Sunday, April 19, 2009

Self description in Two Words..

I was in a group a while back and was trying to decide how I would describe my self in a word or two to someone who had never met me and who has never talked to me. I came to the conclusion that the best description was realistic environmentalist.

Now I know you all are wonder what exactly that means. To me it means that I am enough of a realist to know that I live in America so I am going to continue to live with conveniences like a car and 3 bedrooms and a bath and a half for a family of four. Yet it also means that I will make the changes that help the environment that I can. I will ride my bike to work and I will hang my wet clothes on a laundry drying rack to dry. I will turn off the electricity to my electronic devices when they are not being used.

Changing habits from driving to biking takes some initiative and it even takes some training since riding for transportation on the streets is different than riding for fun on trails. I suggest that you take a street biking class so that you will learn the rules. I took one and I feel 95% more confident about how and where I ride. Also I think I am a better car driver as well when I am sharing the road with a bicyclist because now I know where a little better what the expectations are.

Another habit that was changed over the past couple years is laundry. I have switch from a conventional washer dryer arrangement to a super efficient washer and a series of laundry drying rack. The washer uses very little water, very little detergent and has a high rpm spin cycle so drying a laundry drying rack is very practical.

There are benefits of a laundry drying rack over a clothes line. One is that I can use it all winter even when it is sub-zero. I can use it when it is rainy. Also I can move it around my house into what ever space is currently not being used.

If your house is like mine most of the time the whole house is not being used. The kids are at school and my husband and I are at work. So the house can be used for something worth while like hanging our clothes to dry on our laundry drying rack. Then at night while we are all asleep the laundry drying rack can still be used in the kitchen and the living room.

Air drying your laundry saves 6-10% of the energy that an average US household uses. If we all did these simple switches to biking and air drying what a difference it would make.

So again how does this relate to my self description as a realistic environmentalist? The realist part comes in because I love many of my modern day conveniences including my computer, (we have three of them in the house), our telephones we have 4 portable phones all in charges and 3 cell phones. I think there is a future blog in that.

So for now Happy Earth Day, Happy National Hanging Out Day and National Turn off TV Week!


  1. Hey, I don't have that style drying rack yet, but it looks pretty interesting (albeit a bit expensive!!). I'll have to look into getting one of those!

    Love your post! Thanks for stopping by, too!


  2. Thanks for commenting on my blog pic about the laundry. I'm happy to hear your voice . We too use the drying rack when it is too cold for outside drying. But laundry hung in the sun smell so sweet and warm, don't you think. Congrats on your blog!

  3. Thanks for visiting my blog! Glad to hear that more people are hanging their clothes to dry and it's great to learn that it saves 6-10% energy.

    What a wonderful blog you have. Keep posting. Take care, Deb

  4. Great post...thank you for the link for the drying rack. I will definitly get a couple with my big family.
    And thank you for visiting my blog.

  5. Thanks for coming by my blog and for the drying rack idea! Certainly a way to keep things cool! I've been patiently waiting for my clothes line but you know - I have a sweater rack!!! I'll put it out on the deck and dry my cloth diapers!!


  6. i wish i could say that the reason i dry my clothes is to save on energy, but the honest truth is that i don't want my clothes shrinking or losing their color. i guess it's doing a good thing, despite my motivation;-)

  7. REalistic environmentalist. I like this idea. We have only one car and my husband rides his bike to work in the spring and summer. We do most of our own cooking, cut down on pre-packaged food, use cloth diapers and just try not to be wasteful in general.

  8. Thanks for dropping by and commenting on my blog. I could do more to ease the load on the environment for sure.

  9. Where I live, there are very few months that we can't hang our clothes outside to dry. I think your clothes drying rack is a great idea, though, for when it is rainy or too cold out. I wouldn't have thought of that option! I suppose it might also work better than hanging clothes outside for those who have allergies to pollen, etc.


  10. Realistic environmentalist. I like the sound of that. My goal is to live as simply and inexpensively as possible in order to free up my life for the things I enjoy. Fortunately in a lot of instances those two coincide. Great post, I look forward to reading more, and thank you for visiting my blog!

  11. Very good argument for drying clothes inside. This is especially valuable for people who live in housing areas that forbid hanging clothes outside to dry. Using a drying rack indoors they can manage to avoid using energy-hogging clothes dryers and dry their clothes inside away from the public.

  12. Hi Mary, just saw your comment regarding how to get the stiffness out of line-dried jeans. And I gotta tell you...I love 'em crispy! Interesting indoor line link. Thanks!

  13. Thanks for your comment on my blog. Does clothes-drying really represent 6 to 10 percent of US energy use? Oh -- maybe domestic energy use means specifically energy used in the home? I can't imagine that the percentage would be that high if it included transportation energy.

    In any case, every little bit helps. I have drying racks, the traditional tiered kind, and I use them a lot, especially in the winter. I can't really use them if it's raining out, though, at least not unless it's cold enough for the heat to kick on, and not if I need the clothes any time soon, because the air is already saturated both outdoors and in.

    Imho anti-clothesline ordinances are an abomination. As energy becomes more expensive and people become more environmentally conscious I hope they will go away.

  14. KEEP WRITING! You started a good thing here with your blog, would love to hear more from you! Try to post something everyday!

    I too dry most of my clothes naturally. The dryer tears up clothes, they last a lot longer when dried naturally.

  15. thanks for commenting on my blog, I would love for you to do some more writing on the realism of environmentalism and yes I did order the clothes dryer you recommended. I hope you have a stake in the company as you deserve it for putting it out there!

  16. Thanks for stopping by my blog! :o)
    Did you see my post about my clothes line?

    It's funny to see frugality and gentle living be in vogue. My brother and I were raised with both concepts before it was cool. :o) My mother was a woman ahead of her time.


  17. Hi! Thanks for stopping by my blog. I sent a reply to your comment, but just to make sure you get it I thought I'd comment here as well. I'd love to review your drying rack. It would need to be April do to a long trip, but I hope it works out!