I must admit that it is taking me a while to get around to being 100% environmentally conscious.
In fact - it didn't even occur to me until I had a child and I started to think about things like chemical exposure more seriously.
It all started with me reading an article on the dangers and potential side effects of Bisphenol-A (BPA) - so I switched everything to glass, stainless steel and BPA free plastics - although I must admit that every now and again I forget.
Then I decided that cloth nappies were an important step for me to take - both for financial reasons and environmental. I just could not get over the amount of nappies we were going through. I do get a little blase becasue I cannot use Cloth when the little one is at childcare (they insist on us providing disposables and they use 5 - 6 a day so biodegradeable disposables would get expensive) - but whenever I can at home I try to use cloth.
We try to buy locallly produced produce as much as possible.
We travel by plane very infrequently.
We try our very hardest to dress for the weather rather than to use electricity/gas based cooling and heating.
We recycle as much as we can.
I breastfed my baby.
I try to limit our consumerism of petrochemical based items - especially plastic toys! I buy Natural Organic skin care and hand soap.
My latest thing is attemting to make my own Laundry powder and in the coming weeks (once I get the hang of the Laundry powder), diswashing liquid, general purpose cleaner, and toilet cleaner.
I have only used it a couple of times but so far so good - it seems to get the clothes nice and clean. Here is the recipie I have used:
Laundry Powder for Clothes washing
2 Cups of pure soap flakes (I used Lux brand but you could also use a pure soap that you grate/shave from a bar)
1 cup Borax
1 Cup washing soda
500g Bicarbonate Soda
Mix all together thoroughly in a bowl and then transfer into an airtight container.
You only need to use a scant 1/4 cup for a large load of washing. Apparently if you have a more heavily soiled load of washing you can put it on the pre rinse for 1/2 an hour with 1/2 a cup of Washing soda added.
The thing I love about this is as I was pouring mine into the bowl I thought to myself - this would make a great gift for someone who was environmentally minded. I put mine into a 1 Lt Preserving Jar and it would be great to put a lovely label on it, tie a ribbon around the seal and add a cute wooden tablespoon or measuing cup.
Environmentally friendly things I still need to work on!
Composting!!! I really should be doing this and need to buy a composting barrel!