Zero Waste Week-Day 2

OK, 1st up, apologies for my moaning yesterday, and huge thanks for all your lovely comments and support!

So, Day 2.
I opened the bin this morning, to assess the extent of yesterday’s waste, only to find that hubby had deposited an empty packet of crisps, AND (this is truly shocking, so brace yourselves) a tea bag and some melon pips.

The evidence!

The evidence!

Needless to say, I fished the teabag and the melon pips out, and put them with the rest of the food waste to go in our Green Johanna. But the crisp bag, I am kind of stuck with. I did manage to persuade hubby to switch from individual packets of crisps, to large family bags, that he then portions up into a sandwich bag (that he uses until it splits!), but he is reluctant to forgo crisps entirely. Does anyone have any Zero Waste answers to the ‘Crisp Conundrum’..?

We then moved swiftly on to breakfast, and I took the last weetabix out of the packet, and then realised that the plasticised paper wrapping is probably not recyclable. Or compostable? Or is it? Let me know if you know!

ZWW Day 2-enhanced1Next on the agenda was a much needed cuppa, and I had to open a new bottle of milk, and peel the annoying plastic shield thing off the top. I was feeling ok about plastic milk bottles as at least we can recycle them, but now I realise I had forgotten about the annoying plastic shield thing.

ZWW Day 2-enhanced3

I know that the Zero Waste solution is to get glass bottle from the milkman, but I looked into this last year, and we can’t get organic milk delivered in glass bottles. And then, as ever, I am forced to decide which is the lesser of two evils, and rightly or wrongly, I plumped for organic milk, in plastic bottles. But what about the annoying plastic shield thing. Arrrghhhhhh!

My next Zero Waste dilemma involved flowers and a tired and crabby pre-schooler, and no buggy. I wanted to buy a friend some flowers. We were in the supermarket, and I deliberately rejected their offerings because of the plastic cellophane-y wrapping, and thought I would support my local florist, and buy from her. She could then pluck the flowers straight from the bucket and just wrap them in good old paper. So I dragged a slightly recalcitrant SmallSmall across the road, and down the road, and round the car park, and to the bank to get some cash to pay for said flowers, and then on to the florists. Only to find they were shut. Curses! And the thought of dragging SmallSmall to the florists at the other end of town was too much. So we went back to the supermarket, and I have to confess that I did in fact buy cellophane-y type wrapped flowers, and then compounded the whole thing by saying ‘Yes’ when they asked if I wanted them gift wrapped. I naively thought this would just involve paper, but it inevitably didn’t and was 1 layers, one of which looks a little unrecyclable.
Best intentions and all that. 
I think I should get bonus points for honesty on that one, as the rubbish didn’t go into my bin…..

Whilst in the supermarket, doing that whole “just popping in for a pint of milk, and then spending at least a tenner” thing, I realised that we were in need of some alternative sandwich fillings for lunch boxes this week. SmallSmall declared that he would like ham, so we toddled off to the cold meat section. I was just about to take advantage of the 3 packs for £6 offer, when I realised that this was Zero Waste Week, and I was supposed to be Naked Shopping. Needless to say I had no receptacles for placing sliced ham from the deli in, but I did buy some from the deli. It was wrapped in stretchy plastic, which whilst not idea, is at least recyclable (we wash ours, and then stash it all in a bag until it starts blocking the way, and then I make hubby take it to the supermarket and wodge it in the bin for recycling plastic bags-I am assured by a Waste Minimisation Officer friend that this is ok).

Other than that (although when you write it down, it sounds loads), I think we’ve done ok today.

As interesting (?) as the contents of my bin may be, the real focus for Day 2 of Zero Waste Week, is looking at disposable items. The daily newsletter from Rachelle, asked what one disposable item could we replace.  
I was feeling pretty smug, as used re-usable nappies with the Smalls for the majority of the time (except at night time as I ‘fessed up to yesterday); I went cold turkey on baby wipes during My Make Do and Mend Year; we use very little kitchen roll; and I use a moon cup rather than tampons of towels. But then I read that this includes things like biros, and razors. And felt slightly less smug.

For biros, the Zero Waste recommendation is either a good old fashioned pencil, or a good old fashioned fountain pen. Or a good new-fashioned i-pad/phone with a note taking facility. Rachelle did also recommend these re-fillable pens, which I think I may look into getting. 
BUT what about felt-tips? Mine go through them at a rate of knots. And each time I throw one in the bin, it makes me feel a bit pants. Other than reenforcing a crayon only rule, I am struggling a little with this one-any ideas would be great!

For razors, Rachelle suggested a Safety Razor, which looks great, but the blades themselves obviously need replacing. Anyone got any other ideas, other than ‘going European’? I would imagine that waxing and sugaring both involve some degree of waste with the strips?

