I kinda hate Earth Day. There, I said it. It’s not that I hate the idea of Earth Day, it’s just that I feel like lately it’s turned into Valentine’s Day-you know, a made up holiday that puts undue pressure on people. Again, I’m not saying making people aware of our imprint here on Earth is undue pressure, but to me Earth Day is not entirely that anymore.
I’m not sure I felt this way before I was a parent. But now as a mom I feel like everyone is watching me to see what I do today. What Earth crafts or Earth lessons will come out of my house? Will I take the kids to the library for Earth books? Will we watch the incessant Nick or Disney shows that have Earth themes? Will we visit a recycling plant?
The simple answer to all of this business is…no.
Why, because we are Earth aware and Earth conscious every day.
This morning I snapped. The Girl was talking about bringing something “Earth Day” to school.(Don’t you love how that happens at BREAKFAST and not oh, say, the night before?!?!) She reached for this pitiful little pot o’ grass from Target that the Easter Bunny put in her basket. It was quite an impressive dollar bin pot o’ grass but I didn’t really understand the Earth Day aspect. So I got a wee bit cranky and rattled off about a million things she could stand up in front of her class and teach them about what we do.
“Show them your reusable sandwich and snack bag and water bottle. Than talk about all the junk you are keeping out of the landfills every day with your lunch supplies.”
“Bring in a cloth diaper.”
“Yeah, but mom you couldn’t stand washing them anymore when we moved so now they’re dust rags.”
Sheepishly I replied, “Uh, yeah maybe not the best idea. BUT tell them about the tomato plants we just got and how we were researching composters the other day. Tell them about our outrageously expensive light bulbs that do eventually burn out and need a Hazmat suit to dispose of! Tell them about how I rinse every glass and plastic particle and break down and fold every single solitary piece of cardboard in this house to the point that your father might leave me for all the recycling I make him lug outside.” (OK, maybe I left that last part out.)
On and on it went for a few minutes, with them chiming in about how we walk everywhere (there was some groaning here) and we turn off lights and water when we brush and everything else they could think of that they do. When I came out of my self-righteous stupor I focused my eyes again and realized the look on my kids’ faces was pure shock and awe. They have NO IDEA how much we do around here. Let me correct, they know what we do, they are not sure why. We have ingrained in them an Earth conscious mentality so well that it is, well…subconscious.
So I guess Earth Day was good for something-it made me teach my kids how Earthy we are. And I didn’t have to buy a thing or do a single stinkin‘ craft project.
**I get nothing for telling you about these green products. I just love them that much. And there just might be an E.D. sale on snack bags. But you didn’t hear it here. I’m very anti-earth day commercialism.;)
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