You already recycle, carry reusable bags and water bottles and shop organically, and the benefits are considerable–you feel great about yourself, you’re out saving the world and whatnot. But what if you could earn something more immediate and tangible, like, I don’t know… Whole Foods’ coupons?
Did you say Whole Food coupons?
Whole Planet Foundation’s new free green mobile app, Make Change, Not Waste created by Atomic Axis, an Austin based mobile application development company gamifies learning about eco-actions. Released in May, this mobile application gives users the opportunity to track their green activity and earn coupons to Whole Foods (which by the way are instantly available to scan on your phone at the checkout) for their actions. Planning on donating those old clothes that have been hiding in the mysterious depths of your closet? You can earn rewards for that.
Performing green actions like buying in bulk, reusing towels and taking short showers earn users of Make Change, Not Waste valuable coupons to green brands like Organic Valley, Alexia Foods and Natures Path. Don’t want to use the coupons on yourself? Not a problem. After earning a coupon, an option is available to donate a percentage of the coupon back to Whole Planet Foundation to aid in microcredit loans. You can track how much money you’ve raised under the “My Impact” tab, as well as bags you’ve avoided by reusing your own. Continue reading →
On historical E. 6th Street, nestled amongst the bouncers bribing passersby with dollar shots is a hidden gem, dripping in Elvis memorabilia. I am talking, of course, about Beale Street Tavern. We held a happy hour for the E-Learning Council in the upstairs area of the bar and it could not have gone better. The semi-private upstairs space was perfect for upwards of 25 people to comfortably mingle at the high top tables and lounge on the large leather banquettes. The Elvis décor is charming, and not at all overwhelming. We received impeccable service; the catering staff accommodated our every need and our servers were friendly and fast with a refill. While we did not have a chance to sample the Elvis-themed fare (fried peanut butter and banana sandwich, anyone?), the catering menu offers a delightful spread of bite-sized appetizers. I will happily admit to going back for seconds (ok, thirds) of the fried goat cheese fritter with raspberry chipotle sauce. As it was happy hour and the main bar downstairs was quiet, the level of the music and ambient noise was just right for our networking event. Overall, the experience was laidback and fun for our guests.
One in four Texans has unclaimed property from forgotten bank accounts, uncashed checks, security deposits and utility refunds. It’s your money. Over $2.2 billion in cash and other valuables waiting for the rightful owners to claim. It’s never too late to make a claim*. Sound like a bad informercial? A scam?
Nope, just the Texas Unclaimed Property Site. It’s run by the Comptroller’s Office and it doesn’t cost a dime to check the site or file the claim (so don’t fall for the nasty scammers who claim want filing fees). We’ve found money from closed bank accounts, an insurance refund check that didn’t quite make it back to us ($500!), and even money from an overpaid bill. A tip, when you’re on the site check for money owed to your friends and relatives–they will always appreciate a tip on free money.
Stopped in to Roaring Fork at Stonelake Boulevard for a business lunch. What a gorgeous location–on the edge of Quarry Lake. The restaurant is quite upscale and I was expecting to blow the lunch budget. However, they have a great deal for lunch–The Texas Two Step. For $13 you can get a Cup of Soup or Pork Stew or Salad and either Grilled Salmon, Trout, or Roast Chicken. Not bad for a sit down meal in a great environment.
The soft opening of Uncle Billy’s Brew & Que on Lake Travis felt more like a family dinner than a restaurant run-through – which, to this comfort-foodie, is a very good sign. After a friendly greeting and prompt seating, my dining partner and I could not decide on which of the 4 house-brewed beers to order. Our server’s solution was to bring out a sampler of each… bless him. We opted for the Amber and Pale Ales in the end, both perfect compliments to our starter of steaming fried pickles. Being something of a fried pickle connoisseur, these spears lived up to my high standards after a few necessary minutes of cooling. The hot sauce-spiked ranch dressing was a welcome surprise for a girl who always adds some heat to America’s favorite dipping sauce.
Did you know that Austin has the highest performing Kiva city lending team in the world—http://www.kiva.org/team/austin_texas. Yep we beat cities many times our size. As of March 14, 2010 the team has loaned almost $157,000. It was started by a “poor” graduate student…as she said last night at the AIR awards…she’s rich compared to the folks she loans to.
Join the Austin, Texas team or start your own at www.kiva.org–$25 lets you help an entrepreneur and the best part you’ll get it back to help the next entrepreneur. The Kiva, Austin, Texas members also meet periodically and participate in local charities.
Folks Entering downtown on 5th street frequently do a double-take at the El Arroyo sign. What smart ass comment did the famous (infamous?) Tex-Mex place put up today. Well now you can follow ‘em on Twitter at http://twitter.com/elarroyosign so you don’t miss a sign if you haven’t made it downtown lately.
I’m never really going to afford a private jet and am far to cheap to fly first class (heck I usually fly Southwest Airlines and there ain’t any first class seats). To make flying easier I look for Nonstop flights from Austin. You can fly to a surprising number of cities nonstop from Austin—Boston, Orlando, Washington, and my favorite during ski season Salt Lake City. ABIA’s website has been kind enough to list all the cities and airlines that offer Nonstop service from Austin at