So over to you, what one disposable item are you going to dispose of..?!

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  • Reply Zero Waste Week-Day 4 | My Make Do and Mend Year September 4, 2014 at 9:11 pm

    […] much bin action here today. Another stock cube wrapper.AND, after flower-gate at the start of the week, I compounded matters by not making it to see the friend I had bought the […]

  • Reply Rachelle Strauss September 4, 2014 at 1:12 pm

    Fantastic write up. I think you’re doing brilliantly. Forgive me if I repeat anything here (no time to read all the fab comments) but I’ve seen @therubbishdiet making crisps from potato skins – they look really good. I’m wondering if hubby would eat popcorn instead of crisps? At least you’d reduce packaging because you get loads of kernals in one bag…

    • Reply Jen September 4, 2014 at 9:13 pm

      Oooh, I might suggest popcorn-thankyou!

  • Reply Jo September 3, 2014 at 9:10 pm

    Hello! Love your blog. It’s honest and refreshing and oh so useful! 🙂

    I use a safety razor (saved up swagbucks and got an amazon gift card to buy it so frugal as well!!) and it came with enough blades to last a lifetime!! I’m assured that they are recyclable with my tin cans. That’s where they go anyways! And the body of mine is completely metal so if that should ever break it will be recycled as well!

    Jo 🙂

    • Reply Jen September 4, 2014 at 10:26 am

      Wow Jo, that sounds awesome! Have you got a link to it? Do you find it’s ok? Hubby read some reviews of some that said they ended up getting more cuts?

      • Reply Jo September 4, 2014 at 6:01 pm

        There might be a link on my blog….I did a post a long time back, but basically it was the cheapest one I could get and came with 100 blades off of amazon. Stick safety razor in the search box. I don’t get cut anymore than I would with a normal razor, but it does take a little practice to get used to it and I still don’t get quite as close a shave as with a disposable, but it’s good! And you’ll need oil, or hair conditioner or something just to slick your leg up a bit. But I don’t bother with shaving cream. Coconut oil is lovely 🙂

        • Reply Jen September 4, 2014 at 9:12 pm

          Great-will have a look, thankyou!

  • Reply Sue September 3, 2014 at 3:23 pm

    Surely you can still buy biros that you get refills for? You would still have to throw away the refill but it would be better than the whole pen. It is all very tricky!

    • Reply Jen September 3, 2014 at 7:44 pm

      I’ve never seen any Sue! Let me know if you find some 🙂

  • Reply Emma Croft September 3, 2014 at 9:16 am

    Waxing strips are reusable and here are some homemade wax recipes 🙂 Brilliant posts Jen 🙂

    • Reply Jen September 3, 2014 at 12:36 pm

      Oooh fab-thanks Emma 🙂

  • Reply lindaswildlifegarden September 3, 2014 at 6:53 am

    Reblogged this on Linda's wildlife garden and commented:
    have a blessed day

  • Reply sooz September 2, 2014 at 11:50 pm

    I have trouble with crisp packets too, I love crisps too much to give them up!

    I use an electric epilator (that also has a shaver attachment) for hair removal, it was fairly expensive but it’s lasted at least 10 years so far and I will put it in the WEEE recycling when it’s finished with.

    Might be worth looking into this for recycling felt tips

    • Reply Jen September 3, 2014 at 12:35 pm

      An epilator is a good idea-might just need to pluck up the courage…!
      That’s really interesting re the Terracycle project-I’ve had a little look and it’s only for schools and businesses-might suggest it to school 🙂 Thankyou

  • Reply mehubbyandthekids September 2, 2014 at 10:21 pm

    Razors are the one item I would like to know how to manage as I refuse to not use one. Crisps are another difficulty in our family.

    With the felt pens could you upcycle them into a pen holder for teachers or something similar?

    • Reply Jen September 3, 2014 at 12:33 pm

      Oooh, that’s a good idea Nicola 🙂

  • Reply Charlotte Clark September 2, 2014 at 8:08 pm

    I love your honesty about plastic and everyday life. We’re surrounded by the stuff and finding any alternative is a real challenge. It must be even more so looking after a house of people (I’m on my tod).

    • Reply Jen September 3, 2014 at 12:33 pm

      Thanks for the support Charlotte!

  • Reply Vicki September 2, 2014 at 7:55 pm

    Hi there,

    I am in the same boat with the crisps. Hubby loves them and I too portion out the crisps from a bigger bag. I am always sad about the individual ones because it is the small packet ( containing maybe 20 chips) and the bigger bag they go in. I have a dog so I use the big bags to pick up her waste.

    • Reply Jen September 3, 2014 at 12:33 pm

      At least they are being used again!

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