Sunday, July 18, 2010

Final APLS Carnival Wrap-Up: Finding community at the farmers market

At a farmers market, you fill up on far more than fresh produce. You savor a little slice of your community.

That's the message I heard from the contributors to the July APLS carnival on farmers markets.

It's the individual connections you make that breaks the mold from simply shopping to something special. Take Mrs. Green at Little Green Blog, whose relationship with an apple vendor has spanned pregnancy cravings to now the pre-teen years. "The people ...put their great energies into the things I eat, they want to know me... they show me photos of their family, they ask about my life, they pack my box, find me things, suggest new ideas and for that, I’m deeply grateful," she writes.

As for myself, I'm happy to watch those relationships build, not only for myself, but for my children, who are getting to know the very people who provide them with their food.

Robin at Simple Green Organic Happy reminds us of the connections she builds on a weekly basis, from the traditions she builds with her children to the faces she meets each week. "On the surface, we’re just getting our food for the week. But we warm ourselves in something bigger than that. Our ideals, and our health, and our community. Our kids. It’s a hell of a lot to put on a business card."

Kellie at the Green Phone Booth reminds us that while markets don't have supermarket variety, they make up for it in other ways. She writes:

Where else can you have breakfast, meet your neighbors, snack all day long,
buy handmade gifts, locally grown flowers, freshly baked bread, eat lunch with
friends you haven't seen in weeks and learn more about others in your community?
If you ask me, it's definitely worth the price of "expensive jelly."

Speaking of community, many thanks to all of you who have participated in the carnival since it launched two years ago. After a lot of thought, I've decided that this month will be the last month I will coordinate the APLS carnival. I've appreciated learning from the many voices who have shared with us these last two years.

Wishing you all the best!
Robbie @ Going Green Mama

Saturday, July 3, 2010

July topic: Farmers market faves

Visiting a farmers market or a farm stand has been one of the hallmarks of summer in my family. I can't wait for those first initial days, when the tiny starts are out, and love to see the bright colors that blossom in the heat of summer. It's all so tempting.

For July, I'd like to share your favorite farmers market experience. Is there a particular market you're tied to? A favorite memory? Favorite foods or recipes to share?

Share you memories. Email your posts to me by July 15, and we'll post our wrap-up here on July 18.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

June topic: Challenges to conversationism

An interesting post on a friend's Facebook page today leads us to our next topic:

Why are we, as a nation, so resistant to the idea of conservation instead of more oil exploration? ... Yes, our lives look a lot different than years gone by but we have a lot of waste and excess that makes life cushy but is not necessary.

Weigh in! Post a comment or a blog link below. Instead of a round-up, let's just see where the conversation takes us...

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Back for June!

You've spoken. We'll keep it going!

I'll be posting the June topic in a few days. Given the craziness of the last month, I've had to limit my blog time.

Thanks for your patience!
Robbie @ Going Green Mama

Friday, April 23, 2010

APLS Carnival: Now what?

Back in summer 2008, the APLS Carnival kicked off as a community to discuss sustainability, greener living and more. We welcomed bloggers from around the country, and we've had some fabulous discussions on these topics and more:

Green journeys
Does Size Matter?
Children as Natural Resource
Buying Local

I've learned much from these discussions, and met a number of wonderful people along the way.

But, like a TV show that's been put on hiatus, after a lull this summer, we've struggled to get bloggers active in this community like we once had. So I'll put this question to you: What would you like to see with the APLS Carnival? Does the old method of monthly topics still appeal to you? If it does, how can we attract a larger participation? What do you think?

Share your thoughts below or shoot me an e-mail at goinggreenmama at gmail.

Robbie @ Going Green Mama

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

April Carnival is Live

The carnival is up over at the Green Phone Booth. Come check it out and add your two cents!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Extended Deadline for April Carnival

I'm extending the deadline for the April Carnival from today to Monday April 19th. That means you get four extra days to finish your posts! I'll be posting the carnival next Wednesday, and I'm looking forward to hearing your thoughts.

If you missed it, the topic is "Which is more important: personal or political action?"

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Which is More Important: Personal or Political Action?

Recently, I was reading an interview on Grist with Annie Leonard of Story of Stuff fame, and there were two things she said that I found very interesting:
Q. What would you encourage people to do on an individual level?

A. People ask me that a lot, and I like to see where they are so I ask them, "What can you think of to do?" They say, "I can recycle. I can ride my bike more. I can buy organic. I can buy this instead of this." Really individual actions as opposed to, "I can work with my neighbors to shut down this toxic factory." We have a consumer part of ourselves and a citizen part of ourselves. And throughout this country's history, the citizen parts of ourselves have accomplished enormously wonderful things to make this country a better place. But in recent decades, I feel like the consumer part of ourselves is spoken to and validated and nurtured so much that we've over-identified with it and the citizen part of ourself has atrophied. We just need to start reinvigorating that citizen muscle. So the number one thing to do is to hook up with others who share your values and start making some real change.

