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Thursday, June 14, 2007

Being Green...

Birdsong and Carole have been posting about how Easy It Is To Be Green in a meme and I wanted to add my practices. I think, tho' that's it's best if I do this here, rather than my knitting blog as it pertains more to this one...and while I'm sure I can't hold a candle to the things I know my friend Jane does, I was raised by one of the best Depression Era Penny-Pinchers and New England Tightwads, so some of the things I do, I might not want to admit to publicly! lololol...

1. I have one of these. I rewash ziplock bags (as long as meat hasn't been inside) and this little device allows them to dry very quickly! I used to wash and reuse aluminum foil, but since I rarely use it anymore, it's a non-issue. I gave these wonderful contraptions to several households on my Christmas list one year and I know they ALL use them and LOVE them! It saves $$, and keeps a lot of plastic out of the landfills!

2. I pack my lunch and eat at my desk most days of the week. I use washable containers and limit the amount of single serve packaging unless it's recyclable - like aluminum cans. I like to have V-8 as a snack at work, but usually I buy a bottle and portion it out into small containers to take in my lunch.

3. I don't actually "buy in bulk" b/c I'm only one person. But if I buy enough for a family of 4 or 6, it's still reducing the packaging considerably. I'll make a stir-fry and package in reusable (washable) containers in the freezer. I've always heard how hard it is to cook for one. I don't. WHEN I cook, I do enough for 4-6 and freeze the rest in single serves - for lunches, for dinners. I've been bad about this for a couple of months...gotta fix that!

4. I reduce, reuse, recycle. Since my move, I'm 2 blocks (I know that sounds awfully close, but they are long blocks!) from the recycling center. When I moved, I collected boxes from the liquor store for packing and gathered newspaper from friends. When I was finished (yeah, sure, I'm STILL unpacking), there was a friend in the office getting ready to move. I brought her boxes as I unpacked them and she used them, then took them to the recycler! (I love that...) The liquor store would have trashed them.

5. I trip chain. I try very hard to plan where I have to go and combine my errands so I have limited back-tracking to do. Our public transportation system leaves a lot to be desired. :(

6. Thrift stores, yard sales, and reuse shops (including book exchanges) are some of the most fun ways to shop - tho' I must admit with the cost of gasoline, I doing fewer and fewer yard sales these days. (Most of my furniture is at least second-hand, tho' I do often have it re-upholstered - I like antiques)

7. I check out books/videos/books on tape fro my library. I pre-screen (as much as possible) knitting books before I buy. I'm trying to get to the point of releasing my current books (not knitting books!) into the second-hand's hard.

8. I only wash full loads of laundry on cold.

9. When I moved to this new house, I realized that even by filling the dishwasher to capacity (which takes a long time for one person who really doesn't cook much) I would still use less water if I half-filled two dishpans with water - one to wash, one to rinse - once or twice a week! The water is then saved and used to water plants and shrubs in front of the house.

10. I moved into town and reduced my commute by 15 minutes each way. I try to keep my car tuned up, air in tires, all the stuff you're supposed to do to get good mileage. While I have a small SUV, it's an "economy car" according to the insurance company and gets 27 mpg on the highway. But I have a dream of owning one of THESE, at least for around town...

Wonder if I can find one in Grape (oh, I know it should be GREEN, considering the title of this post - but I am not THERE in my color preferences...)?


ericah64 said...

Re #1: Cheaper than that is a plastic baby-bottle drying rack. It holds more and is sloped toward the sink for run-off. I'm glad you posted this b/c I used to do that and haven't in a loooong time.

Re #8: Here in CA, we've had various energy problems (THANK you, Gray Davis, grrrrrr!!!), so I've been doing that for years. The only stuff I wash on hot/cold is a) the dog's laundry (just in case there are any ickies in there) and 2) stuff I'm felting!

Re #3: I really ought to do this more. I tend to cook enough for an army, and by the time my family gets through it, we're sick of it. I ought to just put half of it in the freezer right away for another time.

Thanks for the post and all the ideas!

Ruinwen said...

Great list! :)