12 December 2009

Going Green for the Holidays

We're a frugal family by necessity. I wish I could give my daughter everything she wants, but I can't. I feel the same way about going green. There are so many upgrades we could do on the house, like more insulation, tankless water heater, low-e windows, etc., but those things cost money. We've started small and are working our way up.

We recycle as much as our county picks up.
We use rechargeable batteries, when appropriate.
We are replacing light bulbs with CFLs when they burn out.
We have a couple of rain barrels, but I'd like more.
We are enlarging our vegetable garden.
We try to plant native plants or plants that need a lot of watering.

There are some things we do to be frugal that are also eco-friendly, like line-drying our laundry and shopping at thrift stores. For the past few months I've been reading articles about being greener around the house - about switching to stainless steel or aluminum water bottles - we're definitely doing that for Xmas. Other articles have included:

Using cloth napkins instead of paper towels
Switching to 100% recycled toilet paper
Using sachets of lavender and flax instead of dryer sheets
Making cleaning products with combinations of vinegar, hydrogen peroxide and essential oils

We're working up to those. Ella and I fix our lunches for school and work, probably using four plastic sandwich bags per day. I've found reusable sandwich and snack bags online - I need to do more research, but, I want to begin using those in the near future.

We planned to have an energy audit performed on our house, but with the holidays, we haven't done that yet. Once that's done, we'll start weatherizing our house better ans working up to bigger projects from there.

No comments: