Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Change the World Wednesday - cleaning the air

This week's Change the World Wednesday Challenge hosted by Reduce Footprints is:

This week, stop smoking for at least one day (forever would be better) ... yep, 24 hours ... no smoking! It's hard but I know you can do it!

Or ...

If you are not a smoker, remove toxins in your home by cleaning (yep, dust is a toxin), opening windows (fresh air, sunshine and a rainy day actually help clean indoor air), adding a plant to your environment, etc.

Or ...

If you don't smoke and have already taken the above actions, please let us know about any other actions we can take to purify the air in our homes.

It's been awhile since I participated in Change the World Wednesday.  I think the daily challenges and then my life getting hectic for awhile caused me to just stay clear of my google reader for awhile.  I hope to be back though!   Let's hope this starts another long trend of me participating in CTWW.

I'm not a smoker, I never have been and never will (or so I tell myself).   So not smoking for 24 hours isn't a challenge for me.

We've been having some crazy weather here lately and we go from having the heat on to having the AC on. Ok, I wouldn't have turned on the AC but the husband did it because he was hot.  We've had a lot of days where it's been nice though.  A bit chilly to wear shorts outside but warm enough to have the heat off in the house.  We've been opening windows when we can.  In fact, they were open just last night.  Sometimes they are only open for a couple of hours before it's too cool and we have to close them but I do like to open them for a little bit.

I have 3  house plants in the kitchen and recently, in an effort to be a surban farmer, I've planted some lettuce and spinach seeds.  These are currently still in the house as it's too cold yet for outside.   In the last couple of weeks I've also added 4 tomato plants and a pepper plant to the inside garden.   I'm looking forward to putting them outside but until then, they sit on the floor in the kitchen in front of some big windows.

Since it doesn't appear that not smoking and adding a plant to the house was an issue, let's mention the third part of the challenge..doing something else to help purify the air.

While I can't say I don't do anything specific to purify it (although I'm looking forward to reading what others do so I can copy) I can tell you what I don't do.  I don't normally use air fresheners.   When I do, it's because Myla had an accident in her kennel and the smell is over powering.  I'll then spray something in that area to get the smell to go away.  

I don't use the glad plug in's or other similar products on the market. I just don't see how that can be healthy. There have to be chemicals in them that I would be putting into the air in my house.    Plus I don't think we need it.  Our house doesn't have a "bad" smell to it so I just don't see the point of them either.

I will admit that we burn candles, but in an effort to make that better for us I hope to find some soy ones when I'm in need of more.  At least I think it's soy that's better, it appears I need to do more research on this before I do anything.

pssst..when I went to Reduce Footprints to link my post I read the other comments and Eco Friendly Homemaking had a great suggestion.  She said that by removing your shoes before you step inside you can eliminate roughly 65% of the toxins that we pick up when out and about.  I believe I have read this before, or something similar, but forgot about it.  Husband and I do remove our shoes once we are in the house..but do walk around a bit. He walks only a couple of yards before removing his but I normally walk through the house to our bedroom to remove mine.  I'm going to try and remember to remove mine either right before I step into the laundry room or right after I do and then carry them to my closet to be put away. Right now I normally put my shoes on in the kitchen when I'm getting ready to head out the door and I'll try to do that in the laundry room from now on.  


  1. Hi! So glad you're "back"! :-) That's a great tip about the plugins ... I think a lot of people use them without a thought and I'm sure that they simply release toxins into the air. Regarding air fresheners ... I've had success with essential oils ... I put a drop or two on a lightbulb or put some on a cloth in the area or even soak a cotton ball and vacuum it up (it'll freshen the air as you vacuum). Yep ... soy candles are the ones that burn cleaner.


  2. I got a bit behind with the daily CTWW, too. Sadly, I'm not turning out to be much of a green thumb (seriously, how did I get aphids on inside herbs?), so I haven't gotten into planting trees. We try to minimize our use of electricity, since it's probably coal powered, and we don't use artificially fragranced things because of the cat. I have a feeling that the most effective things we could be doing to purify the air are petitioning the government to crack down on polluting industries and boycotting companies with poor environmental records. Must do more research...

  3. Small Footprints - It's good to be back! I was thinking essential oils might be the way to go..I'm going to have to get one that I like and play around with it. Thanks for confirming I was right in thinking soy candles were the way to go.

    NotEasytobegreen - I think you are right. Companies need to start doing something to minimize their carbon footprint. Until the government steps in and threatens fines, I'm not sure that's going to happen with a lot.