Since we’re all spending A LOT more time at home than normal, we thought we’d veer a little from our “typical” content and spend a little time talking about some topics that will impact our NEW “typical.”
With entire families now home all day long, utility bills could go up and waste output will rise. But with a lot of people not working, incomes are often being cut in half. While utility companies and other service providers are offering breaks during this time, we thought we would share a little info on how to be eco-friendly, help the planet, and save a little money while you’re stuck at home.
Here are some tips on how to live more sustainably, at home!
Take Reusable Bags to the Store
We should only be going to the store when absolutely necessary but when it is necessary, try taking reusable bags instead of getting new, plastic bags every single time. Or, if you get to the store and realize you forgot to bring bags, it’s fine—just don’t throw away the plastic bags when you’re done with them.
Here are a few ways you can turn plastic bags into reusable bags:
- Use them to line small trash cans
- Use them to pick up dog poop
- Take them back to the store with you next time
- Use them for school lunches (once all the kids are back at school!)
Also, many stores like Meijer have a recycling program for their bags. You can usually find a bin just inside the door!
Cut Back on Laundry
Now that you’re not leaving the house, it’s probably not necessary to wash your clothes as often. Wear the same jeans a few days in a row (if you even bother putting on jeans) and wear that sweatshirt a few times before it hits the wash. When you do have to throw in a load of laundry, try hang drying instead of putting them in the dryer. This will save on both water and electricity!
Use Tupperware (Not plastic baggies!)
If you’re meal-planning in order to cut back on grocery trips and make sure your family is fed throughout an uncertain few weeks, try storing your food in Tupperware rather than sandwich or Ziplock bags. A lot of food comes in containers that you can wash and reuse and if you’re supporting local food establishments by getting take out, sometimes you can even save the to-go containers!
You can also purchase beeswax wraps to keep food fresh and avoid plastic altogether!
This same policy can be applied to water bottles and other plastic containers.
- Buy reusable water bottles instead of plastic
- Buy bar soap instead soap in plastic bottles
- Look for products sold in boxes rather than bottles
- Tell restaurants you don’t need plastic utensils
- Use a razor with disposable blades rather than disposable
Turn It Off
We know, there are more people at home right now but that’s why it’s more important than ever to watch your electricity use. Make sure to turn off lights when they’re not needed and try unplugging your appliances when you’re not using them. Put your outdoor lights on a timer if possible and try using a smart thermostat to regulate the temperature in your house. The heat doesn’t need to be cranking if everyone is asleep under blankets!