Introduction

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I suppose it all started back in 1984 when I would spend hours in the bathtub reading product labels. I was only six but I would sound out so-di-um-lau-rel-sul-fate with my best first grade phonics while gazing at the back of my mom’s shampoo bottle. I memorized chemical names instead of playing with bath toys. Then once bathed and dressed, I would run to our bookshelf of 1970s-era encyclopedia and look up each and every one.

Fast forward several decades later and I’m still reading labels. But I’ve expanded from shampoo and conditioner to bathroom cleaner, mascara, pasta, diaper cream, dog food – you name it, if it has a label, I’m going to read it. My family is eternally grateful for our local grocery pickup service because they are no longer circling the aisles waiting on me to finish reading every label in the store.

Currently, I’m a practicing Environmental Engineer. I hold degrees in Civil and Environmental Engineering and in the spring of 2020, I’ll earn a Master of Science in Safety and Occupational Health, and Environmental Management. I’ve been working as an environmental professional for 20 years and cross-training in the safety field for the past 10 years.

I also teach classes explaining Federal code, interpreting the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) and US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations. I either currently hold, or have held in the past, professional certifications in microbial growth (mold), asbestos, lead-based paint, hazardous waste, hazardous materials management, radon, lightning protection, occupational safety, explosives, radiation, and a few other gloriously geeky qualifications.

Aside from all that nerd stuff, and most importantly, I’m a mom and a wife, a sister and a daughter, a friend and a neighbor, a community volunteer, and I want more than anything to keep my friends and family safe and preserve this planet on which we live.

Which is why I started this blog.

Every day my friends and family ask me random questions like, “Is my drinking water safe?” or “Which cleaner/makeup/shampoo should I use?” or “What’s the most eco-friendly paint at my local hardware store?” I love answering these questions because I love what I do for a living, and answering these questions allows me to share my heart with the person who asked.

So what’s ENVIRO-MAMA-MENTAL???

Well now that you know a little bit about me, it’s easier to explain.

Enviro – because it’s what I do.

Mama – because it’s who I am.

Mental – because I like to learn and teach (and I want to make you think)

My goal is to empower you with whole-sided facts so that you can form your own opinions on environmental issues. I want to share what I know and what I have learned over the past two decades with you, but I don’t want you to just read my blog and form a fast opinion. It is my hope that my posts will inspire you, that they will provoke thought and light a fire in you to learn more and to seek your own truth.

My assurance to you is that I will use credible sources to support what I write. I love a good peer-reviewed scholarly article more than anyone, and you might see me cite one or two or a thousand, but you won’t find me writing one on this blog. What you can find here are real, down-to-earth, (hopefully) easy-to-understand explanations of environmental issues. Of course, if you want me to nerd out with you and get super scientific, I’m glad to do that too. And I’m glad to cite a source for you any time!

That’s it – me in a nutshell. If I’m to be honest, it was pretty awkward to write an “About” and an “Introduction” page all about myself and my reasons for writing this blog. But as I told you before, I’m an engineer, and well, we’re typically pretty awkward (at least I am).

Now let’s save our planet, together, one post at a time!

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