It’s been nearly two months since we returned from Maui, and now we’re trying to soak up the rest of summer before it flashes past us.
I’ve always thought of myself as fairly environmentally conscious, but not to the extreme of the crazy tree hugger lady. No offense if that’s you. I applaud you, really; it’s just not where I’m at in life, but I am getting closer. Maui was so incredibly breathtaking, it felt like a dream. I kept repeating over and over (probably to the point of annoyance for Cassidy) as we drove around, or took in the views, or frankly just hung out at the beach: “Can you imagine what it would be like to live here?!” It was just hard for me to grasp what day in day out life would feel like. Island Brittany was certainly loving life, virgin drinks in hand. (Disclaimer again if you didn’t see my Insta stories: not pregnant. I just don’t drink.) But honestly, what a beautiful place to inhabit. With that though, we admired the care for the environment, common love for nature and its beauty that everyone respects. It’s just a way of life. Never in your face or boastful. They just serve paper straws instead of plastic. End of story. Every trash can also had a recycling receptacle. Target doesn’t have plastic bags. Bring your own or buy a cheap reusable one. Everyone was in on it. Being environmentally friendly was a cohesive effort and everybody cares. There are opportunities to see the implications right in front of your face if you choose not to abide and how it immediately impacts. Instant gratification of doing good.
This perspective lended Cassidy and I to discuss and come up with some simple action steps we can take to be more mindful of the impacts we have on the world around us:
Don’t use a straw or plastic lid unless I really need it. I like to think I’ll get a metal straw and keep it in my purse. I am really considering it, but I’m not sure how truly sustainable that is for my lifestyle. I am grateful to the mainland establishments that offer paper straws. We are trying to make more coffee at home, and I really don’t take drinks to go too often anymore. It seems like a metal straw is unnecessary for me at the moment, but maybe if you find yourself regularly getting those cold Starbucks drinks, it would be ideal to make the switch. If my lifestyle displays that more in the future, I will certainly invest. If we all cut down on the plastic we’re consuming, it can have huge effects for the waste we’re producing that is also impacting our environment and making its way to our oceans. Save the sea turtles! They are majestic creatures necessary to the ecosystem.
Recycling. Our apartment building has a trash chute in our hallway, but we have to go all the way down to the parking garage to recycle. It’s a brand new building, and I really wish they would have also included a chute for recycling, but they did not. Typically my choice to not recycle is out of convenience, but we are making the decision to recycle more, even when it is inconvenient. I have been trying to save a recyclable cup until I am in a place with proper disposal rather than conveniently dropping it in the closest trash bin.
Use coral reef safe sunscreen. While in Maui, Cassidy and I went on a SNUBA excursion with Trilogy. Honestly, if you are planning to go snorkeling while in Hawaii, pay for the upgrade and SNUBA. As our diver said, “Snorkeling is two dimensional, SNUBA is three dimensional and makes the reef come to life.” It was one of the coolest experiences ever. I will share more in an upcoming post about the experience, but it is not one to miss. Because of this experience though, we have a newfound appreciation for ocean wildlife and the reef. We didn’t know about the effects of sunscreen previously, but now that we do, choose wisely. Vote with your dollars. Get reef-safe sunscreen. In 2020, retailers in Hawaii will no longer be able to sell sunscreen that isn’t reef safe. Beautycounter is leading on the frontlines of this legislation. We used this one while on our trip and we were so thankful we invested, because we used a LOT of sunscreen in that Hawaiian sun!