Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Happy Earth Day!

In honor of Earth Day today I decided to post a little something on how we can all be a little "Greener" in our everyday life.  The following list is a great way to becoming Earth friendly without changing your lifestyle too much.  And if we all just implement one of these things it can be a huge step in the direction of fighting global warming.
1.  The Three R's (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle)!!!  I think I learned about this simple saying in kindergarten, but I didn't start applying it to my lifestyle until I was in my 20's.  You can take the simplest steps and make the biggest differences.  Examples:  Reduce- Turn off water while you brush your teeth, Reuse-  Instead of using plastic bags at grocery stores spend the extra dollar and buy reusable cloth bags, and Recycle-  This is my favorite.  Many of the things we use everyday is recyclable material (ex. pop cans, milk cartons, water bottles), so pay attention to where you throw things away and if you happen to be by a recycling bin, make the effort to throw things there.

2.  Skip on the bottled water.  Here is a fact for ya.  Each year Americans throw away 25 billion individual bottled waters.  This is stuff that just ends up in landfills producing large amounts of container waste.  So the solution, buy a water filter and a reusable water bottle.

3.  Eliminate "Phantom Power".  Basically, if any sort of appliance or charger is left in an outlet (even if it is turned off) it will continue to use power.  So to help stop this, simply unplug your devices or invest in a power strip.  It will even help cut back on your power bill.  Saving money is always a plus.

4.  Stop junk mail!   By subscribing to the following two websites you can eliminate up to 70 to 90% of your junk mail.  That in return is not only nice for you but it will help cut back on the over 100 million trees that are destroyed each year and saves the 20 billion gallons of water that is used.  So visit or and for a small price you can be pretty close to junk mail free.

5.  Use reusable dishes instead of plastic or styrofoam.  A great example I found was when you go out for ice cream, get the cone instead of the cup.  You are basically eating your silverware instead of using and then just throwing away plastic.

6.  Use natural chemicals to clean your home.  Check out the Green Works Natural Cleaners by Clorox.  I love this stuff.  Not only does it make my house super clean and sparkly, but I am not putting any harsh chemicals into the environment.  Double Plus!!!!

7.  Change your bulbs to compact fluorescent bulbs.  They may cost a little more, but they last up to 15 times longer.

8.  Buy organic produce.  Honestly I didn't understand the big hype over organic foods, but after I researched it a little more I can see why it is such a good thing.  Since organic food doesn't use pesticides, it uses less energy.  So not only is it healthier for you, but it is healthier for the planet.

9.  Take advantage of your local farmer's markets.  This is one that I totally want to get into.  It may cost a little more, but the quality is likely to be better.  And it helps save energy by reducing the fossil fuels needed to transport foods and other items all over the world.

10.  Save water to save money.  This is the one that will be the hardest for me, but I am willing to try.  Take shorter showers to reduce water use.  This will help cut back on water and heating bills.  For every two minutes that you take off your shower, you save 10 gallons of water.  That can add up to so much.

And here are some facts on how long it takes to biodegrade:
Brown paper bag
1 to 5 months

Cigarette butts and filters
12 years

Plastic bags, caps, and lids

Aluminum cans
2 to 5 centuries

Styrofoam cups and clam shells
Virtually forever

Now lets be honest.  Do I do all of these?  No.  But I do what I can to be aware of my surroundings and what I can fit into my everyday lifestyle to do my part in being eco- friendly.  So with that said, I hope that everybody had a fantastic Earth Day, and I hope that we can all strive to be a little "Greener".

