Baby steps into living green?

K. i’d like some tips, steps, and advice to living more green.
and trust me i am talking baby steps (i just started recyling last week for the first time in my life – grew up in the country so we just burned our garbage) what do you all recomend. i am not ready to jump on any band wagon just yet. but i wouldn’t mind trying a few things first. and also is it worth buying organic if there is no real way to be sure it is in canada?

9 thoughts on “Baby steps into living green?”

  1. Buy green products like supre concentrated household cleaners, change your light bulbs to energy effecient ones, buy products made in the us so we can cut down on transporting goods.

  2. Going green has actually saved me money. Put vinegar and water in a spray bottle and use as a cleaner. Turn your heat down 1 or 2 degrees, or your A/C up 1 or 2 degrees. Open the drapes and let the sunshine help heat your house. Use fluorescent bulbs whenever you can. Make sure you do full loads of laundry and turn your water temp down. I buy organic food, which isn’t saving me money, but I feel so much better about not putting chemicals in my body. Buy quality when you purchase new things, they last a lot longer. There are so many things you can do, you will be surprised how many things you notice as you go more green.

  3. Going green is easy, there are so many great resources about the subject. My personal favorite is "The Green Book" which has parts of its book online as well at

    As I have been striving to "Go Green" I realize it is like stepping back in time without getting rid of my modern conveniences. I’m doing many things I learned as a child, like line drying my clothes, sweeping instead of vacuuming, opening the windows in the morning to catch the cool breeze, only buying what I need instead of everything that looks cool, growing some of my own food, and canning what I can’t eat now.

    To me "going Green" is a frame of mind. Do what fits your lifestyle and do the easy things first, it is a process and like dieting if you go to radical to soon, you are more likely to go back to bad habits. I also believe there are good, better, best choices in most things. If you aren’t ready to start a home garden, then try finding a farmers market, until you locate one look for produce grown as close to home as possible and go organic when available.

    Many people think "going green" is expensive, I disagree. Some changes may take an initial investment, but they usually have a short payoff time. Things like weatherstiping and insulation cost, but the energy savings will add up quickly. You may need to purchase reusable bags, but most stores give you a 5 or 10 cent credit, so you are paid back within a few months.

    My top tips are make your home more energy efficient, that also means using natural light, cooling and heating.

    Reduce your packaging, if you eat more fresh food you will generally reduce packaging, it’s the same thing they tell dieters, shop the perimiter, that is where all the meat, dairy and produce are located. Only buy what you will use, many Americans throw away a lot of unused food. Buy in bulk, that doesn’t just mean large packages, but that area with the bins that you buy only what you plan on using.

    Replace disposable items with durable items, if you eat outside often and use disposable paper or plastic plates, it is a wise investment to purchase a set of reusable plastic plates. Replace disposable razors, diapers and cleaning products like swiffer. Avoid bottled water, get a home filter like Pur or Brita.

    Recycle, will help you locate the nearest recycle center. I try to only purchase plastics that are #1 or #2, they are more easily recycled. I also buy recycled products when available, that includes paper towels, napkings, toilet paper, tissue, school/office supplies and clothing.

    Detox your cleaning, vinegar and baking soda clean almost anything, they can even losen a hair clog. Seventh Generation and Method are a couple mainstream brands that are very earth friendly.

    Just start small and build from there, don’t get overwhelmed.

  4. Think dollars and cents. Look at your spending. What you spend the most on shows where you can make a difference and not just be jerking off with the little things here and their.

    For example, I spent $2000 a year on leisurely travel. I cut that and have save hundreds of gallons of fuel. I spent $1000 a year on music concerts and CDs. Those things take energy. There are others. By cutting back I am saving $4500 a year and $300,000 over my lifetime. Think of all the resources I am not consuming.

  5. You could buy an aerator for your faucets at about $2 dollars each they will cut your water usage at that point by about 25-40%, same for shower heads go with a ultra low flow and it will do the same.
    Most important to help is don’t waste. Use cloth bags instead of paper or plastic, use a stainless steel water bottle as opposed to downing bottled water and chucking the bottle, buy locally when you can, use power strips to knock out phantom loads,install cfl’s or leds, make sure your house is well insulated, use a programmable thermostat, if your interested in it try a rain barrel out, and most importantly just turn things off when they are not in use. Great that your interested.
    Transportation wise: car-pooling, planning trips so that you stop at multiple places on one trip rather than making seperate trips, or if available in your area riding the bus and riding a bike.

  6. Get a reusable plastic or metal water bottle if you drink a lot of water. I know people that go through 3-4 bottles a day and just toss the empty bottles when theyre done. Call it 3 bottles a day, thats a ton of wasted plastic in a dump somewhere.

    Use real plates, cups and silverware and steer clear of glass and plastic. It will cut down on a lot of trash that, for the most part, isnt recycleable.

    Read your news online and cancel your newspaper subscription if you have one. Just about all the news thats in print, is also online. I know paper is recycleable, but still, it takes energy to recycle stuff.

    Go easy on your gas pedal when you drive. Quick starts and fast acceleration release more exhaust than if you drive more slowly. Not to mention its safer and you will have less chance of being pulled over or in an accident.

    If you smoke, stop. For health reasons and environmental reasons. All that smoke just goes into the atmosphere and builds up.

    Theres a few simple steps you can try. The water bottle is the easiest way to start. I did that and spent like $15 on an awesome metal water bottle at dicks, but its paid for itselve dozens of times, and im not throwing away water bottles anymore.

  7. I totally understand where your coming from.

    Simple suggestions that I would make:

    1. Unplug electrical items that you are not going to be using.
    Depending upon the item, the amount of money that you save on your light bill can be small to very noticeable depending upon how much you unplug and how much you actually have plugged in to begin with.

    2. When a light bulb burns out, change over to the new, yes, more expensive energy efficient light bulbs.
    While more expensive, they really do cut down on what you use, they also have a pretty long life and really worth the money and you still get the same amount of light for less money and power usage.

    3. Switch over to cloth shopping bags.
    The amount of waste and landfill problem that comes from the tons of plastic bags in landfills is a mind boggle in and of itself. If you have ever driven by one, you see them literally floating on the air all around the place. Switching to the cloth bag keeps not only the plastic out of landfills and wasted fuel to make such – it also keeps the clutter out of your home. I don’t know about you, but I really THINK that they have babies where I store them and there always seems to be MORE than I put there.

    4. Turn up/down the ac/heat 2 degrees.
    Doesn’t seem like much, but you will notice a difference on the billing.

    5. Try to stay away from drinks that come in plastic bottles.
    Seems a no brainer, but actually taking the time to plan for a drink that you know that your going to want and bringing your own in a re-useable container.

    6. Buy from re-sale shops.
    Not only can such save you money, but it saves cutting down of forests, the making of plastics, etc. Even if the chair that you find you have to have recovered to match what you already have – one less tree that is cut down and one less piece of furniture that goes to the city dump.

    7. Plan your cooking.
    I bake more on the weekend to make the most out of an already heated oven vs. having to reheat several times during a week to fix something that I know that I am going to be eating later on in the week. I also have reuseable containers that I portion control so that when I am busy and don’t feel like cooking, I have a ready meal on hand.

    8. Do the laundry in cold water.
    With the advancement in washing powders, the need to wash in hot water is almost a thing of the past. Also, most of the newer fabrics actually do better when washed in cold water – not to mention that it also cuts down on the color fade problem. Clothes last longer – win/win situation.

    I have many more, but these are ones that cost little if anything to make a more positive impact upon the planet. Better a small step than no step at all.

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