I love nothing more than to read a self-help book. If I’m inspired by it I will flip my life, and my family’s, upside down and try a new way of living. We lived without bread for a year on the Wheat Belly diet. Marie Kondo put our lives in rainbow order. And there are a whole lot more candles burning in my house thanks to, The Little Book of Hygge.
Last August, 2017, I had first seen Lauren Singer’s Ted Talk, she managed to only produce one jar of trash for a whole year. I was intrigued. I looked for a book on the subject and found, Zero Waste Home by Bea Johnson. I read it once and then the very next week, while on an 8 hour train ride from VA to NYC, I read it again, this time taking notes.
Over the years I have done what I could to reduce my environmental impact: using cloth bags, shopping locally, and eating in season. So, this seemed to me to be the gradual next step. But this next step didn’t feel gradual. It felt like a giant leap.
I coerced butchers to put my meat in glass containers. I completely stopped buying cheese. And I stumped cashiers when trying to buy bulk items in a jar.
Going grocery shopping became a nightmare. It literally gave me panic attacks. I would reward myself with baked goods just to make life more bearable. After about 3 months something had to give. My wits and my family’s patience were waning.
So, I learned what I could do that works for my family and how much we’re willing to change our lives to accommodate the health of our earth. We’ve come a long way and we’re always looking for new ways to step more softly on this beautiful life-giving planet of ours. And I am so grateful that my husband and two sons are 100% on board.
Follow my plastic-free July Instagram posts to see how we do it and hopefully find a little inspiration of your own… but take it slow so you don’t pass out in the grocery store when you see that you’re surrounded by more plastic than food. Every little bit helps!
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