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  • Jun 24, 2021
  • By NextEra Home

Earth Day 2021 falls on April 22. It is the perfect time to use fun activities that could help to preserve our natural resources, while also teaching kids about conservation. School children will learn about conservation in their classrooms, but hands on experience at home with mom and dad is invaluable. Plus, it’s fun!

Earth Day lands midweek this year. It may be inconvenient for working parents to plan an activity on that day. It’s okay. Plan an earth-friendly activity on another day that is convenient for you and the kids.

1. Is there a better way to celebrate Earth Day than to get your hands nice and dirty? We think not. Help the kids get a touch of earth under their fingernails. Plant a garden in the backyard or if space is limited, make it a container garden. Whether you garden with pots or dig out a plot, you can choose how to fertilize your plants.

2. Plant a tree on your property to celebrate Earth Day or choose to plant in a deforested area, the help of the Canopy Project1. It only costs one dollar to help plant a tree through the Canopy project, which is under the Earthday.org umbrella. For every dollar your child donates from their piggy bank, a sapling is planted and transferred after six to 12 months, into a deforested area on the planet. Matching the kids purchase, dollar-for-dollar could fuel their excitement. Remind them also that trees play a significant role in fighting pollution, removing up to 784,000 tons of pollutants each year in urban districts.2

3. Make your own all-purpose cleaner. The ingredients are safe for the kids to handle and thereby, the cleaner is safe for the environment. There are only five items to gather to concoct the earth-friendly cleaner: vinegar, water, lemon rind, rosemary sprigs and a spray bottle.

Mix one-part vinegar to one-part water. Use your own discretion about how much lemon rind and rosemary to add to the mixture. Pour the mixture into the spray bottle. Allow the rind and rosemary to infuse, which takes about a week. At the end of the seven days, the homemade all-purpose, natural cleaner is ready to use. Give it a good shake and spray over hard water stains or to clean away scuffs and smudges from doors and walls. It is safe to use on just about anything around the house except granite surfaces. The acidity in the cleaner isn’t good for the stone and could cause etching. The kids might warm up to chores, when using an earth-friendly product they made themselves.

4. Earth Day is a good reminder to think about the little things that could add up to make a big difference, ecologically speaking. Saving water is one way that kids and parents can help to preserve the earth’s available fresh water. On average, each American uses almost 70 gallons of water a day, equaling approximately 25,300 gallons per year, per person3. That’s a lot of water.

Kids can conserve water consumption at home. Something as simple as turning the water off when brushing their teeth is a conservation measure. Also, most kids can probably get behind less time in the shower. Cutting shower time will reduce the amount of water used per minute, which averages about 5 gallons per sixty-seconds. Scaling off just two minutes could save as much as 10 gallons of water per shower. Encourage kids to take shorter showers or to turn the water off when soaping up, then back on to rinse off. They’ll use less water and still be just as clean.

5. As humans continue to build out homes and infrastructure, we also continue to encroach on the natural habitat of wildlife. However, you and the kids can create an animal-friendly backyard, by setting up areas where birds and other creatures take refuge, stay safe from direct human interaction, as well as the toxicity associated with insecticides.

It doesn’t matter if your home is located, in the city, country or a suburb. Creating a haven for wildlife is entirely possible. Simply provide for their basic needs; that is food, water and shelter. In celebration of Earth Day, your family could make a pledge on the Humane Society’s website, promising to create a Humane Backyard. Of course, you can pledge on your own, but make the pledge and donate on the Humane Society website4, and the organization will send information on how to take actionable steps to build a safe space for wildlife, pets and people, too. You’ll also get a cool Humane Society backyard sign declaring the space a “Humane Backyard.” They’ll also throw in work gloves to tend the space.

NextEra Home provides home warranty plans* to help prepare for inevitable breakdowns due to normal wear and tear. Unfortunately, the planet we all call home, doesn’t come with a warranty, but the combined efforts of its inhabitants can help to protect its resources and to preserve it from irreparable harm.  For more information on how to enroll, call 833-634-6634.

Happy Earth Day!

* Home warranty plans are offered and provided by NextEra Home.  The home warranty plans are service plans and not warranties.

1 https://www.earthday.org/campaign/the-canopy-project/

2 https://www.fs.usda.gov/speeches/state-forests-and-forestry-united-states-1

3 http://www.bu.edu/sustainability/what-you-can-do/ten-sustainable-actions/take-shorter-showers/

4 https://secure.humanesociety.org/site/Donation2;jsessionid=00000000.app30028b?idb=250176944&df_id=24245&mfc_pref=T&24245.donation=form1&NONCE_TOKEN=A7E8559481FF0C3FDF2FC83C740788D1