Trying to be more green

Wasn’t it Kermit that said “It’s not easy being green.”? I was thinking about this yesterday while I was shopping at our local Good Will. Not about being a green frog of course but about living a life that is more earth friendly. As a Christian I feel that it is important to take care of the place God placed me in.

I found a really cool blog yesterday while searching for family cloth information. She has some great links and an awesome list of some of the things she and her family have done to be more green. After reading there I thought about all the things that we do and the things that I would like to move toward. So in the same fashion I am posting my list in two parts.

What I/we currently do:

Use cloth diapers. I started using cloth with the birth of our 3rd daughter. I wish I had known about them sooner. Although I am a different person now and I am not sure the JoAnn then would have even considered cloth. I do still use disposables at night because I haven’t found a night-time system that works yet. I am open to suggestions.

Breastfeed my babies.

Use natural homemade cleaners.I started doing this because cleaners in general give me headaches.

I am slowly but surely moving to cloth napkins. I picked up 8 brand new ones at our good will store yesterday. We now have a total of 10! I used to think cloth napkins were only for special occaisions but now I know they work just as well with PB&J as they do with Thanksgiving turkey.

I recycle eveything that our garbage service allows and I search for alternative places to recycle the things that they won’t take.

I use freecycle to decrease and declutter my house.This has been a tremendous tool with the move we just made.

I try to run only full loads of laundry. This isn’t too hard to do with 6people in the house but there are times when I fall back on this and run a small load.

I keep the thermostat up or down a few degrees depending on the season.

I accept any and all hand  me downs and pass on what I can’t use. I try not to buy new if I don’t have to.

I am always turning lights off around the house. I have done this for a while out of a desire not to have a huge electric bill and without realizing it was being “green” in the process.

Along the lines of turning off lights I try to use natural light in our home as much as possible.

Almost all of our drinking glasses are glass jars of some sort. No redneck comments please.

What I would like to do:

Plan my errands so that I am on the road less. This cuts down on gas and emissions.

Completely eliminate papertowel and napkin use in my home. When we have papertowels we go through a bunch!

Have an organic garden this year. This is something I am excited about because I didn’t get to last year.

Move to using family cloth. My husband thinks this is nuts but I am open to at least trying it. With 4 girls and a wife he might actually be able to create his “Sports room” with the money we save not buying toilet paper.

Use my bike for the quick trips to the grocery store and the pharmacy. Both are just around the corner and this would also be a good form of exercise.

Add native plants to our landscape.

Add bird feeders to our yard.

Carry a bag to pick up trash when we go for a walk. And not just in our neighborhood but when we walk trails at our local parks etc.

Move away from plastic and replace with stainless steel and cast iron.I got a couple of great links from this mom.  I LOVE my big cast iron skillet. I am hoping to get a cast iron grill pan soon.

Make and use cloth shopping and gift bags. There are some great links for buying these online if you do a google search. I have enough material here to make my own…if I can find the time. I have made a few cloth giftbags and didn’t even think about it falling in line with living green. I just thought they were really stinkin’ cute.

There is more but I can’t think of them right now. I have to remind myself that it is all baby steps.

 

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4 thoughts on “Trying to be more green

  1. Isn’t her site neat?? I am inspired by her, and by you! I am currently on the fence with the cloth napkins. I know it’s silly and I should just use them. We are getting ready to move this week and I almost donated them to Goodwill (my parents passed them down to me–funky 70’s prints!) but thought twice. I need to take better care of the Earth and teach my kids to, too. I am reminded by your words that God gave us this place to live and we should take care of it.

  2. That’s a great start I would say! I’ll have to check out the links when I have more time. I’m always searching for ways to be greener.
    We’ve done cloth napkins for maybe a year now and it really works well. I have dozens because I pick them up everyhwere I go. It’s much nicer in the spring/summer when you can hang them to dry. I need to get more consistent with my cloth diapering. I switch between 7th Generation and cloth but would like to do 90% cloth. I’m working on it…

  3. i love this post! we have been doing much research (i love the library) and much talk of going green!! It was so great to read the things you are doing and starting to give me some ideas on more we can do as well. I have never heard of “family cloth” I’m gonna look into that. : )

  4. You go! I have been seriously considering family cloth. You know, little baby washcloths work nice and they are soft and absorbant. I also want to phase out my teflon type pans. I use my cast iron skillet for lots of things and I have a big stainless soup pot. I just need a little stainless sauce pan. I am using old Adams peanut butter jars in place of Nalgenes for portable drinking water. I love sharing these ideas! Thanks! 🙂

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