because he could only do a little
~ Edmund Burke
Replacing disposable items with reusable items is kind, thoughtful, frugal and saves time:
- Kind – to the earth as less trees will need to be cut down, less plastic has to be made/used
- Thoughtful – to your fellow planet inhabitants as less garbage will be put in landfills, or end up hurting ocean life
- Frugal – only having to buy it once, or once in a while, instead of every time you shop will save you money
- Time saving – less time spent shopping and emptying your garbage
Back in TTBD (the time before disposables) people had to make a lot of their own household items. They cut and sewed their own cloths to wash dishes. They made rags to clean the counter and table, and washed them when they got dirty. They dove into the sea to cut their own natural sponges……well, maybe they didn’t go that far, but you get the idea. They had a saying in the 40’s during World War II:
In other words, make your possessions last the full duration of their usefulness. People today are terribly wasteful. They often throw things away at the first sign of a little wear, sometimes tossing items that are perfectly good, simply because they are tired of them or they are the wrong color. “Making do” is a concept that has been lost in the ever expanding consumerism of the world today. Buy, buy, buy is what we are taught from the cradle. The more you have, the better you are. He with the most toys wins!
This mindset is a big part of why the world is in such a mess today; garbage taking over, people deeply in debt, people working 2 or 3 jobs just to make ends meet. If we actually were taught to live more simply, use what we have and not live a life filled with disposables, think of how different things would be. Substituting reusable items for throw away items is easier than you think. I bet there are items you can replace that you never even thought of!
- Stainless Steel Drinking Straws – tasteless, odorless, easy to clean, never rust or corrode and last forever.
- Commuter Mug – Keep this in your car so you can use it, not only for coffee, but also for soda when you do fast food lunches or stops along the road for refreshment.
- Handkerchiefs – Stow a couple in your purse or pocket. Not only is it classy to have a cloth hanky, think of the trees you are saving! Just drop in the washer after use.
- Cloth Shower Curtain Liners – These liners are every bit as water proof as plastic ones, but they are washable. I love being able to toss them in the washer, it’s much easier and cleaner than trying to clean a gunky plastic curtain.
- Cloth Napkins – These can be homemade, or you can buy them. I keep a dozen on hand, so I don’t run out and just toss them in the washer, after use.
- Cloth Wipes – These can also be homemade, or you can buy microfiber cloths. I love the microfiber cloths because they don’t stain and they are super absorbent. Just wash a couple times a week and get rid of your dependency on paper towels. Think of the money you will save!
- Microfiber Duster – Get rid of the need for paper towels AND Pledge by using this washable duster. No chemicals needed, traps dust naturally.
Doing a few small things at a time really can make a difference, especially if more and more people do them. These items make great gifts to give to others, and also encourage them to make these important small changes too. Show people that you care about being responsible and that you want to share your knowledge of how to be more earth conscious as well as more simple and frugal in your living. You can make a difference and show others how to do the same.
Below are some great tutorials that show how easy it is to make your own reusable cloths.
How to make a roll of resusable non paper towels.
How to Make Cloth Napkins
How to Sew Your Own Cloth Wipes
Let's all do what we can to stop contributing to the massive garbage problem that we have on this planet. If there is a viable alternative to disposable, use it!
Have a great weekend,
These microfiber cloths are one of my favorite things! They are super absorbent, and wash up clean. I have used mine for over a year and they are still going strong. I just put a small bucket under the sink and drop the dirty ones in it. Dump the bucket in the laundry basket once a week and these cloths are like new!