Monday, October 15, 2007

Living Green

When I was pregnant with Natalya we decided to use cloth diapers. Everyone thought we were nuts. I was always asked, "How hard is it?", "Isn't it a lot of trouble?" "What do you do with the poop?" But did you know that 50 million diapers enter landfills each day and they will stay there for about 500 years? Cloth diapering was the only option for us and turned out to be easy. We did it with both girls.

As a part of Blog Action Day, I am doing my part by letting you know what we do in our family to protect our happy earth. Still today, I am as green as I can possibly be. We are. We, as a family, do our part to protect the environment. It has become a lifestyle. And, again, it's easy. It's the least we can do. And you may think that you and your family can't possibly make a difference but it's you and those millions of others that say they can't make a difference that really could make a difference.

* We recycle!- Our community has a recycling program so we utilize it. Junk mail, plastic, tin goes in the bucket; magazines go to big bins set up at schools for recycling.
* I use canvas shopping bags- I try to never use plastic, and only use paper when my canvas bags have runneth over. Plastic bags go back to our grocery store because they will recycle them. And we try to remember to say, "That's OK, I don't need a bag."
* I try to remember to bring my own cup to Starbucks. They will put my coffee in it so that I don't have to leave with trash.
* We don't run the water unnecessarily.
* We xeriscape. Meaning our landscaping doesn't require much watering.
* I try not to buy water bottles. A tiny percentage of all water bottles are being recycled which means that the majority of them sit in a landfill.
* We use reusable plastic containers for lunches, not baggies.
* We split one napkin in half at dinner. Hopefully we will use only two napkins instead of four.
* We keep our blinds closed during the heat of the day keep our air conditioner from running more than it needs to.
* We donate a lot of stuff. If it's reusable it goes to Good Will instead of the landfill.
* We try to repair things rather than replace things.
* I try to buy bigger rather than many small. It takes less energy to produce one large container of yogurt than it does to produce several smaller containers.
* We turn off the lights when we leave a room.
* We really try hard (really try hard) not to buy those little things that we don't need. This is hard when you have kids. Junk toys and trinkets will ultimately end up in the trash.
* We talk about things that the girls understand and have an interest in. Like endangered animals and protecting the park.
* We pick up trash when we go for a walk.
* We play outside.
* We try to remember to turn off the tv when we're not watching it. We are working really hard on this one.

OK, you get the idea. And even though that list looks pretty long, I know there are still tons we can do. Hopefully the girls are learning as we live and will be able to carry these lessons with them. Because isn't it scary to hear about the demise of the earth? What will you differently today?

Bloggers Unite - Blog Action Day

And in honor of living green, some pictures of the girls enjoying the great outdoors:

Natalya is really enjoying fishing with Daddy. This is her yesterday with her catch (and release.) She actually caught three!

And amazingly, Vienne's catch. Amazing because Vienne caught one within seconds of the line hitting the water. Perfect for her attenion span.


Brittany said...

Great shot! And what great things you are doing for our planet. Kudos :)

Stacy said...

Great shots, Melody! You are certainly green, too! That is great that you did the cloth diapers. I think it has come a long way since our parents age, because my mom was definitely not an advocate of them. We did the disposables, unfortunately. BUT, I did make my own baby food, so I did try a little!

Anonymous said...

We are also cloth diapering. It's so easy - and our daughter Isabel has never had one diaper rash.

Dawn said...

great post and pictures!

Jackie said...

Great shots! And you are doing a fantastic job going green :-) I'm trying to be better these days, we're great at recycling but that is about it sadly to say. Is your hubby still AF or is he out now? Yeah, we dont have orders yet since its so far out, but TX will be on the Army. We have training in Missouri first, which will be nice because it's the closest we will ever find ourselves to family (michigan). My hubbys on a 15 month deployment right now, our first, kinda scary. Rumors of it perhaps hitting 18 since he's with a batallion, not just a company. We will see. I guess I can't complain too much, we don't have kids so it is just me & the very spoiled dog left behind. Being in Germany gets a bit lonely though.

Ok, sorry for talking your ear off! Have a good week :-)

Mandaroo said...

That's a great post and a nice reminder to do more, thanks!

Anna said...

What a fabulous post--and you are my idol for all the things you do.

Now to catch up, I've missed your posts!

half pint pixie said...

Lovely pics... we're starting to cloth diaper, the disposables we use are compostable so it's not too bad while I'm finding my cloth diapering feet!

Phyllis Sommer said...

great list and great pics. thanks for visiting...

Stacie said...

I didn't manage a blog action day post, but I wanted to chime into the cloth diaper love.

Arizaphale said...

Great post Melody. (I'm just catching up as you can see.) I was feeling very self righteous going down your list saying "yup, yup, yup" to most of the actions. The one I fall down on most recently is the cloth bags at the supermarket. I have them in the boot and EVERY time I get to the check out I slap my forehead and go "Duh-oh".....I used to bring them routinely, then got out of the habit. In honour of you I will try VERY hard next shopping trip to remember my cloth bags.
I did cloth nappies too to start with, then my mother bought me disposables and I just fell into the way of it (blush in shame) but I too made my own baby food!!!!!
Water here is a BIG deal. We are currently on level 3 water restrictions which means we can only water by bucket or watering can most of the time and on one day of the weekend you can water for 3 hours with drippers. Its changed the face of gardening. I have never heard of xeriscaping but it is definitely what Australians are having to do nowadays. There was a time when a day out at a plant nursery was my idea of a good time. Now, its all we can do to keep alive what we have...........

mamazboyz said...

Gosh, Greg is addicted to that hat....not that many guys look THAT good in a cowboy hat!!! When you guys move out here, they don't have a recyling program, is that retarded or what!! You have to take everything