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Welcome! Our blog focuses on environmental conservation, education, green living & wildlife rescue! We have put together links to resources, books and information to help you and your children learn more about these topics. Please feel free to comment on any items posted. Rate or review us on NetworkedBlogs (Facebook app) & Blogged. Tell your friends about us. Follow us on Twitter and other sites listed on this page. There's a banner & widget if you would like to include us on your webpage. All we ask is that you please keep any comments here G-rated for the kids!

NOTE: The birds & squirrel pictured at the top of this page and in the slideshow below are just a few that I have helped rehabilitate.
WARNING: Please do not touch a wild animal, especially the young ones. If you remove a baby from it's home, sometimes the mother is just off getting it's baby food and will be back.

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

New Project to start on

As I was driving to pick my daughter up the other day, I was driving by Walmart and Menards. As I looked at this empty field I couldn't believe it. All this trash, not just some items scattered around, I am talking about mass quantities of trash. I plan on this week (maybe tomorrow if it's nice out), taking some pictures and forming a letter to send to those businesses - demanding that something be done. Maybe these businesses (Kohls/SamsClub/Walmart/Menards) feel no obligation to pick this trash up because it isn't in their parking lot, but this trash is due to the business that they have brought in, and in my opinion IS their responsibility. I couldn't believe how disguisted I became over this, I just couldn't believe that it even got to that point.

Anyway, if anyone would like to let me know and as soon as I form the letter and get everything together, some signtures from concerned individuals may not be a bad thing to have. Let me know, and I can email you the letter. If you don't live in this area, maybe you can take a look along your local malls, etc. I know when I go to other towns I always look around to see my new surrounding and unfortunately I usually see a lot of trash and shopping bags that have been blown and are pressed against fence lines. Also, keep logging in and you can see exactly what I mean when I post some of those pictures of what some of these "superstores" are doing to our towns environmentally.

Great Books to Read

Just a couple of books I thought I would share:

Sharing the Joy of Nature by Joseph Cornell
This book contains great nature activities for children, there are lots of activities in this book that I think would be great to share with you children or young family members!

another book by this same author is:

Sharing Nature with Children
Same concepts in this book. One nice thing also about this book is it breaks down what age groups each activity is suitable for...

I found both of these books reasonably priced online. Great material for anyone who has or works with children!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Compost: the 3-2-1 List

Teachers sometimes use a summarizer technique called a 3-2-1 review. It's an organized bulleted list that helps students process what they've learned and show that they've gained from the activity or unit. For example:

While watching the video, fill in the following.

  • 3 things you already knew
  • 2 new facts
  • 1 fact or concept that surprised you
New Year Goals

  • 3 positive habits I will keep up
  • 2 events I'm looking forward to
  • 1 goal or change for the new year
I can use the same 3-2-1 techique to summarize my composting progress.

3 items that decomposed completely: no sign of them at all!
coffee filters with coffee grounds
banana peels
waxed paper

2 items that did not decompose: I should leave these out from now on.
Dental floss. Don't laugh; it's waxy, contains food residue, it makes sense that it would decompose! But it didn't.
Pine litter from the bunny box. The small dry pieces partially degraded, while the wet one are gone for good. If I left the bin for another year, just to finish decomposing, I think the used litter would completely fade into the soil. Maybe when I get that second compost bin...

1 goal: another item to add to the compost pile, one more thing to keep out of the garbage can and landfill
Non-recyclable paper and cardboard. Examples: the cardboard circles from pizzas, food boxes containing crumbs or soiled with food residue, and the like. I've started ripping these into long strips and soaking them (in rain barrel water, of course) before adding the paper to the compost.
There you have it: my 3-2-1 review, a summary of the pile I just spread on the garden soil. The resulting assessment will be a long time coming: to fully evaluate the success of this year's bin, I'll need to wait until next spring, when the latest pile of compost (you guessed it) happens.

