Friday, May 30, 2008

A Greener Baseball Game

For those who don't know, my 4 boys play baseball. Avidly. Since they were 4. The oldest two are almost 13 now, so that's hundreds (if not thousands) of hours of baseball, considering we are there about 6 days a week. When it is winter, they play in an indoor league, so I don't plan for time off when the snow flies. Now, there is talk of joining a fall league. That would mean the only months I am not driving to baseball would be July and August. Add that to cross country, track, band, intramural basketball, preschool, field trips and oh, yeah - my job - and I am driving. A LOT. That's very not green. So, what did I do?

I switched from a hulking, gas guzzling SUV to a much more fuel efficient mini-van. That was step one. Then, I stopped letting the car idle more than 20 seconds during drop offs and pick ups. After that, we started working on carpooling with kids in our local area for practices, which we do at least once or twice a week when everyone's schedules jive.

One of the biggest sacrifices was deciding that taking more than one car to the games was just not cool. See, little eco 'burban boy is still quite little (OK, he will be 4 next month, but's he's still my baby!) and he doesn't always like to stay for the whole game, so in years past we took two cars - meaning one of us could take him home early. Because, you see, the big 'eco burban boys MUST be at the fields by 5:30 for warm ups and games don't end until 8:30 or even 9:00. That's a very loooong time digging in the dirt and eating laffy taffy from the snack shack. And, don't give me any crap about the non-local, non-organic laffy taffy. Bribes are crucial, OK?

So, between the carbon emissions and price of gas, we go one car to games or bust. This also means plenty of DVDs (from the library, OK! Geez, the laffy taffy doesn't have me completely off the wagon or anything!) and treats and blankies in the van, but it's working out. Everyone's a little cranky - especially eco 'burban mom - but we are making do. Saving money and cutting our carbon footprint - one game at a time!


Green Bean said...

Good for you! It is tough to balance kids activities versus the environment and shoot mine are only 3 and 5 so I'm amazed what you are doing. And laffy taffy as a bribe? A-okay!

eco 'burban mom said...

Ooooh, get ready! Once they hit about age 6 or 7, you start to feel like a taxi-service. They look all little and cute and smiley when they are asking you for a ride, but they are carbon emissions just waiting to happen!