donate buttonThis is Umbra’s second entry in the series “Grist dared me to make a change.” Read the first and third here. And support her dare with a gift to Grist!

peapotDay 1, July 5: Plant an unusual garden
My challenge was to plant something edible in an unusual place and take a picture of it. Radishes on a rooftop? Corn in front of City Hall? I once grew lettuce in my hat. Today I planted a pea plant in a teapot. (Does that make it a peapot?)

umbra bikingDay 2, July 6: Raspberry Beret day
Embrace the lyrics to the Prince song “Raspberry Beret” and get something you love at a secondhand store. Or trade for something, or barter. Be sexy in secondhand! Here’s my vintage car print dress I like to wear biking!

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bezos scholarDay 3, July 7: Wisdom from our juniors
When was the last time you talked to a young person about something really meaningful? Any day is a great day to talk to a youngster about their vision for a more sustainable world. I spoke to a few teenagers who taught me things I didn’t know about Chinese economics, wind farms and litter! (Thank you Bezos Scholars Julius Kakwenzire, Sundoes Mohamed Elbery and Kent Smith!)

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baking sodaDay 4, July 8: Blow your mind with baking soda
I made a batch of my favorite DIY shampoo with baking soda! I brushed my teeth with baking soda paste. Then I used some under my arms for deodorant. And since I wasn’t worried about working up a sweat, I scrubbed the bathroom tiles with it, too.  Simple and sustainable. Check out my baking soda shampoo recipe!

umbra in a big hatDay 5, July 9: Green your sunscreen
Wearing sunscreen is a must in summer — but it can also be a bummer. Did you know conventional sunscreen can be toxic to your body and the planet? For this challenge, I found sunscreen that’s eco-friendly and effective. To stay safe in the sun, I happen to love large hats!

manhattan sunsetDay 6, July 10: Take a snapshot of sunrise or sunset
We humans spend a lot of time at laptops and in office buildings these days. Time to get outside and enjoy the world around us. It’s probably one of the most sustainable things we can do, at least for ourselves. Here’s to sunset over Manhattan!

Coming up in the second week: Meatless Monday, fixing broken stuff and cow hugging. Hay, that reminds me! How about a donation to Grist?