Welcome to our weekly challenges ... if this is your first visit, please click HERE for information and a list of all challenges.
Last week our challenge was to go "paperless" and pay our bills electronically. So, how did it go for you? Here's an interesting fact: "In one year, by switching from paper to electronic billing, statements and payments, the average American household would save 6.6 pounds of paper." ... PayItGreen for Consumers. Now imagine how many households there are in the world. That's a lot of paper! Making the switch to online billing is another example of a small action having a huge impact.
Let's see how our Honor Society did:
Kira already pays bills online. She mentioned that paying bills reduces stress because one can schedule a payment ahead of time and not have to worry about getting it in the mailbox. Nice to have you back, Kira ... and thanks for accepting the last couple of challenges, as well. We look forward to hearing how those went for you!
Brian is paying about 80% of his bills online and would be paying 100% if he were given the option. He mentioned that paying bills online helps with budgeting because one can track payments.
Maurie Kirschner stopped in. She also pays bills online and says that it reduces the amount of "stuff" in her home. By the way, Maurie ... were you able to get the post office to stop putting mailers in your mailbox? If so, we'd love to hear about it!
Joe Todd took the challenge. He recently went to an art exhibit about "cut paper" and plans to post about it soon. Looking forward to that, Joe!
EcoGrrl pays her bills online and shared that some places even offer a discount for doing so. She also had great advice for those paper bills, or any mail, that we can't get rid of ... recycle them ... even the plastic magazine wrappers. Great advice EcoGrrl! By the way ... EcoGrrl has been a long-time, consistent participant in our challenges and I'd like to encourage all of you to drop by her site and check it out ... it is eclectic, interesting and always heart-felt.
Mrs. Green wrote an excellent article on the Pros and Cons of Paperless Billing. I was particularly interested in the "cons" because, as Mrs. Green points out, electronic billing isn't without it's problems. I hope you'll check out her interesting article.
Heather took the challenge and wrote this wonderful article: Find News Online or Swap Paper Editorials. She also said that her mother has converted to electronic billing and loves the ease, money savings and tree savings. Thanks to both you, Heather, and your mom!
Pondering4cat stopped by. Regarding a previous challenge where we sent e-greetings out, Pondering Cat offered another site: Ojolie eCards. Thanks, Pondering Cat!
Ann came by. She'll be posting her Save the World Wednesday/Think Green Thursday article soon ... this week's post will be about eating parts of the pumpkin plant ... that ought to be very interesting!
Ange dropped in and shared that, in France, some of her bills arrive through email but companies will typically also send the bill through "snail mail". While France may not be up to speed with electronic billing, they do offer direct debit. Just a reminder ... on a previous challenge Ange offered to trade French magazines for ones you might have sitting around ... well, that offer remains open so get those magazines out and contact Ange through her blog.
Great job, everyone! I've Stumbled and Tweeted your articles! If you are a member of any social networks, please pass the word about our Eco-friendly challenges!
Okay ... last week I promised to move on to something other than saving paper. This week's challenge was suggested by Marcy, from Cooking Rut, who said "I grew up with parents who were antique dealers. Most (not all, but most) of the furniture we had was purchased at auctions. Basically, we had a house full of antiques. Even sofas were purchased used. If you think about it ... buying antiques (or purchasing used furniture) is very green. You can buy lots of household items at antique stores -- glassware, dishes, old tools, hardware, old sinks/bathtubs, etc." So here's the challenge:
This week consider antique stores for household purchases. If you've never been in an antique store, visit one to see what items they offer. If you need a couch, table, tools, dishes, etc., check out an antique store before buying new.
If you don't have an antique store in your area, don't need to buy anything this week, or find antique stores too costly, write a post about all the various resources for finding previously-owned items.
Doesn't this sound like fun? A challenge to go antiquing!
That's it for this week!
WE'RE CHANGING THE WORLD ... ONE CHALLENGE AT A TIME!