Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Is it easy to be Green?

Lately I feel as if messages about being "green" are all over. From bringing your own bags into the grocery store to billboards about picking up your dog's business, there are hints and tips everywhere. Throughout grade-school, I was a Girl Scout, and still "Leave it better than you found it" plays over and over in my head.

I want to believe that there are very few people who do not care about the environment. Really, at a minimum, it's not hard to sort out the recyclables and turn off the water while you brush your teeth. So, as we are bombarded with these messages, I have been thinking a lot about our family's "green-ness" lately. Are we green? We make an effort, but is that enough?

These questions were rolling around in my head, then I ended up in a conversation with a friend about it yesterday, then I saw the billboard again! I know that we do what we can. I feel like we try to be conscious about it but have to accept some of our own limitations. For example, I would feel so guilty every time we emptied the diaper can. However, I can't even keep up with our normal laundry. Sorry Momma Earth on that one.

We have some very green friends who are inspiring- cloth diapering, composting, gardening people. You just know they are "green." They make me want to do more. Is it weird that we peg some people as "green" but don't call others "wasters?" As I ponder it, I'm not sure that I can peg anyone I know as downright wasteful, which is great! I just can't help but wonder are there some easy things that we aren't doing?

Some simple things we do:

1. I try to use cups or reusable water bottles instead of paper or plastic. For example, I generally make my own coffee and use my own to go mugs. We rarely use juice boxes for the kids.

2. I try to use reusable containers, like Tupperware and Pyrex, for leftovers, picnics and school lunches.

3. If the kids can play with it, I let them. Our kids have too many toys and I feel like they can't be imaginative enough with so many of them. It is amazing what they can do with a cardboard box, paper-towel roll, or old container. At our house, boxes instantly become playhouses or cars. Paper towel rolls make great "logs" in the dump truck or pirate spyglasses. Old wipey containers have become jewelry boxes and a place to store Memory cards (the game). Save your paper towel and toilet paper rolls and check out this post by Little Speckled Frog called "Help! I have created a monster!" http://littlespeckledfrogbabyboutique.blogspot.com/2010/07/help-ive-created-monster.html

4. Recycling. I do my best to sort and recycle. If I do forget my reusable bags, I ask for paper, and then stand it up next to the garbage can at home to collect paper products.

5. Reusable Grocery Bags. This is such a no brainer! They are actually so much easier than the store bags. Genius! I am working on being better at taking reusable bags with me to other places.

So, I'm looking for new and simpler ways to add more green to our lives. I know this sounds cheesy, but if we all try a little then it should help a lot, right? (See, I told you the messages are everywhere!)

Here are some cute resources:

Little Green Footprints: http://www.littlegreenfootprints.com/
A great site I recently found that promotes "real living." After all, everyone can be some shade of green. A beautiful site!

Little Speckled Frog:
LSF is a great resource for greener living and she blogs about her family's adventures. Her "Friends of the Frog" posts also share many green and mommy-driven companies

1 comment:

  1. Thanks so much for mentioning LSF! I think everyone does try and do their part for the environment. We are all just different shades of green. ; )