Living Simply

 
Happy St. Patrick's Day!

I'm not Irish but I do love green -- the color (especially the natural ones outside), and all the "green" things we can do to improve our lives and to be good stewards of God's earth.  So...I'm joining HeavenlyHomemakers.com in their Little Green Project.  Here are some of the ways we are "going green" or "saving green" in our home:

1. Cloth diapers -- we've been using cloth diaper for our little girl since she was about 4 months old.  Using them has greatly helped out monthly budget and is really not difficult, time consuming or messy.  We do still use disposable diapers for at night and when we are out and about but we still go through so many less diapers than if we were only using disposables (we spend about $15/month on disposable diapers).  We're hoping our little girl will soon learn to use the potty, but by then baby #2 will be here and we'll still be using diapers.  Check out the Simple Store for a great cloth diapering resource!

2. Cooking from scratch -- I began cooking from scratch about a year ago and have slowly been getting rid of all processed and "convenience" foods from our home (the only things I still buy are condiments, pretzels, chocolate chips and one box of cereal a week).  Cooking from scratch has greatly improved our health and it is sooo much less expensive to cook from scratch!  I spend $50-$70 each week on groceries -- this is for my husband (he eats lots), me (pregnant) and a 2 year old (she eats like her father).  And don't think that I spend all day in the kitchen either.  In about an hour per day I can feed my family healthy, home-made food!

3. Riding our bikes -- Since it has been warming up here in Central Minnesota I'm beginning looking forward to riding our bikes more.  My husband is the youth pastor at our church and we live only 2.5 miles from church.  During warm weather (spring, summer and fall) he rides his bike to work.  We all also ride bikes to church most Sundays.  It is great exercise and saves on gas!

4. We live in a rural community -- we drive 25+ miles to go grocery shopping or to Walmart.  Thereofore, we plan our trips to town and try to get everything done in one trip, once a week. 

5. We also enjoy shopping at thrift stores, consignement stores and garage sales.  We've gotten some great clothes shopping this way.

6. We're planning on doing some container gardening this year -- tomatoes, cucumbers, peas, spinach and lettuce.  With baby #2 due at the end of July we are hoping the container gardening method will be easier than a traditional garden while also providing us with plenty of fresh veggies.

7. House plants -- house plants improve indooor air quality, which is especially important in Minnesota where we spend so much time indoors because of the long winters.  Philodendrons are my favorite -- easy to care for and one of the best at improving air quality.  But be careful -- they are posionous if eaten so keep them up high out of the reach of little ones.

8. Toys without batteries -- we have a very modest amount of toys compared to many families with young children and most of these don't require batteries!  Our little girl gets to use her imagination and we save money and the planet by not buying batteries!

What other easy ways have you "gone green"?
 


03/23/2010 4:11pm

Hi, I'm Shonda and I'm a lot like you. You can check out my blog for my green ideas. Also, I noticed that you had a lot of names of recipes listed under Simple Kitchen for cooking from scratch. Do you have links to recipes for each of those? I'm always looking for great ones. Blessings, Shonda

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03/24/2010 10:45am

Shonda,

Thanks for reading! I'm hoping to get links to recipies up soon. Hopefully I'll be able to get a few up each week.

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