Reduce Your Footprint

Plastic bags can be washed and reused or recycled.  This rack, specifically for the purpose, comes from an Amish catalog.

Plastic bags can be washed and reused or recycled. This rack, specifically for the purpose, comes from an Amish catalog.

A bit of a rant here, sorry!  Doesn’t everyone realize that bottled water is one of the most successful marketing hoaxes that has been foisted upon us?  I recognize its utility in some situations; stored for use during a hurricane or traveling in places where tap water isn’t safe.  Even during Hurricane Irene, I bought it because of the convenient size of the large container as it’s the perfect size and shape for my pantry shelf.  The standards for tap water are stricter than those for bottled water.  I guess it seems “cool” to have some high-priced water bottle in hand to sip out of.  A friend recently had a very nifty water bottle from Fiji, no less, but she had refilled it many times and it fit well into her pocket.  I can see this and have a Nalgene water bottle that I use when hiking.

I reuse a lot of plastic.  Plastic bags can be used over and over, if you wash them out well. The photo above is of a plastic bag drying rack I bought from a catalog that caters to the Amish.  It’s years before the ziplock seals wear out.  Worn out ones can be recycled with grocery bags after you cut off any paper labels, if you still use plastic grocery bags (they’re banned here and we all take our own to the store).  Those shower caps they give out in hotels?  They’re great for covering bowls.  I use them to cover my bread dough while it’s rising.

While I’m on the subject of conservation, it isn’t that hard to put dishes in the dishwasher and cloth napkins in the washing machine.  The boreal forests that are the breeding grounds for some of North America’s most beautiful birds are being cut down for paper plates and napkins.  You probably have cloth napkins that you never use.  Start using them.  People will think you’re being elegant and the birds will thank you.

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