Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Making a Difference With Your Clothing

Almost a year to the day ago I posted about fast fashion and consumption and didn't touch on it too much for the rest of the year. Time to check in and revive this topic. While the major onus is on governments and corporations to make huge changes to battle climate change, individually we can make little changes that add up to make a big difference for the Earth. With one of leading contributors of pollution being the fashion industry, the easiest way anyone can start caring for the Earth is by reexamining their fashion choices. Keep reading on to figure out how your wardrobe can help the Earth.

Find Out the Current Impact You’re Making
Some people are motivated by keeping track of things and measuring changes. You? Not really me, but it's good to figure out the current carbon footprint you’re making with your fashion choices. Look into trying an online fashion footprint calculator in order to find out how much your spending habits and clothing choices are contributing to climate change. Knowing where you’re starting off will make it much easier to figure out how much of a difference you’re actually making once you start being more mindful. Do you rent clothes for special events? How often are you buying fast fashion? Do you donate all unused clothing items? Let's get down into it. 

Donate or Sell Your Unwanted Clothing
Once you’ve gone through your entire closet, you’ll want to divide your entire wardrobe into keep or donate piles. If you have trouble deciphering what you want to keep versus what you want to donate, ask yourself the following questions: does this still fit me? When is the last time I’ve worn this? Does this accurately reflect my style? Answering one or all of those questions will help determine if you should actually keep your item versus getting rid of it. If it’s the latter, offer it to a friend or look into donating to a local organization. If neither of those will work, call Vietnam Vets for a pickup. If you have higher quality in good shape clothing from brands such as Madewell, Free People, Lululemon, etc. that you’re willing to get rid of, sell your gently used clothes online. Thred Up is super easy, you just pack them up and send them off. Donating or selling your clothing will reduce your carbon footprint, help eliminate clothes from entering landfills and give your clothes the second life they deserve. Not having a bunch of crap to get rid of in the first place is the most desirable, but after that, finding a second life for your stuff is the next best thing you can do.

Create a Minimalist Wardrobe
So much of our closet is often filled with clothes we never wear or have only worn once or twice. In order to reduce your footprint, cut down your wardrobe to only include the necessary pieces. Some people can jam with having 10 to 20 essential pieces in a capsule wardrobe, making their wardrobe a lot lighter and working to create variety with what they have. If that interests you, you can check out following a guide to creating a minimalist wardrobe to help prevent you from buying extra clothing and downsize your carbon footprint.  You can check out Steph's spring and summer capsule wardrobe here to get a better idea about that. 

Shop Eco-Friendly
Of course there will be times where you’ll want to add new styles to your closet, so let's talk shopping in an eco-friendly way. This can be by shopping secondhand online or by going to your local thrift and/or vintage shops. I've had great luck on Poshmark and Thred Up. Another way is by looking into ethical and sustainably made fashion. Shopping sustainably means supporting companies that have less water usage in the creation of clothes, sustainable packaging, the use of recycled materials and low impact dyes in the clothing.

Of course, the very best way to reduce your carbon footprint when it comes to your clothes is to wear them until they die then use them in another way. Very seriously, the rate at which many people buy new clothes is mind blowing when you think about how your grandparents got by with their wardrobe. Over the last year I have bought less than I ever have, and what I have bought I was very picky about. I used to buy a bunch of shit - $5 t-shirt here, $15 dress there, get rid of them at will, whatever. That shit added up. I can see in my mind the exact items of clothing I bought last year because they were all bought with intent and there were much less of them than there have ever been been before. I only bought one item that was a straight wish add (not filling a hole I had in my wardrobe). It feels good to stay in line with what I set out to do. It's helped me feel less cluttered and wasteful and I haven't felt deprived.

Are you trying to cut down on fast fashion and be more mindful with your carbon footprint in regards to clothes?

Monday, February 17, 2020

TWTW - the one that is not three day for me

Friday I have seldom been so happy to see a week end. I moved the email icon on my phone out of the home bar on the bottom and onto page three for the weekend and it was fucking glorious. While MFD was making dinner I did my in-home walk. He made steaks and asparagus and fries in the air fryer and we zoned out on the couches with Parks & Rec and me with a book. 
Saturday was leisure-tastic. I finished a book, read an entire other one, and started a third. I painted my nails (Zoya Annie and Charla) and did a bentonite clay mask, we did a family walk on the trail near our house with me splitting off early to bring the old dogs home, and I did a super simple dinner of salad, corn bread, and chicken drums in the air fryer. 
Sunday My mom came over for a visit bearing bagels and her delicious baked goods. MFD and Vincent went to Quaker meeting and I did an in-home walk and showered. What else what else. Normal sheet changing and towel washing and putting the house in order. I should have done laundry but I argued with people I don't know online about why Bloomberg is so fucking terrible instead. After years of saying we were going to we finally bought a new sectional for the shore (no ottoman, but the sectional is the ottoman color) and went to dinner at Margaritas since it was right across from there. The service was great but the food was fucking terrible, we had immediate regrets/should have gone elsewhere. I finished reading Just Mercy and whew. 
Weekly food prep: Breakfast is savory oatmeal and a banana. Lunches are salads with a hard boiled egg side car. Snacks are baby carrots. Dinner is spaghetti with veggie meat sauce from the freezer, garlic bread to use up bread from last week, and side salad - MFD is making that Monday night. I'll probably do sheet pan veggies and smoked sausage mid-week. That's one of the only meals I am cool with making the day of during the week. So no pics because the only things I made were hard boiled eggs and oatmeal and cut up some stuff for salads. Oh I lied. Here are some tomatoes. Bye.

