A life without plastics?

There was a very good article, A Life Without Plastics?, run on the front page of the Chicago Tribune yesterday (yes, I have the tiniest of mentions in it) about attempting to live plastic free. It is laugh out loud funny and heartwarming in it's sincerity.

The author's struggle, chronicled over seven days to do away with plastic, is easily recognizable for all of us who have given a second thought to plastic. It's not easy. As Beth@FakePlasticFish is quoted as saying, "No one can do the whole thing in a week."

But the author, Trine Tsouderos, mother of two, does try and becomes more aware in the process. "It's like I can smell it," she writes of plastic at the end of the week.

And I felt like I could smell it to.


Is there one thing you've done to reduce the plastic at your house?

13 comments:

Kel said...

nice article. hmmm, plastics...bane of our lives. like you, i shop outside the supermarket. I know from years of practice that if you make your food from the basics, buy the fundamental ingredients and dont indulge too often in processed foods, you go a long way to reducing your package waste. For me, having been brought up in a healthful household and continued it after i left home, its easy. Im always shocked how hard it is for people to actually 'make' their food. Practice, patience and planning make a lower impact , and healthier household.

Anonymous said...

wonderful article! was it really on the front page?! that is very exciting news indeed...

becky

Amber said...

I reduced a lot of plastic by replacing toothpaste, deodorant and shampoo with baking soda. From now on I will take reusable containers with me to an eco-store to get them refilled with laundry and dish soap.
I take my own containers with me to the bulk store, take my produce away in reusable, mesh bags.
The only plastic that I have a real hard time getting away from is my local bread comes in a plastic bag, and some veg like carrots, parsnips, beets I can only get in bags in the winter time. However I turn those bags into plarn for crochet projects!

Green Bean said...

Good for you. I'll have to go check out the article.

I buy our milk in reusable glass. Make my own yogurt or, if I can't, buy it in reusable glass. Use my own bags and produce. Use the Eco Dent dental floss and similar hygiene products like vinegar rinse in lieu of conditioner, shampoo bar. Buying used over new and buying less dramatically reduces plastic because you don't have all that darned packaging.

Happy New Year, Katrina.

kendra said...

Oh, eliminating plastics is a tough one for us. We use a lot less than many families because we shop for produce a lot at home, but to be honest it is something that we do need to be more conscious about.

How fun that you were mentioned in that article!

Fake Plastic Fish said...

I was tickled to see your name in the Trib article! I didn't know if the reporter had spoken to any other plastic-free bloggers besides me. But isn't it funny that, being in Chicago, she called two Californians? We have it soooo much easier out here.

Melinda said...

Mmm - I'll have to go check out the article! Go Beth! We have done a lot to reduce plastic: like using reusable bags at the store, having milk delivered in reusable bottles, refrigerating unused portions in glass containers (instead of tupperware or plastic baggies), bringing silverware and plates to work, carrying around water bottles,.... sorry I'm getting carried away! Lots, we'll say. But we still have more to do!!

Melinda said...

Hey, you're in it, too - Go, Katrina!!

kale for sale said...

Kel - And for a grocery store the Good Earth is great about reducing the plastic output. And you're right, it takes years of practice to tone down the plastic element with food. At least it's taking me years.

becky - Yeah! The front page. Very cool. Chicago is happening.

Amber - I've not heard of plarn but I'm going to check out your link. I wonder if plarn is recognized in the Scrabble dictionary yet? I could have used it tonight.

green bean - You hit on a volcano of plastic. A recent trip to the dentist brought up all kinds of plastic in plastic packaging and then they wanted me to take it all home in a plastic bag. I stuck it all loose in my purse instead. I need to check out the Eco Dent floss you mention. That could cut down on some of the plastic.

kendra - I suspect you have a natural nose for plastic. We have kids visit and somehow the plastic output increases and my respect for parents that can reduce their plastic use increases. It's a challenge with just two adults in the house.

fake plastic fish - aka beth - I suspect you had as much fun talking to the reporter as I did. She was so damn nice. And maybe we're the only two that responded or didn't end up on the cutting room floor. Who knows. But I do love California.

melinda - Let's not forget, Go, Trine, the author of the article! She did an awesome job. And, Go, Melinda! Get carried away girl. We need all the enthusiasm there is to cut back plastic.

Laura said...

I was laughing when I read this as today I dragged a lunch bag to work that must have weighed 10 lbs. Couldn't figure out why until I realized that there was a pint jar of home canned peaches, 2 separate 1/2 pint jars with my yogurt and thawing strawberries, a glass container with my leftover squash soup and a 1/2 pint jar of pear butter to stash in the fridge at work for toast later this week.

Days that my lunch bag weighs that much do make me remember why I used to prefer plastic...

Great post and article!

Donna said...

Cute article & congrats on the quote. :) I started bringing my own bags when my son was a baby and I was afraid he'd get into the mounds of plastic bags I had stashed in one of the kitchen cabinets. Not bringing the bags home in the first place was much easier than hiding my stash from him. Besides that, shopping at the farmers' market has cut down on the plastic, but we still bring home an awful lot of the stuff!

Karen said...

I am totally freaked about landfill usage, try to be so good but it's the kid stuff that always seems to be plastic or nothing. I am trying to get the family to stop using ziplock bags for sandwiches, but they complain that wax paper doesn't keep the bread fresh. I bought a couple of Wrap-N-Mats, which use some plastic but not a lot, and I wash and reuse them daily. Also re-use paper grocery bags for trash bagfs instead of accepting/using plastic bags from stores. I do what I can but it's not always easy!

kale for sale said...

Laura - Pear butter. That sounds terrific. Worth its weight I'm sure!

Donna - It seems like being a Mom is partly being an environmentalist these days to keep kids healthy and safe.

Karen - It's not always easy and it seems like once I've switched from one way to a new way that the new routine actually does become easy. It just takes awhile. Keep up the good work!