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Friday, April 22, 2011

5 Ways I Accidentally Turned Green

You see, I just took Kermie’s word for it. I assumed it wasn’t easy being green. so I left it at that.

kermit disney

I only recycled because I had to (city rules).

With hubby and I being full time employees and grad students who ate most meals on the go, we flew through paper lunch bags, little plastic sandwich bags, etc.

I washed clothes on HOT HOT HOT, ran my sink all through teeth brushing, and busted open a fresh bottle of water for every workout.

When I heard my sister in law was cloth diapering, I considered doing it myself and said to my mom, “Here’s my thing. I know I am leaving a carbon BOOTprint instead of a little carbon footprint, and for some reason I don’t care.”

Then I turned frugal. I don’t know when it hit me, but at some point I got sick of buying diapers every week. I got sick of looking at disposables spilling out of my stupid diaper genie that really only held a day’s worth of diapers and looked like a giant poop sausage when you pulled it out (ewe). So it happened. I bought cloth. Then, all of a sudden, that simple decision to help the environment got me thinking of other little tweaks to turn a little green.

Diaper genie sausage

So there’s (1): I turned green by doing cloth diapers instead of disposable diapers. I limited the amount of diapers filling up a landfill.

Then I got more green..

(2) I started putting our lunch items in tupperware containers that could be reused. I even made my own sandwich bags (I can’t sew worth a lick, but I tried!). I love this tutorial for how to make sandwich bags (for sewing dummies like me!)

(3) I started to use reusable grocery bags and even reusable produce bags. I got the produce bags at Whole Foods and they ROCK. I am, however, pining after these. But read until the end of this post to know why I haven’t splurged on them.

(4) I started watching the water flow in our house. Laundry washed in cold for things that don’t REALLY need big-time sanitation. I even became more aware of my cloth diapering washing, waiting until I absolutely HAD to wash diapers and even then, being cautious about using the wash cycle that gave just the right amount of water without going overboard. I put the diapers on one short dry cycle and what isn’t dried gets hung to dry.

(5) I started using Shaklee products (my favorite retailer is from www.abowlfulloflemons.com). So this is embarrassing. Basically I got sick of buying bottle after bottle of all purpose cleaner, so I just kept refilling the bottle with water once it got to 1/4 full (I am sure by the time I gave that bottle a toss it was only 99.99999999% water). So I found Shaklee. You basically keep the same spray bottle and only drop about 1/4 teaspoon of this stuff and fill the rest of the bottle with water and VOILA no tossing a spray bottle. And the good news is it is a big bottle for only $11! Anyway, this is my newest obsession. I did my floors with it and added some lemon and peppermint essential oils to give it a nice smell (one quick note: I did try the detergent on my diapers. I did just the normal amount and I don’t think it worked with my machine/water type/amount of diapers).

So what’s next? This Earth Day I have made a few goals for myself:

(1) Limit fast food to once a week: yup, confession, I go at least 4 times a week. Think of all the waste I use (and put in my body!)

(2) Buy organic apples and potatoes. Dr. Oz said to at LEAST get these organic. I may do other organic stuff. By the way, I totally recommend Epitaph for a Peach, a story about an organic farmer. A great read. But read it in the summer months so that you can get a hand on a peach, or else you will go crazy.

(3) Try to include more vegan/vegetarian meals in my life. Is this green? I dunno. But all the green people are doing it. My newest obsession is this new website by a friend of mine. She cannot post recipes quickly enough! She is one of “those” Moms you totally admire…biking her kids all over town, eating healthy foods, oh and she’s gorgeous (I think I blame the veggies for her pretty glow!). I am also a long-time fan of a great green food blog: Kath Eats Real Food.

(4) Limit materialism and donate clutter. I am starting to get a little icked out by how much I buy. Like every weekend I buy at least 10 new things to clutter my home. Is that necessary? I hope to cut things back and try to be a little more resourceful. That way fewer things are PRODUCED for me to just stuff in my home. (oh so how am I going to get those cute produce bags? I plan to enlist the help of my crafty friend from Mama Mel Crafts.

If you are still reading…what have you done to get green? Do you have any goals for becoming more green?



  1. I would recommend organic celery as well.
    I am a bit of a green spaz and rather hardcore, so I don't want to list my green goals or people might think I am nuts!
    Just want to say I love those produce bags! Really cute. Those are from wholefoods?

  2. Oh that is great, I will try organic celery. I went to the store this week and was amazed by how some things were the same price. So I will try celery too.
    The bags are from a company called sustainabite. I guess the only do special orders now...so I am going to try to make some myself this weekend with some old toule I have.

  3. Here is a resource for green reusable bags. They have reusable grocery bags, sandwich/snack bags and produce bags .... http://greenworldbags.com/


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