The last blog posts told you all about my baby steps to zero waste living so far. Time to start writing about other stuff, but to give you an idea of what we’ve actually changed since reading Bea Johnson’s book, this last post about zero waste living. Enjoy some amazing views of the wonderful region we live in, nature at its best, worth preserving for our grandchildren by a zero waste style of living.
Actual changes in our lives:
- All plastic containers are now out of my cupboards (given to charity for refugees), welcome glass jars in cupboards and freezer.
- No cling film, plastic bags or aluminum wrap to be found in my kitchen.
- I shop with my homemade cloth bags and even got compliments about my cute bags in the supermarket! My shopping bags are made out of old fabric.
- Cleaning, washing products (washing machine and dishwasher) are homemade with Castile soap, vinegar, soda bicarbonate, fruit peels (lemon) with natural ingredients and put in reusable (non plastic) containers.
- A bucket in the shower recuperates water before it’s hot and is used to give our dogs drinking water, water the plants.
- We use a bar of soap instead of tons of shower bottles.
- One bucket in the kitchen sink recuperates water when washing hands, rinsing something (can then be used to flush the toilet).
- Dog and cat’s wet food is homemade not bought in tins anymore. We make our own dog meat (free leftovers at the butcher for 9 dogs! to add to the kibbles and pate for the cats. Homemade cookies (for humans and dogs) are baked instead of buying pre packed ones.
- I make my own vinegar, mustard.
- Yoghurt is bought straight from the farmer (every week I can give the jars back for refilling)
- Fruit and vegetables are bought from the farmer in one big bag (weekly packet and the bag is given back and refilled per week)
- When sending off items from my shop I try to avoid plastic/ bubble wrap (bubble wrap, which was originally designed to be wallpaper, can be recycled if all the bubbles are popped) and go for paper/ cardboard.
- I started to declutter the kitchen and bedroom cupboards, dvd’s and cd’s cupboard, bookcase.
- No more paper serviettes, we use fabric ones
- Presents from now on are packed in fabric (special folding technique).
- I am more conscientious about my purchases.
- Cat litter is now replaced by sawdust from the sawmill (which works wonderfully well!)
- Pet’s waste is composted.
- We buy in bulk wherever we can (rice, coffee, macaroni, lentils….)
- The water cooker is only heated to fill up a thermos of coffee, instead of every time somebody wants a cup.
What I did before already:
- Make my own jam.
- Cook from scratch, no premade dishes.
- Have our own vegetable patch.
- Keep chicken for eggs.
- I always make my own mayo.
- Sort out paper, packaging.
- Only use the tumble dryer for towels
- Reduce ironing to the strict very minimum.
- Print both sides of paper when I need to print.
- Compost our kitchen waste (when it can’t be given to the chicken).
- When my 4 children were little I used re usable cloth diapers.
- Buy unpacked bread.
- Buy second hand, I just love thrift stores.
- Go from 2 cars to one.
- Buy seasonal and support local businesses by shopping locally.
Still to do:
- Find refill for oil for kitchen use (I buy it in glass bottles now).
- Make toothpaste.
- Make my own peanut butter …
- Continue to declutter my house.
- Find milk in glass bottles instead of plastic ones here in the region .
- Remove our trash bin from our kitchen, putting it in an out-of-the-way place so I have to think about it every time I designate something for the landfill. Simply put my compost receptacle and recycling in the space under our counter that was meant for “trash” and put the trash bin somewhere a little further out of reach. That simple step will make a big difference for our family.
- My husband has to get rid of disposable razors (finishing the last ones).
- Offer a zero waste kit for visitors: note to find out what goes in which bin, welcome bamboo toothbrush, homemade toothpaste, bar of soap. (Our shower now has a poster on display, explaining visitors to avoid spoiling cold water before their shower hits the warm level and the bucket is in place).
- And many more things I suppose.
For me thinking about the overflowing landfills, there is no better time than now to try zero-waste living. It saves money, space and time once the infrastructure is in place.
Are you on board too?
Aligning my life to what I believe in, hopefully by adding my baby steps I’m helping to preserve our beautiful surroundings, our world