Lately, with the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown, I have embarked on two new projects
* I started making eco-bricks, from washing the plastics to cutting them and putting them in 1.5L PET bottles, and so far I am in my 5th bottle already.
* I went back to gardening and this time I began planting seeds. I also started my own mini-composting pits (using used gallons and ice cream containers).
It felt weird doing these projects that I even put the hashtag #tryingtobemoreenvironmentallyconscious in my FB post and to be honest I wouldn’t be doing these projects if not for the lockdown because I was outside most of the time, busy with other stuff.
I had a card reading with Krisselle Naguit of Pathways Healing Center and she used the Keepers of the Light Oracle Cards. Surprisingly, one of the cards that came out was Gaia. It was a validation to connect, re-connect, and establish a deeper relationship with Mother Earth.
But why? Why is there a need to connect or re-connect to/with Mother Earth?
I feel that she is calling us to remember her, to care for her, to protect her.
She is reminding us to bring healing to where it is possible and she wants to tell us that we are loved and valued. She is saying to us, “The Earth is blessed to have you.”
Did you not notice that a lot of people have started gardening during the lockdown? Unknowingly, we are answering Mother Earth’s call to remember her, we are answering our soul’s whisper of going back to a simple life full of creativity without boundaries, we are re-connecting back to Earth. Gardening is also a grounding exercise that can also help us in facing our fears, give us the stability that we are looking for especially with the uncertainty that COVID has presented to us.
Here are some tips for establishing a deeper relationship with Mother Earth:
1) Minimize or stop, if you can, using single-use plastic.
2) As you bathe, spend a few minutes to be grateful to Mother Earth for the water that we drink, use for bathing, etc. If you can, use pail and dipper for bathing instead of using the shower and bathtub so you can use less water. You can also re-use used water for flushing the toilet.
3) Turn off lights and appliances if you are not using them, you will not only save electricity but you will also save money.
4) For drinks at home, buy big pack sizes like 1L tetra pack or 1.5L can or 2L bottle and just pour into cups or glasses. I know it is more convenient to just use single-serve packs but imagine, if you serve 6 bottles of 250ml drink to your 6 visitors then that is already equivalent to one 1.5L bottle so instead of throwing 6 bottles of 250ml, you will only throw 1.5L bottle.
5) Re-use used bottles and containers as storage bins, “pots” for gardening, mini compost pits, etc.
6) Walk to your destination. If you are going somewhere that is “walkable”, then just walk. The walk will also help you clear your mind and heart, give you a different perspective especially if you are in the middle of a problem or project. The added bonus is the exercise you will get by walking. So, try and walk more
7) Take the bike to your destination, if possible take it to work. Aside from saving money from the gasoline expense, you will also get a great workout. Just be mindful of your safety especially as we don’t have dedicated bike lanes on our roads. Also, plan to reach your office early so you can still shower and freshen up before working.
8) Start planting or having your own garden. Plant fruits and vegetables to have a sustainable and long term supply at your own backyard or mini-garden. Choose your most loved fruits and vegetables for your own mini-garden just make sure you have enough space. We have sprouts of watermelon that are growing when we just threw the seeds into the soil and watered it. An unplanned growth that is making us think about how we will grow them with our limited space that will not be able to support its vine growth but it sure is a nice problem to have. We’ll just cross the bridge when we get there. 🙂
9) Have a beautiful and colorful garden that you always wished for. If you love flowers then start planting or growing your own flowers. Aside from making your house alive with the colors and smell of the flowers, these plants will also help in supporting the pollination process and carbon dioxide-oxygen cycle. Remember, in grade school, we were taught that we inhale oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide and that plants and trees convert carbon dioxide into oxygen? So by having our garden, mini or not, in our small way we are actually helping to improve the quality of the air we breathe.
10) If you have space, I highly recommend you plant and grow trees. In time, they will provide us fruits (if they are fruit-bearing trees), a shade during the summer and they can help absorb water when there is rain.
11) If you have limited space but want to do gardening, try and explore hydroponics and vertical gardening. I am no expert but you can go and check google as they have tons of free content that you can learn from.
12) If you are not fond of planting or have no space to do so, keep the seeds from the fruits and vegetables. You may find somebody you can give it to in the future or you can just throw it along the expressway or when you go to the province you can give it to the people or farmers you may meet along the way.
13) Make your own composting pit just be forewarned of the smell if you use leftover food. We had to make our own compost when the soil we had was not fit for planting. Initially, we were using leaves and peels of fruits and vegetables but my mom got so “involved” that even the leftover food was put in our mini-composting pits. Just do a research on what you can and cannot put in the composting pit because in my first few attempts I even put the orange and mango peels but apparently they may cause the soil to become acidic. Also, make sure you cut it into small pieces and water them once in a while in order to hasten the decomposition process.
14) If you are in the process of designing your own house, congratulations, by the way, think about how you can make the house more sustainable and environmentally friendly but also weigh this with your budget or look for creative ways for your money to work for you by investing though that is a separate topic altogether. Think about using solar panels, and mind you the design nowadays are better compared to years ago. Think also how you can recycle used water or even collect rainwater that you can use for gardening.
15) Make eco-bricks and donate them to organizations that can use it for building a house. Make sure you wash the plastic first, cut them into small strips, and follow the weight requirement. You will be surprised by the amount of plastic you need to fill one 1.5L bottle and how your garbage volume will tremendously decrease. The cutting of the plastic materials will also help you to destress.
16) Declutter your house, your wardrobe, your stuff. Barter them, give them away, or sell them. These pre-loved items are not giving you joy anymore so find them new owners who will value them and find joy in them.
17) Declutter your digital environment – your phone, tablet, laptop/desktop, and camera. Remove the files, pictures that are not serving you anymore. It is time to let them go.
18) Declutter your mind. Let go of people, situations, relationships that are not aligned with you, your dreams, and your plans. Let go of the problems that are bogging you down. Seek the help of God, the Source, Universe, or whoever you believe. Seek also Mother Earth’s help as she will help you reconnect back to your roots and to the simplicity of life, what are really the most essential and important to us.
19) Be like a child and start star-gazing again. Look for the big dipper, small dipper, and get re-acquainted with the different star formations or constellations.
20) Be like a baby and start sun-bathing again early in the morning. As you absorb the sun’s rays early in the morning, breathe in deeply and think about how grateful you are to be alive and think of the things and people you are grateful for. Be happy to be alive.
These are just 20 tips and I am sure you have other tips so please feel free to share them so that I may also add it to my own list to practice. Thank you in advance for sharing. 🙂
But my fervent wish is that, as we become more “lax” during this pandemic, we will continue to establish our deeper connection to Mother Earth and not wait for another lockdown to remember her, to start valuing her.
P.S. In the Phils., you can get free vegetable seeds and seedlings from the Bureau of Plant Industry, Department of Agriculture Regional Field offices, and LGUs. Check out this post for more details: https://www.facebook.com/BureauOfPlantIndustry/posts/3046145968770770
P.P.S. If you want to get to know more about Pathways Healing Center and the services (like private healing sessions and public healing workshops) they offer, go ahead and visit their FB page https://www.facebook.com/pathwayshealingcenter/ or their website https://thepathwayscenter.com/.