Water, Water, Everywhere

Mariner 1“Water, water every where and all the boards did shrink / water, water every where and nar a drop to drink.” 

The ancient mariner in Coleridge’s long and twisty poem reminds me of our current weather anomalies.

I doubt there’s a single person who doesn’t now acknowledge that global warming – with its attendant ramifications – is occurring, and while we may never see the extreme devastation caused by Mother Nature’s recent hissy fits, our grandchildren or great grandchildren may well reap the harvest of our careless use of the earth’s natural resources.

The Polar Vortex has wreaked havoc with so many people.  Droughts and fires look like the west coast’s future, water tables have fallen drastically, and runoff from the mountain snows flows uselessly into the delta.  The South is experiencing snow, sleet and ice as a first-time experience in recent history.

We received a notice from our local water department asking us to make a voluntary 20 % reduction in our water consumption.polar vortex 2  Our back yard and front lawn are roughly five times the size of our house, so we have a lot of lawn to water. 

I don’t care so much about the back lawn; it’s gigantically huge and was great when our kids were little, but now  is a huge PITA to upkeep.  But I’d like the front lawn, which is much smaller, to look halfway decent with its shrubs and flowers.  I guess I care enough not to be looked at as the poor family on the block.

My neighbor confided in my husband that the whole drought/water reduction scare was a government conspiracy and he has no intention of stopping his lawn regimen.  Maybe he’s the one person left who doesn’t believe in global warming.  He has a gorgeous lawn, always green, full of lush plants and flowers, a lovely deck in back and roses, roses, roses.  It takes a lot of water and hard work to keep that landscape looking beautiful. 

I guess we look like the poor kids on the block anyway!

Rain in ChinaMy husband does much of the outside watering by hand so there’s little runoff and we’ve reduced that waste of water.  We’ve thought of other ways to reduce water consumption, too, most of them activities that I actually enjoy. 

I wash dishes by hand; it’s oddly soothing. 

I realize as I wash dishes that I never taught my children the “proper way” to wash by hand – utensils first, glasses second, so the water doesn’t leave spots on the glasses, dishes and bowls next, and skillets and pans last as they’re usually the greasiest.  I don’t remember my mother actually teaching me this, but I definitely remember there was a right and a wrong way to wash dishes. 

Although there’s no water saving involved, but a lot of electricity, I hang most of my laundry outside unless the temperature is below 40 degrees Fahrenheit; I figure I’m just freezing the clothes at that point.  And I have a trick for keeping them soft; when the clothes are almost dry, I put them in the dryer for about 5 minutes with a fabric softener sheet.  Makes them nice and fluffy.drought

There’s a system to this activity too, so as not to waste clothes pins, stringing two towels together with three pins instead of four.  I’ve watched actors in movies perform this task, and I realize they never really had to do it in real life because their system was very inefficient.

Additionally, we don’t keep water running while we wash hands or brush teeth.  We keep our showers to less than 4 minutes and baths are a real luxury.

I think of our pioneer ancestors and the time-consuming acts they used, not to save time or energy, but simply because they didn’t have the wherewithal to do anything differently.  My husband’s ancestors crossed the Rocky Mountains to settle in Utah; one relative was part of the infamous Donner Party. 

polar vortex 1Boy, those people knew what hard work and suffering were.  I won’t even camp out in the back yard!

Still, I’m saving my empty gallon bleach bottles and adding water to the bleach residue in the bottom just in case we don’t have drinking water; it’s inexpensive and easy to do.  You just never know when there’ll be water everywhere, but you can’t drink a drop of it! 

We have emergency lighting and cans and packages of food that don’t require refrigeration, along with first aid supplies. 

On one level, Coleridge’s poem, “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” is a cautionary tale not to violate the laws of nature.  Perhaps this is more applicable today than when it was published in 1798.Mariner 2

What about you?  How do you contribute to conserving natural resources?  Do you have emergency plans in place in case your family gets stuck in a snowstorm, flood, or earthquake?  What kind of plans have you made?  Do you believe all this weird weather we’ve been having is a fluke or nature’s way of warning us to be more careful with natural resources.