Is this just a weekend and books and Thursday Thoughts blog anymore? In this season of life, seems like it. I am not off today, but I do feel more rested than I have in a while.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Thursday Thoughts - I’ll take you down the only road I've ever been down

1. What life has looked like lately. I've been working a lot and not doing much else. I'm tired down into my bones and deep into my brain.

2. Thanks for joining us or checking out Show Us Your Books on Tuesday. Gus is approaching 15. I have read over 1,000 books sitting next to this dog. It's wild when you think in terms of stuff like that.

3. I've been doing my best to get eight hours of sleep and I've kept up with walking at least a mile a day and doing my face routine at night - the latter being two self care pieces that I loathe doing but self care is not always about cool and fun things. It's about things that actually maintain yourself. I've been keeping up with no buy too outside of two books in the past week. Yikes. I have excuses but they're like assholes, everyone has them and they stink.

4. What I got from the library this week.

5. Things contributing to my exhaustion outside of deadlines and all the things that come with them:

6. It's quite a conundrum when you fuck up and buy the wrong item and you hate coconut but hate food waste more.

7. This makes my black heart sing.

8. Happy Galentine's Day, friends. I'd be absolutely nowhere without my girlfriends.

9. Reminder:

10. Ecards: 

I can't believe I had 10 items this week. 

What appears after the hyphen in Thursday Thoughts is a song lyric to whatever I'm listening to when I start to write the post. This week is Bitter Sweet Symphony by The Verve

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Show Us Your Books February 2020

I'm pulling this together on Sunday and I'd rather be reading the book I'm reading right now (Long Bright River). Lots of kindle books this month because I had to get through a lot of Netgalley reads, other than that hi how are you let's talk about what we've read over the last month, okay? 

Here's what I've been reading since the last linkup.
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Engrossing Reads

Long Bright River by Liz Moore - A contemporary book set in Philly, a mystery with female leads, the opioid crisis which is an every day conversation in our house, and the author uses the title of the book in the first 40 pages? How could I not love this. I was sucked in and couldn't put it down. This is my favorite read of the year so far. Thanks to Heather for the recommendation!  I actually bought it because I was #366 on the library hold list and ain't nobody got time for that.   Hard cover, own     buy

Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid - The second book one a row set in Philly and written by a woman. This book flew by - good writing and pace and managed to retain a certain lightness even through its heavy topics: race, class, ambition, intention vs impact. People are not liking the end but it fits the book and main character if taken in as a whole. Hardcover, own   buy 
Valentine by Elizabeth Wetmore -  I was desperate to get my hands on this book. It’s powerful and a lot to swallow: what women deal with in this world, have always dealt with from men and patriarchal society and yes, other women; and the avenues they take to exist without being crushed, the dark humor they bring, the hope that survives despite the big and small cuts men don’t feel, will never feel. Set against a desolate Odessa, TX, background, the writing is gorgeous and the story telling makes it feel far from a debut novel. Books like these are important, and I know saying that automatically makes some people not want to read them or some people want to read and shit on them, but I'm saying it anyway. If you are not a fan of books about hard things or unhappy endings or nuanced writing in which you can hate the situation or a character but still admire the writing and see what the author is doing, this book is not for you. Also, I pre-ordered a copy of this book even though I already read it which is not something I typically do because I think its cover fits it so perfectly and I think it's important to support books like this from debut authors and pre-order is the best way to do that. Netgalley, free ARC, book comes out March 31.     pre-order

A Cold Trail (Tracy Crosswhite #7) by Robert Dugoni - Another solid Tracy read, story-wise. I like seeing Dugoni address working mothers/gender differentials of working parents as well. Can't wait for the next in the series already. Free copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

