Posts Tagged ‘Clorinha’

Simple Green Ideas

This is more of a repurpose. It’s also a personal effort.

Many of us have plants growing around the yard, in pots, tins, whatever.

Plants in odd tins

Plants in odd tins

I began to get so many for the yard, that I did this…

Plants on the street

My plants on the street & Kitty

I used them to make a barrier on the footpath (sidewalk for our American cousins) to prevent vehicles parking there.

Parking on footpaths is epidemic in Brazil, illegal, but everyone does it.

My fear is that the continual weight of cars, and if some idiot parks a truck there, will break the thin unreinforced concrete.

I have another almost ready to add.

The stones are the type used to make the old style roads here, you can find them around the streets. I do and carry them home to repurpose…

The Siamese type cat is the one that is in the process of adopting me. Kitty (pronounced Kitchy in Portuguese) has a belly full of paws and claws, and decided that my place and me are better than her current situation. Last night she got brave enough to jump up on the sofa for the first time while I was watching TV for a stroke. I feed her because she started coming here to steal Clorinha’s food, and I have guessed that she is not getting enough at home to feed both her and her extra baggage.

I realise that such a display on the footpath would be frowned on, if not illegal, in parts of the world where you would have neighbours and/or councils who would order their removal; which is why I live in Brazil and not the First World, my neighbours think it’s lovely despite the crappy looking tins. I am waiting for someone to offer me leftover paint… that I will recycle.

Ponder… why do Americans call it a sidewalk and not a footpath? I walk on my feet, not my side!

Change the World Wednesday – 2nd Jul

I have been M.I.A. for the day.

A belated start to my blogging.

My guava are doing well, I have four waiting in the fruit bowl, and have managed to keep the neighbourhood kids happy along the way. You may think that the national passion here in Brazil is football, well it is. But Brazilian kids are just like kids the world over, they love to raid the orchard.

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On with the show.

This week CTWW is about single use stuff.

This week, avoid the use of any single-use or disposable items. This includes paper towels, paper plates & cups, plastic utensils, plastic water bottles, aluminum cooking trays, etc. Instead, make the effort to use real plates, towels, etc. The idea is to eliminate waste.


OR … If you’ve already eliminated ALL single-use and disposable items, please reduce other waste. For example, plan meals this week so that no food is wasted. Before tossing an item out, try reusing it or offer it on Freecycle. The goal is to achieve zero waste this week.


There is more, but you’ll have to check Small’s post.

I have no disposable stuff in the house, at the moment. Although when I do a BBQ, I get some, simply because I don’t have enough plates and utensils. Glasses, I have plenty; recycled from cheese spreads, jams,  etc, as well as my booze glasses. So we never use disposable cups.

I do, however, have a confession…

Yes, I know this isn’t church.

The last three weeks I have used my paper towels a lot, for more than just my delicious juicy hamburgers, which is normally their only use to protect shirt fronts.

Clorinha being a book under the lppy table

Clorinha being a book under the lappy table

Clorinha has taken to pooping under the kitchen sink. Don’t ask me why; her dirt box is only six feet way. But I use paper towels to clean up, there is no way I am using cloths and then washing the kitty poop from them.

Sorry trees, but this time I feel justified.

Oh, and I threw out a banana tonight… but ate the more edible one. It was too far gone even for a smoothie.



Change the World Wednesday – 14th May

Early start this morning.

I went to bed earlyish last night, and as a result woke at 1am for nature. I discovered that my little Clorinha had been sick on the kitchen floor. Cleaned that up, then found the main act on the living room carpet. Cleaned that up and scrubbed the carpet with an old scrubbing brush that I keep for such unpleasant tasks. It was a scrubbing brush that most would have chucked, as it is well past its ‘best by date’.

talkqwertyThe little dear is now asleep on my our her bed; it’s got the warm. She’s in my spot and I don’t want to disturb her just yet.

So, I get to talk qwerty to you for a bit and start this week’s CTWW.

Following last week’s dodgy belly, I am pleased to report that all’s well; I finally managed to eat normally on Friday, but it was a rough week. The best news is that I didn’t have to resort to BigPharma for a solution. A simple bottle of Milk of Magnesia did the trick for R$4 ($1.70).

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This week’s CTWW is a ‘Good News’ one.

This week share environmental good news. Unlike the challenge we did in November (see it HERE), which asked that we talk about all good news, let’s focus on our personal triumphs. For example, if you were able to overcome a green-living obstacle (recycling, composting, etc.), we’d like to share in your good news. Perhaps you are preparing to plant a garden this year or have upgraded appliances to energy-efficient models … let us celebrate with you. Maybe you’ve realized successes like turning off the water while brushing your teeth or turning off lights when you leave the room … we want to be inspired by your achievement. The idea, this week, is to share all the good, green stuff in our lives.


