Wednesday, June 16, 2010

GREEN MACHINE

I don't consider myself to be a crunchy earth mama, but I do consider myself to be "aware". I always recycle as much as I possibly can, knowing what goes into our environment. I have one thought always circling my head, and that's "when I have kids, I want there world to look like..." So I take that into consideration. I don't want our kids to grow up with garbage in our lakes and water streams, nor do I want our kids to be exposed to toxic waste while playing in the dirt.

Every single thing we do here on earth has an impact, either good or bad. It takes just as much effort either way, so why not make it a good impact?

I'm not saying we should buy everything organic, wear garbage bags for shoes, and eat off of the floor, i'm just saying we do what we can, so you should too!


Here are a few ways we've gone green;



* We have switched all of our cleaning supplies to Method and Seventh Generation

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* We recycle all paper, plastic and aluminum. I'm not sure if your state offers this, but in California and Oregon we got money back for our cans and bottles. So we keep them in big plastic bags and take them in every other month and usually get back $40.00! A pretty sweet deal to us. We keep that money in our fun account, for date nights, vacations, etc.

* We use reusable grocery bags. This was a pretty hard adjustment for us. Not because we didnt want to do it, but because we'd always forget to grab the bags. We still have that issue sometimes, but I'm always trying to remind myself that once I'm done with putting away groceries, I need to run the bags back down to the car. I also really like these because I only have 5 or 6 of them, so it makes us buy less stuff each grocery trip, and therefore we save money. I purchased my bags at Whole paycheckFoods  and Trader Joes for about $3.00-$5.00 a bag. When I do have to use the plastic grocery bag, I save those and bring them back to the grocery store bag recycling container.
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* We limit our showers to 10 minutes. I generally shower pretty fast anyway, but C tends to take longer showers. We've started making it a point to get in and get out, so we can conserve water. This also goes with laundry. I limit my loads per week, so we use towels 3 or 4 times, dish cloths, sprinklers ( as if we even needed those on with all of this rain!) Not only are we conserving water, we're saving money on our water bill!

* We switched our light bulbs to florescent some time ago and have never even thought twice about it. Home Depot had a sale several months ago where the light bulbs were literally 25 cents a piece so we stalked  up and switched everything out. Sometimes it can be annoying having to wait a full 3 minutes before the light is at it's actual wattage but no biggie! Again, another money saver on our electricity bill!

* Speaking of electricity, During the winter we keep our thermostat at 70 and only run it at night, unless we're home and it's super cold. During the summer, we only have 2 window Ac units, so we only turn those on at night along with our ceiling fans. We also turn off any and all lights we're not using as well as unplug appliances when not in use ( toaster, blender, etc)

* We make Spencer his dog food. Well, sort of LOL. We used to buy him dry food and cans of wet food. Since his wet food was so costly and full of unneeded junk, and plus the hassle of having to recycle the can it just became a huge ordeal each day. He went to the vet 3 years ago for something ( I can't remember) and they told us he was about 10 lbs over weight. We asked how we could change his diet and they told us steamed brown rice with boiled chicken mixed into his dry food.  We have been following that ever since. We make 6 cups of brown rice in our rice cooker once a week, along with green beans. Sometimes, if I have extra chicken i'll throw that in, otherwise I just use a bit of chicken broth. he gets a cup of that mixed into a 1.5 cups of dry dog food once a day. It's been a real life saver, and he managed to get 12lbs off and is healthy as ever! Plus, we're saving about $30.00 a month!

*  We support our local farmers. We always try and buy things that are in season, and when there's a farmers market going on, I always try and buy some tasty items! We live in Oregon, where being eco friendly is the way of life, so we have a farmers market every single day. Unfortunately, that isn't always a good thing. I wish some of the farmers would sell weekly instead of everyday. You never know which day they put out their best produce, and unless you're there everyday, it's a gamble.

One of the main reasons we made changes was it reflected our pocket book. I don't know one single person that doesn't like to save money, and we're doing that just by making a few simple changes!


That about sums up what we're doing at the moment. It's not much, but again, I feel like every little but helps. When we have babies, I think this will change even further.

What do you do to stay green or help out our environment?

4 comments:

My Husband's Watching TV... said...

OMG! Showers are the same way at our house, I'm in and out but Matt 1. feels the need to let the water warm up (in summer?!? COME ON!) and 2. Is in there forever, sometimes I think he falls asleep in there.

We recycle, do reusable bags (but only at Aldi's and Shop-n-Save) and that's about it...I know I know, we need to get better, however, I have to get Matt on the same page too!

Jennelle said...

Too funny! I thought I was the only frustrated wife with a husband that takes the world's. longest. showers!

We have a few reusable grocery bags, and we do always keep them in the car, but remembering to take them in the store is a challenge. :) I love our Method cleaning supplies!

Jen said...

Your 2 photos are crazy! I have the exact same bags and soap. Craziness!

We recycle cans because you get moolah back for them. Other than that, we live in an unincorporated area and they want to charge like $30 a month to recycle! It's craziness.

Krystie said...

jen-We live in the country ( well, sort of!) and we get charged as our monthly garbage billing that includes recycling every other week. I'm not sure what percentage of the bill is recycling, but we pay $30.00 a month for everything.