Just recently I have begun the process of becoming plastic free, or as close to as possible. Is there a term for mostly plastic free? For the attempt at being plastic free? Ideally I would like to be one of those individuals who are completely plastic free. Who compost and recycle perfectly, who use little to no waste. This is unfortunately unrealistic for me, however I try.
Right after University I got into the job I am in now. Who give us reusable grocery bags during the holidays. Coming from being a broke student who couldn’t afford reusable bags. Who didn’t have the energy or brain power to remember to use them. To working a job that supplied them was the big step towards my movement to go plastic free.
This is something I had wanted to do in University. I even signed their pledge at graduation. To do everything in my power to help the environment and be environmentally friendly. I took that pledge seriously and still do.
Step one was the reusable grocery bags. I shop for two – three people and three animals, we go through A LOT of plastic bags. I started with collecting all the reusable bags I had. Even the small tote bags from school and piling them into my car. Step two was remembering to use them!
I won’t lie, I think that this was the longest step in the beginning of my (almost) plastic free living. Remembering to use the bags. Once I started to bring them into the store on a regular basis it was easier and easier to remember them. I made a point of putting them on my front seat days before I knew I’d need them. Of putting sticky notes on my dash and even wrapping my purse into the bags before leaving for the store.
This way I would remember, and now 99% of the time I have them with me! The other 1%? When I go with K in a rush and forget them in the trunk, it still happens, and he goes nuts when I pout lip, puppy dog eyes him to just buy one or two new reusable bags instead of using plastic, “we already have enough!” yet still most of the time he caves, and even buys me ones he thinks I’ll like when he’s out! <3 I do love this man.
Now that I regularly use reusable bags it is becoming easier and easier to remember them, and I won’t lie, the guilt of forgetting them is a huge motivator! This was step one because the bags are easily accessible, fairly cheap and a large part of my life but not daily. Starting to build a habit for me is easier when it is not daily so that it does not become overwhelming. This way once to twice a week I get to feel better about what I am doing, and that ego boost makes it more than worth it. These bags are for more than groceries too! This is just where it started but now I use these bags for all the shopping I do from groceries to clothes, shoes, even second hand shopping!
Keep following as I keep posting about my step by step journey through going plastic free, from giving up plastic straws, to reusable produce bags, sandwich baggies, the toughest one for me so far; reusable coffee mugs at the drive through and hopefully some day reusable containers at Bulk Barn! Have any advice about better garbage bags? Let me know, I’m still looking!
Links as I post more below:
My Plastic Free Journey : Straws, roommates, the cost, coffee cups, waste and the holidays