Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Our Trash Diet: Week 3!

Hey Guys!

Sorry I am so behind on updating you on our Trash Diet progress! Adjusting to life with a new tiny person has been fun but challenging and unfortunately sleep has taken priority over blogging the last couple of weeks!

That doesn't mean that we have been slacking in the garbage department though! This past week we saw a lot less visitors so luckily our garbage production was reduced as well. We only took out our garbage and recycling bags once this week, which I think is awesome! Usually we empty both twice per week so once is wonderful. We filled our compost bin again as well and again it was super smelly but luckily the filter on our bin is so great we don't smell it at all when it's in the process of being filled!

We also emptied our diaper pail for the first time which is a garbage bag that ends up being about 3/4 full with used diapers. This was the first time we have emptied it since Mason has been born though so that is about once every 2 1/2 weeks. As he grows the diaper pail will fill quicker though so in a few weeks I do want to try cloth diapers part time to see how I like it. So if any of you hear about a good deal on a starter set of diapers please let me know! I know we can also buy them pre-owned from craigslist or ebay and just buy new liners.

Speaking of ebay and craigslist; this is another way our family greatly reduces waste and saves money. Most everything we buy in our family comes 2nd hand. Whether I find it at a thrift store, buy it on craigslist or even pick it up off a curb for free, we very rarely pay retail for anything! I also donate old clothing and household supplies to our local thrift store (which in turn gives me a coupon to shop with!), sell it on craigslist/ebay and take my children's items to a local consignment shop once per week. We save a lot of money this way and my kids are very well dressed little munchkins. I got a sideways look a few weeks back because my 3 year old was in 7 For All Mankind jeans, but little did they know I only paid $4 for them at Goodwill!

Here is a small list of ways you can reduce waste in your home and save money as well. Most of these things you probably already know but maybe you haven't seen one or two!

- Stop drinking bottled water. Our country is hugely dependant on bottled water but this creates a ton of waste and you are probably just drinking filtered tap water in the bottle anyway. You know that Fiji water in the cool square bottle? It comes from FIJI - think of the jet fuel that just went into the atmosphere from that plus if the bottle doesn't get recycled its even more waste! Our family invested a whopping $4 on a Brita pitcher deal a while back and I take a water bottle with me when I leave the house with clean water and no waste or money spent!

- Give up Starbucks, Brew at Home! This is a big one in our home. We used to go to Starbucks every morning - $4 per drink/$8 per day/$2920 per year plus that's 2 disposable cups per day! 2 years ago we decided to stop and start brewing at home. We still drink fancy coffee but its only about $8 per lb and that lasts about 3-4 weeks so we cut the cost of our coffee addiction substantially! We also use a gold cone filter in our coffee pot, which means we don't have to buy or use disposable filters! More savings! *If you can't give up the Starbies, at least take your own mug, they'll give you a discount if you do!

- Stop using paper towels. This has been difficult for our family and we haven't stopped buying them totally but we have reduced the amount we use a lot. A 6 pack of paper towels lasts us about 6 months in our home. We actually prefer to wipe the counter clean with a dish rag and some natural cleaner. Plus now the paper towels we do use can now go into the compost bin with our food scraps!

- Reuse your plastic grocery bags. I almost never get plastic bags anymore since I keep my reusable shopping bags in my car at all times, but inevitably we end up with a few every now and then. You can reuse plastic bags by lining small trash cans, using them as doggy doo cleaner uppers and even as packing material when you are shipping something! Or you can always take them with you to the grocery store and recycle them before you shop.

- Eliminate Soda from your diet. This will save you money, reduce waste and your waistline will thank you for stopping! If you can't stop the soda, at least make sure you recycle the cans and bottles.

- Take the bus, ride a bike or walk to run errands or go to work. You'll save on gas and if you can walk or ride your bike to and from the grocery store your body will get good exercise as well! Plus this will help you to stay on budget because you don't want to lug a ton of heavy bags up a hill! We are lucky enough to have 2 grocery stores and a Rite Aid all within walking distance from our home. If you don't have that option, limit your outings every week and bundle them all into one or two days. Hit up your grocery store deals, drug store deals and your trip to the bank all for one day and plan your route out! If you drive in a counter clockwise direction then you won't have to idle in your car waiting for a left turn signal; instead you'll get free rights on reds!

