I like to consider myself green. I try to live as sustainably as I can, and I am working to reduce my impact. So what does a day in my life look like, and how do my environmental sensibilities figure into it? Read on to find out.
I wake up in the morning before I’m strictly ready, because my toddler Jacob is climbing all over me. I have two children, which is arguably not a very green choice. But they are here and I love them, so that’s not going to change.
It’s Sunday, so today is farmer’s market day. I gather my carbon-producing offspring, and my re-usable produce and grocery bags. I love the farmer’s market because the food is fresh and local, which reduces its carbon footprint. Also, it comes with little or no packaging, so I’m not left with reams of plastic to throw away.
The Flour Peddler was at the farmer’s market. He converted an old bicycle into a pedal-powered flour mill. Carbon neutral flour! I bought some freshly-milled local spelt and some hand-cut local oats.
I also bought bread, a birthday gift for a relative, tomatoes, cucumbers and some local organic hazelnuts.
Just outside the farmer’s market we found a salmonberry bush, and the kids and I couldn’t resist sampling. I love wild berries – they’re like the ultimate local food, and they’re free, to boot.
At home I am working on toilet-training my toddler, Jacob. It’s kind of tedious and awfully messy, but in the long run I think that having him out of diapers will reduce my carbon footprint. Right now I’m using cloth diapers to reduce the waste, but if I didn’t have to wash them that would save water and energy.
I considered the environment in some of my other actions on that Sunday. I recycled and composted. I drank tap water and wore second-hand clothes. I worked in my garden and I even checked out some bicycles. I’m hoping to buy one, and I visited the bike store to help me get an idea of the type of bike I’m looking for. It’s a little shallow, but I’ll admit that my conclusion was I’m looking for a pretty bike.
My day certainly wasn’t all green The kids and I drove to the farmer’s market, because it’s well outside of walking distance and if I were to take transit, it would be 48 minutes in just 1 direction. This is the major downside to living here in the suburbs. I also accepted a lovely mesh bag to hold the birthday gift, just because it was nice, even though I didn’t really need it. I am not perfect.
The environmental impact of my choices does affect my daily life, in big and small ways. And probably in ways that I don’t even think about. Is it enough? I’m not sure. But I choose to concentrate on the positive, and strive for improvements. Beating myself up is just no help to anybody, not even the Earth.
What about you? What sorts of choices do you make in your daily life to reduce your environmental impact?
This blog post was inspired by the Green Moms Carnival, which is hosted by the fabulous Beth who writes about plastic-free living over on My Plastic-free Life. Check out her blog on June 21 to see all of the carnival submissions.