This is a collaborative post.
I’ve always been a bit of an eco-warrior. I remember learning about renewable energy sources in school and from that moment on, I had a keen interest in green and sustainable living.
If you’ve been a reader for a while, you’ll know that it’s something I’m always thinking about but I definitely feel as though a few things have lapsed recently.
So, with that in mind, here’s my eco-friendly resolutions for the coming year…
— Do more hand-washing with the pots and use the airer more than I use the tumble dryer.
We recently had a smart meter installed and despite both our dishwasher and our tumble dryer being A+ rated when it comes to energy efficiency, it’s very easy to spot when they’re on as the usage readings creep upwards.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a busy mum. I practically swear by these two appliances but I didn’t used to have either and I coped without a hitch so I think it’s worth thinking ‘could I squeeze this into my day instead?’ and ‘do I really need my clothes dried THAT quickly?’ before I switch them on.
— Remember to take reusable bags shopping with us.
I’m really ashamed by this. It’s one of the easiest swaps you can make but I’ve lost count of the amount of times I’ve reached the tills and realised I forgot to pack a reuseable bag to carry our shopping in. With plastic bags taking anywhere between 15 to 1,000 years to decompose, I can’t believe I’m still buying them every now and then.
— Make a real effort to choose products with minimal packaging.
This definitely isn’t a walk in the park when you’re on a budget and trying to live frugally.
Like most of us, I was brought up to buy products that are the best value for money but this doesn’t necessarily align with the products that are better for our environment. I already pay more than I could do for our washing and household cleaning products to make sure they’re as eco-friendly as they can be but I really need to start thinking about everything else (particularly food items) whilst still managing our spending budget effectively. It’s a tough one to crack I think! At the end of the day, our budget is often quite tight and I don’t want to leave us short so I’ll have to find a balance that’s affordable for us.
— Extend ethical buying to my own clothes and accessories.
Lily has a very ethical wardrobe as we tend to buy clothes from ethical stores and companies like Duns Sweden, Frugi and Little Green Radicals. Again, this is slightly more expensive but I find that they’re easy to sell on if they’re kept in relatively good condition. I also buy a lot of Lily’s clothes second-hand and preloved.
However, my own wardrobe is made up of whatever’s on sale regardless of where it’s from! And I think that needs to change, or I at least could do with being more aware of where my clothes are coming from and their impact on our living world.
I am plus-sized and have a fondness for clothes with an alternative style so it’s not as easy to find things that I can fall in love with in the charity shops. I’ll admit that I’ve stopped looking though and tend to gravitate towards the children’s section so I’ll have to start having a quick flick through the rails again to see if I can strike lucky!
Another idea I’ve been toying with is making my own clothes for both of us? The sewing machine has been on the bottom of the kitchen shelves for ages and I really need to get it out and start using it again.
— Try to repurpose our recycling.
We recycle everything we can but I feel like we need to be thinking about what we can do with our recycling other than leave it out for kerbside collection.
For example, I recently gave a broken wooden dollshouse to our rabbit and he loves it — it’s perfect for hiding inside and sitting on top of! We also feed him the cardboard tubes from our toilet rolls and tend to save some of our recycling for crafts as well.
There’s tons of ideas on Pinterest for repurposing and recycling and when it comes to our non-recyclables, I’d like us to start making eco bricks.
If you’re interested in other ways that you can be more mindful of the environment during your day-to-day life, Glasdon have created a fantastic eBook about social responsibility with lots of ideas for you to try and take onboard.