & Look for household cleaners that are chlorine, ammonia, and fragrance-free as well.  Or better yet, make your own "green" cleaners-- you'll know exactly what's in them and you'll save money.  

After Kristi's inspiring presentation, we made 3 all-natural products to take home:  a household sink scrub, a window cleaner, and a (kind) weed killer.  These items were easy and fun to make plus they cost only pennies per jar of finished product.  We encourage you to try out these DIY recipes and see what you think!


For more information and inspiring content, please check out Choose Wiser, Women's Voices for the Earth, & Environmental Working Group (EWG).

Kristi Marsh sharing her journey with us

Simple & effective DIY cleaner ingredients:  baking soda, vinegar, castile soap & water

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