Today we officially celebrate our lovely planet.
According to earthday.org, Earth Day grew out of this particular context: 1970, a time when “Americans were slurping leaded gas through massive V8 sedans,” and “industry belched out smoke and sludge with little fear of legal consequences or bad press.” When “air pollution was commonly accepted as the smell of prosperity. ‘Environment’ was a word that appeared more often in spelling bees than on the evening news.” Though mainstream America remained oblivious to environmental concerns, the publication in 1962 of Rachel Carson’s New York Times bestseller Silent Spring had already set the stage and “represented a watershed moment for the modern environmental movement, selling more than 500,000 copies in 24 countries and, up until that moment, more than any other person, Ms. Carson raised public awareness and concern for living organisms, the environment and public health.”
Earth Day is one of my favorite national holidays. Though, admittedly, it often feels somewhat bittersweet to me. While I’m far from a treehugger, I’m conscious of my actions’ overall impact on the environment–what I consume, how I consume. So several years ago, I began limiting plastic in my life. Not an easy task. And I’ll likely forever be in process as plastic is ubiquitous. Check out ecologist Michael SanClemens’ recently released Plastic Purge: How to Use Less Plastic, Eat Better, Keep Toxins Out of Your Body, and Help Save the Sea Turtles! if you’re curious about plastic’s impact not only on our environment but our overall health AND the sea turtles!
To pay homage to Earth Day, I found this amazing How-To for you, for me, for everybody to try! Super simple and uses what everyone will at one point or another have lying around: a plastic two-liter container. So before tossing the bottles into the recycling bin, consider transforming them into this fabulous Sea Creature Lamp from The Big Ass Book of Crafts by Mark Montano.
Snap-in socket-and-cord set with switch and a candelabra base
15-watt chandelier bulb
2 emptied and cleaned 2-liter soda bottles
*Glue remover (author suggests Goof off) – optional
Now, do the following for both bottles:
1. Prep the bottles first by removing the labels. Soaking in very hot water has always worked for me. In case it doesn’t, the author recommends using Goof off glue remover.
2. Next, using your craft knife (very sharp) cut the base off.
3. With your scissors, starting from the base, cut ¼ inch strips to the neck of the bottle.
4. Stack the bottles by inserting one bottle into the other so that one bottle neck is tucked inside the other.
5. Thread the light cord through the bottles so that the socket is surrounded by strips.
6. Finally, screw in the light bulb and hang the lamp from a hook. Ta da! You’re done!
Happy Earth Day everyone!
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