Passed the Time Just Fine

The Museum of Desire (Alex Delaware #35) by Jonathan Kellerman - I cannot believe I've read 35 books in this series, I think it's the longest I've read. It's definitely surpassed the Kinsey Milhone alphabet books. If you are familiar with this crew, it's standard fare which at this point is sort of like pulling your favorite blanket over yourself and sometimes you find a piece of delicious candy in it and sometimes you find it needs to be washed. Netgalley free ARC

The Scholar (Cormac Reilly #2) by Dervla McTiernan - Solid second effort in this series. It's not setting the world on fire but I'll read more. Philly library paperback

A Good Neighborhood by Therese Ann Fowler - I have complicated feelings on this book. To start with the simplest item, there's a Greek chorus narrator aspect that I like that many people will not. The writing was good but the build up to action was long. There was also too much in here: racial profiling, frivolous lawsuits, hints of pedophilia...the racial profiling in this neighborhood would have been more than enough. And speaking of that...I could see trouble coming a mile away, and the detached tone of literally the entire book in the aftermath was hard to decipher - was that purposeful, meant to mimic the neighborhood, or was that a white author writing about an issue they can never truly understand? Free copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

Behind Every Lie by Christina McDonald - Everything including the kitchen sink can be found in this book and I found myself saying huh, now this quite a few times. Not always in a good way. It was a wild ride, that’s for sure. Free copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

Truly Devious #1 by Maureen Johnson - I like books about criminals and crime, but this book showed me that I don't have a lot of interest in the whys behind why people like criminals and crime LOL. I thought it was clever and I liked the back and forth in time but when I enjoy YA books there's a certain element to them that was missing in this one and I can't exactly iterate what that is.  Philly library hardcover

The Misfortunes of Family by Meg Little Reilly - I liked reading about the Bright family and enjoyed the writing, but the end POV was pretty powerful and made me think about what that would have been like interspersed through the story. Solid read, I'll read more by Meg Little Reilly. Free copy from Netgalley  in exchange for an honest review

All this Could be Yours by Jami Attenberg - Family dysfunction junction what's your function. There's eight loads of shit in this book, keep peeling back the layers. Philly library hardcover

Finding Claire Fletcher (Claire Fletcher #1) by Lisa Regan - I love Regan's Josie Quinn series, so I thought I'd try another by her. This was quite good while simultaneously being hard to read because of the subject matter. Kindle e-book

Not Worth It


Did Not Finish

This Bright River by Patrick Somerville - A classic case of the carpet doesn't match the drapes in which case the carpet is the interior and the drapes is the cover, which is the reason I plucked it off the shelf. Philly library hardcover

What have you been reading? 

Linkup Guidelines:
This link up is the second Tuesday of every month. The next linkup is Tuesday, March 10, 2020
1. Visit and comment with both of your hosts, Jana & me, and check in with as many in our reading circle as you can - give some love to the later linker uppers! 
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Such a Fun Age by Kiley ReidSuch a Fun Age by Kiley Reid

Monday, February 10, 2020

TWTW - that February flow

Friday I worked from home and switched it up a little. Instead of starting work at 7, I read for a bit and painted my nails (Zoya Madeline). Then I took a break to meet Michelle for lunch at Maggie's, dropped a box off at the post office and returned library books, and picked up a few groceries. Around five I made italian wedding soup for dinner, and dip three and four of the year (dips are being saved on an instagram highlight at the top of my profile with either where I got the recipe or what it is-some of them will make their way here but that’s where they are for now), worked from about 7:30-10 in the basement, and did a zillion loads of laundry (including the couch covers) while MFD hosted a debate party upstairs. I went to bed around midnight. Flexible work schedule rocks. 
Saturday was a leisurely start. I put laundry away, did my walk, then spent much of the day finishing a book and doing some organizing. We went to Dad & Carol's for family dinner and looked through a bunch of old photos and stuff from my Grandmom & Pop, which I love doing. I took Grandmom's dictionary home with me. I started a new book and had to force myself to put it down and go to sleep at midnight, it was so good. 
Sunday I did the normal morning routine of changing/washing sheets, then set up blogs, did my walk, and did some food prep. I meant to take the best friend dogs for a walk, finish working on my basement shelves, make chicken salad, and run to the grocery store in the afternoon but I cancelled life and finished Long Bright River and I loved it. I did manage to get dinner made with MFD pitching in on the mashed potatoes so that was fine. I had to bring my book along to get dinner going though.
Sunday night I started another book and half watched the Oscars. 

Weekly food prep: Breakfast is scrambled eggs topped with broccoli. Snacks are bananas and baby carrots. Dinner is pork and sauerkraut with mashed potatoes and brussels and salad or chicken salad (must make tomorrow) on Dave's killer bread. Lunches are leftovers of everything. I made Gus's super high priced ground beef with organ meat because he can't process it raw, which I was planning on switching him to.

Show Us Your Books is tomorrow! See you back here for that. 

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