Going Green: A Start

Recently, my husband and I decided to try to really focus on being a little greener around the house.

We always recycled, but our township was nice enough to provide a dedicated trash receptacle, and changed the way items are collected to make it easier to recycle. Now, we just dump everything (glass, plastic, paper) into one place.

Surprise to us: we started to recycle more and more. Now, it’s a rarity that our regular garbage container is full week to week.

Phase Two was eliminating all the light bulbs and replacing with the compact energy-saving ones. This was a big step for me, since my biggest gripe was I did not have the patience to let them “warm up”. I’m an “on-demand” kind of gal, and this was painful at first, but you know what? It’s not all that bad anymore. In fact, I appreciate not being blinded by 300 watts of bright light in the bathroom first thing in the morning.

We are about 70% switched out with the light bulbs. One more trip to Sam’s Club for some more bulbs and we’ll be 100%. I am wondering how this might affect the electricity bill. Only time will tell, I guess!

Not sure what we’ll do next, but I am open to ideas.

We’d love to get rid of the honking big pick-up truck (husband’s ride), but due to the declining economy our three year old truck is next to worthless (ok, I am exaggerating, but it’s worth LESS than what we owe on it). Who knew? At least I got rid of my large SUV a year ago.

Little steps to a greener world I guess.

18 thoughts on “Going Green: A Start

  1. Congratulations on going green. Composting is also a great way to cut down on garbage. And then you can grow your own food or flowers because you’ve got great fertiliser!

  2. I am slowly trying to be more green too! I got the shopping bags and most of the time remember them! I am also switching over light bulbs and cleaners as needed. Another thing I did was to buy cloth napkins to replace the paper ones. We stopped using paper plates too. I also bought some cheap wash rags to use in place of paper towels. I got a whole bunch so I can clean hands and wipe counters etc. and then rinse them out to dry. Sometimes I can use each one many times before it has to be washed but other times like cleaning up after raw chicken etc. they need to be washed right away. I also try to walk to things within a mile – luckily we live close to a lot of things. Also I plan errands and such to limit driving – hitting all stores in the same area on the same day so as to limit driving. We also got a programmable thermostat and at night turn heat down by 12 degrees in the winter (and pile on blankets) and in summer turn air up about 8 degrees at night. I also set the temp up or down a little when I leave the house for long periods of time. I am saving for a new washer and dryer – and wishing mine to break at the same time! Good Luck! iclw

  3. I made the switch about 4 months ago to be more green, and it’s a challenge at times. Luckily, on a whim, I bought a Honda Hybrid in 2004, so I am a little ahead of the game. In May I bought a new energy efficient washer and dryer, LOVE THEM, and I’m dying to see my water bill because they use less water. I’ve already noticed a big difference on my energy costs.Good luck to you! I’m here from ICLW!

  4. Good for you! I told DH I am going to become more and more green with time, especially when it comes to pregnancy and babies. We started recycling here, our trash doesn’t take it but there is a drop off place. We are also replacing bulbs as we need them with the CFLs, but waiting until the old ones burn out. I am a big Method advocate, and am trying to eliminate all of the toxic cleaners from our house. Again, we are replacing as we run out. Great website to the previous commenter!

  5. Hi,I think one of the best things you can do to go green is to eat less meat. I love meat but we are trying to eat less of it. I could eat it every day, twice a day. But it’s so bad for the environment. Also, we only eat fresh fish…no farmed.

  6. From ICLW…Glad to hear that the transition to green is going well…we are so far off that train. I would like to transition to compact flourescents, but haven’t started yet. We are so bad about recycling because you have to pay to recycle here. It isnt’ that much, but it seems to be a hurdle for me. In a nearby city, you pay for tags for your trash, but recycling is free. Interesting thought.

  7. It’s quite surprising how much we can actually recycle isn’t it!? I take loads of cardboard and plastic bottles to the recycling place every now and then and feel oh so very virtuous for doing it!!A visitor from ICLW

  8. The grocery bags are a great idea! I’d try to also start weaning off of the chemical cleaners but I am afraid that hubby’s grip is too firm on the Clorox. I think he’d fight me for it. tee hee.

  9. I agree… you gotta do the grocery bag thing. AND they make cute ones now out of recycled plastic and such. And 7th generation and meyer’s make good cleaning products that don’t have as many chemicals, which has an added bonus of being kind to pregnant women too. Just saying…

  10. Good for you going green. I too have been doing things here and there to try and be a little more eco-friendly. I have not made the complete switch to CFLs, but have switched a few. Since I am a clean freak, I have been switching over my cleaning products to environmentally safe products. Not all clean as well as the chemical ladden ones, but I am adjusting. Still haven’t been able to free myself from Soft Scrub, but I’m getting there.

  11. Hola from ICLW :)I love your blog layout!!! I am trying to go green…it is so hard! But, I agree that it is best to do little by little. Maybe I will try the lightbulbs πŸ™‚

  12. Going green sounds great. You have a great start too. I want to get rid of our Jeep Cherokee, but like you said, we owe more on it than it’s worth. I suggest taking your own cloth bags to the grocery store in stead of getting paper or plastic ones.I’m glad I found you on ICLW, I’ll be looking to see what other people suggest too.

  13. I love this! We have gone over baord on the green at my place! We recycle everything, compost all our food scrapes and use only environmentally safe cleaning products that are not tested on animals! I try to buy my clothes and shoes at consignment stores to further recycle! I am a earth loving hippie, but a fashionable stylin hippie! ha ha. Have fun making the home green! I am always proud of our little house πŸ™‚

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