Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Change The World Wednesday (#CTWW) - Indoor plants

Welcome to Change The World Wednesday (#CTWW)!

Wondering how to live greener? You've come to the right place. Each week we challenge ourselves to try a new task ... or "amp up" something we're already doing. We raise our awareness, learn from each other and develop Eco-friendly skills which will improve our lives and protect our planet. Doing so together gives us power ... the power to Change The World!

If this is your first visit, please click HERE for information and a complete list of all the challenges we've taken on so far.

This post contains great information and I encourage you to read through it at your leisure ... however, if you are short on time, you might find the following quick links helpful:

Last week we jumped right into our month of clean air by asking that everyone stop smoking. I don't smoke, have never smoked, and don't allow smoking in my home. So I took on the second half of the challenge and looked through my home for possible pollutants. We use natural cleaners, avoid air fresheners, have no carpet, and use a cloth shower curtain. The one area which has concerned me is that our temporary home is equipped with a kerosene heater. It is possibly the dirtiest heater I've ever used. It emits a fine dust throughout our home which we breathe. Not good! Luckily, with the nicer weather, we aren't using it any longer and our new home will have radiant heat.

The Honor Society are those people who help us spread the "green" word by writing an article about our challenges and/or leaving pertinent comments.

Andie's comment shows the importance of this challenge. She said, "THANK YOU for this post. I am 60 and grew up on the east coast with a chain-smoking mother. It was bad at home, but worse confined in a car with all the windows rolled up. I was constantly ill with URIs—while in high school, my doctor believed I was a smoker though I never smoked and hated it. They had no clue about second-hand smoke in 1972. Once I moved out, I started to get better, but I have always had diminished lung capacity because of it. Even at the peak of fitness (speed walked 3+ miles a day, ideal wight, etc.) my lung capacity was not great. Today, it's not good at all; I worry about getting COPD. Second-hand smoke is damaging to everyone around. I am glad I live in a non-smoking city—Seattle. I have to do all I can to restrain myself from accosting people when I see them smoking in a car with children in it! We cannot spread this word enough!"

Morag accepted the challenge and offers several quests to help. Here are her comments: "Stopping smoking is sooo difficult (so difficult we made it into a 6 part quest!) but you can do it. It is possible to quit and stay being a non-smoker. If you are going to do the alternative #ctww challenge we have some possible quests you can do here: choose one or more off that list or if you want to up the anti challenge yourself to complete the World Changing Me Fresh Air Collection: 6 quests, one goal = fresh air :) " By the way, you'll find the "no smoking" quests here:

Marla joined us and shared this: "Smoking is something that I hate. First I am very allergic to cigarettes and reaction immediately to them but I also hate the idea that they not only affect the person smoking health but all those around you. I had a brother-in-law who died very young because smoking destroyed his lungs or he would probably be alive today. Smoking is so bad for children. I just encourage any one who smokes to please stop for your own sake and all those around you. As far as other changes I never use commercial air fresheners. I use baking soda with essential oils to purify odors. Don't have carpet any more in my house just a few rugs in front of doors to catch dirt. Most of my cleaners are DIY homemade from baking soda, peroxide, vinegar, orange peels. I never send anything to the dry cleaner. If I can't wash it I don't buy it. It a way of life for me because having MCS (Multiple Chemical Sensitivities) you learn fast as to what has toxic chemicals in it and you change everything around you as much as possible. Live healthy. Live green!"

Alicia stopped by and said this: "I was reading not to long ago that the air quality in homes a lot of times is worse that the the air quality outside! This is mostly from the products we use inside our homes and the chemicals we bring in on the bottoms of our shoes. One awesome thing to do is to take your shoes off before coming inside or leave them right inside the door. Pretty much get rid of anything that has fragrance listed in the ingredients and use products that contain essential oils instead.Web MD says that air fresheners emit 20 different VOC's including several that are listed as hazardous under U.S. federal laws! Lemons, soda, and vinegar are awesome cleaners and leave a fresh natural scent behind. It is not as hard as you might think to pretty much eliminate harmful chemicals from your home and improve your air quality DRAMATICALLY!! Just takes a little research and label reading."

The #CTWW Gang are those folks who tweet our challenges using the hashtag #CTWW. If you're a Twitter member, I recommend following them ... they share great things. Let's meet them:

@aussiemoose @authors_secret @beatepdx
@collegegogreen @debsmikdav1 @dehelen
@familyfocusblog @freshcleanersaz @garioncoyote
@greenageworld @greengympenge @greenqueenofmod
@gronavra @groovygreenlivi @herbgir1972
@justanotherhat @kaitlingarder @laalicia
@lady_bren @ladyjcmuses @london_020
@mamasmoney @marbaird @marjoriemcatee
@mdgblogger @mimibarbour @moha_doha
@momfindsout @msmoreau_guid @nolafusion
@rckweddings @realityarts @ronchatterjee7
@rulesofgreen @snickerdoo2 @spafloating
@spookymrsgreen @sustyq @taralain
@thefreckledrose @theworld4realz @tiffanywashko
@timhemlin @wary12 @wencdj
@wimpyvegetarian @worldchangingme

My Final Thoughts:

Smoking is polluting. There's no way to get around it ... no justification ... plain and simple, it's pollution! It hurts everyone. Stopping can be tough but if we are truly concerned about our environment, then we need to stop polluting.

Thanks, everyone!

This Week's Challenge:

May's theme is: Clean Air

House plants purify air.
Aloe Vera helps remove
formaldehyde from indoor air
All plants help purify our air. Some, however, are super stars!

According to NASA's research, the Areca Palm Tree is the best air purifying plant. Boston Ferns remove formaldehyde, and English Ivy removes air-based mold. Chrysanthemums remove benzene, a harmful VOC compound.

Here's your challenge ...

This week, add one house plant to your living space. Try a Peace Lily, Rubber Plant, or Palm. Perhaps a spider plant or "Mother-In Law's Tongue". Any plant will improve indoor air quality so choose your favorite and breathe easy!

Are you ready to clean up your indoor air? I know that you are!

Until next time ...