January 3, 2012

Plastic Challenge: Danielle, Week 52


How do I reduce/eliminate shipping packaging when I’m not the one doing the buying/sending??

Location:, North Carolina, United States

Name: Danielle

Week: 52

Personal Info:

Collecting our plastic waste for 52 weeks*. See week 1 post for more info :)

*Before committing to 52 weeks, I collected for 3 non-consecutive weeks. Therefore, I will end this challenge with 55 weeks. :)

Danielle’s personal blog: http://itstartswithme-danielle.blogspot.com

List of plastic items REFUSED this week. (Yay!)
The majority of my kids Christmas gifts were bought used! I wonder how many individual bags that over 12 lbs of legos would have been if we bought new??

We went on a road trip… so that means we refused bottled water & gas station snack foods by bringing our own snacks and reusable water bottles!

Total items collected: 48

Total weight:

Items: Recyclable

Items: Nonrecyclable
1 powdered sugar bag
1 cereal bag
4 caps/spouts (from Tabasco)
5 caps/rings (from milk in glass jugs)
3 pet heartworm prevention

Not pictured: 4 straws, 2 condiment cups

Christmas: (not all pictured)

3 plastic boxes (from book lights)
2 inner plastic holders (from games)
14 plastic wrap/bags from games/puzzles
9 shipping packaging (from gifts sent by family directly from websites)

Not included: Plastic tape that came on boxes.


What items can I easily replace with plastic free or less plastic alternatives?
Powdered sugar. I’ve made it before, but the last time I made it… it turned out grainy. Grainy frosting does not work well for cookies, so I made the decision to buy the powdered sugar.

Cereal: We used to buy cereal… like 2 boxes a week. Once a month or less isn’t too bad.

What items would I be willing to give up if a plastic free alternative doesn’t exist?

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?
Games/ puzzles are essential for my kids. It is very difficult to find used games and puzzles… especially ones that are in good condition. (i.e. with all their parts/pieces).

Pets’ heartworm prevention.

What lifestyle change(s) might be necessary to reduce my plastic consumption?
Honestly, I don’t know. I’m personally pretty vigilant. Anyone who goes out to dinner with us will tell you… BUT… for whatever reason… 2nd week in a row, I got stuck with straws!!! WT…???

Condiment cups were a mistake of going to an out of town restaurant and not knowing they served their dips and dressings in single-use condiment cups.

What one plastic item am I willing to give up or replace this week?

What other conclusions, if any, can I draw?
I’m trying to come up with a plan for next Christmas to reduce the amount of packaging. Maybe “Made in the USA” and/or previously owned?? I have a little time to figure it out :)

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