February 24, 2007

End of Week #3

Week #1 - at least one meatless meal a week - check

Week #2 - don't buy anymore paper napkins - check

Week #3 -wash out and reuse milk bags - check

Week #4 - This week I am on the hunt for fabric grocery bags at very reasonable prices (and I am still looking for cloth napkins). Also, I am going to check out how much those green shopping cart bins are... I have at least one already... there may be more lurking around the basement. So my goal is no more plastic grocery bags or any store bags. I have tried this before and the hardest part is remembering to always have a cloth bag with me.

This goal also changes other things around the house. We are so used to having this big cache of grocery bags that we will have to find solutions for those things we use them for... kitty litter, tying up day care diapers (ack... how am I going to contain the smell until garbage day?) Oh this one is actually going to be hard to change. I like all those bags! I use them! But they all do eventually end up in the garbage. Change hurts baby! Deal with it!

February 17, 2007

Saturday Supper Plan

I shopped for two weeks today... well almost two weeks... I left some room for leftovers.

  1. homemade pizza - pepperoni, mushroom, red pepper, mozza
  2. spinach manicotti, broccoli
  3. roast turkey, stuffing, rutabaga
  4. homemade veg-beef soup, cheese biscuits
  5. Baja beef and beans, cauliflower
  6. spicy orange pork chops, cauliflower
  7. Indian butter chicken (P.C. simmering sauce)
  8. meat loaf, peas & carrots, rice
  9. chili and homemade bread
  10. baked tilapia, lemon almond beans, multi-grain bread

See more menus here.

February 16, 2007

Week Two Under my Belt

#1. At least one meatless meal per week. Doing well so far.
#2. Not buying paper napkins ever again. I have not purchased paper napkins, but I didn't find any cloth ones that I wanted to buy, so the search continues. I asked my local fabric store if they carry any organic fabric and they do not. I have looked at earth friendly napkins online, but they are expensive. I have looked at cloth napkins in stores and they smelled so chemically! I didn't want to buy them. So the search continues.
#3. This week's new habit is to wash out and reuse milk bags. We did this when I was a kid at home. We used them as freezer bags for the veggies from our garden. I have done it from time to time, but always got out of the habit quickly. I washed one out this morning!
I have been doing a lot of reading online about eco/green/earth friendly/organic/local/etc. I am getting lots of ideas for future habit changes

February 14, 2007

Works for Me - Boiling Water

I have two or three cups of tea a day. Each time, after I boil the water and fill my mug, I take my dish cloth and hang it over the kitchen faucet, and pour the remaining boliing water over my dish cloth. There you have it... this little step keeps my dish cloth fresh for the whole day. Otherwise, I go through too many cloths in one day. Simple but effective.

Visit Rocks In My Dryer for more tips.

February 09, 2007

Week One - Footprint Friday

This past week, week one of my green journey, was a little tough. Not following through with my first change... that was fine. The tough part was that since my "green radar" was on, grocery shopping was arduous! I looked at everything I put in my cart and thought, "How do people shop so that they get no packaging?" "How will I ever learn which choice is the best choice?" I am so ignorant about green choices that I don't even know where to begin. All week, I found I was consumed with changes I am going to have to make eventually... and worrying because I don't know what to do to actually make those changes. How do I know what has been sprayed with what? What am I buying that gives off toxic gases in my home? Where can I find this product in no packaging? What am I going to wear? How do I know if the clothes I buy are green? Where can a find green clothes? Blah blah blah on and on it went. I was really frustrated. It seems such a huge thing. Everything has got to change. Never mind that I am doing this just for me right now... I am not trying to convince my husband that he needs to sell his vehicle or anything... just things that I can do all by myself. Yesterday, I sat down and made a list of changes that I can make. It made me feel better to do that... to see that even without knowing all the ins and outs and right answers, I can still make changes that are positive. And I told myself that wisdom will surely come through experience. I was just getting too far ahead of myself. Isn't that what I always do?

My change for this week is to never buy paper napkins again. That means I have to find some cloth ones and hopefully I can find cloth ones that are a good green choice. (And hopefully, I will learn what exactly makes that a good green choice.) A secondary change this week is to stop feeling guilty for things I haven't changed yet! Good grief woman!

February 07, 2007

Storing Dog Food

We have two dogs and a cat. I always struggled with where to keep the food so that it would be handy but invisible. One of our dogs is large and we buy giant bags of food. Once the cat arrived, and then the second dog, I was desperate. Finally... I don't know who thought of it originally, my husband or I... but we decided to keep the food in the basement laundry room. Each bag of food gets dumped into a lidded plastic bin (must be lidded or the cat would eat until he exploded), with its own measuring scoop. Wow! Bowls, water, food, everything hidden away in the basement! We keep a bowl of water in the kitchen also. And all it means is a couple of extra trips down to the basement. Well worth it, in my opinion. Visit Shannon for more Works For Me tips.

February 05, 2007

Today's featured meatless recipe is Bean Salad Wraps. Even my meat loving sweetie likes these. They have a little spicy kick, and lots of fibre. I find serving a meatless meal goes over better with my family at lunch time, rather than supper. You probably already have several meatless dishes in your repertoire... grilled cheese, egg salad, omelettes, quiche, frittatas, quesadillas...
Try and add a meatless meal into your menu plan next week. Leave a comment and tell me what you made and how your family enjoyed it.

February 03, 2007

Supper Plan Saturday

I am off to the grocery store bright and early this morning. My sweet hubby is away for three days this week, so I have not exactly planned for those suppers... daughter and I can just wing it and eat whatever we feel like. I am only shopping for one week today.

  • teriyaki shrimp & peppers on rice
  • nachos and sausage rolls (Superbowl food... oh so good for us!)

  • steak on the bbq, mushroom and onions, veggies

  • chicken fajitas

  • szechuan chicken and rice, veggies

A few lunches that I have planned...

  • egg salad sandwiches and salad
  • bean salad wraps

  • cabbage rolls

A few daycare lunches that I have planned

  • tuna noodle casserole

  • meatball subs

  • grilled cheese and tomato soup

See more menus here.

February 02, 2007

Footprint Friday

I have found myself to be more and more interested in making my lifestyle more green. I am a novice at this. I don't pretend to be knowledgeable about this subject, but I do know that there are many resources available to us. Just do some surfing...

I have a couple of green fantasy lives... one is my urban green dream. We live downtown in a funky loft. No car. Walk to work and shopping. Get food at the local farmers' market. Support local businesses. Make our clothes from thrift store finds. The second fantasy life is my rural green dream. We live way out in the woods in a cabin, grow our own food. That's about as far as I have been in that dream. Never mind that I hate gardening and mosquitoes. Our reality is that we live in the suburbs, drive everywhere, hubby's work is forty minutes away. We shop at giant box stores, eat some fast food, buy lots of prepackaged crap, and have way too many things in our home that plug in.

Your eco-footprint is a measure of how many resources you use and tells you whether you tread heavily or lightly upon the planet. You can find numerous footprint tests on the internet in order to find out how your lifestyle measures up. In my Footprint Friday posts, I am going to chronicle the small changes that I make to lighten up my own footprint. So tune in each Friday. If your are interested in joining me, leave a comment.

First change... at least one meatless supper each week. My sweetie will be asking, "Is there any meat in here?" He is a meat lover, that's for sure! Now some of you may be asking, "What harm to the planet is there in eating meat?" If you asked that, I encourage to do some research about meat production...the grain, the water, the pollution ... and I will join you in that research. I know a little, but not enough to give someone an intelligent answer. Then share your meatless recipes with me! Please.