Monday, 4 November 2019

How to live a little bit greener

Image Credit: Pexels CC0 License
I love nature. I've never been to Disneyland or Vegas and I don't see myself ever going, because I'm not a big fan of man-made attractions. But I've seen Arches and Zion National Parks 11 years ago, and they still rank amongst my top 3 places I've ever been to. Most of the photos on my phone are of trees, clouds, landscapes or animals, and a good sunset gives me more enjoyment than going to the movies. As long as I can spend at least a small portion of every day outside, I feel like it was a worthwhile day.

That's why climate change scares the crap out of me. I'm not super-green by any means, but I've been trying to adopt a more eco-conscious attitude for the last year or so, because I want to live life consciously and with purpose.
Pattie Gonia (whom you should be following if you're not already) always says that we're not striving for perfection, but improvement, and I couldn't agree more.
Here are a few of the small changes we've made over the last year that may not be much, but are a step in the right direction:

Save Water

Ever since we moved to the semi-desert I'm obsessed with saving water. Both Rich and I only have a shower every 3 days or so, doing a little spot-washing of the smelliest areas (under the arms, between the legs and feet) at the sink on the days in between. We don't wash our cars, we don't have a lawn to water, and we collect the little rain we get.
The Aussies, being experts when it comes to living in arid areas, like to collect rainwater in tanks like the ones you can buy at https://www.clarktanks.com.au/, which can be a great help when it comes to watering farm animals, vegetable gardens, or washing your car if that's what you're into.

Drive Less

Where we live it's almost impossible to drive less since we are out in the boonies, but we do try not to drive into town every day. I do my shopping after work when I'm in town already, with Rich giving me his list as well. When we go out for breakfast or lunch we always combine it with running some errands to make the most of each drive.
We don't drive an electric or hybrid car (yet), but our much more urbane kids recently bought their first electric car.
As our son-in-law put it: "It's Axel's [our grandson's] first car!" For reference, Axel is currently not quite 9 months old. But since electric cars don't have the usual wear on the motor and all the other parts under the hood, he may very well be driving his parents' car in the year 2035. Crazy cool, right?!
Grow your Own
We started growing some of our own vegetables 2 years ago, and while it's still a process of trial and error, it's thrilling to eat your home-grown produce! Nothing tastes better than a tomato picked fresh from the plant, warmed by the sun and bursting with flavor.

I always bring my own shopping bags instead of using plastic, avoid fast food due to the excessive packaging, and bring my own coffee cup into coffee shops when I buy myself a coffee.
While we love our meat, at least one day a week we are meat-free and eat fish, pasta or vegetarian instead. Most of our meat is home-grown anyways, and we like to trade some of our own meat (we have chicken and turkey in the freezer) for elk, moose or deer meat with some of our friends.

Recycle
I'm a huge recycling fan, finding the act of distributing paper, plastic, cans and cardboard into their separate containers at the recycle station oddly relaxing. I've also stopped buying so much fast fashion, don't follow the latest trends anymore, and donate my old clothes instead of throwing them out.

It's not much, but I believe that every little bit helps. Our planet is so beautiful, and it needs our help!



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2 comments

  1. Great post, Miriam. I just watched an interesting documentary on Netflix called "The Game Changers" about the physical and mental benefits of going plant-based for diet. It's from the perspective of elite athletes. You might enjoy it.
    And I'm so sorry to hear about Nina and happy that your little Dixie is helping ease the pain.

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    1. She sure is! We should be able to bottle up puppy-love and use when needed, it's such wonderful medicine for when you're feeling down.

      I've heard of that documentary and will watch it out of curiosity, but I doubt that I will ever give up meat. I don't restrict my food intake at all, and focus instead on a balanced, varied diet. But I'm curious what they're saying about the benefits of a plant-based diet!

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