Hi, I'm Daisy, and I'm a newcomer to Green Spot-On. This post was first aired on Compost Happens, my main blog. I believe Earth Day is Every Day, and I'm always glad to find kindred spirits.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Happy Earth Day!!

Earth Day 2009

I am happy you could join us here at GreenSpot-On! A lot of things have been going on for the last week in West Michigan and other places in the United States to celebrate Earth Day and to educate people about helping make our planet better for our descendants.

I took my family to our local Zoo’s “Party for the Planet” and we had a great time! Not only did we get to enjoy the animals, but we were able to receive information on various conservation methods, educational information and even talk to vendors that had energy saving products. My sons and niece were able to participate in various activities, including: plant sunflowers in a cup, plant a tree that we could plant for a small donation, make hats out of scrap materials and more! If you ever get a chance to go to one of these events, you should. It is a wonderful family activity that can be an educational experience for you and your children!

Let’s face it… We live in a throw away society, but it doesn’t have to be. Some people say they do not have time or the motivation to recycle. Even the busiest people on earth can find time to do their part for the environment and wildlife. If you are one of those people, my advice to you is to start small.

New Years Resolutions made by many of us have to do with weight, money, personal lives and family.

Why not make an Earth Day Resolution instead?

Challenge yourself to find ways to reduce waste in your household or neighborhood. There are many ways you can do this. Such as:

1. Take the extra few minutes to sort & clean your recyclables. See if your city has a recycling pick-up program. Some cities offer this service for free. If your city doesn’t have a program that picks up the recycling at your home, find a recycling center in your area and just take your recyclables in every so often. You can save A LOT of money by recycling. I have personal experience in this. Instead of needing a larger trash can or trash service, I was able to opt for a smaller container which has saved my family money. All because I take the extra time to recycle our glass, plastic and papers/boxes.

2. Get frustrated at the amount of trash blowing down your street or into your lawn? Do you exercise or want to start? Go for walks with a bag and some gloves. You can even have your children help. While getting some great exercise, you could pick up the trash on your street and recycle what you can. Put it in with your trash (You could set a limit of 1 grocery bag full of trash a week so you aren’t filling your trash totally up). I have done this before and not only does it clean your neighborhood up a bit, but it will eliminate the amount of trash that blows into your yard. You could even chat with your neighbors and organize a larger scale cleanup of your street (this could greatly help your elderly neighbors too).

3. Reuse. Use second-hand sources for clothing, items you need and more! Find a local Freecycle online at There you can find items that other people are cleaning out of their garages or houses that don’t want them to go to landfills. Some things I have seen offered: Scrap Lumber, appliances, clothing, books, furniture and even electronics.

4. Maintain your home and yard which can save you in energy costs, make your neighborhood a greener space and stop erosion. Even small repairs or changes can make a big difference. It doesn’t have to cost you big money either. Find a local on-line group, or start one on Yahoo Groups that can make a flower/plant exchange or even offer them for free. There is one in my area that constantly has people posting free flowers and plants or even seeds (If you live in West Michigan, contact me for the link).

5. Donate time to a local environmental group or items for animal rescue shelters.

6. Spay and Neuter your pets!

7. Adopt pets from your local humane society or animal shelter!

These are very simple ways to get started and do your part to keep things out of landfills when they could be reused or recycled and to help wildlife and domesticated animals thrive and find homes.

Question for all of you:
After reading this, do you plan to make an Earth Day Resolution? In what way are you going to help our planet if you have not already? Those of you already doing your part, what new things are you going to try?

Any tips for people or comments you would like to make is encouraged. Please do leave a comment!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Looking for Additional Authors

GreenSpot-On would like to find a couple more Authors or Guest Bloggers. We are trying to make this a collective effort.

Topics will be limited to Environmental & Wildlife Conservation/Education, Green Living and categories that lie within that range.

We are looking for the following:

  1. People who are interested in being a part of a collective effort on educating the public on these subjects areas.
  2. Who are passionate about one or more of these subjects.
  3. Who work well with others.
  4. Can keep their work G-Rated (Remember the kids).
  5. Can cite sources (With links if there are any sources used) for your writing.

