“It’s not usually this warm, I don’t understand”

Really? You don’t understand? Have you been living under a rock?

The title of this post was overheard by me on the bus, spoken by a local to a tourist, as the local tried to explain it wasn’t always this warm/humid here.

But she claimed to not know why.

Climate change.

We hear about it all the time and now we’re living it. There’s tornados and floods in Central Canada, longer, drier droughts in Australia, heat waves in Europe, wetter wet seasons in Asia resulting in massive flooding. That’s climate change. It’s not happening 10-15 years from now, it’s happening now and people are doing the ostrich and sticking their heads in the sand. They see and feel climate change first hand but refuse to acknowledge what it is.

I think they’re afraid. Afraid of admitting that our lifestyles are and have been damaging for a long time. Afraid of admitting we’ve gone too far and there’s nothing we can do to stop it from getting even warmer, drier, wetter and windier. I’m afraid.

But we can’t just stick our heads in the sand. The governments should be the ones dealing with this. They need to step up to protect their people when they need it most and are too scared to deal with it themselves. They should be funding local food operations for when droughts and floods decimate our overseas suppliers. They need to be encouraging wind farms for when oil runs out. But they’re not. They’re sticking their heads in the sand too! WTF! Help us! You’re the ones in charge!


I guess we’ll just have to look out for ourselves.

So it’s up to you to support local food ventures. Maybe you should look into joining a local CSA. Buy local at your grocery store. The apples from New Zealand are not tastier than the apples from Nova Scotia (unless you live in New Zealand, then go for it).

It’s up to you to promote sustainable energy. Write your local officials and tell them you want to see solar panels on town hall. If a wind farm is proposed in your neighbourhood, support it instead of worrying about it ruining your view. A drought will also ruin your view.

Sadly, it’s up to you to worry about climate change. I know it’s scary, but we can adapt and survive. We’re really very resourceful when we need to be. It’s just a matter of recognizing that we need to be right now.

Breaking with Tradition

There were over 150 000 weddings in Canada last year. That’s everything from sneaking off to city hall to breaking the bank on an all-out traditional bash.

Think about the last traditional wedding you’ve been to. Beautiful flowers for the wedding party, on the tables, on the pews. Toast after toast to the happy couple. So much food you couldn’t possibly finish it.

Those flowers were most likely grown with pesticides and possibly shipped overseas. It was easier to get 150 plastic wine glasses than 150 glass wine glasses.  In the rush to clean up and get home at the end of the night the catering staff skipped sorting out the compostables and all that left over food went with the trash (with the plastic glasses that could have been recycled).

Well, tradition is lovely but you can’t cling to something out of nostalgia when it’s just all-round not good for us or the planet. As an educated, environmentally/socially conscious group of brides-to-be and grooms-to-be we have to do what we know we should but cringe at the thought of: break with tradition.

You might want to start by mentally preparing yourself to deal with the expression on your grandmothers face when she gets her email invitation. I think invitations are an area that can easily be upgraded to planet-friendly, but it possibility one of the hardest. Invitations are the first thing guests experience about a wedding. They set the tone, arriving in a colour that matches the flowers and bridesmaids’ dresses. They’re pretty, customized and give all the info your guests need.

But they use resources. Lots of paper. The invitation. The envelope. The response card. Are all your guests going to recycle it? Lots of postage. Trucks driving the letter to your guests. Trucks driving the response cards back to you.

You can still get all the pretty, all the customization, and all the info to your guests without the tree chopping and exhaust billowing. Email! Websites like Cocodot let you have what looks exactly like your traditional invitation without all the guilt. Beautiful, customized invitations, along with all sorts of other handy features, such as links to registries, wedding websites and guest tracking. When I first saw this website my first thought was “people won’t like getting an email invitation”. But this is the bride and groom’s wedding, not the guests’, and why would they set aside their values for their wedding? If anything this is a chance to embrace your values.

(As an added bonus, it will also most likely cost you less)

150 000 weddings in Canada a year. You could save a lot trees.

***Author’s Note*** I got engaged! In case you couldn’t tell. Don’t worry though, all my posts won’t be about weddings from now on. I’ll try to bring up topics that are applicable to other situations. You can use email invitations for any event; anniversary, birthday, just because. And I’ll still cover some non-wedding issues. Like the BP oil gush being plugged (for now).