ReTale’s Green Gesture for the Digital Age

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So how did this awesome project begin?

We got inspired to start this online for bloggers after reading a study by Dr. Alexander Wissner-Gross, who calculated the average amount of CO2 emitted when anyone visits a website. Our corporate sponsor, Retale, is a digital platform for shopping, so the company is already paperless. Retale wanted to address the emissions that come from the internet in efforts to be a truly green company. Not only is planting trees vital to maintaining our environment, but it also actively fights carbon emissions. We figured the simplest way to combat carbon emissions was to try and replant America’s forests together with bloggers.

What has been the most exciting support you’ve received for this project?

The most excited support or situation we’ve had because of this project I think is yet to come. We have only just started collecting participants, although we have done this project in 5 other countries with exciting results. If I count our sister projects, I’d say the most exciting event was the replanting of the Gévezé forest in Brittany, France. With the Arbor Day Foundation, we plant species of trees that are carefully selected according to the location in which they will be planted. We will have more information on the species of trees planted after we send our first round of trees for fulfillment. This is something we’d like to include in the planting update when we get the information from the Arbor Day Foundation.

How can we bloggers get involved?

Bloggers can get involved by writing about our project, spreading the word via social media, and reducing the carbon footprint of their blog by letting us plant a tree for them. The reason why spreading the word is so important is because the more bloggers who agree to participate in the project, the more trees we will plant and the bigger the impact on the environment will be. We need great blogs like Miseducated who have a strong following to set an example for the blogosphere by proactively helping the environment. I think taking a stand to reduce the carbon emissions of Miseducated is absolutely an example of doing what you think is right no matter what others say! Many people don’t realize that CO2 is emitted by websites. They assume because it’s paperless, that there are no adverse effects to the environment, but this is not true. We need to work together to show the blogosphere that a) their blogs are emitting carbon too, and b) they can do something about it.

Where are these trees located?

We make quarterly donations to the Arbor Day Foundation for all the trees we plant to Green Gestures. Right now we are collecting our first 1,000 blogger participants to plant a big batch of 1,000 trees. We plan to update the Green Gestures website with information (and hopefully photos) about where the trees were planted. It depends on where the Arbor Day Foundation has the most need for reforestation. If you’re interested to see which forests they are focusing on this year, you can see a list of national forests on their website here.

Do you have any other environmentally friendly projects we should know about?

The use of paper is related to two major environmental problems: loss of biodiversity and damage to the environment. Paper production contributes to the loss of biodiversity through the destruction of native forests, the expansion of monoculture eucalyptus and pine trees, and high levels of water and energy usage. Paper consumption also generates an enormous amount of trash – much of it is not recycled and ends up in landfills, incinerators, or littering our nation’s landscape. Through our Green Gestures campaign, Retale™ aims to reduce paper consumption (and paper waste) by creating a more sustainable way to shop. With our website and mobile apps, you have instant access to thousands of diverse offers and catalogs from stores near you. Using our digital service means that you can reduce your paper waste by opting out of the weekly ads and catalogs you currently receive in favor of viewing them online.

In addition to providing a digital solution for consumer shopping needs, Retale™ also engages in efforts to help the environment with two initiatives: our “Make a Green Gesture” campaign (described above) and our Sustainable Careers portal. Retale™ also supports the green economy with our Sustainable Careers portal, a virtual service providing specialized listings for environmental and sustainable employment. Through this portal, we aim to help professionals in environmental fields find meaningful employment, and thus contribute to building a society that lives in harmony with the environment.

10 Easy Ways To Be More Eco Friendly

Being environmentally friendly is big news these days, and here I share with you my top ten tips to be an eco warrior.

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1. Use public transport. Better yet, walk.

It’s an easy one, but it works. It’s stated that New Yorkers save on average $19 billion a year simply by using sustainable transportation. This shows that in addition to being good for the environment, it’s good financially too!

2. Reduce, reuse and recycle.

This is important for so many reasons and it takes just a tiny bit of extra effort. From saving habitat destruction to reducing pollution caused by waste, the advantages of this are huge.

3. Eat locally sourced produce.

Visit your local farm shop or farmers market. Not only is the food from there more eco friendly, it’s healthier, tastes better and is often inexpensive!

