Progress – In Trashy Little Steps

It’s amazing how one little change can lead to progress in multiple areas.  Years ago, we started recycling, and this decision produced benefits we never anticipated.

At first we used an old trash bin for plastics and a milk crate for papers. This system was functional and practical – we already had both so there was no expense – but this arrangement left much to be desired. Despite cleaning, the trash can perfumed our garage, and its great size made it hard to transport.

Photo courtesy of IKEA. Our recyclables center was $9.99 at IKEA and well worth the splurge.

We then upgraded to an official recyclables center, a lightweight metal stand with three detachable bags. This center was clean, attractive, and easy to pack in the car. And because it had a third bin, we began collecting our plastic bags.

Fast forward a little further. We noticed how many soft drinks we were consuming. (Those bottles can pile up fast.) This led to us drinking more water and homemade decaffeinated tea. We started reducing the number of processed foods we ate—fewer sodas, canned goods, and prepackaged products. Fresh foods don’t come in a lot of wrapping, so our overall trash diminished, and we got healthier.

And now we come to today. This morning we purchased a garden composter. I know there are less expensive ways to compost our waste veggies, but I’m terrified of snakes, so ground compost piles are definitely out.  Also, I wanted something that was easy to move and rotate. Now, our veggie scraps and eggshells will have a new final destination –in the bin of our little black compost spinner. (The seeds I collected for next year’s garden just shivered in delight!)

Did you catch all that? Let’s recap the benefits that came from one simple decision:

  • A healthier family
  • Better (and eventually free) compost for our raised bed gardens
  • Less overall trash we are producing
  • Materials being recycled and not ending up in a landfill
  • Money saved because…

We may be cancelling our trash service. With so little trash there’s just not much for the trash man to do. This week, he had one measly bag from us. How great is that!

So where have you made progress or where would you like to start?

Living Light Tip of the Day: Make one positive change today and stick to it. You never know where it will lead, maybe someplace wonderful you can’t even imagine.

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2 Responses to Progress – In Trashy Little Steps

  1. Yep! The recycling works and so does the composting. We’ve had a compost pile ever since I can remember. A lot of scraps go into it each day. Ours has become a “compost system.” We have 3 piles. When one is full, we begin filling #2. Then #3. Once we’re on #3, we use the compost from pile 1 for the garden. The cycle continues so we always have compost for the garden. We’ve been recycling for several years too and only have one or two bags of trash per week. The recyclables go in a bin next to the trash can and both are picked up weekly so it’s a good deal.

  2. C.C. Owens says:

    That’s great! I’ll have to get tips from you on compost pile fillers.

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