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

California Here We Come

Well, it's official!  In about a week and a half I will be a "California Girl"... again.  Our new home is in Citrus Heights, CA (it is right outside of Sacramento).
This is the place we get to call home for the next 4 months.  We lived in these same apartments 3 summers ago and loved them!  They have their own washer and dryer in the apartments and that is absolutely priceless.  No scary basements for this girl to do laundry in.  YAY!!!
Where we are going to be living is so close to so much stuff.
We are about 2 hours from San Francisco.  You gotta love those fish and chips.  YUMMY!
And then we are about 3 hours from my favorite Northern Cali beach town, Santa Cruz.  Chris and I love this place.  It has so much charm.
My sight seeing goal for the summer is to make it to this place.  Yosemite National Park.  It looks stunning and is only about 3 1/2 hours away.  Not too bad.
This summer is going to be pretty hectic and crazy for both Chris and I, but I know that a few fun adventures are just around the corner for us.  It wouldn't be a summer without them.  I am so excited to get this summer started.  I have extremely high hopes and goals for AXIS Protection's first summer, and I know that the summer will not disappoint.  So wish us luck on our next adventure.  And watch out Cali...  the Burrup's are back!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Our Mini Vacation To Vegas

Chris' job presented him with a 3 day getaway to Las Vegas this weekend, and of course I had to tag along.  Although it was short and mostly job related, we still had a spectacular time.  We got to Vegas early Thursday afternoon and after we checked into our hotel room we headed straight to the "2009 International Security Conference & Exposition".  Chris and I walked into this thing thinking that it was mostly going to deal with his line of work, home monitoring.  We were so naive.  Basically, this gigantic building was filled with the newest technologies for all of your security needs.  Hundreds of companies were there displaying and demonstrating all sorts of equipment ranging from surveillance cameras, to metal detectors, to doors that only allowed access after if scanned your finger or eye, all the way to your everyday taser and rotating doors.  It was all very interesting.  There was so much to see that we spent Thursday and some of Friday there.  After we left I couldn't help but feel a little sad that such extreme security is needed.  But it was also a relief to see the amazing efforts that these people put into their work to help protect the safety and well being of everyone.  Technology is an amazing thing.  
Friday was an unbelievably cold day in Vegas.  So after we left the Expo we went to the Strip and shopped around a little.  We decided to call that an early day and besides just going to dinner we didn't do too much.
This was a one of my favorite displays in a hotel.  What you can't tell from the picture is that it looks like it is raining from the ceiling.  It was beautiful.  
Saturday on the other hand,  we crammed with as much as we could since we were leaving early the next morning.  First stop, the Stratosphere so that I could ride the rides (something that I have never done before).  Now first off I have to tell you that I am not easily scared, I mean I went sky diving without so much as a hesitation or butterfly in my stomach.  So you would think that I would be able to handle the ride called Big Shot, yeah, no problem... right?  That was so not the case.  I was not only scared I was FREAKED!  I kept telling Chris on the way up "Honey, I'm scared".  And he would look at me with confusion written all over his face and all he would say is "Really?"  So I didn't find much comfort there obviously.  So with sweaty hands and a stomach filled with butterflies I climbed into the seat to face my fears.  In the end I realized that I had nothing to fear.  The ride was absolutely amazing and completely exhilarating.  I would totally do it again.  We also went on the other two rides and they were awesome also, but neither gave you the rush like Big Shot.  
Chris and I at the top of the Stratosphere before the "RIDE".  I hide fear well if I do say so myself.
Big Shot.  The ride I conquered.
The rides Insanity

and X-Scream.
Chris and I went to Vegas under the impression that we were not going to spend much money.  Well, he remembered that I have been talking about this certain show that I wanted to see for so long and he talked me into splurging and buying tickets for us to go later that evening. Well, I was naturally elated, because I finally got to see "The Beatles LOVE Cirque Du Soleil" show.
It was by far my most favorite part of the trip.  The entire show was so visually overwhelming and artsy that it took my breathe away countless times and the fact that it was filled with some of my favorite Beatles songs only made it that much better.  It was an absolutely incredible show that swept you up into a world of fantasy and imagination and it never disappointed as it went from song to song.  Chris even enjoyed it and that is saying a lot because this usually isn't his sort of thing.  
When you first walked into the theatre this is what you walked into.  It honestly felt like you were walking through clouds.  I loved it.
So needless to say we had a great time and it was nice just getting away.