Monday Mission: Your Top 3 Eco-Friendly Tips

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Your mission, if you choose to accept, is to reflect on what you do to save the earth – and pinpoint the top 3 eco-friendly habits you have.

Top 3 eco friendly tips for healthy living

Two weeks ago, we shared our top 3 frugal tips to help save others’ pocketbooks, last week we tackled the top 3 real food tips to make healthy eating possible and save sanity, and this week, we’re going to help save the earth.

Just like the other Monday Missions this month, the real mission is to share the love – so type out your top 3 and then share in the comments on this post or with your own community.

You may have noticed already that the January Monday Missions are part of a series. The four pillars of Kitchen Stewardship that we all try to keep in balance are:

  • nutrition
  • budget
  • environment
  • time

This month of “fresh starts” is a great time to prioritize your own “must-do” lists and help others out in their journey.

What are my Top 3?

This “top 3” is the hardest one for me yet. I do so many little things to help protect the environment, like using cloth napkins and saving our egg cartons, but it has been hard to pinpoint three major habits I have.

I suppose it’s cheating to say the top 3 eco-friendly tips are “reduce, reuse, recycle?” Okay, okay, I know – totally cheating.

Number One: Avoid Parabens

Parabens are nasty little hormone disrupting chemicals that are added to many, may personal products. You can read more about them here, but once you start choosing to avoid them, you’ll probably have to learn to make or purchase many green personal products. Just take one baby step at a time!

Number Two: Avoid Triclosan

I get pretty worked up about triclosan, the chemical in many antibacterial soaps and products – probably because it’s both so ineffective and so horribly harmful.

Here’s an early Monday Mission on antibacterials, and here is a little info on hand sanitizers and how all that works. Ultimately, you’ll need some baby steps in the green cleaners category to accomplish this one, but mostly you can find even conventional products that do NOT contain triclosan for every product you end up finding in your house that does. (Check toothpaste, antiperspirant, dishsoap, and especially handsoap.)

Number Three: don’t waste food

Did you know 25% of all food purchased in American homes is tossed out? That’s insane! I’m sure there are many other strategies that could be the no. 3 green tip, but food waste is a pet peeve of mine, so it makes my list.

Some ways I avoid wasting food include:

And of course, trying to buy what I need and use what I buy. It’s as simple (and as complicated) as that.

If you are passionate about wasting less food too, you’ll love Carrie Isaac’s eBook From Garbage to Gourmet (no longer available) – it’s packed with recipes for odds and ends and strategies for not throwing away an ounce of food. You can even cook with cobs of corn (the cobs!), herb stems, and broccoli stems. I just noticed the book is slashed to half price, less than $5 instead of $10. Check out all the happy testimonials and beautiful page layouts here (no longer available).

What are you top eco-friendly tips? Do share!

 

 


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11 Bites of Conversation So Far

  1. Karen says

    Reusing your egg cartons if they are cardboard or cannot be properly cleaned after a chicken egg has been in there, is not a good idea. Fresh eggs do not come out clean. The bacteria can thrive there. A better idea is to get a plastic one at the feed store and reuse. This also applies to crafts that people do with them. In fact in some states it is illegal to reuse egg cartons at a farm stand.

  2. AshleyB says

    1. Compost. This alone reduces the amount of trash I produce multiple times over! And while I still hate to waste food, I feel better knowing the the orange that got lost in the back of my fridge is going back into the earth instead of filling the landfill.

    2. Cloth pads. Yup, you read that right! Not something I widely advertise (after a year, there’s still fewer than a dozen people who know I do this!). This has cut down on the amount of money I spend on feminine products, and the waste that would be going in the trash or down the sewer pipes. It’s truly not awful to deal with, either–I promise!

    3. Avoid using the dryer. Even during the winter! The only reason I use my dryer is for bedding when it’s too cold to hang outside, since I don’t have a way to hang something so large inside. Not only does this save electricity, it’s much gentler on the fibers of my clothes, which will make them last longer. When I do use the dryer, I have 3 tennis balls and 4 wool dryer balls to help speed drying time.

    • says

      We won’t tell your secret…quick question on that if I may…do you just do one load per cycle of just your stuff then? I would think they’re like cloth diapers in that you wouldn’t want to mix with other clothes, but they’re so small…that’s something I am still figuring out for myself, so thank you!! :) Katie

      • AshleyB says

        Katie–
        I don’t mind you asking at all! I keep a small container in the bathroom and a spray bottle of hydrogen peroxide. When I finish with a pad, I spray it liberally and drop it in the container. When I’m finished with my cycle, I fill the container with cold water and soak for several hours, usually twice. At this point there’s not much left on them, so I run them through the washing machine with a load of sheets/towels (just to be safe! 😉 ). I’ll sometimes add a ~1 c. of peroxide to the wash (this is mostly if I remember!). It was a bit of an adjustment for me, but no regrets! Hope this answers your question :)

      • Lisa P. says

        I use cloth, too. But I don’t do anything special with them. When I’m done, I just throw them right in the hamper with the underwear. And they wait until laundry day. Everything gets washed together; I still usually use hot for the underwear. I’ve never had any staining issues, but I use minky-topped pads. I know you would appreciate not having to do anything special! Oh, when my littlest still was in cloth diapers, I threw my mama pads in with the diaper load instead. But, yay, no more diapers!

    • roimata says

      If you are more used to tampons, menstrual cups are great! I like keeping things inside as much as possible. (sorry TMI)

  3. Roimata says

    1. Cloth nappies. Way easier than most people think. Buy second hand nod use them for all your kids.
    2. Soap nuts for laundry.
    3. Mooncup or other menstrual cup. No waste, just empty and rinse then boil between periods. As a bonus they reduce period pain markedly in most people.

  4. Sharon says

    1. Leave the car at home and travel by bike or foot whenever possible (and it’s amazing what’s possible when you want to). Doesn’t work well for everyone of course; if you’re toting around a couple little ones or it’s 5+ miles to get anywhere not much may be possible. But within 2 miles of my house is my church, usual grocery, library, gym, addictive donut shop, etc…

    2. Watch the thermostat. If it’s 15F outside 60F inside feels toasty warm.

    3. Rainwater barrels. It’s a bit of an investment but worth it. All the water used in my garden came from the sky not the utility company.

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