The boy and I decided we should work on how much waste we create. Even with just the two of us it feels like we’re taking out the garbage nearly every day. Between toiletries, cleaning supplies, and food packaging, recycling is a disturbingly small part of what ends up leaving our house. I’ve seen plenty of cool concept designs for waste-free packaging, but for whatever reason it seems that companies are resistant to make the change. In the meantime, we’ll have to do what we can to help.
1. Reusable grocery bags: In LA they’re required at convenience stores and grocery stores, even Target and Bed, Bath and Beyond. I’m going to try use mine at the mall too, but if I forget I’ll consolidate purchases in one bag as I shop. You can also ask the salesperson not to use tissue paper and email the receipt. Just be sure to wash your reusable bags regularly!
2. Cleaning cleanly: I love Clorox wipes and Swiffer pads as much as the next person, but it’s time to get back to basics. Use old wash cloths and hand towels for cleaning. In order to avoid mixing them up with your bath towels, cut the tags in half or mark them with a Sharpie. There are plenty of recipes for DIY cleaners or you can buy in bulk. Which brings me to my next point…
3. Buying in bulk: In addition to being eco-friendly, it’s economically friendly. In an apartment, it is difficult to stock up on big items like TP and paper towels. Utilize cabinets that are too high up for regular use or the back of deep shelves for your stockpile. Some grocery stores sell grains and nuts in bulk. Save glass jars for these types of purchases or trips to the farmer’s market. Plus, you can use old jars for packing lunch or leftovers in lieu of plastic containers.