June 23, 2008

Year 2, Week 1 Results: 4.1 oz of plastic waste.

Back to dealing with plastic. I wonder if it’ll be another whole year before I have a second plastic-free week.

Plastic items used this week but purchased before the plastic project began:

  • 1 plastic wrapper from a Wholphin DVD. I subscribed to Wholphin before starting this project. I believe I’ve received my last DVD, and I won’t be renewing. The really stupid thing is that I haven’t watched any of them since I subscribed. I used to buy a lot of things that I didn’t end up watching or using. My friend Axelle is currently borrowing these DVDs. Hope she’s enjoying them.
  • 1 Ikea fluorescent light bulb. The weight of this week’s tally includes both the plastic and the glass because I can’t weigh them separately. Instead of saving this light bulb in plastic purgatory, I’ll be getting the mercury out of the house as soon as possible and dropping it off at Cole Hardware on 4th Street in SF. Yes, I realize Ikea will also take them back. But Cole Hardware is easier for me to get to via BART.
  • 2 Bandaids. Or as they call them in the U.K., plasters. This will teach me not to to let the kitties’ nails get too long! Had to cover up some nasty scratches on my foot.

New plastic purchased since the plastic project began and used this week:

  • Plastic bag of Instinct dry cat food. Mostly Soots and Arya get wet food from cans, as I’ve previously mentioned. But we do give them a little dry here and there so their teeth will have something to crunch.
  • Plastic pizza box top holder upper thingie. I found this under the refrigerator! I think it arrived in a pizza a few months ago before we started remembering to request pizzas without the little plastic thingie in the middle. Nowadays, we always ask, and our pizzas never stick to the top.
  • 1 Refresh Endura single use eyedrop container. My eyes have been doing pretty well without drops until this last week.
  • Plastic shipping label cover from a package sent from Canada. Don’t know if this type of plastic is required to ship from Canada. Anyone else know?
  • 1 plastic tag hanger from a To-go Ware tiffin I bought from the Ecology Center. I’m thinking this little container will be much safer for bringing home hot leftovers than the plastic Tupperware to-go container I had been using.
  • Plastic seal from around the neck of another jar of Fudge Is My Life fudge sauce. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. Fudge Is My Life is the best fudge sauce I have ever tasted. Axelle and I had a little taste test this weekend, comparing it to some sauces from The King’s Cupboard, which we got for free at Whole Foods. (Why? Because the guy in the chocolate sauce department liked us!) The TKC sauces were good. But FIML won hands down.

Okay, gonna be more careful this week. After all, I have enough dessert toppings to last for a while. What else could I possibly need?

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John Costigane
15 years ago

Waste reduction is my interest, especially with regard to landfill in the UK. I am aiming to use 1 bin bag over 3 years. 1 particular problem is toothpaste tubes. Do you have a practical alternative which wont destroy my teeth and gums?

15 years ago

Glass jars, steel wool, baking soda and lemons rule my life. I like canning jars because they have a separate ring and lid. When the odor of, say, garlic pickles permeates the lid, I wash it and put it out in the sun for a couple of weeks to air out. I’ve got plenty of lids to replace it. If rust accumulates on the jar ring, I rub it off with #3 steel wool. Bubbie’s pickle jars are great because they are tall, have a wide mouth, straight sides (e-z cleaning) and hold a lot without taking up much space. I love rooting through recycle bins the night before trash pick-up, looking for nice jars shhhh

Condo Blues
15 years ago

I eliminated the need for plastic pizza thingies altogether by making my own pizzas instead of orderng takeout. I make pizza dough in my breadmaker and freeze at least one batch. That way I always have a pizza dough made with healthy ingredients on hand when we want pizza/a quick meal and eliminate the need to try to recycle greasy pizza boxes.

15 years ago

I store leftovers in glass jars. I reuse ones food came in. I did buy a set that are smaller canning jars because they have the wide mouth lids. Starting doing this after Axelle showed me her fridge last summer. It looked so organized. They also take up less room in the fridge. I use them to freeze items also.

15 years ago


i’m curious about how you store leftovers. we’re a family of 4 and while i’ve left plastic wrap behind it’s been tough. i’ve spent the majority of my entire 40 years with a roll of the stuff in the house…. now what? i have storage boxes but short of mortgaging the house to buy enough glass boxes to keep us set i’m stuck. i’m sure the answer is fairly simple but for the life of me i can’t get past those sheets and sheets of clingy plastic…. help!

15 years ago

ive noticed you mention those plastic pizza thingies too and like brigid said, i was also thinking, i havent seen one of those in years either. i also live on the east coast. …i also havent ordered from an mainstream places (i.e. pizza hut or dominos) in years and maybe that has something to do with it?

Anarres Natural Health
15 years ago

Re: Plastic Bags for Shipping Labels

I believe that shipping firms (UPS, Purolator etc) require the shipping slips in those dreaded baggies. I haven’t tried demanding that they leave them off, because I don’t ship that way. I can picture someone on the other side of the counter just grabbing my package and slathering it with plastic.

It’s worth asking them to knock it off, though. I had a plastic-free shop at a small bakery/deli in the neighbourhood. The lady didn’t blink when I asked her for the ham (for my omnivorous daughter) in paper.

15 years ago

You know, I didn’t really think about it until I read your post, but I haven’t seen one of those plastic pizza thingies in years, and I see a lot of pizzas, as we frequently have pizza parties at work. Maybe it’s a regional thing? I live on the East Coast.

Also, far be it from me to argue with anyone over fudge sauce, but you could try making your own. I just melt good semi-sweet chocolate (Ghirardelli) with heavy cream in the microwave. I think there’s a recipe in The Joy of Cooking. It’s surprisingly easy to make.

Beth Terry
15 years ago

See Jenn? I have to exploit my kitties; otherwise, people like you would never leave comments on my blog!

15 years ago

Look! There’s Arya! Hi Arya! *pet* *pet* *pet*

…hrm… were you saying something Beth?