All posts filed under: Eco-Friendly

Road Trip 2016: Albuquerque & White Sands

We had half a day in Albuquerque before heading south, so we wanted something a little less time-intensive. Since we have a Family Premier membership to the Thinkery in Austin, we could get in to reciprocal science museums for free, and we found the National Museum of Nuclear Science on the list. It wasn’t a very large museum, but the display of missiles, jets and bombers were pretty impressive to walk around. At the same time, it was awe-inspiring to see the range and devastating power contained in these missiles. The science side of my brain was like, “COOOL,” while the self-preservation side of my brain was like, “Oh, crap. That’s horrifying.” Inside were a number of hands-on exhibits. I think my husband and I were more interested in them than the kids. 😉 Since we got there right as the museum opened, we had plenty of time to explore and play without bumping into any crowds. Our final national parks stop on the trip was White Sands National Monument. We battled strong winds the full length of New …

Road Trip 2016: Mesa Verde National Park

Seeing how 2016 is quickly coming to a close, I’d better finish out blogging about our road trip from April, yeah? Thanks, NaBloPoMo, for giving me no more excuses. We left Durango bright and early in the morning to make the quick 35 minute drive to Mesa Verde National Park. When I was doing my research on this park, I was really rather bummed that we wouldn’t be able to do the Ranger-led tours through the different cliff dwellings. They required everyone to be able to scale the ladders safely, and you can’t backpack any young kids. Even though I’m 99% sure Bear Shark would have been steady and agile enough to climb ladders, I knew the Park Rangers wouldn’t allow it. Instead, we asked the very helpful Rangers at the visitor center what we could do as a family to still enjoy the park. She asked how long we had to visit, which was about 5-6 hours, and then drew us a nice driving route where we could stop at the vista points and explore. The …

Happy Earth Day! Let’s talk cloth diapers

Happy Earth Day, everyone! Today, I’m kind of cursing at nature. I picked up a few mosquito bites that are itching like crazy, and my entire respiratory system is revolting from high mold counts. Whenever cedar season kicks in, I have an urge to BURN ALL THE TREES DOWN. But I can’t stay mad at you, Earth! There are way too many beautiful beaches, awe inspiring hikes, grand mountains and double rainbows to want to ruin you through my consumerism. I wanted to talk about cloth diapering in honor of today. Let me first say that we used disposable diapers with our first child for the first year of his life. Getting through a med-free birth and learning to breastfeed were my first priorities in welcoming a human to the world. My husband and I were not up for the task of cloth diapering, so we waited. Also, it seemed so incredibly intimidating. Once we settled into our parenting routine, we decided to take a first step into cloth and ease the feeling of guilt of throwing …

SXSW 2015, Bikes vs. Cars and Aparigraha

This is the last post in the series covering my SXSW 2015 experience. I hope I was able to shed a little different light on this behemoth of a tech conference. Let me know in the comments if you have any questions! The best part about being accepted into the SXSW Interactive programming and receiving a Gold badge is that I also have access to all of the Film programming. While all the tech nerds were drinking and partying into the wee hours of the night, I spent each evening at the Alamo Drafthouse near my neighborhood to watch SXSW Film screenings. I saw a couple of narrative films (one hilarious, one I wish ended sooner) and a few documentaries. The last one I watched was the world premiere of Bikes vs. Cars. The title is relatively self explanatory as they follow bicycle activists in multiple cities who are fighting for road space against an ecosystem built only to serve cars.   Having lived in Austin for 16 years (minus my 2 years in San Francisco), I’ve seen the …

SXSW 2015: Managing digital burnout with travel

SXSW Interactive is this crazy collision of the Internet of Everything, wearable tech, selfies, social media on crack, mobile, near field communication (NFC), shareability, robots, making digital into 3D tangibility and… well… anything that can be digitized and connected. Whew! I fully drained and re-charged my phone battery every 4-6 hours with how much online time I was putting in during the fest. Now that it’s all over, I’m enjoying not being connected 24/7. Five nights of SXSW, I went to the Drafthouse to catch whatever late showing was going on for Film. The Alamo is known for their no texting, no talking policy, so putting my phone on silent and tucking it away in my purse for 90 minutes was a welcome break. Of course, I can’t stay away for too long. People start to worry or get frustrated or get mad if you don’t respond within 15 minutes. Those are the expectations of today’s connected world. Maybe this is my age showing, but I want a break from all the tech. I NEED to disconnect for bits of …

SXSW Eco: The Highlights [Part 2]

While some of the presentations were fun (snack size, if you will), there were two big highlights for me. First, Sylvia Earle. She was the keynote speaker on Tuesday, and she is beyond inspiring. She’s an oceanographer and explorer, pioneering a lot of ocean research and breaking gender barriers left and right. I started watching her documentary Mission Blue on Netflix but haven’t finished it yet. Someone at the end of her session asked whether she still refuses to eat seafood and why. She said she still doesn’t because she knows what’s being passed through the food chain. We’re polluting our oceans so much that by the time we’re eating fish or shrimp or oysters, we’re taking in all the toxins as well. Hmph. I don’t like that. Not only because that puts a damper on my food choices but because I’m sickened by how much waste and how many chemicals are getting dumped into the environment and end washing into our waterways. The second big highlight of Eco for me was a field trip to the Texas …

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