Friday, January 04, 2008

still hoping

Well, I didn't get quite as much done today as I would have liked, but I did get things done. I unpacked and put away about five boxes from my sewing room (and all the assorted clutter that got stowed there over the last few weeks), but I can see that I'm going to have to do some serious thinking about the set up in that room. And maybe purge even more yarn and fabric. I'd much rather use my yarn and fabric, but if I can't even use the room for want of space, I might have to be ruthless. We'll see what kind of storage solutions I might be able to come up with.

The dryer still has not come yet! We've been waiting for it for a month now. I washed the sheets anyway and put them out on the deck to dry. Then, around two, I brought them in to thaw. I might bring the drying racks out here to the living room and turn the fireplace on if they're not completely dry by dinner.

I had to run to the store to get some tomato sauce for pizza night. I'll be so glad when I have a big supply of my own homemade sauce. Ben and I have big ambitions for the garden this year. I hope we can really produce as much as we've been talking about. I'm planning to plant enough tomatoes to get at least a few months' worth of sauce. Some day I'd like to be able to grow enough so I can have enough canned in the fall to last all year till the next fall. I've never had a garden before, but I pray God will bless this endeavor.

I swept all the floors, and wished that my swiffer hadn't been lost in the move. These floors need mopping too. They will replace it though, so I'll get a new one this weekend. I've got about four or five wet swiffer cloths left, and after those are used, I've decided that I'm not going to buy new ones. I'm going to make cotton knitted cloths of the right size to button onto the swiffer, and then just spray the floors with cleaner and go over them. That way, I'm cutting down on waste and saving money too.

Speaking of cutting down on waste and saving money, Ben and I were discussing whether it would be possible to compost and recyle enough to eliminate the need to pay the trash pickup service. It's $25 dollars a month. If we were to recycle, we'd have to take everything to drop off places ourselves, they don't offer recycling. But there's drop off's at church, and we'd be going there once a week anyway. We pretty much decided that it would be impossible to cut back trash that much, but I'd love to here what everyone else thinks. Is it possible to only produce recyclable or compostable trash?

In our case, the cat litter would be a problem. I don't think they make a compostable litter, so short of burying it somewhere (which would probably be a problem, because of the chemicals in litter), we there's not really a solution to that one other than the landfills. Or is there? Anyone have any insight on this?

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Melonie said...

I've seen a kitty litter advertised in a bunch of green magazines like Body + Soul and the like that I think is called Swheat Scoop - I don't know that it's compostable, but I do know that it's supposed to be safer for the cats since they are walking on the litter (and the chemicals therein) and then doing things like licking their paws clean - so they aren't just walking on toxic products, they're ingesting them!

I'll see what I can find out - I'm sure the link is on my computer somewhere as I told a friend about it in a chat one time and grabbed the link from a magazine for her...and I clip the coupons for her whenever I see 'em. :-)

If not - you might consider something like trying to introduce your cats to newspaper (shredded) or sawdust/wood shavings like are used for rabbit hutches? I don't know if they'd care for that but it might be worth a shot - black and white newsprint is okay in the compost bin.

Melonie said...

Found it - and YES, this brand is compostable! :-P

Lemme know if you decide to use it - I don't think my friend has switched to this brand so I'd be happy to pass along coupons I find to you instead.

Bethany said...

Melonie, wow, thank you for checking on this. I forgot to mention that we usually only buy purina products, but I'll talk to Ben about it and see if Purina's Yesterday's New is compostable. The website says not to use it as fertilizer because it will attract flies and other cats, but I would think that would be pre-composting.

I'll definately post about what I find out.

Any thought's on the rest of our trash? (that's just a funny phrase, lol) I'm going to have to look for a list of what can actually be recycled, because I keep thinking that things like plastic wrap or the styrofoam meats trays wouldn't be.

Mary said...

I compost my garbage. But you can't put meat products or grease in the compost pile. it takes too long to break down and it also attracts Rats and other creatures. As for the garden. I take newspapers or boxes and lay them down on top of the grass where I want my garden to be. Then I layer compost, Grass Clippings, wood Chips, Leaves and other biodegradable things on top. I plant right into there and it makes a nice garden without having to till the ground. I got the idea from the Lasagna Gardening book.
Here in my town they offer composted wood chips as a mulch for free if you just have a truck to go pick the stuff up. So each year I get a couple of truckloads and put it on top of the garden for that year. I have also used shredded papers to put around my plants to keep the weeds down. And I lay newspaper around the bottoms of my tomato plants to keep the weeds off of them.
Sorry this is so long. Have a great day!!
God Bless You!!

Bethany said...

Mary, thank you for the info. Don't worry about being too long, I appreciate all the advice. I've never had my own garden before, and my parents' never composted, so I don't really know how it works at all. I'm grateful to have experienced friends like you to help me learn as I go.

Melonie said...

I would say that it's definitely worth your while to recycle by taking things over to the drop-off at church! And compost as much as possible, of course.

Another thing - if you read a lot of magazines, don't forget that you can "repurpose" them by donating them to a local senior center or library. Or depending on the publications, ask if the church nursery teachers or local preschool/school teachers want them for the kids to use for crafts. That way it's a little more community oriented than just dropping them in the recycle bin.

I'll think on this some more - there are tons of ways to reduce. One more tip: when you are purchasing items, look for things that have as little wrapping or packaging as possible - especially plastic! Ikea is famous for this with their minimal packaging policy. Too bad more companies don't follow that concept just yet. :-)

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