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Comments

63 Comments

  • Helen says:

    Is he coming to my place ?

    Have Fun
    Helen

  • Kaelee says:

    Water is such a precious thing that most of us take for granted until we don’t have it anymore. I remember when I was growing up all the water from the wringer washing machine got put out into the yard to water the grass. There was a slop pail for leftover water and tea and stuff that got dumped in the yard as well. Bathtubs got bailed out as well. I lived in a small town and in the summer the water was always rationed. Rain barrels were common. A pitcher of water was kept in the fridge so there was always cool water fro drinking. I think a lot of these practices are coming back into practice due to need now.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Kaelee, I think you are so right! We’re rediscovering “pioneer” practices that we’ve let go for a long number of years. “greywater” for the yard is all the buzz, and I always laugh b/c we always poured dish water or tea water or any of that sort of thing on the flowerbeds. It’s how I learned that dish soap will kill aphids on your azaleas. Grins.

    • Jo Robertson says:

      Fascinating, Kaelee. It’s very interesting how our parents were so savvy about these practices. I’d love to employ better practices. I remember my dad knocking on the bathroom door when he’d heard that the water had been running long enough. And in college I had an Idaho roommate who took a bath in about 6 inches of water!

  • Jo, waving from revoltingly hot Australia. They keep forecasting rain for us to break the run of hot days but no sign of it yet. I LOATHE hot weather, particularly when, as invariably here, it comes with awful humidity. Can’t wait for autumn to descend. Even if it means my deadline looms closer!

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hate to say it, Anna, but your deadline looming closer means another ANNA CAMPBELL BOOK!! So I’m all for it. Grins. Like you, I’m not a heat-and-humidity girl, as you well know. Ugh. I LIKE the winter. And despite everyone’s complaingin, I’m loving this one! Hahahah! (I may be the only one…)

      • Jeanne, all my sun-loving Queensland friends look at me with horror when I say I like cold weather too. Genetically, I’m definitely built for it. All those Scandinavian and Scots ancestors!

    • Jo Robertson says:

      I’m doing a rain dance even as we speak, Anna. We need lots more rain too, so I’m dancing even faster!

      Ugh, high temps and humidity are the WORST!

  • Jane says:

    Hello Jo,
    We do have several energy and water efficient appliances(refrigerator, washing machine) and like you we don’t keep the water running while we brush our teeth. My mom likes to add water to all the shampoo and dish washing liquid bottles to make sure nothing goes to waste. After superstorm Sandy, there were all these notices advising everyone to put together an emergency go kits/bags and have an evacuation/escape plan.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Jane, it is good to have a “go bag” for emergencies, especially when weather looms. I used to keep one at all times when I lived in NC – those hurricanes keep happening there! – but got out of the habit, living in DC.

      Of course, after 9/11, I re-established my practice of that! :>

    • Jo Robertson says:

      The to-go emergency kit is a wonderful idea, Jane. Every household should have one; it just seems common sense to me. Here in California we worry about not IF but WHEN a major quake will hit. There are several faults that run through the state.

  • Helen says:

    Jo

    I agree the weather is changging drastically a few years ago we were all on major water restrictions we were not allowed to water lawns or wash down paths and driveways and even though the restrictions have been lifted I still stick to them the weather is getting hotter and hotter over here and even though we had a good downpour of rain the other day I still think we need to be very careful with it I don’t have a dishwasher so always hand wash the dishes I don’t have a clothes dryer so the washing gets hung on the line or clothes horses in the house to dry and I always make sure I have a full load to wash when doing the washing we take short showers and really don’t use the bath very much. We don’t really have any emergency plans even though I know we should. Everyone should really be thinking about global warming and doing what they can

    Have Fun
    Helen

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Oh, I DO love clothes hung to dry! And its so nice to smell them, fresh off the line, isn’t it?

      Y’all have had some serious weather the last few years, what with drought and fire and all. Yikeys!

    • Jo Robertson says:

      Good for you, Helen. Your house sounds pretty much like mine. In fact, I washed a load last night that I need to hang out this morning — towels, and you know how much energy they take to dry in a machine!

