Garbage Woe’s

For the past two years, and the past 23 for my husband, we have lived in an apartment building. One of the best things about an apartment building is the convenience of garbage bins. When the garbage needs to go out it’s not a problem, just take it to the bin, any day of the week and at any time of day.

Now that we are living in our own home garbage has become an issue. The real issue is that neither of us can remember to take the garbage out the night before garbage day. We aren’t morning people, there is no hope that either of us will get up in time to put it out in the morning. Having missed three weeks in a row we have accumulated quite the pile of garbage bags. It’s easy to put two or three bags out a week and think nothing of it but let me tell you when you forget to do that three weeks in a row the reality of how much waste your generating slaps you in the face.  I stared at the growing pile and thought there has to be more I can do to reduce our garbage foot print.

I have a plan, we will see how well I do at sticking to it. I will let you know how I make out.

Shana’s Anti-Garbage Action Plan

Paper and combustibles:

We have a wood stove and at the moment it’s winter so this is a no brainer. As of today we have a lovely new container in our kitchen to collect paper towels and similar burnable trash. Right now this will just go directly into the fire place but the eventual plan is to break it up and make fire starters or fire logs from it.

Packaging, packaging, packaging:

Naturally anything that can be recycled will be. The idea is to reduce that amount and eliminate it when I can. It is so hard to get away from packaging. I plan to increase my bulk purchases as much as possible and transfer our goods to storage containers at home. Still there is the problem of the packaging I bring it home in. Marc suggested saving the bags and reusing them. This is a good idea and if that is the only option for you then your on the right path.  I felt I could do better than just reusing the bags. The option of taking glass jar’s to the store doesn’t really work as they charge by weight. Then it came to me. Fabric bags. So my next plan is to make some fabric bags that tie at the top and attach a tag at the top that I can use an erasable marker on to write the product code on. I think this is the best that can be done for dry goods.

The next obvious problem is liquid goods. I think I will use the container that they have at the store and transfer the liquids to a storage container at home and wash the plastic container to use next time I need a refill. Not my favorite option but it is better than buying a new container each time.

In the spring I plan to build a worm compost so we can compost all year round. Right now don’t compost in the winter. A worm farm will make it possible to compost year round and give us valuable fertilizer for our plants.

I will add to this list as I come up with more ways to reduce our garbage. If you have any ideas please share them!

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