5 small ways to make a BIG difference: Refuse, reuse, recycle.

5 simple ways to start creating less trash and wasting less- this is intimidating, I know. For about a few months I have been on this train and I have noticed way less trash in the big picture but on a day to day basis it is very difficult to see the change. It is also intimidating because where the heck do you start. The key is to take is slow and steady. Well for one just realizing that humans create so much trash and waste so much is the biggest step you can take! I don’t believe anyone is perfect nor anyone should be. It is all about balance and your lifestyle that best fits where you are in your life and where God wants you to be. If you are stressed that you can’t buy reusable bags or even bring them to the grocery store. Then don’t. just be conscious and get paper to recycle or just carry by hand! Sorry for all the writing but I want to encourage you!

1.Recycle plastic-heck, recycle everything you can! But before recycling can you reuse it? Reuse gift packaging, shipping boxes, string for tying things, rubber bands for holding things in place, paper for scratch notes.  Don’t take this as a free pass to hoard..trust me I have been on the brink with somethings. I don’t think its efficient to get rid of EVERYTHING plastic all at once, because that means being more of a consumer to replace them. It’s the journey of reaching an almost plastic-free lifestyle. You get plastic bags at the grocery store (gosh darn I forgot!-moment) then place them in another plastic bag you have and collect baggies and plastic wrapping and recycle them at your local grocery store like the one in the picture. They make patio decks or other bags out of them apparently! Baby steps! Refuse what you can, Reuse where you can but recycle when you cant.

2. Buy things in glass jars- or recyclable packaging! now I am all about only buying what you need…(relative word) but as for peanutbutter (you can get in bulk with your own container at a local health food store probably, but if your not there yet..which is fine!) J, get itin a glass jar. This can be reused when you are super awesome about eliminating waste (don’t worry, you already are awesome for caring and will get there!). Glass also is a recycle GEM, it doesn’t loose any value when recycled-so I am told..

3. use reusable containers for things. Glass/tin/paper/fabric is greater than Tupperware greater than ziplock bags/plastic cling wrap. Sack lunches, left overs, gifts etc. I just made beeswax-fabric wrap and I love it, stay tuned for instruction on how to do-it-yoself!

4. Stop using house paper products. Well maybe minimize… toilet paper I haven’t done a lot of research on. See I’m a newbe just like you! Paper towels..no! IF you have a bunch only use when absolutely needs and don’t buy anymore. A good trick is to go through your clothes (which is so helpful on other levels) and cut them in squares-ish to use to reusable kitchen rags (clean countertops and messes with them!) Paper napkins…no, I had cloth napkins that sat in my cupboard, but now I actually use them with meals, you feel super classy while saving the earth little by little. If you don’t have any, keep an eye out at secondhand store, you’d be surprised of what good shape things you’d fine. Or get some organic fair trade cloth napkins that help out your local community or another economy around the world, be mindful with shipping packaging and fuel and opt to walk or ride your bike or not drive somewhere to equal it out (I know its not a solution at all but hey gotta try right).

5. Opt out of junk mail! It’s a little pain in the rear but less mail is less trees being destroyed, stupid credit card companies and store ads. Stop magazine subscriptions. Stop store coupon/catalog mailing lists. For the ones you like opt for digital ads/coupons/newsletters. Most have email newsletters and offer the same coupons/deals with them. Go all out and opt out of junk email, not to save on paper but to conserve your time & energy and to live more simple and happy! Trust me, it feels great.

GOOD LUCK, YOU CAN DO IT!

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