The amount of trash generated daily, on average, equals to about 4.4 pounds. Typically, Americans generate around 254 million tons of trash in a year and 22 billion plastic bottles are thrown out annually by us. We live in a society where generating waste is the norm. We don’t tend to give a second thought about our daily waste when most of the items we purchase come in convenient and cheap plastic packaging.
Recently, my husband and I had a nice long discussion about our priorities and goals for our children and family life. The subject of waste and minimalism came up and was a hot topic for the moment. We are becoming more conscientious of what we throw away, recycle, and what we purchase. Our goal is to decrease our waste and abstain from over indulging. We’re slowly but surely switching to an economical lifestyle.
This is a growth for our family. Replacing those bad and most convenient habits can be daunting at first, but that’s why I recommend baby steps. These are just a few habits we’ve personally transitioned to that are not only helping the planet, but our wallets, too!
Reusable Grocery Bags
Think about all of the plastic and paper bags that add up over just a few grocery store trips. We started bringing our own reusable bags to the grocery store for the cashier or bagger to put our groceries in, instead of using the plastic or paper bags the stores offer. If for any reason I forget to grab my bags, I ask for paper bags to recycle and reuse later, they really come in handy!
Replacing Plasticware with Glass
You can buy large-mouthed quart sized glass jars at a reasonable price and they work even better than plastic storage or zip-top bags! They seal, so your food stays fresh, plus they store liquids and last forever! Pyrex glassware is a great choice, too!
When I used disposables on my two littles, I was taking out a full diaper pail bag to the trash can every other day! I also spent a ridiculous amount of money on those darn products! I decided to try cloth diapering and fell in love! I’ve saved a great quantity of money and trips to the store, not to mention the chemicals that I don’t have to worry about that are in most disposables.
I’ve just started line-drying most of my clothes outside and I love it! They smell so fresh and dry faster than I thought they would before I started line-drying. I spray them with a mixture of lavender essential oil and water to give them a nice scent and use my home-made laundry soap and vinegar to soften the fabric so the clothes are not stiff.
Wool Dryer Balls
When I do dry my clothes, I use wool dryer balls and keep about 6-9 in the dryer at all times. These gems save a ton of time on drying and reduce static. I like to add a drop of my lavender essential oil to all of the balls for scent. These are great because you don’t have to buy dryer sheets and you can use them over and over again!
I like to make my own soaps, toothpastes (picture above) and cleaning products, but you can also buy your products from green companies. There are so many companies out there that use recycled material and donate part of their profits to different organizations. I like the Grove Collaborative, personally.
This is such a beneficial lifestyle. If you have anything to add on concerning your suggestions of green living or your personal experience, please give me a shoutout in the comments! I would love to hear!