What "Going Green" Looks Like For Me



I remember being in elementary school and learning about the dwindling rain forests. I remember the commercials that aired, teaching us the “3 R’s: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.” So was my foray into environmentalism, when I convinced my dad to start a compost pile and tried to turn empty toilet paper rolls into all sorts of craft items.

A decade later, we’re still trying to incorporate “green” and “eco-friendly” into our daily life, albeit in more grown-up ways and without reusing toilet paper rolls! What I’ve found most interesting, though, is how friendly—even convenient—“going green” has been to our lifestyle and budget.

To “go green” you don’t have to buy a pair of organic cotton jeans that cost $150; just go to the thrift store and find a pair that fits for $10. I love buying used clothes, furniture, d├ęcor or housewares and being able to get a one-of-a-kind item for a dollar or two; it’s like a treasure hunt for me. It doesn’t even feel like I’m “reusing.”

Instead of buying something brand new that you know you’ll only use a handful of times, why not see if you can borrow it from someone else? When my husband and I needed a stud-finder for one-time use, we ended up borrowing it from my dad. I wanted to try my hand at baking homemade bread, so I asked my mom if I could have her bread maker that’s been sitting in the basement.

I’ve tried to get crafty when new wants or needs arise to use things I already have or make my own. For instance, when I wanted to decorate our apartment for the holidays. I ended up ironing a large swatch of olive green linen fabric into a table runner and using some festive jewelry to accent a cluster of candles.  Even for decorations at my wedding, I trolled through my house to find items that could be repurposed for the occasion, like an old bedspread thrown atop the cake table or a picnic basket used to display the favors.

Obviously, I don’t do all of these things 100 percent of the time: I still end up throwing things away. I still buy new products. I can’t always afford the greenest items on the shelves. But I try. For me, it’s about trying to live as wise stewards of the resources God has given to me. That also includes my time and energy. So you won’t see me washing out Ziploc bags (though I do try to keep their use to a minimum) or taking buckets into the shower with me to save the water (but I am also are aware of how much water I am using).

A fine line, but it works for me!

For the month of December, I’m taking a break from writing new posts to better enjoy the holidays with family and friends. Instead, I’ll be sharing some of my favorite posts from my first two years of blogging here. I hope you enjoy getting to do a little time-traveling with me, and I’ll be back to ring in the new year with a whole slew of new posts! (Click here to see today’s original post.)

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5 comments:

  1. Going green is certainly more of a lifestyle choice than just jumping on a trend-wagon. Thankfully, I was raised in a household where being green was done without a second thought. I feel that being raised that way has immensely impacted the way I am today. From shopping at Goodwill to making my own laundry detergent, I truly do feel like I'm being a wise steward of the resources God has entrusted us with.

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  2. I also get that habit of going green. I live simply and I teach my siblings and even my parents to keep the surroundings clean. I don't like litters and am very obsessive about trashes. I don't do it for myself but, I just want a healthy living and place for us. It's too normal, isn't it? :)

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  3. I agree that you can't start buying all new labeled-organic products. The best is to conserve and make as much as you can. So much more satisfying.

    On another note, where do you get all your great images you use? I'm pretty new to blogging. :)

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  4. Urban Wife - Sounds like we had similar upbringings, which I definitely feel was a blessing for me :) And making my own laundry detergent is definitely on my to-do list!

    Abigail - Definitely more satisfying :) I find a lot of my pictures on WeHeartIt.com, but you can always double-check my sources by clicking on the link at the very bottom of the post which will take you to where I found it. I try to include an attribution like that on all images that aren't my own.

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