      Wishing more rain and cooler temps for you Aussies!

  • Jo – as I type there’s thunder rolling overhead. It’s been raining hard – that on top of the several inches of snow on the ground. The snow is melting, the rain is falling, my yard has become swampy with a stream running along the back.

    But this will probably change in the summer. I have no problem not watering the grass. It’ll go dormant for a while and green up in a storm. I do water our gardens and trees though. We have curbside recycling and we take full advantage. I believe this crazy weather is due to global warning, but my oldest brother does not. He’d be right at home with your conspiracy theory neighbor. Gotta wonder about people sometimes.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      I’m LOL about the conspiracy. There are some days that I agree. After all, back in the 80’s the scientists were all saying we were headed for a little ice age. Really? Hmmmmmm…..

    • Jo Robertson says:

      Yes, Donna, I was just hanging out my heavy load of towels and I wondered if my neighbors think I’m crazy!

      I wish we had curbside service for recycling. The city tells us that they separate everything at the garbage dump, but that seems very inefficient to me. We do have separate cans for garbage and green waste, though.

  • Amy Conley says:

    SJo, I live in southern Indiana and we’ve had more snow and ice this winter (and let’s not forget the bitter cold) than I can remember, ever! And I’ve lived in thia since I was 10, minus a couple of years in Erie,Pa. Today was the first day since sometime in Jan with no snow in our yard or driveway, no today we had temps in the mid 60’s and tonight we had rain. So yes, water, water,water everywhere fits quite well around here right now. Last summer we had the most perfect summer we’ve had in many years, kept the a/c off more than, although for me this is easy. I HATE being cold so keeping the a/c of is easy for me, not so much hubby though. He’s had 4 heart attacks and the humidity is very hard on him. Me, I love it!
    I agree with you though about global warming. People (like my mother) who think it’s all hogwash, live in their own little paper bags. Although she does have enough canned food stored to last a good 6 months, heck by now probably a good years worth. Hubby plants his veggie garden, although with just the two of us now, it is much smaller than it used to be. And he also cans his veggies, so we almost always have some veggies either on a shelf or in the freezer.
    We hang out our clothes, using the 3 clothespin method, always, oncd we hit the 60’s and I do throw my clothes in the dryer for that 5 or 10 minutes to get the stiffness out. Hubby loves his jeans when they are stiff enough to stand on there own…I’m too much of a princess for stif, itchy clothes. I can tell you a hint though, if you leave the clothes on the line overnight where they can get damp from the dew, the next day you don’t have to throw them in the dryer, soft as can be. I do draw the line at hanging out underware, socks, and my own t-shirts though.

    • Amy Conley says:

      Oh yeah, the dishwaser… Since it is just the 2 of us now, hubby washes dishes, because I washed enough dishes in my lifetime years ago and refuse to do them ever again. I was taught the “proper” way in grade school home ec, the only difference from the way my mother taught was she always did glasses first. In home ec our teacher always said wash what come into the most contact with your mouth and go from there. We DO have a dishwasher and it leaks so I only use it when we have a crowd or my once a year cleaning of ALL of my glasses because hubby can not clean a glass to save his soul and to clean all the unused dishes just to get rid of dust and grease build-up. The thing is my dishwasher leaks so I end up with a water covered floor and I use that water to totally scrub down the kitchen floor, so it gets re-used. I then go over the floor with my Swiffer Wet-Jet because the idea of cleaning my floor by spreading water on it and using any sort of mop or rag grosses me out. After that first swipe with a mop it’s dirty so to me the floor is still dirty. Thank voodness

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Amy, I’m LOL b/c even though I love the fresh scent of sheet that have dried in the sun, I too am too much of a princess to want scratchy stiff jeans. Hahah! And I agree about undies, bras and t-shirts too! I really don’t want them on public display. Grins.

    • Jo Robertson says:

      Great tip, Amy, although as sure as I left the clothes on the line overnight, a downpour would occur!

      Sorry about your husband. Hope he’s taking it easy; that’s a lot of heart events.

