I really don't want to be a part of this commercially led waste-society any more. By that I mean, I no longer want to add to the problems of our environment through waste and I am going to do my best to get as close to zero-waste as I can.
I was very inspired recently by watching an interview with a girl called Lauren Singer who now lives a totally zero-waste life in New York. Her website www.trashisfortossers.com features interviews, her TED Talk and some very useful tips and links to sites on how to transition from normal living to something a bit closer to hers. Over the course of four years, Lauren has managed to fit ALL of her non-recyclable rubbish into a kilner jar and although I imagine this would be impossible for our own household, it is incredibly inspiring to see it can be done.
To start my own zero-waste journey (with a few limitations), I am now buying only second-hand clothes and toys for both the kids and us. I still want to buy the children one pair of good Clarks shoes that they have been measured up for each time they grow, but footwear such as wellies and sandals can definitely be from hand-me-downs/charity shops/eBay.
There are real financial benefits from shopping this way, but also something that I wasn't expecting to discover - Strangely, a pre-loved item seems to come with an extra dose of love and respect. I have no idea why, possibly because purchasing it takes a bit more thought? Maybe because it is now rarely an impulse buy, rather something we definitely really need and want?
Apart from changing shopping habits, I now find myself being far more aware of what I'm throwing away. I've always been interested in recycling things - my own jewellery business uses only recycled metals in the casting process, but now, I'm taking it to a new level. The thought of Lauren and her kilner jar floats past my mind every time I aim for the bin with a screwed up piece of foil and it pulls me up from being a slob. Don't use foil or cling-film - use tupper-ware or even better metal-ware - avoid investing in the plastic industry altogether? (I'm not ready for that one yet).
I'm also not currently prepared to give cloth nappies a try, so already my limitations are glaringly obvious. However, I am prepared to avoid packaged foods, only buy cosmetics in recyclable packaging and go the extra mile to make sure items get re-used and re-homed. I aim to avoid adding to the clothes mountain and overall become more conscious of my impact on the Earth.
With regards to being more conscious about things in general - I wanted to give an update on one of my previous blog posts regarding 365 days of sex. Unlike the girl I was inspired by - Brittany Gibbons - I have simply not managed it. However, attempting it was a really good experience and I would say overall, try it and see what happens. Committing to it regardless is a good thing and it simply made me aware of when laziness was setting in.
So, my conscious is now clear - I'm not having sex every day but I am recycling more.