I’d be lying if I said I buy only locally grown and organic food, drive my bike to work every day and wear nothing but cotton. I have tried to be the perfect steward of the earth and after a week of super eco-consciousness and smelling like a pole cat (does anyone know of a good aluminum free deodorant?) decided my sanity was worth more than worrying about a piece of trashed paper towel going in the compost.
Since then I decided I would simply try my best and take baby steps. So, I carpool, buy organic and local food when I can, and use non-toxic cleaning products (mainly so Himmery doesn’t croak when sipping from the porcelain).
The Earth Hour Date was one of those baby steps towards becoming more “green”. I love how easy it was. I didn’t have to read any labels for weird chemical names or calculate my ecological footprint (although I did anyway and I need 3.3 earths – yikes!). I just had to turn out the lights.
At first it took some getting used to actually using our brains to think of a new form of entertainment. We decided to play Clue, a game I had never played before and ended up winning! Just sayin’.
I tend to love peace and quiet. A lot. It was so nice to eliminate all of the noise in our lives and enjoy a quiet night together. Whether you’re looking to sustain the earth or just your relationship this is the perfect date for both!
We started by going to a nearby fruit & vegetable shop that specializes in locally grown food and picked out a few items to include in our dinner. I read somewhere that using a barbeque was more eco-friendly than using a stove. I have no idea if that’s actually true or not, but that’s what we did for our electricity free evening at home. Along with our hamburgers (topped with maple mustard from Sugar Moon Farm), I tried something new by putting carrots and green beans wrapped in tin foil on the barbeque. It all turned out great, despite the fact that I’m just learning how to cook foods that don’t have the initials K.D.
After dinner, we lit some candles in the living room as it was beginning to get dark. We then realized that we hadn’t thought ahead very well. We were planning to play cards, or a board game, but neglected to get either one before shutting off the lights. What followed was a dangerous and frantic search through a dark closet, lit candles in hand, for said deck of cards or board game.
Our board game of choice was Clue. I’m sure if I say I’ve never played Clue before, someone will tell me I played it as a child and just forget (I’m looking at you, Mom). So instead I will simply say that it’s been long enough since I last played that I totally forget everything about it. After we read through all the rules and set up the board, we had a very enjoyable evening solving a murder by the flickering light of the candles.
It was really quite easy to have a fun date at home without using any electricity. I do have two tips for those who want to try this out. First, if you plan on making or eating food as part of your evening, it might be a good idea to time it so that you aren’t cooking in the dark. Second, make sure you have any games you want to play, books you want to read, or any other activity ready to go before it gets dark. It will save you some frustration as well as cut down on the chances of accidentally burning down your house.
Regardless of where you come down on the issues surrounding the environment, there’s no denying that it’s a good thing to take care of the earth. If you’re wondering what kind of impact your life is having on the environment, check out the carbon footprint calculator. It might be all the motivation you need to have an eco-friendly date night.
For the locals: Check out Second Nature, a website with lots of great information about improving the way we live and our impact on the environment in Nova Scotia.