      I love that you’re gardening. My middle daughter used to live in South Bend and she was part of a coop. Taught the kids a lot about gardening and doing your share. I think their crop was peas, but it was so nice for them to get farm-fresh veggies in season.

  • Anna Sugden says:

    A timely post, Jo, given that large parts of England are either under water or very soggy – though it’s a beautiful, crisp, sunny day here in Cambridge!

    Since Doc Cambridge spent some of his career looking into carbon footprints and green issues, we try to do our part – we compost, have rainwater barrels, we grow most of our fruit and vegetables, we recycle (our area has fantastic recycling), along with a number of the other things that have already been mentioned.

    One of the things I love about summer is drying our washing on the line. In the winter we use the family bathroom and dry clothes on racks or hangers – we rarely use the dryer – only for sheets and towels.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Anna, I’d been meaning to ask if the floods had affected you. I’ve seen the news footage on our BBC channel an it just looks awful! They said some of those places had never flooded before, or hadn’t flooded in hundreds of years. Yikes!!

      • Anna Sugden says:

        We’re fine in Cambridge, thanks. We’ve been very lucky. The problems are much further west. Though it’s not clear how much of a problem the enormous amount of rainfall will have on Cambridge – which sits on wells and springs and underground rivers!

    • Jo Robertson says:

      I’ve been watching the flooding in your country on the news, Anna. Hopefully, things will right themselves soon.

      I love to hear how people in different parts of the world are handling their climate shifts.

    • Amy Conley says:

      Anna and Jo hubby does compost, omg the differece in our soil where the compost spreads is unreal! We also do the recyclying thing too,; glass, cardboard, plastic, tin cans ( mostly cat food cans since the cats are so finikey) and of course are aluminum cans. We aren’t as good about it as we probably could be though. But then again there is always room for improvement.

      • Amy Conley says:

        Oh, I do know the differenve between “are” and “our” but on my phone I am basically typing blindly annd dnn’t catch sstupid misstakes until after I post. Sorry.

  • Mozette says:

    This is a very sensitive subject and hard to talk about without standing on somebody’s toes… well, at some point in the conversation – but I’ll do my best.

    I believe that the planet is doing what it is supposed to in its long 3 million year old life. Our planet is a teenager going through its puberty and – as with any teenager – it’s going hitting some really rough spots. There’s earthquakes, droughts, floods and the ice ages we’re getting a taste of.
    However what you must remember is that we are only just witnessing these things because we are living here. We are the by-standers to Mother Earth’s life. Yes, we use her resources and must take responsibility to how we us them, what we will do when we run out and that the creatures we have on Earth now will run their life courses and will – at some point in our lives as we live them – become extinct.

    We have to understand this and live with it.

    The Dodo Bird became extinct and so did the Tasmanian Tiger. There are creatures that will die out and others that will live on, while many more will be discovered and will live long, long lives until they disappear too, through becoming extinct.

    It’s Natural Selection… and Dawin is right … always has been.

    I believe no matter what we do for our planet, it will do what it will do… we can’t save it simply because it’s not supposed to be saved.

    It’s supposed to live the way it does because it simply does.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hey Mozette! In the main, I tend to agree with you. I think we may have speeded the cycle with our depredations, but Earth will keep the balance. It’s what She does. Grins. We may not always like her methods – hurricane, earthquake, etc – but she’s gonna get things balanced! Ha!

    • Jo Robertson says:

      I certainly agree with the natural cycle of the earth’s evolution, Mozette. I was reading about how we used to have droughts in the southwest that lasted a century, longer than one person would live through. We’re just small dots on the earth’s great landscape, but I think we all want to be responsible in how we handle the planets great gifts.

