[identity profile] gailmom.livejournal.com
When your mom is a tree hugger, grocery shopping is a series of lessons that may or may not be same as those taught by other moms.

You will sometimes learn about price per unit etc...but mostly decisions are made based on packaging and origin of the food.

Mom, can we get this piece of produce?

Where is it from?

Commence a lesson on reading stickers for organic and location labels, and how organic takes secondary place to location, since you pretty well undo global benefit to organic if you ship it in from Ecuador.

Mom, can I get these pudding cups?

Does that look like the sort of packaging I'm ok with?

Commence a lesson (or review it) on the evils of plastic, the wastefulness of convenience packaging, and the fact pudding also comes in these little boxes right over here.

Which one should we get, Mama?

Help me find the ones that come in glass and we'll go from there.

Commence feeling the various containers in search of the olive oil/honey/etc options that are packaged in glass. Look inside the box of confectioners sugar to see if it is also wrapped in plastic, determine which package has the least waste etc.

The good news is that even those people who think you are a crazy hippie idiot will usually still respect the fact you are engaging with your well behaved children; resulting in smiles, patience, and free warm tortillas.

Or at least, that is how yesterday went. :)
[identity profile] gailmom.livejournal.com
Chickens are laying an average 2 eggs a day....which is ok in my opinion, considering it is the cold season.

Due to that same cold, I've made no progress on the chicken pen. May have to barter for some help, as I want it done by spring so we can raise a run of meat chicks and some turkeys for the freezer.

Am making arrangements to get a goat for the freezer from family of choice in the area, whose dam is about to drop at least her usual twins, if not some extras. They will raise it and butcher, keep some of the meat, and then the rest will go in my freezer. Goat is delicious, btw, had it at Thanksgiving at their house and YUM.

Between the two that should mean I don't have to buy any sad meat from the store all year, and can still keep my little carnivores happy.

I've stopped buying deodorant. I use baking soda, dusted on with a makeup brush I had around. Works great, and no more plastic containers. I've also started mixing a tiny bit of my remaining toothpaste with baking soda, to adjust to the flavor/texture difference: so when this tube is gone, I'll be switching over to baking soda as my toothpaste: eliminating another source of disposable plastic. :)

Am doing ok without nail polish. I vaguely miss it, but find that I don't mind keeping my nails short when they have no polish, which is actually much easier to maintain...so that's a plus. Cuticles get more regular olive oil attention now that I'm baking my own bread.

Oh, which reminds me: I'm baking my own bread now. The kids love it, it turns out it is fairly simple, and the bread bags were one of my regular plastic purchases in the realm of grocery shopping. Also a great way to heat the house: which means if I'm smart, I'll bake a bunch of loaves for in the freezer, so I don't have to heat up the house during the summer.

I've cleaned out the area of the utility room that has the desk: and as soon as I can give away or sell that, I'll be able to put the freezer in a more convenient location and plug it in...which will be one more step toward happy meat.

Happy holiday-of-choice to you all!

Am I nuts?

Dec. 6th, 2010 11:54 am
[identity profile] gailmom.livejournal.com
I think I've said before that I traded out my top loading washer and my dryer for a front loading washer and teh clothesline.

That has worked really well and I've been very happy with that choice.

I gave up the dishwasher for a while, but with continued entertaining and no housemate, putting a newer more efficient one in for use when things get backed up or I have a bunch of folks using plates in one night has turned out to be a good thing.

So now what I'm wondering is....what do I do with the fridge?

I have a chest freezer I plan to hook up before spring, so we can raise and butcher a run of chickens to be our happy meat during the year.

i don't use my freezer much now, and I really barely use my fridge. With the exception of parties, my fridge is typically only 1/4 to 1/3 full. I just don't use that much that needs refrigerated.

The question then becomes, given that fridges are most efficient when they are full (like washers, dryers, freezers and dishwashers), how much more efficient is my big fridge than say, this would be? Technically it only uses about 100 kwhrs less than my Amana, but that is presuming they are both full, which my Amana never is anymore...

Am I nuts to be thinking of trading down to the small fridge and the chest freezer from the big fridge and chest freezer, so that I can get some more counter space, have room for my recycling center in the kitchen, AND possibly cut down on my carbon footprint/energy use?

I'd like to make a decision by the time I'm ready to hook up the chest freezer, so feedback and thoughts would be appreciated, if anyone has any for me.


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Suburban Permaculture Project

May 2011



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