- Grow your own! If you have a yard, grow a garden and maybe even start a compost pile for natural fertilizer! You'll save money on produce and your crops will be the sweetest thing you ever tasted. If you have never had a homegrown strawberry, you haven't lived! Don't have a yard? Do you have a window? You can grow herbs indoors year round and save on spices!

These are just a few options for going green and saving green! What things do you do around your home to save money?!

If you missed my first 2 posts about our Trash Diet, you can read them HERE and HERE!

Disclosure: The Glad Products Company has provided me with trash disposal products and a home visit from the City of Seattle to help with this program. I was not compensated in any other way and all opinions posted here are 100% my own.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Target: Free Huggies Sample!

Target samples always go super fast, go HERE now to request your size 4 or 5 size Huggies Snug & Dry diapers!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Our Trash Diet Update!

Hi All!

Remember a couple of weeks ago when I posted about our family's decision to go on a "Trash Diet"? Well you can read about all the details
HERE! I missed updating you on our progress last week because I was in the hospital on trash day giving birth to my beautiful baby boy!

Even with being in the hospital and having lots of visitors I think our "diet" is going well so far! We have implemented a few new changes to our home to help us reduce our waste and also save money at the same time! We even got Grandma in on the process! She is from another area of the state where they don't have a recycling service yet. (By the way, I can't believe that, I know we would recycle less or not at all if we had to take our recyclables to the station ourselves. Central Washington really needs to get a recycling service.)

First off let me update you on our recycling progress. We were always very good recyclers before but with our home visit and some new knowledge about what is recyclable we have been sending even more to the recycle side of the trast vs the garbage part! I am happy to say that we only sent 2 full bags of garbage to our can this week and we FILLED our recycle can to the top! We did have a lot of boxes that we broke down but I think that we definitely made progress on that end!

We also have been sucessful in making sure that all of our food waste goes in the food waste bin and taken to the yard waste bucket! Before we would just toss the waste in our trash bin and send some scraps down the garbage disposal in our sink. I am making a concious effort to take all the peels and strawberry tops over to the bin instead of sending them down the sink. Plus now our septic system will be thanking us for this in the long run! But let me tell you, it took all week to fill our 2.5 gallon food waste bin and when my husband took the bag out to the yard waste can it was DISGUSTING and full of fuzzy goo! Luckily it has a filter on top and our house didn't smell bad from it at all. Plus it makes me happy that those food scraps are going to become useable compost material by the end of the process.

In the coming weeks I am going to look into ways to reduce waste and save money at the same time. I am interested to hear how you, my readers, do this in your homes. Do you make an effort to use fewer bottles or not buy paper towels?

With the arrival of our new baby I have also noticed that we are going through a TON of diapers already. Right now I am not motivated enough to start using cloth diapers on him but I am planning to look into part time cloth diapering for him in the coming months. They are a big investment up front but do save money and would reduce a substantial amount of waste going to the dump. Luckily I planned ahead before Mason was born and stocked up on hundreds of newborn and size 1 diapers because I knew that we would be needing them so I saved hundreds already in the process!

Stay tuned to our progress next week!

Disclosure: The Glad Products Company has provided me with the products you have seen above and the home visit from the City of Seattle to help with this program. I was not compensated in any other way and all opinions posted here are 100% my own.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Please Welcome...

Baby Mason James joined our family on 07.07.11 at 2:04 pm PST. He weighed in at 8lbs, 1 oz and was 20" long. We did not find out what we were having but are overjoyed to have a little boy! He is very sweet and sleeps a lot and I can't wait to see his personality come to life.

Please forgive me for light posting over the next week or so as I'm recovering from my c-section and adjusting to life as a family of four! More pictures to come too!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Update to Staples TP Deal!

Remember yesterday's post about the cheap Charmin Basic at Staples? Well today they released this 20% off coupon so now that would make the deal even better! Your price would be $3.99 + tax vs $4.24 which makes it $.249/double roll which is right at my target price for TP. If I'm in the area today I'm going back for another pack!

How do you all like Charmin Basic? I tried it once and while it's only 1-ply I don't mind it because it's a thick 1-ply.

Happy Friday!

Thanks for the new coupon link Money Saving Mom!