  • Debbie Oxier says:

    Okay, you asked the question so I will tell you my feelings on the matter. I am a Christian, have been for years. I believe in the Bible, believe this nation was founded on Christian principles and over the past several years we have done our best to remove God from every part of our lives. No prayer in school, no ten commandments on the walls, and we have even gone so far as to try and remove Christ from Christmas. He is the very reason it was ever celebrated to begin with. As a result, I believe God has begun pulling away his hand of blessing and protection from our nation. Read your Bible. There is such a thing as selective judgement and while we prefer not to use the word judgement and America in the same sentence I am afraid it applies. Global warming? Not so much. Although I agree we need to take better care of the earth God has given us. You asked, I answered. Feel free to agree or disagree.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hey Debbie! I think it’s always a matter for study, and looking at all the answers/questions. I’ve read the bible a lote – several different translations – and above all things, I do believe that God was true in his promise to us in that he said no matter what he’d never damage the earth or his people with fire or flood ever again. So I tend to think of the benevolent god of the New Testemant as not having a hand in this. We’re, in some ways, reaping what we sow in terms of our mis-use of the Stewardship with which we’ve been entrusted. So yes, we need to get on to conservation and planting and making amends. And I think any God that values his people will be on our side in that – making it right, making amends and sowing good stuff. Like you…just my opinion. Grins.

    • Jo Robertson says:

      Hi, Debbie! Yes, I think, regardless of what a person believes in or doesn’t believe it, we need to be respectful of the earth from which we get so many bounteous blessings.

  • Caren Crane says:

    Jo, you’ve made me think once again that we need to replace the two older toilets in our house. We do a lot of conservation around here, including adding solar panels to our roof last summer, and we never water the lawn (though I do sometimes water my flower beds when it’s very dry in the summer). I don’t care two figs what the neighbors think of my house, since I keep it to please me, not them. 😛

    Our yard, though, is a bit more than an acre, so I can’t imagine trying to water the whole thing! It’s bad enough having to mow it! But those old toilets are getting on my nerves. They use much more water and have less powerful flushes than our much newer toilet downstairs. Next time I have a few hundred dollars to spare, I am replacing those things!

    I also would love a more efficient dishwasher (which we rarely run, with the two of us) and washing machine. I really miss having clotheslines (and I have hung MANY loads of laundry in my life!) but our neighborhood covenants don’t allow them. Although, my husband and I have discussed whether we think anyone would actually enforce the covenants, esp. if you couldn’t see the lines from the road. Probably not!

    I think wholesale efforts to be a more efficient nation are what we need. European countries (and others, I’m sure) had to tighten up and start conserving decades ago. We are just LAZY AMERICANS! It’s true. I have coworkers who still won’t recycle their soda bottles or only buy bottled water to drink. Crazee!

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Caren the “not recycling” makes me so twitchy. I just cringe when I see people throwing aluminum cans and plastic bottles in the trash. I’m officially The Rabid Recycler!! Grins.

      Do you think the solar panels have made a difference? I’d love to know because we could do it on our house, but I’ve not investigated the rate of return for the outlay!

      Our covenants prohibit clothes lines too, althought I did string on on my screen porch where no one can see it. Grins. Problem is, that’s wind-dry, not sun-dry, so it isn’t the same. Sigh.

    • Jo Robertson says:

      Caren, I always forget that many neighborhoods in the east and south don’t have fences. It’s SOP here in California, so I could sunbath naked in my back yard if I wanted to! It’s nice to have the privacy, so my ragged towels on the line are my own business.

      I do think we Americans tend to be lazy sometimes; we have such a short (and rich) history that other countries are ahead of us in conservation.

      The new water-conservation toilets are the best! We’ve now replaced all of ours. I remember hearing my daughter tell HER daughter, “Remember, don’t waste a flush!” I’m not sure I want to know what that means LOL.

  • Jeanne Adams says:

    Jo, what a fascinating post! You can see I had a lot of thoughts on it! Hahah!!

    One thing that struck me, though, was your mention of actors “doing it wrong” on movies and TV. I had to think about that for a moment and realized you’re right. OMGosh!! Mama taught me the 3 pin method and we used to hang sheets and towels that way. Pillowcases too. Oh! Memories!! Grins.

    Like Kaelee, we also used “greywater” for watering plants esp if we were hand washing dishes or crystal. Like someone else said, I only reversed the glassware – keep the grease from the silverware off the glasses – and the silverware. Othewise, just that pattern you mentioned. And change the rinse water often! Grins. My aunt had this set of enamelware dish pans that we’d use to wash dishes before she got a dishwasher. Grins. Again with the memories!

