• Consider buying bulk products as much as possible. Purchasing the larger bottle of castile soap, for example, means that fewer smaller bottles need to be produced, thus lowering environmental impact. Finding refillable options like shampoo, or bringing your own lightweight, reusable bags for produce and bulk food items, will also reduce the amount of waste coming through your door. Storing these items in glass bottles is healthier than BPA-riddled plastics and will keep your goodies fresh. • Awareness is a wonderful thing. Before you leave the house, take into consideration what you’ll be doing for the day. Will you be grocery shopping, and might you crave (as you usually do) an impromptu cup of coffee? If the answer is yes, be sure to grab your reusable grocery bags and brew a cup for your to-go mug. Or, better yet, make it a habit to keep your grocery bags in the back of your car so that you’re never left empty-handed. The reduction in trash for a day of shopping like this could be several plastic bags and a single-use coffee cup. It may not sound like much, but it adds up and every little bit counts!
items that end up in the trash could find new purposes as storage containers, decorative pieces, and much more if we just look at them from a different perspective. Almost everything can be reconsidered before being tossed into the trash. • Which of your daily routines can be changed? Consider bringing along a travel mug to your local coffee shop every morning, a stainless steel water bottle to keep hydrated, or a small reusable bag and glass containers for those yummy lunches. Getting into the habit of using reusable products (especially when they look really cute!) is a big factor in reducing your carbon footprint. Also, taking a deep look at your paper product use, from paper towels to napkins, is another great change that will also save you some green of another variety; just switch out cloth towels and microfiber rags for paper towels and cloth napkins for paper napkins. Hankies work just as well today as they did for our parents and grandparents, and real plates make any get-together (even a casual barbecue) feel like a special event.
A close-knit partner of “reducing,” this is the part of “the three R’s” that asks you to think outside the box and get creative. What other uses can you find for an item that will give it a new chance at life? • Look at things through green-colored glasses. That jar of spaghetti sauce has a pretty cool design to it, doesn’t it? Well, once emptied and cleaned, display flowers from your garden or a nearby field in it. Not only will it look country chic, you’ll be saving one more item from the landfill or saving energy from processing at the recycling center. Many
We just love this ceramic travel mug from Second Chance Ceramics on Etsy!