I’m going to start a section on my blog that lends itself to the side of me and my family that is striving to be green good stewards of the resources God has given us. I’d like to include tips and ideas, as well as reasoning and purpose. And of course answer any questions anybody may have! My purpose in sharing is to hopefully bring some new ideas to light and show you how being “earth-friendly” or “green” is not all that difficult, and honestly, it just makes sense.
I’ll start today with baby steps. If you’re not already doing these things, try them out. They won’t completely alter your life. They’re just baby steps. *grin*
*Use re-useable grocery bags. It might take just a bit of effort to get into a good system, but here’s what works for me: Leave the bags in the trunk of my car; take them into the store; let cashier work the wonders of fitting your groceries very systematically into the bags so that it makes them SO much easier to carry out to your car and into your house; unload groceries in your kitchen; fold up bags and leave by your front door; grab them the next time you go out to your car and throw them in the trunk; repeat process over and over again!
*Sometimes I ask for paper when my stash is getting low. I like to keep these around for various things…mainly, they make for beautiful wrapping paper! (and free!)
*If I’m at a store where I’m only buying one or a couple of small things and going right to my car, I simply let the cashier know that I don’t need a bag. (or stick your items in your purse) (or think ahead and use your grocery bags at non-grocery stores).
*Use cloth napkins. I made this switch when Chris and I got married, and I have to say, it’s so easy! How often do you dab the corners of your mouth just a bit throughout dinner. That doesn’t make for a very messy napkin. So honestly? I don’t even wash mine after every use. When they do need a washing, I just throw them on the washer and add to my next load. And an added bonus? You’re saving money. Another added bonus? You can buy cute napkins with cute prints (if that’s your thing, of course) :)
*Ditch the Ziploc baggies. Sure, we all know they’re more convenient. But every disposable item is supposed to be convenient. Again, it’s about getting into a habit, and honestly that’s the hardest part. It may take some time to slowly accumulate small containers (I shop for mine at the thrift store in the kitchen section), and it may take an extra minute (maaaybe) to wash and rinse and put it back in the cupboard. But again-it’s a money saver and keeps those Ziploc bags out of the landfill.
*You could also make your own reusable snack bags, using this tutorial. I’ve made some myself and will say they are great for dry snacks, but I don’t trust them with anything juicy. Just another option if you’re crafty in any way.
*Save water. If you pay your own water bill, you should have double initiative here, because again- it’ll save you money. One of the most obvious things I can say here is don’t just let your water run. Turn it off when you brush your teeth or step away from the counter while rinsing dishes/washing vegetables/etc.
*If you have a spouse and you wake up/go to bed around the same time, hold the flush. Does that make you laugh? Gross you out? Well get over it. Chris and I do this all the time (not with #2….we’re not quite there yet, lol) but combining “duties” before you flush saves water.
*Ladies- how long does it take you to shave? I’ve personally never timed it, but if I’m doing a full-leg shave, my guess is it’s probably between 5-10 minutes. That’s a ton of water. So as the weather gets warmer, try just turning the water off while you shave your legs. This is weird at first, trust me. Standing in your shower while there’s no water running is at first a little creepy. But it’s also extremely eye-opening to know that as you stand there, the water could be running and you’re not even using it!
So there’s a start for you! Do any of you already do these things? Questions? Comments? Concerns? More to come later, I promise :)