July 02, 2021
It has been nearly 2 years since I purged my kitchen of single use plastics, for the most part. I have had a few hiccups due to the pandemic. During this time, I have made the following changes:
1. Making my own Yogurt - Which saved 400 plastic containers of yogurt and sour cream in the span of 2 years.
2. Buying spices in bulk or growing and drying them.
3. Buying grains, flours in bulk, or the largest format if plastic cannot be avoided during the pandemic.
4. Purchasing oils and condiments in metal or glass containers.
5. Buying milk / non dairy cashew milk in cartons
6. Buying produce loose, unless it is impossible to buy it loose. Also picking seasonal fruits and vegetables or growing my own herbs and vegetables.
7. Making deodorant cream (which you can buy in here)
8. I use my own shampoo and conditioner bars (which you can buy here)
9. I use bar soap (You can purchase here)
10. I use a razor with a replacement head
11. I use plastic free toilet paper, paper towel, and tissue paper from Who Gives a Crap.
12. I use dishwasher tabs, dish soap, liquid hand soap and all purpose cleaner from Cleancult.
13. Laundry Detergent from Save The Turtles Laundry Detergent
14. I use Dryer wool Balls but I currently air dry my clothes by hanging it on racks or outside.
15. I reverted back to being a vegetarian. I was pescaterian for the last 3 years, and prior to that I was a vegetarian for 11 years. I will eat fish if I catch it myself, or if its local, but otherwise, I am all vegetarian.
16. We have a DIY compost bin in our backyard.
I admit, there are times I go backwards. Buying cheese, vegan meat, dried fruit, and flowers.
I had enjoyed going up to Fresh Thyme, a Midwest organic grocery chain, to fill my own containers with peanut butter, and stock up on oils, seeds and nuts, or going to Eastern Market for dried fruits at Rocky's, a bulk food store, however, they had stopped taking containers. To save gas, It is easier that I go to my local market for bulk nuts that are plastic free, and discuss with them a way to rid the plastic.
I still haven't finished my toothpaste, as I still have a tube left. I am using what I have left before I switch to tablets. Some say that they don't like tablets because they lack fluoride, however if you live in the U.S. there is probably fluoride in your water.
While reflecting on these last two years, I also realize that I never eat fast food. I have not had McDonalds in over 14 years, Taco Bell in 12 years, and the same for any of the other big chain fast food restaurants between 12 and 14 years. I may have had some local Del Taco once 4 years ago in Texas, and a Tim Hortons, Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts coffee and a donut or pastry. If I am not cooking, I support local.
For Plastic Free July, I will continue on being plastic free. I am habitually looking at everything I purchase to see if there is plastic, and if I really need it. I plan to compose a letter to businesses to rethink their packaging and come up with a better solution than single use packaging. I will share this as a template, and start in my city. I encourage you to start small in your city. Start with the small businesses who will usually listen to the community they serve. Support these small businesses.
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