    My family knows that they must recycle under pain of The Rabid Recycler’s GLARE. So they do it, and do it well. Grins. It’s astonishing how little actual trash our family of 4 actually puts out at the curb, compared to the recycling. HUGE difference. Tons of recycling, one can of trash, usually. :> Our neighborhood is going to be one of the first to go to composting too, so we’ll see how much that reduces things, although I already compost some.

    I’d love to have a garden and do have patio garden things, but my lot is tree-covered and there’s no sunny spot (other than the front yard) for veggies.

    We’re about to get flooding rains and thunderstorms today, after 13″ of snow, so…yeah. Climate change. Grins.

    • Jo Robertson says:

      Hope you’re staying safe there in your part of the country, Jeanne!

      Oh, those enamelware dishwashing pans. My grandma in Kentucky had several of those. I remember we had to go outside to pump the water from the well too. And she had a coal-burning stove to cook on.

      Wow, memories!

  • Jo Robertson says:

    Whoa, gang! You leaped ahead of me. Sorry, I just barely arose. I spent hours and hours last night tutoring my freshman granddaughter in Algebra. OMGoodness!! What are the math experts thinking!!?? It is sooooo much easier the way I learned it. It’s all theoretical now — solving the problem and proving it on a graph, then proving it on a graph and solving it algebraically. I’m no math dummy, but my head is still spinning.

    Sorry for the rant, but sometimes math teachers are just stupid! That’s my story and I’m sticking with it!

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Oh, Jo! I have to say I feel your pain as my 8th grader is doing this major math. They do NOT do this a way I understand and I remember how to do it, but they way they do it? OMGosh. Ridiculous.

      • Deb says:

        When my daughter takes Algebra in a few years, we’re all in trouble, unless she “gets” it…because I’m clueless. (Yep, I’m a teacher, but fifth grade math doesn’t get that complicated.) My husband has a better grasp on math than me, but, help. *g*

        • Jo Robertson says:

          I taught math my first year teaching, basic math, and honestly, Deb, I don’t get it either. Why complicate something that works so well.

          And did I just hear they’re not teaching cursive in school any more? Wow, I’m so, so old school!

          • Deb says:

            We teach it in our school in third grade. BUT, the fourth grade teachers don’t enforce it, so by the time the kids get to my room, they don’t have any idea. It is so frustrating! When I taught cursive in third grade, I did so diligently and made them write! See my response on Joanie’s FB status.

  • catslady says:

    Alas, I too know people that do not believe in global warming. They will say it’s cold, so therefore there is no such thing (sigh). I do believe the Earth will have no problem surviving the harm we do it, but humans not so much. I’ve tried to conserve natural resources for a very long time. My parents were very good at everything but water – for some reason something like hosing down a driveway was normal. I live in PA so water has never been a problem (unless it’s flooding) but I can’t see wasting it. I believe there is a point of no return, and as long as we worship money over common sense, we’re in trouble. Fossil fuels, fracking, GMO’s, poisons in our air, water and food. But there is always hope that the younger generation will figure it all out before it’s too later.

    • Jo Robertson says:

      I have a lot of hope in that younger generation, Catslady. I know my grandchildren are very savvy about and aware of conservation techniques.

    • Jo Robertson says:

      Oops, my comment got eaten! Sorry, Catslady, but I was saying that I have a lot of faith in this upcoming generation. My grandchildren are much more savvy about conservation than I was.

  • Deb says:

    Jo, first of all, I have a confession. I wash dishes by hand, but I wash them like I wash clothes…haphazardly, any way. I do wash pans last, but flatware is 2nd to last since it is in the bottom of the sink…. (When the 2nd dishwasher went on the fritz, I decided to save the money and have been doing dishes by hand for 4 or 5 years now).

    Okay, so, yes it has been a strange January and February, even for Iowa. Extreme cold, snowstorms and sleet, and even a thunderstorm yesterday. But, at least our winter isn’t like the winters of 2009 and 2010 where we had record snow falls of 54 and 52 inches. (October to mid April).

