What can I do to be more green?

So, I’m trying something different today.  Instead of a post where I ramble about whatever’s on my mind, or post pictures of my animals, I thought I’d see what you all had to say.

Specifically, I think there’s a lot of folks who would like to be more enviromentally conscious, but don’t know where to start.

I’m taking the question to all of you, and asking you to post one thing that you do to be more green.

Only one!  (or two if you must).

Ideally it can be the very first thing you did to be more green.

I can’t actually remember what I did very first, so it’s a toss up between starting to recycle and buying cloth napkins.

The pic above is my recycling set up in the pantry.  Beer bottles with pop tops go to a friend who homebrews, first bin is glass (I sort it by color at the facility), second bin is plastics and cans.

I generally never pay more than a dollar for cloth napkins, collecting them when they’re on clearance, but if you can’t find any on clearance, World Market sells “buffet” napkins in packages of 6 for $10, and they are hands down my favorite napkins.  If you catch them discontinuing colors, they are sometimes half price.

I also make the world a better place by giving Percy a forever home, because the world is better with this much cuteness in it.

Okay, so let’s compile a list of ways you all got started, and if it’s recycling, post a little bit about your set-up and how you make it easier on yourself to do it, especially if you don’t have curbside (but even if you do, how do you remember, etc…)

Remember, baby-steps people! and focus on what you do, not what you don’t do :-P  Though maybe we’ll all get some ideas of other things we can do from this list!


Update: I’ve seen the pic of my recycling several times and am now thinking I need to either deep six the plastic bags all together, or get some of the compostable ones that I can throw in a hot compost pile after the dump… thoughts?

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9 Responses to What can I do to be more green?

  1. Anna P says:

    I try to recycle everything I can and be very aware of what recycles and what doesn't. When I lived on my own, I had recycling containers in the kitchen, so it was easy to toss cereal boxes and things into the paper recycling. Somehow it's harder when I have to go two rooms over or to the garage. And when I lived in Boulder I took the bus and walked as much as I could. I still take the train to work every day, though it's hard to walk places near my home.

    • Anna says:

      Yeah, I can see the issues in having them further away… I have to have cleaner in every bathroom or I won't clean them regularly (or make that *more* regularly :-P )

  2. Art says:

    Here's something simple but maybe not so obvious. When taking longer trips (say, to Nashville from Murfreesboro) we trade cars to use the most fuel efficient one for the longer drive. Saves moola, too!

    • Anna says:

      ooo! that's a good one! we try to take the car instead of the truck when we're together or going long distances for the same reason. Then we just use the truck for Husband's commute (not long, I drive way more) and for truck-y things, like hauling my new chicken ark ;-)

  3. Marty Duane says:

    I really want to let some praise for your efforts with making everyone think down environmental friendly avenue.

    I work with an insulating company, and we use all green products. One of the things I notice the most with my work is how many times people will leave the door open for longer than necessary.

    Most houses are negatively pressured against the outside. Every second we leave a door open, 50 Pascals (which is equivelent to 50 basketballs) of outside air come into our house. That's a lot!

    Another place is if you have a guest room or laundry room that only gets used on one day a week, close the door, shut off the vents in that room. No sense in heating the entire house if you aren't living in the entire house.

    Sorry to go all contractor lippy on you :)
    My recent post you really don’t want to read this

    • Anna says:

      Marty, hey, you don't have to apologize, those are great ideas! and I am guilty of leaving the doors open too long sometimes myself, though I try to only do it in the spring before the AC's on and use ceiling fans as long as possible (I just don't do so great with the humidity when it really ramps up :-P )

      And kudos to your company for using green insulation, that's a biggie! I finally saw some at Lowes and I was happy :-) And Sunchips has now come out with a compostable chip bag, which goes to show the companies are listening and the more we do, the more they do, and the better off we all are!

  4. Ana C says:

    Our family will cover the windows and vents in the winter with plastic covering. It keeps the house warm and saves energy. We also insulate the doors.

    • Anna says:

      Ana, is that a special kind of covering or are you hanging plastic, say behind your curtains?

    • Ana C says:

      It's from home depot and it's just like sheet plastic, and yes it goes behind the curtains. You take the sheet plastic and cut it a little bigger than your windows and then take a staple gun and staple it to the wall or the framing of the window.

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