4. Use both sides of paper.

I am guilty of this one, but it’s such a simple way to help cut down on deforestation!

5. Use canvas bags when shopping.

There really is no excuse for not implementing this one. Everyone uses them now, even super models like Kate Moss have been snapped with them!

6. Wear extra clothing rather than turn up the heating.

It’s so simple yet so easily effective.

7. Download music, rather than buying CDs.

It cuts out on waste and is so much better for the environment.

8. Switch everything off at the plugs every night.

This can save a huge amount of wasted energy and takes just a few seconds!

9. Refill water bottles.

Refilling water bottles rather than buying more each day cuts down on waste and is way better for the environment!

10. Use rechargeable batteries.

This can save you money as well as being a step towards being an eco warrior!

So those are my top tips, what are yours?

Mew for Today: Tickle Me Green

It’s St. Patrick’s Day, green shamrocks and rainbow bridges to pots of gold. Green beer. It’s time to celebrate because, as if you needed a reason anyway, there’s a holiday underway.

Green is the color of life and the earth. It signifies growth, health, environment and is often used for it’s calming effects.

Spend Your Day Tickled Green

First, start your day by preparing the cutest of the sweets, pistachio macarons at Tartelette. If you’re feeling thirsty grab an iced green tea to refresh and wake you up. Use milk and matcha powder or brewed green tea with ice.
Next get prepared for a night out on the town or for a very-green party at home. Make sure your outfit contains lots of green and is reminiscent of whimsical St. Patrick’s Day for extra fun — I relate green, rainbows and gold to St. Patrick’s Day due to the decorations!
Add a couple of drops of green food coloring to just about anything to green it up in a flash. This is great for beer and drinks as well as baked sweets.
No matter what you do I hope you can spend it with loved ones having fun and enjoying great food as every holiday should be shared.

Dress Up, Go Out

Green Love

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Power Animals: What is Yours?

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“I think I could turn and live with animals,
they’re so placid and self-contained,
I stand and look at them long and long.
They do not sweat and whine about their condition,
They do not lie awake in the dark and weep for their sins,
They do not make me sick discussing their duty to God,
Not one is dissatisfied,
not one is demented with the mania of owning things,
Not one kneels to another,
nor to his kind that lived thousands of years ago,
Not one is respectable or unhappy over the whole earth.”
~ Walt Whitman , “Song of Myself”

Animals have been admired, revered and even worshiped throughout the history of mankind. They are so beautiful and powerful that I sometimes think that we envy them, in the ways that we strip from them their coats and skin, or how we try to mimic their physical features. Although I’m not much for the skinning, I do love the cat-eye eyeliner effect.

You may also feel a special connection to a certain species, maybe even a sense of kinship. Do you find yourself enamored with fascination at the sound of a wolf howling, or have you ever stopped to look up at the sky as a hawk or eagle flew overhead? Is there a certain animal that stalks your subconscious mind and maybe scares you a little? Many indigenous cultures around the world believe that different animals all carry a lesson for mankind. An “animal totem” (also known as a “power animal”) is an animal spirit that watches over an individual or a group–looks out for them and teaches them what they need to know to survive.

I’ve always been fascinated by wolves and thought they were beautiful creatures. I started learning more about them and found out that they are very family oriented and support the other members of their pack. The females all help each other with the birthing and taking care of the babies, and I love the fact that they “sing” together by howling at the moon in an eerie chorus. They are also one of the few kinds of animal that mates for life, which really signifies to me how intelligent they are.

Like the loyal and family-oriented wolf, there may be an animal that reflects your own personalty traits, or represents to you a trait that you value. The beaver is an animal that works hard to build a sturdy structure for him and his family, a home that he can pass down through the generations. The eagle flies high over head so she can see for miles around, but she can still see when a field mouse peaks its head out of a tiny hole in the ground. After you learn more about your favorite animal, you might even discover that you admired them for a trait that you value that goes way beyond the physical.

