Well, I did just about a month without plastic. Mostly. HA. Actually it wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be and it was A LOT cheaper!!! Like A LOT. I didn’t lose any real weight to speak of but I also didn’t gain any and I didn’t track what I was eating at all. And I ate bread so that was amazing. Here’s my biggest wins and losses and lessons.
So right after I started this challenge, a very close friend of mine passed away and I had a little celebration after the memorial at my house. Normally I just go to Costco for this and there’s allllll kinds of plastic involved. So this time I went to Ralphs, I got a salami wrapped in paper, which turned out to have plastic underneath (I was SO mad!), I got some cheese from the counter also wrapped in plastic, although just cling film. Then I cut up a pineapple, made a tomato and cucumber salad, and bought a few fresh hoagie rolls in a paper bag from the deli section. I also had some salsa in the house and I bought a bag of Chips in a Terracycle bag, so it should be recyclable. So in the end it was very little plastic for a party that normally would have had a full trash can of stuff. And it wasn’t hard, so that’s a good lesson.
Also did I mention how cheap the month was??? Around $200 in groceries for 2 people for the month. Beat that! We did eat a lot of Rice and Beans.
My Significant Other (SO) goes to Starbucks every day, it’s his office basically. So on weekends he brings me coffee, after the first weekend of me yelling at him about the plastic lid, he started taking one of my reusable cups and getting my coffee in that. Men can be trained after all 😛
I went on a work trip last week and I broke down and bought protein bars for the trip, which I ended up really needing. My co-worker doesn’t like to stop for lunch! So there was plastic but it was necessary.
Also I kept forgetting to ask at restaurants for NO STRAW!!
This week is my SO’s birthday so we bought a few things in the regular store like cheese and tortillas. There seems to be no way to get a tortilla not in a bag, I am still searching. So while my main lesson is that I still made trash, my plastic was so so so much less. We used to fill a pick up can like 50 gallons a week with recyclables. In this month we did about ONE can in the MONTH. That is progress. Ultimately this wasn’t that hard after I got used to it and it made a huge difference. I think many times we get so caught up in perfect we miss out on progress. We don’t have to be perfect on our journey to saving the planet, but truly every bit helps.
Honestly this was a lot less work then people think it is or the blogs say. Maybe it’s the cooking thing. I made lots of pots of beans and then we ate them for the week. Want a recipe here goes:
At night before bed:
Beans, however much you want to make, rinse if you want, in the crock pot and drain, don’t soak.
Add water or broth to cover the beans plus a little bit.
Add whatever seasoning you like. I add half an onion, a few roma tomatoes, garlic, salt and pepper. One time I had a ham bone in the freezer. Have some beef bones throw those in.
Turn the crock pot on low. Leave until you wake up in the AM.
SUPER HARD right??? Gosh I just don’t know how I made it. Lol. Beans are an amazing food, good for you, full of fiber, cheap, easy to make, and have a low carbon footprint. You can add them to meat to make it go longer, you can make a chili, you can add rice, add quinoa, put them on chips for nachos, eat them with eggs, in salad, mush them for refried. We ate beans in all these ways. And I have more in the fridge, still not tired of them. There are black beans, pinto beans, my fave are pink beans. I bought this ten bean medley with lentils which we love. In the crock pot the lentils break down but the bigger beans don’t, so it’s a cross between mushy and regular beans. So yummy.
Biggest take aways:
You can truly ask for anything:
Ask your waiter for no straw. If you really love straws get a reusable collapsible one on amazon and bring it with you.
Ask for the deli counter to wrap your cheese in paper not bags
I asked for meat at the meat counter in paper and they did it.
Buying fresh produce is better for you, cheaper and makes no waste. Why have we forgotten this?
Bulk is your friend. It is so cheap!!
The crock pot is your best friend.
Latin people know what’s up, eat more beans.
Love, peace and light! Do a little for a big difference. You can do it!!!