Be joyful even though you have considered all the facts...practice resurrection. -Wendell Berry

Saturday, September 26, 2009

there's a green buzz in my ear

Gretta's guest post, Dottie Angel's challenge-of-the-utmost-kind and the Buy Sustainably Challenge have converged to remind me...AGAIN... that making small changes and developing new habits can have an impact on the health of this fragile planet. I'm trying to BE AWARE of my own actions more often. Not quite ready to take on Dottie Angels tough challenge, but she has me thinking about things...
I buy in bulk when I can, keeping unnecessary packaging out of landfill. I use the backs of envelopes to make grocery lists, and when I'm done with them, I toss them into the recycling bin. I use the backs of used paper, torn in half and collected on a clip board, for other lists/phone messages. I use a mechanical pencil, with refillable leads. And here's another one of our cloth napkins, circa 1999, still in use today.
We use unbleached coffee filters (in VT we use a French Press to avoid paper all together) and unbleached waxed paper, too, and we wash, drip dry and reuse veggie bags. I'm trying to move away from using tea bags and am buying more tea in bulk. The only time we use paper towels is to drain nitrate-free bacon that comes through our doors for special treats. I even pay attention to what kind of TP I buy. Earth friendly cleaning products, and lots of vinegar and baking soda and lemon juice, too. 

Then there's the programmable thermostat, drying racks and clothesline and mending I've written about before. Eating locally grown food whenever possible, and eating mostly plant-based foods helps, and has health benefits, too. 

So, that's all nice, but...what now?

Here's my list of personal challenges I am embarking on this fall. If I share them here, I can't goof around, right?

  • Batman and I are challenging/supporting  one another to lose 10 pounds each by Dec. 15th. To eat lower on the food chain and get fitter. (Our own version of healthcare reform).
  • As a family, we have pledged to make our own holiday gifts, or buy handmade from folks we know/meet at artists' fairs. Homemade music, food, clothing, gifts...all are celebrated. We did this last year and it was one of the best holidays ever. 
  • I will begin to divest this house of it's STUFF, sorting for recycling, giving away, Goodwill, repurposing, and as a last resort, trash.
  • Now that we are empty nesters, I would love to rethink the space we have here in CT. Create new areas and get a few trouble spots ORGANIZED. Because I think that staying organized conserves time and energy and counts towards greenness!
  • As we freshen things up, we will try to make green choices in the materials we use. Like wall paint that doesn't off gas and flooring that is sustainable (I can't WAIT to get rid of old carpet that was in the house when we bought it!).
OK, I'm thinking that's enough for now.


How about you, do any of you have the strength of spirit to join Dottie Angel's challenge? I know brave Pomona already has! 


  1. Well, it looks to me like you are well on the way anyway! And as to me - brave, or foolhardy - time will tell! It seems to me as soon as you start thinking about the way you live, then the changes just come. We have cloth table napkins still going strong from when we were married, over 20 years ago - I also have tablelinen from my grandmother's house which is even older than that, though perhaps not so well-used, as it is rather prettily embroidered with flowers.

    It's great to hear what other people are doing - I think the exchange of ideas and potential for mutual support is wonderful.

    Pomona x

  2. Will support you on the weight loss challenge as I need to loose a few pounds. Monday morning will be my first weigh in and will do it again the following Monday. Will go now to have my last supper...... Sue

  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  4. Well, that was my very first comment worth deleting!

  5. Yay Pomona and Sue! You are my blog comrades!