Going Green

I guess its actually happened. I never thought it would.

If you know me, you know there’s nothing earthy about me. No one has ever used the term granola or tree hugger to describe me. Not even close. I think global warming is a figment of Al Gore’s imagination. I think we have plenty of oil we should be drilling for right here in the US. And don’t even get me started on the whole insanity about putting a limit on CO2 emissions  (ok, everyone hold your breath….hello, what do plants need to survive?!) its just plain nuts.

BUT, our family is actually going GREEN! It started with little things, filling the little green recycling bin that came from the garbage company. Then we started mulching the lawn instead of bagging. Innocent enough. Then Middle Child said, “We need to compost our food scraps!” I had to think on that one for a long while. But this past fall, we dug through all the used lumber we keep in the garage.  {I thought we were just being frugal…we will use it for something someday….now I hear we were being green!} Using the wood we had, we designed a compost bin. Yes, you read that correctly, a compost bin! I guess I should have seen this coming, Middle Child has been throwing his apple cores in the yard for years. When I realize it and called him on it he first said he wanted to grow an apple tree. Later, he said he wanted to feed the squirrels and birds. He was a child ahead of his time. So, the new compost bin sat in the back yard for a while, unfilled. Then he started putting leaves and table scraps in it. I collected the coffee grounds from my work (no one in this family drinks the stuff). Now we have a container under the kitchen sink where we throw the food we compost.

Then our church offered a class on going green and Hubby and Middle Child went. When they came home they were so excited! I was anxious to hear what they learned. They both had a page of notes about what they had learned. It all sounded good and so easy. We could do these things. And then they said something crazy about turning down the water heater and taking shorter showers. Now, hold it right there. You’ve gone too far. I’m a frugal girl. I don’t go to the spa. I don’t get mani’s and pedi’s. Don’t tell me I have to take a short, cold shower! They quickly realized they had crossed a line. They did a little back peddaling and showed me  the cloth napkins they got at the class. They’re all navy blue, but have different patterns of white; mine is flowers, one is big dots, another small dots. Now this I can do, and buy fewer paper napkins! There’s a lot about going green that appeals to my frugal side too.

So 2011 brought another big change at our house. We took the plunge. Jumped in head first. Are you ready for it? We switched our tiny little bin we used for recycling with our giant kitchen garbage. What does that mean, you ask? That means our regular garbage can in the kitchen is now our recycle bin! And that tiny bin we kept in the island for recycling…its now our garbage can. So, the amount of recycling we produce is bigger than the amount of garbage! Can you believe it?! I can’t.

It’s happened – we’ve gone green! And we still wouldn’t be called granola, or tree huggers. But we are doing a better job of  decreasing out impact. We’ve gone from 6 bags of garbage a week to 2-3! There are so many simple things you can do. Like switching to compact flourescent light bulbs. {Side note: I don’t need the government to regulate my light bulbs, I think they have bigger fish to fry!} Using fabric napkins, keeping your grass longer and mulching when you do mow and taking reusable bags to the grocery store.

I’m still taking long hot showers and we don’t have solar panels on our our house. But we’re having fun seeing what changes we can make. 

Going green is a journey.

Is your family Green? Share you ideas in the comments below…I’d love to hear them!


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Filed under Advice, Family, Frugal living, Lifestyle

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