8 small ways to build green

Jetson Green’s blast today includes something they are passing on with credit and it was so good I think giving credit to both parties I can do that without going to jail. But here is a direct link to their entire post, which includes a really neat green addition to a cottage.

But this is what got my attention.

In an article that appeared in the August 2009 issue of Buildings, John Kouletsis, executive director at Kaiser Permanente, set forth a list of eight things to do to develop sustainable buildings. These elements can be applied in the context of new construction or substantial renovations, but the key is to start doing something now. Here’s the list (with our own ad lib descriptions):

1. Borrow from Industry Leaders – no reason to recreate the wheel unless there’s innovation to be had. Get in touch with leaders and pick their brains for strategies and assistance.

2. Look to the Past – at some point, the industry may have strayed from effective strategies, such as building small or
building near community resources. See if history has any valuable lessons.

3. Use Sustainable Products – the next generation of products
has been designed to do two or three things at the same time. They’ll save you money, time, and help the environment.

4. Location Makes a Difference – every site is different and the available options can vary. Understand the pluses of your site to take advantage of wind, rain, water, sun, etc.

5.Water Conservation – no matter how much rainfall you receive, it’s important to minimize water use wherever it’s used, whether through your landscaping, facilities, equipment, or otherwise.

6.Build Universally – adopt strategies with the future in mind and expect to be able to adapt to advances that come in the future.

7. Use Technology Advances – advances in technology could save vast resources, whether paper, water, or materials. Adopt new strategies to use less and reduce your carbon footprint.

8. Join Others – get together with like minded individuals
and organizations and commingle in an effort to exchange information and strategies. Combine to advance environmental sustainability.

You can read the entire article on Buildings at “Small Ways to Build Green.” After reading it, let us know what you think and whether any other elements should be added to the list.

The new thrifty

MSN Money Today has an article about “15 overpriced things we hate paying for”.

With Americans feeling the force of the recession, some charges have grown from minro annoyances to pet peeves. Readers tell which goods and services just aren’t worth the money.

I can actually relate two experiences just yesterday where we went out of our way to avoid handling fees on event tickets. David Cook is in town on Monday (I saw a tweet about it) at The Showbox in SoDo. Instead of buying them online we stopped by the venue during box office hours and only paid $2 handling per ticket instead of a LOT MORE via Ticket Master.

And this was on the way to see Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince at the IMAX Theater at the Pacific Science Center. Normally we would always order tickets in advance to avoid the line. We decided to go to a 4:10 pm showing and arrived an hour early to be sure we got tickets – and good seats. We did pay for the parking garage ($7) but saved more than that by avoiding online handling fees.

Of course, it helps the film has been out since July 22nd and the crowds have diminished. BUT it was the very first time we were sitting on the floor at the very front of the line for an IMAX showing. We sat there and tweeted and surfed the web on our PPCs, so we didn’t feel like we were wasting our time.

And the film is pretty good! Loved the 3D in particular. Technology has come a long way, baby!

The Word on Water Filters

Courtesy “natural home magazine” email newsletter

Health experts recommend you drink 8 to 10 glasses of water a day, but the water coming out of your sink may be filled with contaminants. Use these tips to find the best types of systems.

Follow-up: “Bottled water is 98 percent melted ice caps and 2 percent polar bear tears.”

Find out more about bottled water at Tappening.com. Image Courtesy Tappening.

Harvest Festival Celebrates Urban Garden Revival

You definitely want to get this event onto your calendar. It is such a great opportunity to meet with Seattle-area organizations that hum in tune with our green and healthy lifestyle! ~Wendy


August 18, 2009
Contact: Liza Burke

(206) 633-0451 ext.103]


Harvest Festival Celebrates Urban Garden Revival

Millions of new gardens have sprung up across the nation this year and Seattle Tilth is inviting everyone who has had their hands in the soil to gather together and celebrate harvest season. At Seattle Tilth’s Harvest Fair, people can find out what next steps they can take in their gardens this fall and winter, enjoy demonstrations and workshops on cooking, food preservation, and composting, and get ideas for living more sustainably. People are also invited to come enjoy the tasty food stands and live music. This free event is held on Saturday, September 12, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. behind the Good Shepherd Center in the Wallingford neighborhood of Seattle (4649 Sunnyside Ave N; Seattle, WA 98103).

There will be free hands-on activities to engage people of all ages. People can meet urban livestock such as backyard chickens, goats and bees, and ask their owners questions. The art of canning at home will be taught by Master Canner/Food Preserver Jessica Dalley and PCC Cooks will demonstrate cooking with fresh ingredients. Master Composters will be showing people how to compost food scraps and yard waste in the demonstration garden. For a small fee you can also take a class on how you can turn your yard into a veggie garden in “Lawns to Lettuce” or how to grow vegetables this winter (pre-registration is required online at http://www.seattletilth.org/).

