So, here I am in week two of my sustainability challenge. In my last post, I shared what living a sustainable lifestyle meant to me. It’s all about doing what works for my family and our needs. We come first, and then we gradually work on the environmental aspects, second.
There are many things we do to live sustainably; however if I list them all, you’d be reading forever. I may, in the future, post one big ol’ list, but until then, here are some of them.
Our Sustainable Actions
Utilize the sunlight – Natural sunlight is a big deal in our household. It makes us feel great and as a photography enthusiast, I love what sunlight does for my photos. We wake up, open the curtains, and soak up the natural rays until they dim, leaving the lights to be turned on during the evening hours – as we need them.
Cook using small appliances – We just bought a toaster oven and popcorn popper to go with our beloved George Foreman grill and waffle iron. We grill, make waffles, and need to toast quite frequently and Jayden and I love eating popcorn. By using these smaller appliances, we consume less energy and save on our electricity bill. We also eliminate package waste when buying popcorn kernals by the jar to use in the popper instead buying microwavable popcorn.
Use rechargeable batteries – We have quite a few gadgets and toys that require batteries. To eliminate the need to purchase new batteries, we use rechargeable batteries in a family sized charger. Doing so also eliminates the energy and resources required to manufacture and restock batteries as they are purchased.
Locked hair = less energy & product used – Since I wear my hair in locs, I don’t have the need to use flatirons, curling irons, or even a blow dryer. After washing my hair, I re-twist each loc by the root and let my hair air dry. To keep from going to bed with wet hair, I of course have to do this earlier in the day. My hair now requires less product and less frequent washing. I have no need to use relaxers, shampoos, moisturizing lotions, and whatever else I used to use. My staples are apple cider vinegar, conditioner, hair gel, and a moisturizing spray.
Use cloth or chlorine free diapers/training pants – In my previous post, I shared how we used cloth diapers on and off and when we didn’t use them, we used chlorine-free disposables to rid Jayden of any possible skin irritations or exposure to harsh chemicals. The first Seventh Generation product we’ve ever used were their disposable diapers which we’ve grown to love and have since graduated to their training pants which we’ve been buying before they offered to send us more for this campaign :).
Wash only what needs to be washed – Articles of clothing such as jeans and sweaters can be worn and refreshed many times before having to be washed. This preserves their quality and the energy and resources used to wash them. Growing up, I would do this only because I didn’t have any quarters to put in the shared machine in our building. I look back now and don’t feel so bad.
In my last post, I also mentioned that we had a few areas we needed to work on. Let’s take a look.
Room For Improvement
Recycle more – We have a large recycling can outside, but only select items make it into this can such as broken down boxes and large plastic items. Since we don’t have a small recycling bin inside our home, papers and cans often get tossed in with the garbage. *hangs head in shame*
Ditch paper towels – I feel we use way too many paper towels and they end up in the trash; unrecycled. Can you even recycle dirty paper towels? Ick. Anyway, I ordered some Bird-E Towels and they came today!
Wash clothes in cold water – I am one of those cold water washing skeptics. I just don’t understand how cold water could throughly clean, but I’m going to at least try washing some of our clothes in cold water. It would surely help preserve the colors in our clothes as well as add some additional savings to our energy bill.
Naturally purify our air with plants – Just like my mom, I have a bit of a green thumb, but having a small child in the house has hindered me from having many plants. I was given an air purifier which I thought would fill the void, but after researching the product, I found that it was known to emit ozone. That was definitely a purpose killer. I now have some places in mind to set down and hang some plants, so I’m going to do some shopping around for plants known to naturally purify the air such as the Areca palm, English Ivy, Rubber Plant, and Dracaena.
So there you have it, some sustainable ideas that fit our lifestyle and some ideas that we need to get working on. Join me next week where I will talk about some more sustainable ideas we do so well; selling (items we don’t need), thrifting, and repurposing. As a bonus, I want to leave you with some resources for cosmetics, remedies, and cleaners.
- Vitacost.com (Cosmetics, Remedies, & Castile soaps)
- Eyes Lips Face (Cosmetics)
- Amazon.com (Charlie’s Soap).
- Walmart & (.com) (Seventh Generation Products)
- Diapers.com (Seventh Generation diapers and training pants) *
*Get $10 off your first order of diapers using code momdadblog. $49 min. total order.
What are you doing to live a more sustainable lifestyle? In what areas do you think you need to improve?
I’ve been invited by Walmart and Seventh Generation to participate in a sustainability challenge. I hope you continue to follow my fellow Walmart Moms: Jennae of Green Your Décor, Monica of Mommy Brain Reports, Jenn of Frugal Upstate, Denise of Wholesome Mommy, and I on our four week journey to living a more sustainable lifestyle.
And as you already may know, I am a participant in the Walmart Moms program. Seventh Generation provided me with product samples. Walmart has also provided me with additional compensation for the time involved in the campaign. Participation in this program is voluntary. All opinions are my own.