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Consumption: Week 3 of Reducing Plastic: Balance
Submitted by ambika on Fri, 4/20/2012, 1:08pm
"Another world is not only possible ... she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing" - Arundhati Roy
My girlfriend posted the above quote on my Facebook wall yesterday. It gives me hope in the midst of much confusion these days. I have been noticing my tendency to focus more on the negative and to become overwhelmed.
The truth is I am overloaded as write this post today. I am spread quite thin between kids - birthdays, school, jumping through numerous hoops to get my kids in decent public schools (which could take up many blog posts), work, taking care of my aging mother, etc... I’m having a hard time slowing my mind down and focusing on one thing at a time. So much information coming at me from so many different sources feels overwhelming and it’s hard to hold it all. So at the moment I am working with balance, patience and acceptance in all aspects of my life. I am especially grateful for my daily practice.
All that said I was incredibly encouraged at the start of the week by a comment on my last post from Beth Terry who’s Plastic-free guide has served as my primary guide this month. She mentioned a podcast she did for IDP last year that I had no idea about since I found her site via The Well Daily. The podcast is: Dharmic Plastic Bag Activism: A conversation between Adreanna Limbach, Stuart Moody and Beth Terry. There are 3 parts and it is well worth listening to.
Now on to my purchases and progress: I must admit I do love to shop, although I am aware of the dangers of getting caught up in any kind of consumerism. I do find that focusing on what I can do rather than all that seems out of my control is helpful and I also like to support companies that are offering eco-friendly products. So I ordered the following items from reusit.com: a starter kit from ChicoBag Produce Bag Set, with one hemp/cotton bag, and nylon bags made from recycled plastic bottles (although not all of this is plastic-free I am experimenting to see what works best), a couple of organic cotton net bags, more reuseit Workhorse bags (my favorites) for shopping, one cute shopping bag from flip & tumble (kind of an impulse purchase I admit), and these stainless steel drinking straws.
Here are my reviews thus far: My green beans went bad in the hemp/cotton bag after a couple of days :(. Clearly I need another solution for storing green beans.The broccoli is holding up nicely in the nylon bag and zucchini seems to do equally well in nylon and cotton. The lightweight reusit shopping bags are really great since you can cruise all over NY with one or two (or more even) in your shoulder bag without any added weight. I also like the shoulder bag from flip & tumble for the same reasons. The straws are a big hit with my kids since they keep smoothies and beverages extra cold. I even took them with me to my kids’ favorite smoothie place where I used the odd combo of disposable plastic cup with the reusable steel straws. My daughter was trying to think up a reusable smoothie cup and I will look into something for that. We often make our own smoothies but the kids love the treat of going to the smoothie place so...
Also a note on packaging: most of the packaging from resuit.com was good with minimal plastic however the reusit workhorse bags came in individual plastic bags (odd and seems unnecessary), chicobag packaging was great and all cardboard, and the straws did come in plastic and cardboard, so room for improvement there.
This month is causing me to examine my waste in general and again inspired and grateful to all my fellow bloggers and practitioners I will keep trying to change and improve my habits in this front as well.
We are on this journey as a community. Read all the Responsible Consumption posts and follow along as we examine our habits.
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