Why It’s So Easy Being Green

Living in a world that has become consumed with technology, it may give us reason to think that “being green” could become a lost cause.  Yet, technology has given us so many outlets to become more ecologically responsible.  Bills, schedules, and even airline tickets can now be accessed paperless.   The Internet and television have made us more connected and globally aware of products available to help protect the environment in every aspect of our lives.

In the home especially, you can now choose a range of products that will help sustain the environment, while still providing beautiful, sleek and modern finishes.  The Home Depot has a link on their website (www.homedepot.ca) to a section called “Eco Options,” where you can easily locate the product type you are looking for, from flooring to appliances to décor, there is a way you can help manage your carbon footprint.  But the green initiative doesn’t stop at technology and interior/exterior design.

Almost all major grocery stores have become more eco-friendly as well.  By providing large reusable bags/bins, made out of recycled materials and typically costing $1, consumers are given a convenient eco-option.  And even if you do forget your reusable bags at home, you will be charged 5 cents per plastic bag, which have also become noticeably larger in order to try and reduce the volume of plastic bags and encourage the purchase of reusable ones.  The food itself has taken on the green trend; growing organic crops and eating green foods like avocado, broccoli, spinach, and kale are all the buzz with regards to keeping good health and a healthy planet.

The trend of being environmentally friendly has transpired into the fashion world as well.  For example, H&M has created the “Conscious Collection.” It is H&M’s “action for a more sustainable fashion future.”  This collection uses greener materials such as organic cotton and recycled polyester.  Originally the campaign came out in April 2011, and the colour scheme was mainly different shades of white and muted earth tones.  However, one year later, they are still producing the collection but have amped up the colour pallet.  Walking into the store this season, you will be bombarded—literally—with everything green. Emerging mainly in pastel and mint, but with occasional pops of emerald, green is popping up all over the fashion world and the colour is going to be a huge trend this spring.

So maybe it was the resurgence of Kermit the Frog, or maybe it’s because being eco-conscious has spanned to every outlet of our lives, but I am happy to say that it’s never been so easy being green.

(This article was originally written by me for www.thesilo.ca and published in the March 2012 issue.) 


For the Men in Your Life

Hear yee, hear yee!

My last post was definitely aimed towards a female audience, or perhaps a male audience to get some ideas for the women in their life, depending on how you look at it.  Well today is a reversal: I have decided to bounce back with a gift-list for the fellas.  If you are really stuck, yes, it’s ok to get cologne, golf balls, ties, or any other “go-to” gift for the men in your life.  But if you want to do something a little bit special or creative for your [dad/husband/boyfriend/brother/grandpa/co-worker/friend-with-benefits/freind-without-benefits/cousin/uncle/boss/neighbour/etc] and get him something he’ll really love, check out some of my ideas below.

For your satisfaction, I have created categories for a few stereotypical “types” of men that may be in your life, and given three different price points, ranging from $500.00 – $20.00:

The Splurge, The Savvy Saver, and The Stocking Stuffer.

Simply click on the image and it will direct you to the website where, in most cases, you can purchase the item online.


For the ADVENTUROUS man in your life:


K2 Playback Snowboard - $350

This is a great gift for a beginner/intermediate snowboarder.  Excellent brand, stylish, and a very good price for a nice versatile board.  On the website, it will give you a sizing chart of what size to buy depending on your guy’s height.  To amp up the gift even more, add matching bindings and boots. 


Lacoste - Men's Oversized Pixel Croc Beanie - $50

Snowboarder or not, most guys dig a new toque.  And really, why not make it designer? 


Burton - Fluoro Comp Wax - All Temp - $19

This is a great option for a guy who likes to hit the slopes, and doesn’t hit deep into your pockets.

Not into snowboarding?  Not a problem.

For the MUSIC LOVING man in your life:


Philips - Fidelio DS9000 Premium Docking Speaker System - $500

This bad-ass docking system will light up the eyes of anyone on the receiving end.  Maybe a gift to split with your siblings for dear old Dad?


GEAR4 - AlarmDock Halo 2 - $100

Multifunctional and elegant design, what more could he ask for?


SkullCandy - Smokin Buds - Black/Red - $45

This is great because it works with all Apple and non-Apple products.  However, if he is currently a “non-Apple” user, why are you looking at these gift ideas?  Get him an iPod, iPhone or iPad. It’s a no-brainer.

Okay, fine.  Not everyone is into the whole “iWonderful-World of Apple.”  In that case…

For the STYLISH man in your life:


Diesel - Men's Gift Set - Leather Wallet & Leather Strapped Watch - $205

Classic, timeless (or time-keeping ha-ha-ha), and functional… 

Need I say more?

Oakley - Fuel Cell - $125

I don’t know any guy who wouldn’t appreciate a pair of Oakley sunglasses.  Available in every style, every colour, and every price-point, you can’t go wrong.

H&M - Chunky Knit Sweater - $50

This pull over knit sweater is the “grown up” version of a hoodie.  Great for that retro-fabulous-bush-man in your life. Perfectly comfortable on a snowy winter’s eve (and at a comforting price).

Style not really his thaang chicken waang?  Ok then…

For the GAMER in your life:


Carbon Fiber Esky Honey Bee KING II Electric RC Helicopter 6 Channel CCPM Remote Control - $339

For the young, for the old; all boys men love nothing more than a new toy to play with on Christmas morning.


Black Wii Console with New Super Mario Bros Game - $149

Super fun and for all ages, this updated black Wii is pretty darn sleek.  Not to mention the bonus of the included new Super Mario Bros game.

Already has the Wii console?  No worries!

(You could always get him an XBox 360 or PS3 – total splurges)

If he’s already decked out with all the consoles, never fear.

All gamers need want games:

Wii - Zelda: Skyward Sword - $50

This is the new Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword for Wii.  Also made for other consoles.  *Extended playing sword sold separately (but definitely encouraged to make a really super gift).

He’s not into video games?  (I doubt that, but…)

Perhaps he’s more into “manly-man” toys…


For the HANDY man in your life:


Makita - Cordless 4-Piece 18V Combo Kit - $500

Now I don’t know all that much about tools, except that, generally, men love them…Even if they don’t know how to use them.


RYOBI One+ 18V Starter Kit - $129

This is great for a beginning handy-man to get his tool collection started.


Telescopic 3 in 1 Snow Brush - $20

Maybe it won’t literally fit in a stocking, but handy or not, everyone needs a good ice scraper to get them through a Canadian winter.

 Well, I sure hope I have inspired some good gift ideas for all the guys in your life. If you are ordering online, get it done soon or your gifts won’t be delivered in time.

Happy gifting!

What will you be getting for the men in your life?