A Planet of Trees, Not Plastic

It’s Earth Day.


Aided by my own midlife transition, I’m transitioning to a stage of life where I am really trying hard to live more lightly on the planet. 

It’s always been strange to me that people, in general, think it’s a bad thing to express sensitivity, respect, and care towards nonhuman animals, and other tree/plant/rock/insect/arachnid friends.  

Or somehow think that they don’t feel pain, loss, fear, or think that other life forms that also exist on this planet are somehow “less than” people. 

Anyway, taking the cue/the knowledge shared to me from the Green Stars Project blogger, I’m reducing my consumption of single-use plastic.

I’ve switched to bottle-free shampoo and conditioner, I’m exploring alternatives to toothpaste in tubes, I’ve found mouthwash tabs that (I thought) were in glass jars, but they turned out not to be. At least not from the Vitacost website, anyway. 

One of the toothpowders from the original website says it’s also in glass/metal jars, but I had to buy it from a site where I had a coupon, and it, too, was in plastic.

I got some deodorant from Pretty Frank that’s not in plastic containers.

I’m trying out different kinds of bottle-free laundry soap (I was using Tru Earth and I got some scented ones, but the scent was WAY too strong for my system, so I’ll probably go back to the unscented laundry strips). 

I generally can only invest in this stuff as I run out of the plastic-bottled products I currently had, but I’m going to try to do some more Green Star reviews on the items I did get. 




I also recently read this book that I either got with a gift card someone gave me, or I won it through a giveaway, but the author’s approach to downsizing was really inspirational and motivating. Especially when I look at my own stuff, and think about what is really relevant to my lifestyle.

Like, as much as I cherish the vintage Arrowhead set I inherited from a family member a while ago, I never entertain with things like dinner parties, and why do I need a full set of dishes (and a full set of silverware, etc.) when I actually (yes, seriously!) use one fork, one spoon, one knife, and a couple of bowls? 

I could sell those, and get a nice handmade artisan bowl and a fancy (single) set of silverware, instead. 

Anyway, I’m pretty subdued at the time of writing this post…tired, saddened over the natural world, and did I mention I was tired?

But, I’d love to hear about the changes and sacrifices and efforts you all are making for the planet on this 2023 Earth Day.

Earth Day


Beware of Snapdragons!

Having a wee garden was always a maybe-someday wish…so far, it’s not to be, but it did inspire this week’s horoscopes over at Horror Tree.

Hopefully you’ll dig up some inspiration for either your garden, or your manuscripts, with these fun posts!


And, if you’re like me, and have a “brown thumb” when it comes to growing things, here’s March’s “Tarot Cards for Writing Inspiration”.


What projects do you all have lined up for Spring?

Six Things Saturday: Mini-Interview with Miranda Lemon and Violet Plum

This week, we have Miranda Lemon and Violet Plum from over at Violet’s Vegan Comics (https://violetsvegancomics.com/)!

Willow Croft: This question’s a two-parter! What vegetable and/or vegan dish is your most favourite? And what vegetable and/or fruit makes you go “Yuk”?

Miranda Lemon: My favourite dish is vegan Yorkshire pudding with chips and beans, and the fruit that makes me go “yuk!” is avocado, because I think it is like eating margarine.

Violet Plum: Ooh, what to choose? I guess chocolate’s not a vegetable – although it does come from beans. Speaking of beans, I think one of my favourite meals is beans on toast, especially with peanut butter and yeast extract on the toast. I’ve loved it since childhood, never tired of it and it’s so easy to make. Sadly I don’t have it very often any more because bread is no longer my friend, but it is a rare treat. And the yucky vegetable which immediately springs to mind is celery. Yuck!


Willow Croft: If you could be any animal (or plant) which would you “bee”, and why?

Miranda: I would like to be a koala because I think it would be lovely to spend all my time in a tree, eating leaves and sleeping.

Violet: If I could also wish away all human activity, I would be a Canada goose because I’d love to be able to fly, and fly great distances. They are mostly herbivorous so I wouldn’t have to eat anything yucky and I could see the world from a great height. The limit of how high Canada geese can fly is not known but they have been documented at 9km above the Earth!!! Amazing! I’ve no desire to ride in an aeroplane but I would love to be able fly myself.


Willow Croft: There seems to be a movement building around the practice(s) of urban (or wild) foraging at present. What you do think about this movement from an environmental and/or personal perspective? Which is more sustainable—a “backyard” or urban garden, foraging, or a combination of both practices?

Miranda: I think foraging is a fantastic idea, I would love it if we could find all our food that way. I don’t have a back garden, so I think it would be most sustainable if people with gardens foraged in their gardens, and everyone else foraged everywhere else. But there needs to be a lot of replanting of forests so that there will be enough for everyone.

Violet: I love this idea! One of my stories, The English Family Anderson, is about a family who live on a bus and do just that. It’s wish fulfilment for me because I’ve always fantasized about being able to live like that. Being self-sufficient. If we could all live closer to nature, follow the seasons and understand where our food comes from – be responsible for growing it and gathering it ourselves – it would feed our souls. I think both things – wild foraging and home growing – would be completely sustainable. The forest garden is the most productive use of land, as well as returning natural habitats to wildlife. I think we should turn all the agricultural land into food forests for everyone to share.


Willow Croft: Imagine the world ten years from now if we as humans don’t break our consumption-driven, environmentally destructive habits. What would the world look like?

Miranda: I think it would be not very nice, so I hope humans will break their destructive habits.

Violet: Have you seen the movie Idiocracy (2006)? With Luke Wilson and Maya Rudolph. That is the world we are fast approaching.


Willow: How do you see the world changing over the next ten years in regards to conservation and environmental awareness as driven by the latest generation(s) of kids/young people?

Miranda: I believe that if we tell children the truth they will do the right things to save the environment and conserve nature. Everyone deserves to know the whole truth, and once they do, they will know that being vegan will save the world, and so they will all go vegan, and the world will be saved. Hurrah!

Violet: Education is key. If children were told the truth at school, about meat, fish, eggs and dairy being unnecessary and hazardous to health; about animal agriculture and fishing being environmentally devastating; and about animal farming being the cause of human starvation and diseases like Covid-19, then I think they would lead the charge for an end to animal farming and a new beginning for the natural world. But sadly the governments who write the national curriculum are controlled by big businesses who make vast riches from these destructive practices so lessons aren’t going to improve any time soon. Thankfully, though, the internet has enabled more enlightened people to get this information out there, and the mainstream media picks it up and runs with it sometimes. So I think there is hope that a new generation of eyes-wide-open individuals might, through the power of their consumer choices, move the world to demand ethical, zero waste, organic vegan products, and abandon those which aren’t.


Willow Croft: And, lastly, what sort of environmentally friendly art supplies do you all use?

Miranda and Violet: Most of our art materials (pencils, watercolours, pastels and ink) have been found in secondhand/charity shops so we are re-using other people’s waste. But when we do need to buy anything new we usually get it from artdiscount.co.uk who have labelled qualifying products as vegan and have done a very helpful blog post (https://artdiscount.co.uk/blogs/artdiscount/vegan-vegetarian-and-eco-art-supplies) which explains what’s good and what’s bad for the discerning artist. There’s another helpful post, here: https://vegomm.com/vegan-art-craft-supplies/. And of course we only buy recycled sketch paper.


Visit Miranda Lemon and Violet Plum at https://violetsvegancomics.com/ where they have a wonderful selection of things for kids of all ages.