Please leave a comment below if you are interested and leave a way for us to contact you.

Monday, April 13, 2009

The Future Is Looking Windy

I found this article on the AP news today about states that have wind power technology. It gave some interesting and encouraging numbers.

U.S. wind farms, with a combined capacity of 25,300 megawatts at the end of last year, should be able to generate some 73 billion kilowatt hours of power in 2009, enough to serve nearly 7 million homes, the association said. The association estimates that 10 new manufacturing facilities started up in 2008, while 17 were expanded and 30 new plants were announced.

Note that Michigan was included in the article (Yay Michigan)!

The association estimates that 10 new manufacturing facilities started up in 2008, while 17 were expanded and 30 new plants were announced.
Indiana added its first utility-scale wind project. Michigan, Utah, New Hampshire and Wisconsin grew at the fastest clip.
This is encouraging that our power companies are going into this field. Though I think we can do better than this!

Though I would like to say GOOD JOB TEXAS AND IOWA!


Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Party For The Planet @ John Ball Zoo - Grand Rapids, MI

We're having a PARTY and YOU ARE INVITED!!!

SATURDAY - APRIL 18 - 10:00am-3:00pm

Celebrate our world's resources at this huge Earth Day event!

- Get cool stuff to take home!
- Learn simple ways to conserve & preserve!
- Play a game!
- Try a science experiment!
- And....the ANIMALS!

Over thirty West. Michigan organizations will be attending PARTY FOR THE PLANET and each will offer something unique, they will have displays, exhibits and demonstrations! There will be seedling give-aways, games, entertainment, science experiments, recycling and conservation tips, and, of course, the animals. PARTY FOR THE PLANET will also be the “one-stop-drop” for recycling of electronics and household items thanks to the on-site collection by KENT COUNTY DEPT. OF PUBLIC WORKS, 1-800-GOT JUNK? and GOODWILL INDUSTRIES.

Zoo admission for PARTY FOR THE PLANET is only $3.50 for adults, $3.00 for children 13 and under, and kids 2 and under are FREE.
John Ball Zoo is located on Fulton Ave., one mile west of downtown Grand Rapids, MI.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

For the future

It is up to us to help make a difference. Our children learn from us and we need to start teaching them early on why we need to recycle and use our resources carefully!

Recycle Dryer Sheets & More!

Here are a couple tips I have read about, I hope they are helpful:

Recycle used fabric softener sheeets:

  1. Use them as dust cloths.
  2. Another good use for them is to use them on your shower doors, they won't leave streaks or water spots.

Make your own Fabric softener sheets:

Mix 1 cup of liquid fabric softener and 2 cups water; keep a bottle of the solution in your laundry room. When you need to dry some clothing, dampen an old washcloth with a small amount and toss it into the dryer with your wet clothes.

Make your own Fabric Softener:

Mix 2 cups white vinegar and 2 cups baking soda. Slowly stir these into 4 cups of water. NOTE: Be sure to mix it in a container in your sink or tub because it WILL fizz. Store in a plastic bottle, and sheck well before adding one-quarter cup to the final rinse. The same ingredients may also do the job when used individually. Try adding half a cup of white vinegar or 1/4 cup of baking soda to the last rinse.

Homemade carpet freshener recipe:

Mix together 3/4 cup of baking soda, 1/4 cup of talcum powder and 2 tablespoons of cornstarch. Toss in your favorite scent and then sprinkle the powder over your carpet. Let sit for 15 minutes and then vacuum.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Michigan's recycling program works so well, creators want to add water, juice containers to the mix

I am sorry that this is an old news story. However, I think that Michigan's recycling should include all plastic water/ juice/drink bottles and containers. It is sad to see them tossed around neighborhoods and roadways, this wouldn't happen nearly as much if they put a $ .10 deposit on them as well. I think it would be better for the environment and our state altogether! Feel free to comment on the story, let us know what you think!