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Re: Small things to increase sustainability at home

We also do the things many others have mentioned; LED bulbs, composting, no single use water bottles, etc. 

Over the past couple of years we've converted our landscaping to native plants requiring much less irrigation. 

We live in a hilly area making cycling tough on our 70 year old and knees.  We recently added 2 e-bikes to the 'fleet' that we use mostly to do local errands; groceries, hardware store, and the like.  Our car sits idle for days at a time while we get more exercise.

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Re: Small things to increase sustainability at home

Not sure if this qualifies, since I've always considered it a perk and a convenience more so than being intentionally sustainable, but I work from home 2 days a week.  

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Re: Small things to increase sustainability at home

After reading through this thread (thanks for starting it, BTW), I realized there are a lot of little things that we've incorporated into our daily lives over several years that count: switching all our lightbulbs to LEDs, converting part of the backyard to a pollinator garden, carrying cloth shopping bags along whenever we get our groceries or do a Target run, shopping more often at the local farmers markets, using our water bottles when traveling, making my coffee at home and using a travel cup, composting all our yard waste for later use in the garden, buying fewer clothes in favor of using just a few really well-made pieces that will last. My husband and I also changed how we do Christmas gifts with each other: we've eschewed more useless stuff in favor of giving each other good books and experiences (like concerts or movies) as gifts. 

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Re: Small things to increase sustainability at home

" If I don't have a reusable container with me, I don't get a drink. No coffee if I don't have my own coffee mug. No water if I don't have my reusable water bottle." YES!!!!

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Re: Small things to increase sustainability at home

Liked “I've begun taking a glass container with me for leftovers when I go out to eat - no more disposable take-away containers.”

i will start taking along a glass container for my leftovers when I go out to eat as not to use containers that create unnecessary waste. Thanks for the idea!

Peace, Andrew

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Re: Small things to increase sustainability at home

This is such an inspiring thread - I see some ideas I am going to adopt!  A few years ago I committed to reducing plastic, and it blows my mind what I've had to change.  For example, I grow a lot more of my own food now because almost all food - even fresh - requires plastic for transit/storage.  Avoiding dyes - everything from hair color to many clothing/home linen manufacturers - has been another focus because dye is gross for the environment and the people who work with it, but also because it moves in plastic.  The simple practice sorting my recycling at home has also made me more aware of what comes in plastic so I can actively look for alternatives.  And why on earth do restaurants still serve straws?  Infuriating!  

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Re: Small things to increase sustainability at home

Great topic! Sustainability is near and dear to my heart.  I crochet, so I eliminated paper products (with the exception of toilet paper) by using reusable cloths which i make myself.  I also replaced disposable sponges by crocheting scrubbies with coated yarn.  I eliminated water bottles many moons ago in exchange for insulated reusable water bottles and a water filter.  I use a reusable kcup or my French press for coffee. I compost which has reduced my trash to the point of near extinction, yay! I switched to mineral salt instead of deodorant which is much healthier for me and lasts about a year per stick rather than a couple months per stick.  i make my own toothpaste so i don't use the tubes anymore and i super love it and my teeth are brighter, whiter, and healthy!  I switched out most household cleaner for baking soda and vinegar. I am shun excessive packaging when I grocery shop and buy bulk where reasonable.

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Re: Small things to increase sustainability at home

My main focus has been on reducing plastic use, similar ideas to the other replies: reusable containers, cloth bags, no packaged food, bamboo brushes etc. Some other things I've tried, I now use a Castile dish soap and some vinegar mixes I store in bottles I had at home. I've also tried shampoo and conditioner bars, it takes a couple of washes for your hair to get used to them. If not, there are also companies where you can send the shampoo bottles back and they refill them for you. 

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Re: Small things to increase sustainability at home

My wife and I converted over to metal reusable water bottles and copper straws.

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Re: Small things to increase sustainability at home

@Sleymrzy as we approach the holidays, a new tradition in my family is cloth wrapping paper - no more paper and tape that gets used once and thrown away. Instead, we have bought/found scraps of fabric over the years and now wrap all gifts in it, holiday after holiday. When giving gifts to others, we ensure they will reuse the fabric, and if not, we take it home with us to reuse again! It has felt really good to not fill garbage bags full of wrapping paper after a birthday or other holiday.

At REI, we believe a life outdoors is a life well-lived.
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