Autumn is a beautiful time of the year with leaves changing color. It is also a time for accepting things as they are or have become. Leaves fall, vegetables fade and everything is becoming settled, peaceful, quiet and calm. The days become shorter than the nights.
2010 saw the first ever Sunbeams Tree Planting Event. Here is some up-to-date information on how our forest has fared so far.
Conserving energy doesn't just apply to your heating and electricity. Winter is the end of an annual cycle in nature. It's also the season for quiet rest and energy conservation for our bodies. Shorter days mean less natural light and warmth – the perfect justification for going to bed earlier to get more hours of much needed sleep!
Like last year, the MYP students are currently involved in a project called 'Lease a Tree'. For just 35€, 48 fortunate families can enjoy me, and my pine tree friends', company for three weeks.
Have you got things in your house that you don't need any more but which are still in good condition? Have you bought something on impulse only to realize later that you don't really want it? Do you want to get rid of clutter but can't get yourself to throw away stuff mercilessly?
Well, why not make your unwanted items the life of your Christmas party by holding an 'all-old items' gift exchange? This gift exchange can be best done by a game called White Elephant or Yankee Swap. This game is very simple yet guaranteed to be fun. This could be an additional gift exchange or even replace the gift-giving altogether.
“Oh toilet brush oh toilet brush, how lovely are thy bristles...” just doesn’t have quite the same holiday ring to it as the classic carol, does it? I know I was surprised when, in the course of researching this article, I came across the humble origins of the artificial Christmas tree: in the 1930s the Addis Brush Company discovered that their toilet brush factory could produce a reasonable facsimile of a Christmas tree. The artificial tree is now firmly entrenched in the ethos of Christmas consumerism.
What does the war in Congo, the chimpanzees, your mobile phone and your daily life have to do with one other? It was this strong and convincing holistic message of inter-connectedness which impressed me the most after hearing Dr. Jane Goodall speak in front of a full auditorium at the Free University of Brussels last 22 November 2010.
- Use a variety of plant species, especially hazelnut, hawthorn, and lime tree (tilia/linde/tilleul) are popular.
- Do not clean up leaves and stems from your garden until after the winter.
- Practice eco gardening: no pesticide or insecticides.
- Do not cut the grass too often and leave it high in some spots.
- Leave some of the nettles, they love it!
- Flowers provide them with nectar and pollen.
- Make a shelter for the winter for them and watch them cuddle up.
- They are the perfect solution for aphids or plant lice on your roses!
Thanksgiving is just around the corner. Those who observe it remember all the things they are thankful for: families, friends and blessings such as a house or that dream job. This year, let us add to our list something which has always been there for us but we don't seem to appreciate enough: trees. We know that some trees are a source of food. Others provide lumber and raw materials for making paper and other products. The latter are values trees give us when cut. However, we seem to take for granted that they offer us a number of benefits when they are alive and strong. Besides being grateful for the products we get from them, why else should we be thankful for trees?
Last month's article on genetically modified organisms (GMOs), Threshing out the Promises from Reality: a Look at GMOs, highlighted some of the environmental, health and economic issues behind GMOs. Here we'll look a little deeper at how GMOs affect our health. Is there really a danger in consuming GMOs, and if so, what is being done about it?