Category Archives: activism

Story of Citizens

As always, I can’t help but share my enthusiasm for Annie Leonard and her brilliant Story of Stuff films series. So here’s the latest, which is about corporate power and how citizens lost control. It’s less than ten minutes, and you’ll no doubt be inspired…or at least motivated to take action:






What are your thoughts on the film/topic?


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Sustainable Family Finances 
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

Healthy Eating & Living

In honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., the Obamas spent time yesterday volunteering at Stuart Hobson Middle School in the District of Columbia painting apples in support of Michele Obama’s initiative to create healthy eating and living habits.


Creating healthy eating habits for your kids (and yourself) is not only good for your health, but also good for your wallet.  Some quick tips on how healthy eating can help your bottom line.

  • Eat in, rather than out, is almost always healthier and cheaper
  • Veggie snacks, i.e. carrot sticks or ants on log (celery with peanut butter and raisins)
  • Hot cereal! This is a great and healthy alternative to expensive cereals, add in apples, raisins and nuts for an added bonus. Yum! 
  • Make your own applesauce with kids instead of cookies, they will remember the activity
  • Buy in bulk, you’ll save more than you think on good whole foods than you think you can
  • Make a list and stick to it.  Good intentions can go out the window to grocery marketing.  Better yet, shop at spud! (mention SFF and we get a referral)
  • Drink only tap water and you’ll save a bundle and be much healthier
  • Don’t buy junk food.  Not only is it bad for you, but it’s bad for your wallet
  • Buy in season and on sale, it is amazing how much you can save when you shop smart
  • Visit a farm and see where your food comes from, great cheap activity that reconnects

Help build happy, healthy, and smart kids.  Here is a great resource for kids volunteering, on a site called Compassionate Kids.


Another quick shout out to a great blog post on MLK, Jr. from the folks over at The Story of Stuff, entitled Honoring the Spirit of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.Through Action.


Did you volunteer yesterday?  It not too late, the volunteer spirit lasts all year!
What are your tips for healthy eating?


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Sustainable Family Finances 
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

Conflict-free Camera

In follow-up to my post yesterday about the Story of Electronics, I’ve been searching for a conflict-free camera to replace our obsolete one. 


While the demand is growing, there are currently no actual verified conflict-free cameras on the market (or laptops, phones, ipods, etc).  There’s only camera one that I managed to find that is so-called “eco-green,” but I couldn’t find any information about what makes it’s design environmentally benign. 


I’m aware of the extreme atrocities in the Congo, because my Twin Sis was there for most the past six months. She was there helping rape victims who are being threatened from their villages which may hold more conflict minerals. Here’s a quick video from the Raise Hope for the Congo campaign, which mocks the feud between Macs and PCs while spelling out the conflict in seriously simple terms.



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Sustainable Family Finances
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

Story of Electronics

I’ve felt empty-handed in past few months, ever since my digital camera went kaput. First the flash started going, then the digital screen died, and it was clear that our camera was terminal. 


We bought our digital camera as our first “family” gift for the holidays right before our Big Guy was born. It’s become part of the family, always at all our special occasions. It even helped me earn my pet name of “Mamarazzi”. But with our 5 year anniversary around the corner, it seems like camera manufacturers planned on our camera’s demise.  


Unfortunately “planned obsolescence” appears to be unavoidable. Yet, it wreaks havoc on our environment and breaks the bank when you suddenly have to replace your electronics every few years.


Today the brilliant folks at the Story of Stuff are debuting the “Story of Electronics.” They will no doubt explain how planned obsolescence came to be the modern-day norm, and hopefully they’ll provide some tips about how we can shift the consumer demand.


How much does planned obsolescence costs your family?


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Sustainable Family Finances 
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

Get Out Your Green Vote!

You are probably as tired as anyone with all the campaigning, but we’ve made it to the all important election day. I know we are all busy with our everyday lives, and I’m just grateful for Oregon’s vote-by-mail system where I voted while the kids napped and then dropped it off at the library. But democracy isn’t about convenience and elections do shape our economic and natural environments.


12 Environmental Facts to Remember When Voting


So in case you haven’t connected already, become more informed about how your representatives walk their talk with the League of Conservation Voters. If you want to get wonky and academic, you can read this article about why environmental issues don’t get political attention yet as they do socially: easy answer is voters still aren’t really voting green.


The important this is that you do your civic duty and vote!


Have you voted? 
What matters to you in this election?


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Sustainable Family Finances 
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.