Q. Has there been any stuff that's been difficult for you to give up or part with or not consume?

A. Not really, partly because I just don't really focus on the individual piece so much. I really don't fall into that camp where it's your fault because you left the water running when you brushed your teeth. So I just don't spend a lot of time around the guilt and the individual action stuff.
I often see this divide in the environmental world between advocates of personal versus political change, our consumer side versus our citizen side, and individual versus large-scale actions. Many encourage people to focus on small changes like changing their lightbulbs, while others say that those small changes don't matter and we should be focusing on broadscale changes of the entire system.

So for this month's APLS Carnival, I'm asking the questions:
  • Are personal changes too small to matter?
  • Should people who have full time jobs and kids and church responsibilities, etc. be expected to find time to organize their neighbors to shut down toxic factories?
  • Are people who do only the personal changes being lazy?
  • Are people who expect political changes to solve all of our problem pushing the blame on others instead of taking responsibility?
  • Is consumer action less important than citizen action, and vice versa?
  • Where's the balance?
These are just some questions to get your ideas rolling. Email your posts to consciousshopperblog [at] gmail [dot] com by April 15. The carnival will be hosted at the Green Phone Booth on April 20th.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

March Carnival: Prioritizing

This month's carnival on how you set your green priorities is up at the Good Life. Check it out!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


The March APLS post is hosted by wilkeorama...

It's a big green world out there and despite wanting to do it all, there are limits to our abilities. (Even Superheroes from the Green Phone Booth are talking about their shortcomings!)

Sometimes we tell ourselves that we can let one thing go because we are going above and beyond in another area. For example, one might go all out and grow a great garden but not compost.

Other times we struggle to do a number of things, but don't seem to be able to divide our attention and energy successfully.

This month's topic is about the decisions we make, big or small, that affect our actions as self-proclaimed APLS. How do you decide what gets to be top priority in your green life? What types of activities are a MUST for you, and what gets left on the chopping block? Please email your submissions to wilkeorama at gmail by March 15.

I look forward to reading about everyone's priorities! Thank you!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Carnival is live

The February carnival is up! Check it out at

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Winter motivation: February carnival topic

They say the darkest hour is just before dawn. And in this late-winter month, it is all too true.

It’s easier to stay motivated in the fall, as you prepare for the holidays celebrations. And in January, we have great intentions with our resolutions.

But as the weeks progress, it’s hard to stay focused. It’s cold to dig in and get motivated outdoors. The walls seem to close in as we’re stuck inside. And perhaps a little too much expressions of holiday cheer have left you debt-ridden and with few resources to take the next steps of your big green dreams.

So how do you stay motivated in these winter months? Share us your tips on how you stay motivated as part of this month’s APLS carnival.

Post your comments below or e-mail your posts to goinggreenmama at gmail dot com by Feb. 22. We’ll post the highlights at Going Green Mama on Feb. 24.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

February Carnival topic: Winter motivation

They say the darkest hour is just before dawn. And I'm beginning to figure it's the same with greener and more sustainable living.

It's easy being green in the spring and summer. Look around you: The opportunities about to live lighter: Gardening, farmers marketing, even simple things like friendlier weather for opening the windows and cycling and walking instead of driving.

And in the late fall/early winter, the focus turns towards making a lighter footprint without lightening the joy of the holiday season.

And perhaps January is about your resolutions for the coming year.

But what happens as winter goes on? Cold days and fewer opportunities may mean some people lose their motivation. Or maybe it's simply a time for you to regroup and plan for the coming seasons.

So this month, I'll ask you: How do you stay focused on greener and more sustainable living in the dead of winter?

E-mail your posts by Feb. 15 to goinggreenmama at gmail, and we'll include them in our carnival posting by Feb. 18. If you're thinking spring, we're also looking for hosts for the spring months, so indicate that as well.

Have a wonderful month!
Robbie @ Going Green Mama

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The January Carnival Is Live!

Thanks everyone for submitting your posts! There is a lot of good info in this months carnival so be sure to check it out.

-Lisa at Retro Housewife Goes Green

Thursday, January 14, 2010

January carnival reminder and call for new hosts

Good morning! Just a reminder that the deadline for the January APLS carnival is Sunday. Please email Lisa at love_cats05 on yahoo with your post. Details are below.

Also, we're on the lookout for hosts and topics for 2010. If you'd like to host a month or suggest a topic, post a comment below or email me at goinggreenmama on gmail.

Have a great day!
Robbie @ Going Green Mama