Friday, January 7, 2011

Water Day 6

Today should be renamed to 'Two Steps Foreward and Three Steps Back'.

This is water day, however. Thankfully I made progress in this department. I already practice turning off the water when I brushed my teeth and wash dishes. Actually my husband and daughter do this also. In the past two years I have installed drip irrigation to most of my garden areas and have been chipping away at the lawn and replacing them with beds. I plant both Xeriscape and vegetables in these beds. I purchased materials last week to make three new beds, two for veges and one for Xeriscaping. I filter tap water with the Britta Filter and fill refillable bottles. These are all things I have been doing already. I tried three new things today. I used a bucket to capture water in the shower while I was waiting to heat it up. I poured it out onto my Japanese plant that gets neglected. I also practiced toilet discipline. Without being graphic, my daughter taught me this jingle, "If it's yellow, let it mellow, if it's brown, send it down"! Lastly, I turned off the shower while sudsing. This is easy actually. We did this in Haiti since we didn't have running water. Before Brown And Root built us semi-running water showers, we had to fetch two gallons of water in a hanging bladder to take a shower. It had a spout. It was just enough water to wash hair and body if your technique is good. I learned early to wash hair first. You can always towel off soap on your skin but not really your hair.

I regressed in respect to the other tennets. Going into this adventure I acknowledged Transportation and Trash are my weakness. I learned a lot of how to reduce trash and I am amazed at how much I was able to reduce when I planned for it. This week has really changed my perspective on the world around me. Now when I go into any store, first I see the packaging and then I see the product. This weeks exercises really changed the way my brain functions with respect to all waste. I am surprised, its only been a few days.

I made a few mistakes, namely distractions are to blame. I went in to two stores with my reusable shopping bags but was distracted by other people talking to me in the check out lane and before I knew it, the cashier said, 'Have a nice day' and handed me my goods in PLASTIC BAGS!!

I wanted to cry. I felt guilty, I felt like mad cat.... Instead of having her rebag them, which I have done in the past only to watch them rebag them and throw the plastic bags in the trash, I just took them knowing I will reuse them as trash bags. I know. They will end up in the landfill. Note to self, be more vigilant!

Mistake number two, don't tell your blog readers that you are going to secretly pick up your daughter from school on a city bus without first making sure this can happen;p

Apparently my daughter was scheduled to stay after school, no not suspension, she volunteers for EVERYTHING!! It's part of her social life. She cleaned up the school theatre, AGAIN! I kinda think she got wind of my plan and made sure she was engaged in something after school. The time of her pickup was the same time I had to be at my sisters house so still, no bus adventure. I went to buy some bus passes for us only to learn they don't sell the daily bus passes, you are expected to just give the driver exact change. Oh well. I thought, well, I will ride my bike tomorrow for some errand, ANY errand. I have no bike lock. So mistake number, how many is this now?, I bought something new, a bike lock.

I am chucking up all these mistakes, ah hem, observations, as part of research that will allow me to live a lower impact life and overall not be so ignorant of the important issues that are affecting the citizens of this planet.

For food, I bought some conventional bread from a conventional store to make patty melts from my local organic beef from my freezer. I have gotten into the habit of going to the farmers market a few times per month and buying lots of bread and storing them in the freezer but I ran out.

For trash, just the packaging from the bike lock and some tissue. I was able to compost or recycle everything else. I committed some small trash crimes at work yesterday I forgot to cough up to.

For energy, nothing new that I haven't told you about.

So clearly there are 5 main points;

1) This has been an emotional experience.
2) I have learned TONS!!
3) Even doing a little to change your habits can be quite disrupting and difficult but very much worth it. Eventually, over time, the changes just become a way of life.
4) I love funny animal pictures.
5) Anyone can do this, just don't give up when you have setbacks.

Tomorrow, Giving Back.


  1. Great post, very insightful. Have you figured out that I have just sat back, watched you and learned from your pitfalls.

  2. I hope you had a good laugh you moocher!! Nice goat;)