When it comes to the things we do and the things we buy as a family I try to do my best to be as eco friendly as possible. I have a LONG way to go to be where I would like my family to be. But it’s all in baby steps and takes time. Buying all eco friendly things and tossing out the things they would replace All at once is kinda counter productive. So as we need “more” of the things I’d like to swap out to be eco friendly that’s when I upgrade them. I personally know that when you decide to start being more eco living that it can kinda of be overwhelming. Your not sure exactly where to start or what to start with. So I decided to share 10 eco friendly swap outs that are easy for anyone to do. The majority of these my family has already done and some we are striving for. For instance reusable shopping bags.. I’d love to stop using the plastic ones from the store but currently with corona my local stores are allowing reusable bags to be used. So I’m doing my best to reuse them at home and you can drop them off at most grocery stores to be recycled.
Now I’ve linked each section to an amazon item if that’s your way to shop. Be sure to make sure the items I linked will work for you before purchasing them. Everyone’s family is different and so will your needs on what type or how many of each thing you will need. If your wondering about the eco friendly part of amazon…. you can email customer service and ask them to omit any unnecessary plastic related your accounts orders. Sometimes it’s works but it always. But it doesn’t hurt to ask. Where we live our amazon packages are delivered by our local post office and saves me a trip to our nearest store to purchase which can be anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour one way from us. If you live more local then it might work better for you to stop at your nearest eco store.
Now if your wondering why we have personally chose to live more eco friendly the bottom line is that the earth won’t survive the way it’s being treated and I want my kids to grow up and have kids, grandkids and great grand kids of their own. And the only way for that to happen is for change and swap outs to happen now. I’m teaching my kids not only by example by sharing why we are doing the things we are doing. The earth needs us and we need it… so do your part!
I know most people will disagree with me on this but living without paper towels is 100% doable. I haven’t bought paper towels in over 4 years and I have 4 kids! So if we can do it so can you! We use flour sack towels and wash them with our normal laundry. We have a bunch and they aren’t pretty but their job is to clean up things how pretty do you expect messed to be. I like these because they are pretty decent in size. Pretty decent at absorbing liquids and not very expensive.
I keep ours in a bun in our kitchen that even my children can reach. They all know where they are and have access to them all the time. I don’t worry about folding them either. I just toss them right into the bin when clean.
We aren’t really big straw users but when we are we use our reusable ones. There’s really no point in buying disposable straws. They are so easy to clean and take up barely any space while reducing landfill waste or ending up in the ocean. If Seaworld can run and function as an amusement part without straws than I’m sure any home can to also.
This was probably one of my most favorite investments ever. I was a weirdo who didn’t like using dryer sheets. I didn’t like all the perfumes and what not that came along with them and stuck to our clothing only to be rubbed all over our skin. It just didn’t settle right with me so I rarely used them. Well now I don’t have to. We’ve had dryer balls for well over 2 years and they are still holding strong. You’ll need a couple per load so don’t try to settle for just one.
This is the one that almost everyone is going to struggle with right now thanks to corona. Most stores aren’t allowing them unless that was their only form of bagged groceries, like Aldi. They are still good to have because although they won’t let bag with them you can use them as produce bags before and after check out instead of the plastic ones that supermarkets provide.
I’m guilty of buying those food pouches for my kids and even recently even though we have reusable pouches. I went right into the easiest route during homeschool and quarantine. But I love having reusable ones. You can buy bulk apple sauces or yogurts and just fill them right up. For things like yogurt you can just freeze them until ready to eat too. They can be packed with yours kids lunches or for trips around the neighborhood. The bottom has a zipper seal that closes up air tight. Most say they are dishwasher safe but I prefer to hand wash for longevity. There’s so many adorable designs put there too.
Ours we have isn’t beeswax but if o didn’t have them already I would definitely be getting these. I found reusable snag bags that fold up at our local thrift store new in their package. So we are set on food wraps. But if your needing something to store food in or to seal containers these are awesome and are typically biodegradable once they lived their live.
For the longest time I was guilty of constantly buying new plastic tubberware from the dollar store any time one got warped or a lid got lost or for any reason at all. It wasn’t until after I had kids that I really started focusing on the world around me. They opened my eyes to so many things. Once I had kids I stopped wanting plastic storage, coated pots and pans and anything that could potentially harm them or the earth they would grow up in. So I waited for our plastic tubberware to dwindle down to almost nothing. I mean I went years without replacing a single piece until it was so non existent that we had to buy more. And this is the set we got. I wanted glass bowls with plastic lids. You can use beeswax to cover the tops but they aren’t stackable. Or you can get ones with bamboo lids but they aren’t in the price range I wanted to spend to upgrade for food storage.
I store ours with the lids on so we don’t have to worry about missing lids or pieces.
I don’t actually use ours for my babies bottoms. I really should and I was ready to during the shortage of wipes and toilet paper. And maybe one day I will. But currently in that status I’m choosing sanity over reusability. I had some old reciting blanket material that o cut with pinking shears to make ours and I use them for all kids of things. Mostly for wiping my kids faces. But they can easily be used to remove make up. Clean up messes or anything along those lines. I try to keep my cleaning cloths separate for different things even though they all get washed. I have our kitchen towels. Our cleaning wipes and then I use cut up old dog my shirts for our deep cleaning (aka wiping around the toilet). So if it’s ever something that I can’t bare to toss into the washer I can toss it. But I try to not do that.
One of the things I think is the most ridiculous thing to buy is water bottles. I know for some ppl they don’t like tap water or things like that and for that I suggest investing into a nice filtration system. Water bottles can only be recycled so much before they can’t anymore. Well all plastic really. It all eventually ends up in a landfill. A reusable stainless steel or glass bottle will have a much longer life span and can be recycled fully. So you don’t have to worry about adding trash where it can be prevented.
These we don’t have but have been on my list for a while. I’d like them more in the larger size and for freezing meats. That’s the hardest place I struggle. Being able to freeze meats for a long period of time. I currently freeze meat in ziplock bags and then try to reuse them if they’ve survived the life and came out on the other end able to be used again. I know it doesn’t help now with wanting these. But it’s all a journey and something we can strive for in our future to add to our eco friendly list of home products.
There’s a ton more things I could add to this list. But I wanted to keep it simple for you. I wanted to create a list that was easy to swap out with and wouldn’t break the bank. I would definitely use up what you have first before leaping fulling into all of these. I mean if it’s going to end in the landfill anyways you might as well get the use out of first. So don’t go running around your home and throwing out all the things. Plan and think ahead!
Do you have any specific things you’d add to this list that are in your top 10? If so comment below and tell me about them. I’m always up for learning how others are more eco friendly too.
Until next time, live a life you love!
If you loved these tips then you should check out my friends and what home tips and tricks they are sharing on their blogs today.