The connection you have with a certain animal doesn’t always need to be spiritual. If you admire a certain animal for their physical traits–such as the antlers on a male deer, or the eyes of a cat or the paw prints of a dog, you can incorporate these symbols into your wardrobe or your home decor. The animal may even be so close to your heart that you feel compelled to get a tattoo related to them. Recently, an image of a piranha kept popping into my head, and it wouldn’t stop until I sat down and drew a picture of this animal. I think this particular animal was showing up in my subconscious because it represented my fears toward a certain situation, and I had to face that fear before it could stop tormenting me.

If there is an animal that wants out of your subconscious, let it roam free and howl or roar or whatever it wants to do. Let your inner doe run gracefully and silently through the trees. Try to see the world through your hamster’s eyes by getting down on his level. Imagine weaving a net-like home for yourself, suspended in the corner of a dark basement, waiting for your dinner to fly in. Animals represent our inner, primal natures that sometimes get repressed, and this is a side of ourselves that we should explore so that we can come to fully understand ourselves and the world around us.

Here is a short list of animals and the things that they generally represent:

Spider

Weaving illusions, writing or creating art.

Bear

Strength and protecting your family and territory.

Cat

Courage, agility and being able to see into the mysterious.

Dolphin

Playfully joyous and lovers of life.

Frog

Adapting to a situation and knowing when to leap.

Falcon

Knowing when to take swift action.

Dog

Loyalty and selflessly protecting loved ones

Recycle and Upcycle Happy Meal Toys

Eh, so sometimes when my husband and I are running late or feeling really nasty we’ll grab happy meals — mainly just when the toys are cute… but what the hell do you do with the little plastic toys after you eat your meal?

Make something out of them!

My plan was to attach gems and glitter all over my lovely ponies and headbands with sweet unicorn emblems. Every headband is on it’s way to a special home for fun and whimsy instead of being chewed up in Wanwan’s bed or thrown in the garbage. 😉 Perhaps soon we’ll do some more silly DIY with all the plastic junk we always come across! ha

(go ahead and keep the box too for silly gifts to friends — haha)

Show me the plastic flash

Unconditional Kisses

Eating the food is like eating the box

You want dis?

Photos by Benjamin Amick <3 Dress: Manoush; Headband: DIY; Shoes: Russe & Rilakuma

Miseducated Inspired Love


Ariel: The Forest

Recycle your Vintage Scarf into a Necklace

This is a style that I wear all the time and it’s easy easy to make. I’ve loved vintage scarves but for ages I was stumped as to how to wear them without looking like the queen! Finally a brainwave brought me to the knotted scarf necklace …

You will need a patterned scarf of square of fabric, about 30″ (76cm) x 30″ to start!

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1. Lay your scarf flat, pattern side down.
2. Fold it in half, so the patterned side is on the outside.
3. Start rolling from the corner …
4. … Until you have a long sausage.
5. Tie three knots – one in the centre, and two either side.
6. Finally, tie at the top, and there you have your necklace.

I’ve used a green paisley scarf for this one, but it works with any pattern, or even a plain silk scarf. I especially love it in a nautical or equestrian print.

I think I’m Miseducated because I don’t wait for beautiful things to come to me, if I have something pictured in my mind, I’ll try and make it. Sometimes I succeed, sometimes I fail but it’s all worth it when you get complimented on your outfit and you can say ‘I made it myself!’

Create an Owl to be your Pal

So you want to create a ‘fuggly’ owl to be your pal? Though yours doesn’t have to be fuggly, that’s just the way I sew! (hehe)

1. Cut out two triangles (one small one, one bigger one) with slightly curved edges as seen.

note: it’s not an exact science, so you may like to experiment with longer, shorter, wider, thinner, curvier triangles.

2. Face the fabric inwards and sew up one side. As you sew, pull the two fabric edges so that they are together. There will be a gap where the ‘A’ triangle ends. Continue sewing up along the side of B triangle, then back down along the other side.

3. Sew around the bottom opening so that you can pull on the thread and draw the bottom closed like a drawstring bag. Fill it with filling and pull the bottom closed.

note: I use grain but wool or polyester stuffing is also good. Do not fill it up too much!

4. Fold the top down and secure it. This makes the beak.

note: This is why you don’t want to fill it too much because you wont be able to pull the beak far down, though some people like very small beaks. If so then fill it up lots!

5. Add eyes.

note: Beads work well. Fabric has a tendency to fray when cut too small. Don’t learn this the hard way!