Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

My son loves trucks.  I mean, trucks are his passion.  We’ve spent many dinners at the local IHOP by the truck stop watching the trucks.  We’ve spent almost every trash day in his room, waiting for garbage trucks to go by. He loves them.  Recently he was insisting on more trucks, but all the garbage trucks had come and gone for the day, so I brought up YouTube and searched Trucks.  Some videos are just 10 minutes of big 18 wheelers driving by.  *yawn* for me, but the best entertainment around for my truck enthused son.

We came across this video where it follows a bulk garbage truck around picking up the large items left by residents.  Now, I don’t want to get all preachy here or anything, but I couldn’t help but think how wasteful this all seems to be.  Look how much garbage has been created by just a few people?  Whole couches, perfectly good pieces of wood, all just crushed in the truck to be deposited in some landfill.  Which brings me to the topic of recycling… it seems like long gone are the days of “wear it out, fix it up, or do without.”  I’m not suggesting we go without the comforts of modern day, but perhaps we could be more thoughtful about what it means to truly be friendly to this earth we live on.

Here are three super simple ways to reduce your impact:

  • Use reusable bags at the grocery store.  I’m a reusable bag convert.  They carry more stuff, stores give you credit for using them, and each one reduces the amount of bags in the environment by hundreds!  My bags I’ve had for more than a year and I use them each and every trip.
  • Recycle everything you can.  Most cities have recycling which is just as simple as throwing your trash away.  If you don’t have that luxury, a lot of cities offer drop off stations.
  • Reuse anything you can.  Before I trash anything I think- can I reuse this in some fashion in my home?  If not- would someone else want it?  Think Goodwill, Freecycle, or Craigslist.  (Listing on Freecycle and Craigslist are free and you would be amazed at what people would love to take off your hands.)
  • Encourage companies to reduce the amount of packaging they use by purchasing from bulk bins or low packaging items.  I support local business and other moms, who often have little to no packaging.
  • Support local business.  This reduces the amount of travel your item takes to get to you.  This includes food, furniture, electronics, etc.
Not only will making these simple changes reduce the amount of crap that goes into our landfills, but also reduces the amount of smog that is polluting our air.  We don’t have to be uber reusable gurus to make a difference.  If there is one small change you can make (like giving up your Styrofoam coffee cup for a mug) then we are making a difference.

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