    We try to conserve water in summer when there is a drought, but with a garden, we water it. Conserving water, especially hot water, when one has a 13-year-old daughter is not easy. DH has now put her on a time limit of 5 minutes. (It kills her.) AND, she would help greatly with conserving water by using the same darned towel at least 2 or 3 times in a row!! Geesh. 😉

    • Deb says:

      I should also add that my husband is a prepper. He makes sure all flashlights have good batteries, candles are available along with lighters, he keeps some foodstuff stocked in plastic tubs, and has gone as far as making his own fire starters (egg carton cups, stuffed with cotton, string, dipped in wax), and he has a 15 gallon jug of water in the basement. AND, since our house was built during the Cuban Missile Crisis, we have our own bomb shelter under the garage. *g* Or, bunker, if you will.

    • Jo Robertson says:

      I agree about the towel usage, Deb. My youngest daughter always used 3 towels every time, one for the hair and two for the body. I had a hard time convincing her that this would NOT do.

      I don’t think I could’ve washed dishes by hand when I had all 7 children — that’s a lot of dish washing, even with everyone taking a turn. Thankfully, it’s only me and Dr. Big now.

  • In Alabama we say if you don’t like the weather, wait a minute. It WILL change! We’ve worn snow gear and flip flops in the same week this winter.

    I need to send you some of our rain, Jo! We had horrible thunderstorms last night with lots of wind, rain and thunder and lightning. My poor basset hound was frantic all night. He hates storms.

    I do believe we are changing our ecosystem with every greedy, ignorant, arrogant choice we make to strip our resources or to pump toxins into our atmosphere in the name of money and supposed “progress.” Everything on the planet is connected and anyone who doesn’t think what we do changes things is just kidding themselves.

    I have rain barrels set up on my property and I use that collected water for all sorts of things. I have small economical washer that only washes 6 pounds of clothes at the time which is fine for me as I live alone.

    I have canine and feline timers for my showers. If I take too long one of the dogs and / or the cat will pull the curtain back and peer in as if to say “Are you done yet?”

  • Becke says:

    Jo,
    Although I haven’t gone over the edge as Chicken Little with the sky is falling, we aren’t oblivious to waste.

    We recycle. We have a nice lot, but left the majority as a natural area and don’t mow or irrigate. Our front yard is small and we have a small garden area in the back.

    We’re empty nesters so we wash clothes and dishes every few days instead of daily and we always do a lot of the odd items by hand because it’s more efficient.

    I believe our planet has always been changing, but humans tend to facilitate the more negative aspects. In the more progressive countries, we do our share. However, for those who are barely scratching out a living, conservation is probably not a high priority. It’s also those countries that are the largest contributors to the carbon fallout.

    It takes a lot of energy and resources to develop a conspiracy. Unless there’s lots of cash involved, I don’t think the “conspirators” would invest the time.
    JMHO
    b

  • Hey Jo!

    We try to conserve our water consumption. Like you and Dr. Big, we hand water the roses and bushes and flowers. We are always on watering restrictions down here in Texas, but we don’t even run our sprikler in the winter and only two mornings a week during the dry summer, but that’s more to prevent spontaneous fires as opposed to having the greenest lawn.

    • Jo Robertson says:

      Oh, yes, the fires can be a really hazardous problem here too. And it isn’t always the human factor. Sometimes there’s just a spontaneous combustion that starts our fires. It makes me so sad when I drive through areas that got burned to the ground. All those lovely trees gone. I know some of it is natural, but still …

  • Pissenlit says:

    We recycle, separate biodegradable/compostable waste from regular trash, turn off the lights when we leave a room…and we don’t water the lawn…ever. Then again, part of that might have to do with the fact that we don’t garden or care if the lawn is lush and extremely green. Heh!

    The closest thing we have to an emergency plan is that we have some candles and matches and I know where they are. Ha! We’re not very prepared. I think the messed up weather is global warming and if we don’t make changes to the way we’re treating the planet, it’ll just get worse. Sad. 🙁

  • Jo Robertson says:

    So true, Pissenlit. It may be snowing violently in some parts of the country, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t global warming.