I thought it might be fun to document all the ways that I’ve moved from single use to reusable items, and from plastic to an alternative over the last few years. Partly to provide some sort of inspiration to other people, but also to give me a bit of a reality check. We are at this stage with zero waste and sustainability, where most of the obvious and basic things are done, and we are now moving on to the things that require more sacrifice, preparation, and thought. It’s easy to get overwhelmed and for your mind to get a bit “you suck at this, look how far you have to go!”, so this post is here to remind myself “Hey! Look how far you’ve come!”.
- Converted from Tupperware to glass jars for all pantry items (storing flour, etc.
- Stainless steel straws for everyday smoothie use.
- Keep cup for coffee on the go.
- Reusable water bottles to take with us.
- Plastic free lunchboxes every day.
- Using microfibre clothes for cleaning instead of chemicals (in plastic bottles no less). I know microfibre isn’t perfect, but I didn’t know at the time, and it is at least a step in the right direction.
- Reusable bags for groceries (the trick is remembering to take them!).
- As of yesterday – a compost bin! Have spent quite a few hours already watching youtube videos on the best way to compost!
- Using bar soap instead of body wash in the shower.
- Changed to reusable pump bottle for hand washing instead of buying a new one each time.
- Changed to a menstrual cup instead of using tampons and pads.
- Using essential oils to replace some first aid supplies.
I’m not sure how extensive this list is.
I wrote this all a week or two ago, and then I see the most wasteful lifestyle choice from people as I browse instagram (cooking in single use foil containers instead of a dish you can wash and reuse – WHY?!), and then I think perhaps I do much better than I think I am.
I am truly so grateful to my mother, who hardly ever used single-use items, except for the “standard” things like cling wrap, and alfoil, and who always made our food from scratch (admittedly this has made us all food snobs to a degree, but there are worse things in life than refusing to eat packet mix cake!).
I feel like these messages have really influenced my life a lot, even without her specifically teaching us anything on the subject. I wouldn’t even consider buying packaged food for my son’s school lunch box. I wouldn’t even consider using a single use foil tin to bake in when I could so easily use a proper dish. I wouldn’t consider using disposable plates as a lazy night thing (even though we don’t have a dishwasher).
Anyway, even with those things I would never consider, and with the list of things I’ve changed, there is still room for improvement, and a chance to be more mindful about the way I live. I’m excited! This feels so right for me/us, and has brought me huge peace along with the excitement and a new passion project to sink my teeth into!