Generally, I consider my ‘greenish’ life to be good news. I have said before that much of my greenness comes from necessity being an impoverished English teacher. Being frugal often means being green.

I have made many small changes, often prompted by CTWW itself, that give me comfort that I am doing my little bit. Changing from incandescent light bulbs, composting and growing what I can in old tins, grey water use, reducing chemicals in the house, using old jars for pickles and preserves, upgrading to more energy efficient fans and reducing paper are all minor changes that I have made.

I acquired a new piece of furniture last weekend. No, I didn’t rush out and buy it. I found it in the rubbish waiting for collection on the corner. I think it was a TV stand as it didn’t have a top, just adjustable brackets where a TV could sit and wheels.

My new laptop table

My new laptop table

I had the perfect piece of wood, found on another expedition, for the top and I have the perfect little table for my laptop when it’s at home on the weekends for private classes.

For me that is good news.

Clorinha is not right. She mewed plaintively in the living room and I manged to get her on the dirt box for a little vomit, then spent sometime petting her without her biting routine, just a nice stroking that made her purr. Now she’s asleep on the floor, which she never does. So, she’s definitely not right.

Here’s a little video that I shot yesterday morning of my rising star playing football in the garage.



Change the World Wednesday – 19th Mar

Clorinha’s first baby photo

Still crazy, this week I’m here at 1am. It’s too hot to sleep despite the fan. We had 43ºC (that’s hot, even in ºF – 110 something).

Let me introduce you to Clorinha. She’s still at home with Mommy, and will be for another two weeks. I have called her Clorinha because Daddy was Cloro (bleach), and she’s a little girl Cloro, she has the same markings as her Dad.

CTWW isn’t actually up yet on Reduce Footprints, but I was here, so you get the introduction.

Yes, in a can

Yes, in a can

One thing I have changed in my life since I have become more environmentally aware, cans. I avoid cans like the plague.

I restrict my cans to sardines, I love canned sardines in olive oil on toast, and I have an emergency ration of feijoada (black baked beans with meat) which is easily heated without having to cook a whole meal in the evening which also heats up an already hot house.

I use about one can of each a month, sometimes less.

At my advancing age, a little more BPA can’t do too much damage. My endocrines are already disrupted.

But I generally stay away from canned goods, including drinks and beer.

However, last week at the supermarket, I weakened. I saw these wonderful cans of Guinness. Now I live in Brazil, Brazil does not make a good beer.

Four cans just leapt off the shelf into my shopping cart

A few weeks ago I bought two bottles of Stout made in Brazil. It was so unpalatable that half the first bottle went down the sink, the other relegated to the shelf in the beer box. To call this product stout was criminal, it was no more stout than caramelised pigs’ swill.

Now to find a quality brew like Guinness is a rarity here, I weakened. I would have preferred bottles, but they weren’t available.

Oh, and the stout was like heaven.

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CTWW is up now, but I’m going back to bed. I have had a quick read and will visit some of your blogs later when  the head is a little clearer and I have coffee.

This week’s challenge is a little easier.

This week, do not use or buy any paper towels or napkins. Instead, use cloth napkins and cleaning rags.


OR … If you never use paper towels or napkins, please review your paper use and determine if there are other ways for you to conserve. Can you use less toilet paper? Could you say “no” to printed receipts? What about printer paper, gift wrap, magazines and catalogs … can you give them up? Choose at least one area where improvements could be made.


OR … If you’ve basically eliminated paper from your life, please share your tips and ideas for doing so.

Part One

I do have a roll of paper towels in the kitchen, I bought a double pack about two years ago, and have just started the second roll. The last time I used one was to hold a juicy homemade hamburger more than a month ago. In my defence, I will say that I bought them before the previous CTWW challenge not to use them.

Part Two

If I used less toilet paper than I do, I’d be using my finger. I generally use one double piece for a wipe, then have a bum shower with soap and water.

Other paper reduction, I have stopped paper bank statements, I use the net.

I don’t buy magazines or newspapers, so there’s no problem there. Junk mail is a problem, not a big problem as most of it is little A5 sized flyers, the plain paper ones go on the compost heap, but the bigger glossies come at the rate of about two a week. Brazilian delivery does not understand “No Junk Mail”, although I have had strong words with some when I catch them. Which is why I am the neighbourhood velho caduco (grouchy old man).

Part Three

I can’t make any claims there. I use scrap paper for notes alongside my PC. Old papers used on one side get folded in four. I have a printer, but only print essentials for work on recycled paper. It hasn’t been used for more than two months, it’s probably rusted up.

Well, there you have it; my CTWW.

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