Thursday, June 7, 2007

Low Impact Week Update - Almost Through!

I'm not getting everything I wanted done, but I have done some things, so I feel pretty good about it. My goals were:

  • Buy organic and local food
  • Call Earth Shoes to stop the double catalogs
  • Line dry clothes
  • No take-out if I can't recycle the packaging
  • Save shower water while heating for watering plants
  • Set up rain barrel
  • Take my bike for errands
  • Take shorter showers
  • Try a 100% recycled TP
  • Tun off water at kitchen sink
  • Turn off the TV for the week
  • Turn off the water when brushing teeth
  • Use cloth napkins and towels
How I've been doing:

I bought a mix of organic and non-organic. Nothing local, unfortunately. I did email Earth, and they removed the duplicate from the system. I line dried one load of clothes - I need to toss in another load tonight and string it around the house :) I have dried 2 loads in the washer. But hey, it was one less!

I ate out at lunch Monday - the Taco Bell run. Tuesday, a co-worker bought pizza and gave me a couple slices. I've been bringing my lunch otherwise. I ate my last frozen dinner last night - plastic dish there, but I can clean it and put it in the recycling.

I've been saving the initial shower water for plants. Didn't set up a rain barrel, but I'm still debating that one with the whole "water off the shingles isn't good for you" thing. I only have one decorative bed of plants, and it still has herbs in it, so I'm not wanting to put "contaminated" water on it.

I definitely took shorter showers - I'm known in my family for long showers, so that's good!

Didn't get to try a recycled TP - I'll do that when I buy it next - still had rolls to use.

Didn't really run water in the kitchen, because I've been letting the dishes pile up. Need to clean the kitchen!

Only watched 1 half hour show on TV this week (Creature Comforts - I'm an Aardman fan). Had the telly on for about 15 min Saturday morning till I figured out Real Simple wasn't going to be on - I've been trying to see if it's any good, but have only gotten to see one ep!

Turn off water when brushing teeth - been doing that!

Use cloth napkins and towels - only had one slip up on that! Yay!

(x-posted on LJ)

Monday, June 4, 2007

Low-Impact Monday - so far.

I'm a bit miffed - I packed a lunch today, but had to run out of the office to go to the post office, so I decided to pick up something at taco bell. I figured it would have less packaging then the stuff in my lunch - it would be wrapped in paper.

In the plastic bag (which I will reuse) was ANOTHER plastic bag with the napkin, 3 pieces of paper, a wet nap, and a peppermint in a plastic wrapper!

I definitely will be packing my lunch the rest of the week!

Low-Impact Week Update (x-posted from LJ)

My weekend was not as low impact as I'd like :(


I was invited to a baby shower, but the directions I printed out were incorrect, and I couldn't find one of the streets I was to turn off of. So I drove up and down the street 4 times trying to find it.

Then I was to meet a friend and haul a lawnmower for her since it wouldn't fit in her car - her directions were bad too, so we drove around a bit trying to find that place.

I did do a load of laundry that I air dried - yay!


I took my bike to a local bike shop and got a basket for the front, as well as tried to get my helmet fitted - but that was a wash as he said he'd never seen a helmet like mine :(

Then I went to a park and rode the bike paths there, went home, read some, and then rode my bike through the neighborhood some more.

Friday, June 1, 2007

Low-Impact Week (x-posted from LJ)

Crunchy Chicken is "hosting" a Low Impact Week, check it out! It starts today. Um, today kinda snuck up on me - I meant to do this list earlier, so my week will start after work today and go to after work next Friday.

Basically, you choose something (or more than one thing) to do from each area of impact. There are some things I've already done (some all my life). What I'm doing here is listing the whole list, in case someone else wants to copy it.

I'm doing a strikethrough on things I'm not going to do
I'm changing things I already do to italics
I'm changing things I am going to do this week to bold.
1. Reduce energy consumption -
# don't turn the heat above 65 during the day and 60 at night (put on a sweater and dig out those blankies!); for our southern friends, set the A/C to above 90
# unplug appliances when not in use that still draw energy when off (like your cell phone charger)
# turn off the TV unless you are actually watching something
# use the air dry on your dishwasher instead of heat dry
# use only cold water in your washing machine
# line dry your clothes instead of using the dryer*
# turn off the TV for the week and do something else instead (read a book, visit with friends/family)*

2. Reduce water usage -
# take shorter showers and/or use a water saving showerhead
# turn off the water when you're brushing your teeth
# be aware of water usage when at the kitchen sink - turn it off in between tasks
# save the water in a bucket that is discharged while warming up the shower and use it to water plants or for other things*

3. Change your food habits -
# try to buy organic and/or locally grown food
# minimize pre-packaged foods and make more of your own from scratch
# use cloth bags at the grocery store instead of getting paper or plastic*
# don't get take-out if it means non-recyclable packaging*
# try eating vegetarian or vegan for the week (choose your level from egg/dairy acceptable to no animals products at all)*

4. Reduce your dependence on paper products -
# print out only what is necessary
# try out a a 100% recycled TP and tissue brand
# don't use paper towels; when you can, use cloth napkins or towels instead (e.g. public restrooms)*

5. Reduce your garbage output -
# recycle everything you can (for your area)
# donate used items to a charity (many have pick ups and drop off locations) instead of throwing them out or taking them to the dump
# compost your food waste and soiled paper products*

6. Reduce Single Occupancy Vehicle usage -
# carpool when taking trips or going out to eat with friends
# take the bus or other public transportation to work and on errands* - I'm going to try and use my new bike for this!

7. Do something that lasts more than a week -
# replace one bulb per day with a Compact Fluorescent light bulb
# take your name off of junk mail and mailing lists for catalogs you don't want
# sign up for an alternative energy plan if available in your area
# set up a compost bin for your food scraps*
# set up a rain barrel to capture water for watering your yard*
Some things I'm not trying because they aren't practical (for me) - like the AC thing - I can't put it above 90 because I've got Annie at home. I do have it set for 80 though, and I open my windows when it's below that. It's settling into summer here though, and the heat will start in earnest soon.