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Vinny Taylor

Capstone winter 23


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  • 203 TOTAL

participant impact

  • UP TO
    meatless or vegan meals
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Vinny's actions

A Call to Sustainability

Start a Sustainability Journal

I will start a sustainability journal, capturing my thoughts, concerns and learning about sustainability issues.


Visions of Sustainability

Eco-friendly Gardening

I will plant native species, landscape with water-efficient plants, and use eco-friendly fertilizers.



Watch The Story of Bottled Water

I will watch The Story of Bottled Water to learn more about bottled water's impacts on the environment.



Reduce Animal Products

I will enjoy 2 meatless meal(s) and/or 1 vegan meal(s) each day this week.



Improve a Bus Stop

I will improve a bus stop in my neighborhood by posting the stop schedule, adding seating or shelter, adding art or flowers, picking up litter, or some other small improvement.


Participant Feed

Reflection, encouragement, and relationship building are all important aspects of getting a new habit to stick.
Share thoughts, encourage others, and reinforce positive new habits on the Feed.

To get started, share “your why.” Why did you join the challenge and choose the actions you did?

  • Vinny Taylor's avatar
    Vinny Taylor 3/11/2023 4:39 PM
    This week I started a sustainability journal. It's been really handy for writing down thoughts on sustainability and practicing mindfulness. It's also helpful to have a place to put ideas/recipes and other resources.

  • Vinny Taylor's avatar
    Vinny Taylor 3/06/2023 9:18 PM
    This week I got a mushroom grow kit for pink oyster mushrooms. The videos about mycelium we watched a couple weeks ago really inspired me, and this week my grow kit finally came in the mail. So far I've had it for a little less than a week and it's already sprouting mushrooms. I'm really glad I got it, it's been a really fun project related to my eco change and it's been rewarding to see the mushrooms grow. I really wanted to grow something for my project, but with the snow and not having a lot of time to set up a bigger balcony garden, this has been a good solution. It's very simple, you just mist the mushroom brick and make sure it's got enough moisture and doesn't get too much sunlight. It's very beginner friendly. I also started growing my green onion scraps and they've been growing in nicely. I'm excited to make a stir fry with the mushrooms and green oninos once they grow enough.

    • Ashley Landis's avatar
      Ashley Landis 3/08/2023 11:01 PM
      Yay! This inspires me to get a simple grow kit at home for myself. I often forget we have the ability to do those kinds of things at home. :)

    • Alina Peek's avatar
      Alina Peek 3/07/2023 11:08 PM
      This is so exciting! I am rooting for your green onion and mushrooms!! I once saw a video on someone who bought a mushroom brick and was very envious. It is nice to know that it is beginner friendly. Mushrooms are so rad and I am also interested in getting to know them more!

    • Kailyn Mckeown's avatar
      Kailyn Mckeown 3/07/2023 7:09 AM
      Hi Vinny,
      I love that you invested in mushroom growing. That video really inspired me as well. I wanted to invest in mushroom growing, but my project was already about growing plants and I didn't want to get in over my head. But hearing how easy it is, I might pick it up after class ends. Is it a kit where you can replant them somehow to keep from having to buy another kit? That was one of the reasons I haven't invested in one as well.
      We also save our scallop onions scraps and grow them, but I have noticed that without nutrients they don't come out the same. However, because I am doing hydroponics, I invested in powder nutrients, and I have a pretty big tub of it. The portions are for a gallon of water, but if you want, I can bring in some for you? I just mixed mine in a recycled water jug and only put in a small cap size to whatever jar my onions are in, and it seems to be working well so far.
      Thank you so much for sharing!

  • Vinny Taylor's avatar
    Vinny Taylor 3/01/2023 12:29 PM
    This week I cleaned up a bus stop by picking up the trash that had accumulated. It was kind of remarkable how 5 minutes of my time made such a difference to the bus stop's appearance. Hopefully this small change made people more likely to use the bus stop.

