I thought I was super crunchy before having Little B – I mean, I joined a community supported agriculture farm! I vote for people who care about the environment! I use eco-friendly shampoo! I shop (mostly) local! I MAKE MY OWN BREAD! Huge hippie here, right? But the more I became involved in the cloth diapering community, the more my eyes are open to how much waste we generate as a family and how easy it is to do so in our modern, disposable society. But I also learned so many ideas on how we could reduce this waste and how, like cloth diapering, it really is little (or no) extra work and often saves us money (that I can use to fuel my cloth diaper addiction! Everyone wins!) I’m trying to look beyond just using “green” disposable products and really taking the extra step to reduce waste.
As Earth Day approaches I decided to take some small steps towards reducing our carbon footprint as a family:
- I have purchased a handful of adorable, easy to wash food storage bags from Planet Wise for use both in lunchboxes and in the fridge. Adding up how much we pay for zip-top baggies (1 box at $3/2 months for sandwich sized), a small set of bags will have paid for itself by this time next year (provided it’s not my new addiction).
- I use green(er) detergent for my cloth diapers – why the heck not for the rest of my clothes? There are so many great detergents available and while they are a little more expensive, they are a lot better for your clothes so you may even find savings from less wear & tear on your clothing.
- I have made a commitment to myself to take the plunge in using mama cloth and a menstrual cup – I’m still breastfeeding Little B so that one will have to wait a few months. I had considered it for a number of years before getting pregnant and with the availability of a number of super cute products, there really is no excuse not to! I will be saving hundreds of dollars within the first year and doing my body a huge favor.
- I am going to start using the bulk bins at my co-op more. Why pay for packaging of pasta, rice, flour, olive oil, honey, or granola (told you I was crunchy) just to throw it away? I already have baggies and glass or plastic jars in my pantry that I can re-use for this.
- I will stop using paper towels like they are going out of style. I have pulled my cloth napkins out of storage and am using them again. That should save me close to $200 in a year and a whole lotta trees. I may even try my hand at making unpaper towels.
Would you like to be a contributor on The Cloth Diaper Whisperer? We're always looking for creative writers who would like to share their cloth diapering tips. To find out more Contact Us