I Tried to Reuse my Subway Salad Bowl.


If I have a choice when I travel, I try to eat at real plate restaurants.  As you travel across the USA this not always possible.  Subway is the only place from which I will purchase fast convenience food.  They have fresh food, and most of their packaging is tolerable, except for their plastic salad bowls and ALL the plastic bags they distribute!!  Yesterday, I tried to reuse my washed bowl for my Subway salad.  I thought they would reuse it, but they wouldn’t. Yes, I support good health practices!! But..my reply to them was, “Then, you should be recycling these bowls!”  Subway also should be recycling all the plastic bags they distribute.

We can comment to businesses we patronize that they should do more to recycle, and always choose business that have the best environmental policy.

We collect our recycles as we travel and lug them home to put in our home recycling, and we bring our own reusable dishes for hotel breakfasts.

Recycling in Dubrovnik, Croatia


Superior Views-Beginning of May

English: Hermit thrush
English: Hermit thrush (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

But winter lingering chills the lap of May.  Oliver Goldsmith                               

April brought 50 inches of snow to these shores and…

Snow on May 2,  snow, and freezing rain on May 3  Yes, the weather is depressing, but the new birds arriving daily are delightful. Some will nest here and others will move further north, east or west to nest.

The eagles soar outside our window playing in the wind currents off the lake as baby eaglets squeak in a nest nearby. Many migrating white throated sparrows and hermit thrush jump in the leaf litter until a sharp-shinned hawk appears. Kinglets and yellow rump warblers flit from branch to branch. Grouse drum their wings, and flicker woodpeckers, pheobes and brown creepers are busy looking for food.  A group of 17 loons wait in Lake Superior for other lakes to “ice out”

Zonotrichia albicollis (White-throated Sparrow)
Zonotrichia albicollis (White-throated Sparrow) (Photo credit: Arthur Chapman)

Thoughts On Gobal Warming

                                            DSC00364Thoughts from Minnesota Senator John Marty, Chairman of the Senate Energy Committee, on global warming  “Our children and their children, and the entire human race, are dependent upon the earth for our survival. There is no other planet that we could move to if this planet cannot sustain human life. We need to dramatically reduce our consumption of fossil fuels very quickly, or our children and their children will face catastrophic changes in the environment.
No matter how bold we are in responding this year to the problem, twenty years from now people will wonder how we could have been so timid. It’s time to take thoughtful, yet bold action to develop a framework that will bring Minnesota to a sustainable energy system. “

The whole article below:


So…What can you do as individuals and families to reduce global warming on our planet?  This is too serious to wait for everyone else and government to take steps to reduce fossil fuels.  What can you do today to nurture our earth?

Is the Quality of the Air you Breathe Important?


An Environmental Initiative Group and the EPA say the air quality in the metro area of Minneapolis and St. Paul is worse than it should be.  What should be done to reduce the soot particles that hang in our air?

Give up your lawn mower??  Years ago when my husband asked for a push mower for his birthday, I was not amused.  How would our already chemical free creeping Charlie lawn ever meet our neighbor’s standards?   I purchased an American made push lawn mower from our local hardware. It was hard for me to use, but my husband was thrilled. Over the years we have evolved.  We are still a chemical free yard, but also a grass-free yard.  We enjoy the birds and butterflies attracted to our native plants, and our “no mow” yard has given us a new summer independence.

Unfortunately, leaf blowers, and wood pit fires thrive in our an urban area?  Freedom is one thing, but when we create unhealthy air for everyone living around us we can do better!  And why do our children have respiratory problems?  Why are many of our friends struggling with cancer?  It is time to connect some dots.

For many of us in the USA lawn mowers are necessary, but what are some things you can do?

  1. Reduce the size of your mowable lawn by planting grasses, sedges and plants that are hardy and attract butterflies and bees.  http://www.restoringthelandscape.com/
  2. Buy a new lawn mower with less emission, and use fewer lawn chemicals.
  3. Leave your car at home one day a week.
  4. Minimize your use of leaf blowers.
  5. Stop having open-pit fires.


Butterfly Weed
Butterfly Weed


Celebrate our Marvelous Earth

Earth Day 2013, Today and EVERYDAY

Shopping bag made from recycled plastic
Shopping bag made from recycled plastic

3 easy ways to help our earth everyday: 

Reduce the use plastic bags and single use plastic containers. It is so sad how plastic litter is everywhere.  Our wildlife and birds are harmed by the plastic bags stuck and waving in the trees.  Recycle all plastic, including plastic bags!!

Reduce the amount of chemicals you use.  Start with yard chemicals and cleaning materials, try to purchase organic products and organize your trips to drive less.

Reward yourself by Increasing the amount of quiet time you spend outside either sitting or walking. Find harmony with our beautiful earth.

Native plants don't need chemicals!
Native plants don’t need chemicals!

Close the Loop

International Recycling Symbol 32px|alt=W3C|li...
International Recycling Symbol 32px|alt=W3C|link=http://validator.w3.org/✓ The source code of this SVG is valid. Category:Valid SVG (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The three arrows in the symbol represent the three main stages in recycling.

The first arrow represents the first stage of recycling – collection and sorting the various recyclable materials, to prepare them for processing.

The second arrow represents the second stage of recycling – processing the recyclable materials into raw materials and using these raw materials for manufacturing new products.

The third arrow in the symbol represents the third and final stage of the recycling process – the sale and purchase of products created using recycled materials.


The three arrows form a closed loop, illustrating how the three main stages contribute and reinforce one another in the recycling process. The closed loop also means that should any of the stages in the recycling process be ineffective, the sustainability of the entire recycling effort would be affected.



1) Collect ~ recycle our waste
2) Manufacture ~ make something new out of it
3) Purchase ~ buy recycled.






Superior Views-A Northern Shrike

It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade. ~Charles Dickens, Great Expectations

Frozen ice sheets cover the lake, and wind-blown snow covers the landscape.  The pileated woodpeckers, juvenile eagles and chickadees and long daylight bring joy.  Snow falls,  melting, and icy walking are almost an everyday cycle068

Attacking a chickadee a Northern  Shrike is stunned as he bangs into a window.  Our first great view of a shrike!064

Real spring is still weeks away, but enjoy a March sunset over the lake071