January 20, 2011

Danielle, Week 5

Danielle's plastic waste

Name: Danielle

Week: 5

Personal Info:

Read about our family on my Week 1 post. Danielle shares her efforts to protect the planet on her blog “It Starts With Me.” Part of her New Years resolution is to take the challenge every week in 2011.

Total items: 19

Total weight: 4.8 oz

Items: Recyclable
Those numbers don’t mean a thing.

Items: Nonrecyclable
Dental Floss Package
2 contact lens packs
Plastic sleeve (from mailed order)
sock hanger

1 Milk
2 milk caps
2 Gardein packages
1 veggie crumbles package
4 plastic wraps (?) from ice cream
4 rubberband/ties from broccoli

What items can I replace with plastic free or less plastic alternatives?
Milk. I buy in glass bottles (the large caps are from those), but last Monday we were hit with a winter storm (6 inches!!)… leaving me unable to get to my co-op for local milk.

Veggie Crumbles: Use lentils or something else to make Sloppy Joes. (need to find a kid-approved plastic-free substitute)

What items would I be willing to give up if a plastic free alternative doesn’t exist?
I’m willing to give it all up (except my essentials!!)… trying to give it all up and explain it to three kids… it’s not the easiest thing in the world! We’re taking steps… one day… one week… one month at a time. :)

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?
Contacts. (I almost had Lasik done for so many reasons including ditching the plastic waste… but I just couldn’t do it!!)

Gardein. I’m putting this here because my kids love it! I buy it every other week. I’d love for someone to come up with a recipe that was very similar without the plastic packaging. (chickpea cutlets are no bueno with my kids!)

What lifestyle change(s) might be necessary to reduce my plastic consumption?
I’m working on the lifestyle changes…planning ahead, rethinking our meals, and our purchases. Slowly but surely I’m easing our family into a life with less plastic.

From April to December, I get a CSA box once a week. I also have access to Farmers’ Markets during those months… now I can’t find a way to go 100% plastic-free with our produce.

What one plastic item am I willing to give up or replace this week?
Obviously, I’m not buying milk in the paperboard/plastic container.

Ice cream.

What other conclusions, if any, can I draw?
The snow storm really threw me for a loop! I bought things that I normally don’t buy because I couldn’t get to my co-op.

Also, I’d like to share that even though I strive to go plastic-free with our food… I give myself one meal a week that doesn’t have to be plastic-free. No guilt. (This week we had two, plus ice cream.)

Once again… I’m still happy with where we are because I know where we’re going. :)

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