“People see the value of food that is grown locally,” commented Andrea Platt Dwyer, Executive Director of Seattle Tilth. “Whether you are growing some of your own food, or buying it from a local farm, people care about the quality of their food and the health of the environment. The Harvest Fair is a chance to celebrate this community effort. It’s basically a big festive party with opportunities to learn something, too, and everyone’s invited.”

The Harvest Fair offers a lively organic farmers marketplace. This is a great time of year to buy in bulk from local farmers and support their work. Also available will be locally grown plants including fall veggies, natives, ornamentals, and fruit bearing shrubs, gardening supplies, books and locally made goods. Food vendors specializing in fresh local ingredients will be serving up tasty meals and snacks. Activities in the Children’s Garden will engage the young ones. Local organizations and businesses will provide opportunities for people to learn how they can get involved with issues such as energy conservation, transportation, land usage, health, food, human rights, green building, education, horticulture, and reusing building materials. And full lineup of exciting local folk music will keep things lively all day.

So, if you’re a new or experienced gardener, a foodie, urban homesteader, environmentalist, or interested community member, come celebrate the urban garden revival and the culmination of the growing season at Seattle Tilth’s Harvest Fair. For more information, visit: seattletilth.org.


About Seattle Tilth: Begun in 1978, Seattle Tilth is a regional organization with teaching gardens in the Wallingford and Mt. Baker neighborhoods, and the City of Issaquah, offering classes and programs that serve adults and children throughout King County.

Seattle Tilth’s mission is to inspire and educate people to garden organically, conserve natural resources, and support local food systems in order to cultivate a healthy urban environment and community.


Green Homes Sell For More – Energy Efficiency Boosts Value

Came across an interesting post today. It’s basically the same thing that GreenWorks Realty agents and Built Green Certified Professionals like myself have been saying for quite some time – renovate green for a healthy return on your investment. Seems Kerry Mitchell agrees.

Read How to Boost Your Home’s Value Before a Sale by Going Green
Tips for home sellers and anyone interested in building a nest egg

“The great eco-label shakedown”

Oh, great stuff from Sustainable Industries newsletter…

“The great eco-label shakedown” by Sara Stroud

Whether it comes from private industry or federal regulation, the ‘green’ label free-for-all could be nearing an end. The federal government has for more than a century monitored labels on products. But beyond simply making claims, substantiated or not, eco-labels have become a solid marketing tactic.

Read more»

No more cardboard moving boxes! Use FROGBOX

Sometimes I come across something so original yet it should have been a *duh* thing and I am glad some people in our world have great initiative and go out on a limb to provide a new service or product because they truly believe it’s the right thing to do – and that it will work.

So props to FROGBOX, something I tripped over while cruising around the web today reading articles coming across my Twitter feed.

The really cool things about FROGBOX:
1) Each FROGBOX will be reused hundreds of times during it’s lifespan
2) Even if cardboard is recycled, the Environmental Protection Agency has stated that Reuse is a much better alternative than recycling because the product does not need to be reprocessed before it can be used again
3) Reusable plastic box requires 39% less energy than a comparable cardboard box to produce
4) They use waste stream bio-diesel fuel, which significantly lowers their emissions. Waste stream bio-diesel does not compete with the food industry –it comes from recycled waste oils and waste cooking oils from restaurants.
5) They use solar energy to power our website.
6) They donate money and their services to local environmental charities

I think this service is a great idea and I definitely will use their services next time I move! I will also recommend them to my friends and neighbors, and my real estate clients!

You can book your FROGBOX order online and save $10!

92 homes, 70 condos for sale under $300,000 in West Seattle 98106, 98116, 98126, 98136

Expanding on my earlier search and really digging for deals, I found 92 residential real estate listings for sale in West Seattle. I searched sip codes 98106, 98116, 98126, and 98136 only since 98146 is sometimes considered too far south (altho one of my best friends lives in that zip code).

I found 70 condominiums for sale within these same parameters.

I live in 98126 but have lived in this part of town since 1997 and can help you sort the wheat from the chaffe. Email me, Tweet or call me with questions or tour information.

This is a mix of traditional and green real estate for sale.

I am a Seattle real estate professional first, and a green real estate agent second. I can help any buyer/seller, but if you are looking to buy a green home, I have additional education and experience in this area that will really benefit your search for a healthy home.

23 green certified homes for sale under $400,000 in West Seattle

I am doing some traditional real estate for sale property searches for a new buyer prospect and thought I would throw together an update on environmentally certified homes for sale in the “First Time Buyer” category – listed under $400k – in my end of town, West Seattle.

I found 23 green homes for sale – not all are townhomes!

Email me or call if you have any questions.

Today’s Site Discovery: Sierra Club GreenHome

Discovered a sophisticated web site today – after attending Sierra Club’s meeting last week on “Building Resilient Habitats” (more info on that soon), I discovered their GreenHome site. And today’s feature story is about something I struggled for a long time to find information about – personal products.

By replacing your mass produced hygiene products and investing in eco-friendly ones, you can make a positive impact on the environment, your family, and your wallet. Make sure to read more than the price tag of your hygiene products, as most are not biodegradable or handmade.

Read Pretty In Green