Saturday, March 12, 2011

Tipping Point - tumbling towards green

If you would have asked me a few years ago what "green" meant, I probably would have told you it was the color of trees and Kermit the frog.  Sadly, I'm actually kinda serious. 

When Adam brought up using cloth diapers almost a year ago, it resulted in a fight.  He suggested it, I completely fought back!  No way will I agree to reuse diapers and wash poo.  Sounds like a lot of work and I'm not OK with that. 

Then I did my own homework and fell in love with the idea of cloth diapering.  I found great resources and blogs that supported cloth diapering and with those came other ideas [and not the Kermit the frog kind]. 

Hubby and I have recently made the switch to cloth napkins for meals at home.  We have a stack in our napkin holder, just as we always had - but they are cloth instead of paper now.  Totally easy switch!  Our collection of cloth napkins (which I made sure to find super sales, since I'm not much for sewing my own) cost about as much as a pack of napkins!  Love eliminating waste and saving money!

I have a confession....I love paper towels.  I could probably use nearly an entire roll to clean the house and everything else that you can think of.  We are slowly saying goodbye to paper towels (insert sad face here).  Cleaning is done with washable sponges and rags and towels.  [What a concept, I know]  Another great savings and definitely minimizing waste (insert happy face here).

Spring is very near and I'm already thinking about getting out the rain barrel.  We used it for the first time last year to be able to water our flowers and garden.  If you want to make an easy change to minimize water usage with no effort - this is the way to go.  Once it's set up, the barrel and the weather do all the's THAT easy, folks!

I recently opted out of receiving yellow pages too!  This was a suggestion I hadn't thought of and read from Go Green.  There were three printers in my area!  That's three massive books that I wouldn't give a second glance at since I have internet at my fingertips. 

You know those pesky pesky letters that come in the mail, whether it's from a bank or local group?  The ones you don't even take the 10 seconds to open and throw right in your garbage can recycling bin?  Ask to be removed from the mailing lists.  Those mailings really add up!  I've made a few phone calls to be removed from these that we received.

Recycling!  Once we started to recycle, the trash we set out the curb each week was down to almost nothing! 

Composting!  We only compost in the spring/summer/fall months, but this also cut down on our trash.  It was so much easier than I thought!  We kept super small trash can with lid on kitchen counter and while we cooked, we put scraps in there and took out to the compost.  Pretty easy to manage and use.  Easy peasy!

No more plastic water bottles.  We keep a few reusable ones on hand instead.  A lot cheaper too!

Alternate ways of wrapping presents!  Instead of using wrapping paper, try giving the gift in a basket or in an adorable, reusable shopping bag that the recipient can keep as a bonus!  [I must confess, I'm not perfect at this yet, but I'm getting better!]

To avoid some of the chemicals we are using, we are changing our habits with the cleaning  products and landscaping products we use.  We are using natural and organic products as alternatives to what we would normally be using.  I feel a lot better knowing we are not exposing William, our dog and ourselves to unnecessary chemicals and products.

A year ago I would not have been interested at all in making eco-friendly changes.  Little did I know how easy it would be!  One thing led to another, which led to another, which started resulting in difference.  It's so easy to make little changes at a time and it results in visible cost savings too! 

What changes have you made lately to be more green?

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