11 December 2005

the big O

I'm a progressive kind of gal, so I'll say it. I'm quite fond of the big O.

Ha! This is a family-friendly blog, people. So I'm sorry to disappoint those of you with minds firmly rooted in the gutter; I'm talking about O as in ORGANIC. But that's a big O, at least in my book.

I've always been eco-conscious—even went through a militant environmentalist phase back in my early teens. Recently, though, I've become increasingly interested in incorporating organic, sweatshop-free and sustainable goods into my life.

Thankfully, it appears that organics are filtering into the mainstream. For instance, Trader Joe's makes eating and buying organics truly affordable. I've gradually accepted paying extra at other stores, though, for organic goods. Being the tightwad I am, this is no small concession. I remember that I am paying to avoid more chemicals building up in my body. (Nevermind that we should not have to PAY EXTRA to AVOID TOXINS!)

Organic food is a gateway into other organic goods. (Watch out, parents; if you discover an organic apple among your child's possessions, this can only lead to organic toothpaste, organic cotton underwear or worse! He/she might even get into HEMP!) Shopping for a sofa and a mattress increased my awareness of the potentially detrimental chemicals built into our everyday furniture.

Man-made chemicals surround us. Clothes. Linens. Tupperware. Cleaning products. Shampoo. It's incredibly overwhelming, enough to sometimes say 'screw it; I can't possibly escape it.' Did I shell out $1,000+ for an organic mattress? Couldn't do it. But I assuaged my conscience by buying an organic mattress pad and sheets. Gotta start somewhere.

When shopping for organic goods, it can be difficult to find appealing items. Organic clothing tends to be ethereal and naturey. God bless the yoga teachers and commune dwellers; I just don't want to dress like them. Nor am I terribly fond of jute and terra cotta as predominant decor in my living space.

There is cool stuff out there, and it's getting easier to find—and more affordable. I have ferreted out some organic goods that don't necessarily scream "patchouli-fiend". Because it's the season of giving (and I'm finally getting around to compiling them), this week I thought I'd share some of the organic items I've found.

Check in this week for more satisfying Os.

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