talking trash: 2 months


zero Waste trash jar family vegan plastic sustainable

It’s been 2 months since I decided to start keeping all of our trash.  It’s been an eye opening experience.  It really keeps me on my toes avoiding trash since I don’t want to have to add anything unnecessary to the jar!  Having a visual reminder keeps me on track when I’m feeling lazy.

trash jar zero waste

Background: We are a family of 4 and live in a town with access to farmer’s markets and bulk stores where we can buy most things package free.  For more in depth information on HOW we live waste free, check out my first post in this trash series.  Now, lets get down to the nitty gritty.  Here’s what new trash was added to the jar this month:

  • Clif bar wrapper- given to Vin at the park and opened before I saw it.  The struggle is real with kids!  People desperately want to give them things, like food, candy, toys, stickers, and other small plastic entombed items.  I enforce the “No, thank you” rule with my kids- when someone offers something like this to them, they firmly but politely say “No, thank you”.  This is quite easy for C (9 years old) to do, as it’s second nature by now.  For V (5 years), things sometimes slip through, like this bar.  REAL LIFE with kids guys.
  • Two green wristbands- we went to a fall festival at our kids school, and they required the kids to wear a wristband.  I mentioned to the PTA that a stamp would be cheaper and less waste, so I’m hoping they make the switch next year.  IMO the event isn’t high tech enough to require a wrist band?? 😉
  • some more plastic tag connectors.  We picked up quite a few winter clothes secondhand this month and although the tags are paper and compostable, the connectors are usually plastic.  Sometimes they use staples which is awesome and recyclable (save them all up and recycle inside a metal container or foil).  For more info on how and why we buy virtually all our clothing secondhand, check out this post: why+how i buy secondhand clothing
  • backing of a fire station sticker: our local fire station had a open house and V ended up with a sticker to replace the one on his toy fire hat that was worn out.  Stickers are my arch enemy basically.
  • silver plastic pouch of tempeh starter: I miss tempeh so much, its always wrapped in TONS of plastic so I don’t purchase it.  I made my own with this starter and it was a paper box but the starter pouches are plastic 😦 Much less waste than buying it pre made though.  I used banana leaves to wrap the tempeh in instead of a ziplock bag as recommended.
  • seal from a b12 supplement spray which came in a sealed paper box yet still had a plastic seal on it ????? y tho
  • seal from a glass jar of barley grass juice powder
  • seal from a glass jar of coconut yogurt
  • seal from a plain kombucha used to make my own SCOBY
  • produce stickers from avocados, one of the only things I buy that I can’t always avoid stickers on.  There’s a booth at my farmers market which sells avocados from Southern California without stickers.  I buy from them when possible, but they haven’t been at the market lately.

That’s it!  Everything else I’ve been able to refuse, refill, reuse, repurpose, recycle, or rot (compost).  If you’re inspired, try keeping all your trash for a week and going through it to see just how much you’re generating and ways you may be able to make small changes to reduce it.  Do the best you can and don’t get discouraged.  Little changes add up!  For how to reduce waste without access to a bulk store, read my post on this topic.  LOVE to all of you xx

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