What a combo for the title, I know. I couldn't think of anything really snappy.
I thought it was time for another green post. We've been doing a few things here in the luvs2knit house to help with waste. The first one is paper napkins. We are tired of throwing away napkins so I sat down at the sewing machine and threw together a stack of cloth napkins.
They were quickly thrown together so the top seam isn't invisible but we don't care because they're only being used to wipe faces and hands. I made some out of terry cloth (stripey ones) and some out of cotton it two different sizes. We wanted to see which ones we liked best. The cotton cloths are the winner. No I will no be creating more laundry by using these napkins. They'll be washed with the towels so I'm not creating another load of laundry thus wasting more water. I know I can buy paper napkins made out of recycled materials but the cloth napkins are going to cost less in the long run and create less waste at the landfill.
The second thing we've done is replace our liquid body wash with bar soap and our plastic shower puff with wash rags. We bought glycerin soap from The Body Shop (one of our fav places to shop). Their products are excellent. I have never bought a bad product from them. The bar of soap will last a lot longer then a bottle of body wash. Now the bar of soap won't last longer if it sits in water so we bought soap holders by 3M which are the best soap holders we've found so far. When you put them up they stay up until you're ready for it to come down and they won't damage your shower walls. We picked ours up for about $4.99 each. So they cost a little more then some of the other soap holders out there but they are well worth the extra cash spent. We've used quite a few of 3M's shower products with great success.
I'm not saying that anyone should do exactly what we are doing. Everyone should make their own decisions and do what works best for them. What works for our family may not work for others. We are making these changes because we feel that doing so is going to make a difference.
We have noticed a difference in how much trash is taken out. We use to take out a full 13 gallon trash bag out to the big trash can every night. Now we take it out every 2-3 days. No our trash really doesn't smell bad mostly because we rinse out food & drink containers before tossing them (if they're not recyclable). We also use our garbage disposal to get rid of most food waste although the food waste is normally very little. I've gotten the portion sizes down pretty pat for our household. Excess like spaghetti is always frozen for another night or eaten for lunch the next day. One of these days I'm going to get a compost bin going. By recycling more and being more conscious about what we are buying we have cut down our waste greatly. We've actually started looking at the recycle code on the bottom of plastics before we buy it....yes we've gotten some funny looks from our fellow shoppers. We've also found fellow recyclers too.
We bought the reusable bags for grocery shopping and I've noticed that more shoppers here on base are starting to do the same thing. It was also great to go to the BX and see that they had the reusable bags for sale too. Go check out this website to see some really go info on plastic bags. It's worth the read and a real eye opener. I can guarantee you that I won't be using anymore plastic bags. Yes the reusable bags are going to cost you money but you can continue to use them over and over again. I really hope that more US cities follow San Francisco's lead and ban plastic bags.
I'll leave you all with this shot of our tomatoes.
We were having problems with Blossom End Rot, which depending on who you ask can be caused from one of a half dozen reasons. So far the treatment we've tried has helped and hopefully soon we will have tomatoes. I really want some tomatoes! I guess this is a learning experience for next year.