I've been trying to figure out ways to be more eco-friendly and I thought this would be a good place to get other moms advice, tips, tricks and ideas!! I do the usual- I recylce paper, aluminum and I'm trying to buy more organic, but GEEZE, everything is friggin expensive!! lol. It's tough too, because I'm trying to do something good and beneficial for my family and it gets tougher to do, it's like i have to choose between gas or groceries (ok, maybe it's not that bad, but it does get tight)!! I've also been buying cleaning products like 7th Generation, I've even registered at their website to get coupons!!
Any other tips, tricks and ideas???!!!!!
Pay your bills online. Cuts down on paper usage.
Walk more often than not.. if you can.
Use re-usable containers in lunches instead of plasticwraps or baggies.
Thse are just a few.. if I can think of anymore, I"ll let you know!
I am SO into the green movemont! I'm no tree hugger.. I can't say I go that far. But it interests me, and I do what I can do while I still go on about my normal life.
I do a few things...
- I recycle (duh)
- My general household cleaner is a water/vinegar mixture in a spray bottle. It's effective on germs and is safe to use around my babies and around food.
- I buy in bulk when I can - it' not always economic, like you said, to buy organic all the time.. but buying what you know you'll go through in bulk, you use less plastic and packaging materials, that too is easier on the enviroment.
- If you have the time or space, maintain a garden for fruits and veggies. FAR less expensive than buying it all, but also more time consuming.
- One of my proudest achievements: I reuse a Swiffer Wetjet bottle. I drilled a hole in the top (or bottom depending on how you look at it) of the bottle large enough to get a small funnel into it and I refill it with pine-sol. Then plug the hole with a small piece of cork. I can still very easily mop the floors, pine-sol by volume is cheeper than the branded swiffer fluid - and I am no longer contributing to the manufacturing of the plastic swiffer bottles. My house has all hard wood floors; and with two babies crawling around on them.. I go through about a bottle full every 2 weeks. That would be a LOT of bottles I'm throwing away, recycling or not.
- I wash all my laundry in cold water. That way my water heater and washer aren't using that much more energy to heat the water.
- I've replaced all my lightbulbs with energy saving ones. More expensive, yes.. but the fact that they last for years is totally worth it.
My DS, bless his heart, has introduced me to a life of allergen control and seriously paying attention to all the cleaning products I use. I use hypoallergenic laundry detergent that's dye and fragrance free. Babies skin always seems to be sensitive, but why spend $8 a bottle for special baby detergent when you can buy the hypoallergenic version of the stuff you're already using that's about $4 a bottle. Hypoallergenic detergent also kills dust mites and all that stuff that gets on your clothes and fabrics that traditional detergents don't always do.
You can eat healthier without necessarily going organic:
- I buy ground turkey instead of ground beef.. that's cheeper where I live too.
- I buy frozen instead of canned fruits and vegitables. I buy fresh when I can, but it doesn't seem to ever last as long as I need it to, so I end up wasting my money there.
- I buy wheat bread and whole grain pastas and cereals when I can
Save your money when you can too:
you said you subscribed to coupons for 7th generation, but go to other websites and sign up for theirs too.
go to the websites of the other brand name products you use around your house:
diapers and wipes
bath soap and body wash
laundry detergent and fabric softener
dish soap and dishwasher soap
any cleaners you use
Proctor & Gamble and SC Johnson have their company websites, but if you go to, say, all.com to look for All detergent coupons (they have them), gerber.com has coupons... things like that.
Also go to mycoupondeals.com, you plug in your zip code and they have a list of sale ads for all the grocery and drug stores in your area. Couple coupons from manufacturer websites with sale ads - all from your house! You save a ton of $$$!
I'm all about healthy and cost effective! It's a lot, I know, but it should help you out I hope.
I'm interested in hearing other ideas I haven't thought of.. I hope this thread does well!
Don't forget to get some cloth grocery bags instead of paper / plastic! I keep a few 'tote' grocery bags in my truck for those unplanned trip to the store. Wal Mart sells theirs for $1 each, and they fit a lot! I use the ones I bought at wal mart at every grocery store (Walgreens, dollar store, etc).
I also only use vinegar / water mixture for household cleaning. The only real exception is bathroom cleaning. I try to buy big refill bottles to refill my little spray bottles so I can get 3-4 refills out of one bigger bottle.
We also planted a garden for herbs and fresh veggies. Also figured out just how long our yard and garden can go without water before dying. Living in south texas means we have to water regularly otherwise it will dye quickly.
That swiffer suggestion is great! I'll be drilling a hole in my swiffer bottle tonight!
We've also replaced all our lightbulbs with energy efficient ones. Actually noticed a difference in our electricity bill immediately! We invested in High Efficiency washer / dryer - much less water and way shorter drying time. Wasn't that expensive an investment and we've figured our savings will have paid the set off in about 1 year. Less time, less energy, less money - can't beat that!
Another thing we now do is to turn off our A/C unit when we leave in the morning. Now that we are in the extreme heat of summer, I tend to just turn the thermostat up to 85 instead of turning it off (we have inside dogs, don't need them getting heat exhaustion during the day) and it has made a huge impact on our electricity bill. Knowing it isn't churning all day wasting energy on an empty house makes us feel better too. Not too fun coming home to a warm stuffy house, but definitely worth it.
my husband is trying to be more green too!! lol!! he brushes his teeth in the shower!!!! lol
I'm sorry I forgot to say Thank You!! Thank you for all your advice, tips, tricks and ideas!!!!!!! They are AWESOME!!!!!
I buy all biodegradable kid-safe cleaning products with no toxic chemicals.
I laughed at the Swiffer suggestion. We cut the band on the cap so that we can screw and unscrew it to refill the bottle. Set out a five gallon bucket or two to catch the rain water (under your gutter downspout if possible). You can then use the water for your plants.
LOL.. my husband and I looked that thing over time and again trying to figure out how to get that cap off the swiffer bottle.. I finally resorted to the drill.
I'll be looking for this band you talk about lovin3... I'm sure it's MUCH easier than what I'm doing.
I know seventh generation has diapers and wipes. I plan on trying them when my baby is born. Has anyone else tried them?