  • Vinny Taylor's avatar
    Vinny Taylor 2/20/2023 8:57 PM
    This week I watched The Story of Bottled Water. It was really interesting learning about the breakdown of manufacturing demand. It made me reflect on some of the other industries that are particularly culpable to manufacturing demand. As I've been working on eating more sustainably for my eco change, I've noticed more and more diets and wellness products that employ manufacturing demand. They begin with claims about how unhealthy the average diet is (which is true in part), and then go on to make claims about this product or diet decreasing your risk of cancer, helping you lose weight, increasing your metabolism, increasing your brain function etc. It can all be very anxiety inducing. I really appreciated that this video gave me a name to put to this phenomena that I'd been noticing. It makes it easier to think critically and not get swept up in the marketing scheme. I wonder what advertising would look like if environmentally harmful products like plastic water bottles were required to have warning labels like cigarettes. It could be an interesting environmental campaign idea to create these warning labels and raise awareness/demotivate people to turn to these harmful products.

  • Vinny Taylor's avatar
    Vinny Taylor 2/08/2023 11:27 PM
    This week’s reading really made me reflect on the impact I make by using single-use plastics. Generally I try my best to avoid them, or reuse them in some way, but I realized one source of single/use plastics that I use most regularly is to-go cups. I regularly get coffee/tea in single use containers, I probably get a coffee to-go 2-4 times a week. That means I’m using anywhere from 10-18 single-use containers each month. I thought about not going to coffee shops at all this week, but I realized that that change wouldn’t be sustainable for me. Getting coffee at cafe’s is something I really enjoy and on the days where I’d get it to go, I’m usually running late or am too low energy to make my own coffee, so I decided to ask the baristas to fill a reusable travel cup instead. It added a little bit of time to my routine since I couldn’t order ahead from starbucks when I was really running late, but it was a good medium between making it myself on early mornings and using a to-go cup. I’ll definitely be continuing this.

  • Vinny Taylor's avatar
    Vinny Taylor 2/01/2023 4:59 PM

    This week I reduced my animal product consumption by eating 2 out of the three meals of my day without meat, and 1 meal out of the day without meat, dairy, or eggs. In this challenge I actually found that I eat mostly vegetarian anyway. I almost never buy meat at the grocery store, I really only eat meat when I'm eating out. Making the switch from the non-vegetarian option to the vegetarian option was overall pretty easy for me. I did mess up twice this week, I got two meals with chicken in them. I also feel like I sort of copped out on the vegan meal. I just switched my breakfast to cereal with oat milk. I think if I continued to try and eat more vegan meals I would want to get more adventurous with my recipes and ingredients. I think another challenge I might try for myself next week will be cutting out all food packaging by making the majority of my meals at home and making sure any meals I eat out come in reusable dishware.

  • Vinny Taylor's avatar
    Vinny Taylor 1/29/2023 6:29 PM
    This week I got all of my fresh produce from the farmers market. My goal was to reduce the amount of food I bought at my closest grocery store, and reduce the amount of packaging waste that normally comes with the groceries I buy. Instead of buying the salad mix I use that comes in plastic packaging, I bought fresh greens from the farmers market. I want to make this an ongoing goal. Not only did I reduce my plastic use, I bought local, supporting low transportation. I also got to enjoy myself at the farmers market and get some really delicious produce. The kale that I got definitely tasted better than the kale I’ve gotten previously at the conventional grocery store, which I was not expecting. The downsides were that I had to walk farther to get to the farmers market, and I had to split my grocery shopping into two places. The main obstacles I keep running into when it comes to making sustainable changes end up being time and convenience. (I completely forgot to take a picture at the farmer market ): )

    • Ashley Landis's avatar
      Ashley Landis 1/31/2023 10:04 PM
      Hi Vinny, that sounds super fun! I have been meaning to go to a farmer's market.. which do you recommend? I love the idea of less plastic waste and also super yummy, fresh food. Was it pricy? I feel like that is something that scares me as a low income individual.

    • Stacey Alcott's avatar
      Stacey Alcott 1/30/2023 6:55 PM
      Something that we discussed in class on Thursday was the CSA's. I used to use Full Circle. It is a decent way to try new things, too. I am not the adventurous type so a lot of my food ended up waste. I'm trying to figure out how to make it so that I actually eat the foods that we have in my house, especially the fresh fruits and veggies.

  • Vinny Taylor's avatar
    Vinny Taylor 1/27/2023 5:55 PM

    For my eco challenge last week I watched an episode of Our Planet about fresh water and started a freezer bag for vegetable scraps so I can make veggie stock. The episode of Our Planet was really fascinating. One thing I learned was about how climate change can affect lake currents. When global temperatures rise the water mixes less. The water at bottom of the lake doesn't rise to the top. This can reduce oxygen flow and make it less hospitable for living organisms in deep lakes.