Life, death & disposable stuff [day 13, 14 & 15]

IMG_7992As we’re driving back to the cabin in Somewhere Really Far North, Wisconsin, my son says, “Mom?  This snowy landscape looks like hell to you doesn’t it?  Most people think it’s hot, with flames.  You see it as a cold place, don’t you?”  It was the proper use of the word hell, so I’ll let that slide.  “Yes.  This is how I picture it.”

I’ve never been a fan of cold weather.  If we each picture all the things we like in heaven, why wouldn’t all the things we hate be in hell?  It would be cold and covered with snow.  Hell would have only olives to eat, individually wrapped in plastic, on a table cloth made of paper towels, and served with disposable plastic forks.  The walls would be painted beige and I would be required to live in a shopping mall.  Continue reading

I wear your granddads clothes, I look incredible [day 12]

Being that I’m out in the country, in the middle of a snowstorm, there’s not much to report on disposable stuff.  The real issues were encountered before we came to the cabin.

A pain to others…

Buying food.  My sister took care of shopping before we took off to the cabin.  The closest store is 45 minutes away, so there’s no running up to the store for something you forgot.  My kids were thrilled that Aunt Selena did the shopping, as we are in a winter wonderland of prepackaged treats and processed foods.  I brought a few things from home, mostly containers to put food and beverages in while on the road.

IMG_7690W%*&!@#t.  We needed to pick up a few last minute things before leaving town.  We followed my sister to the store, which we were not making the connection that the grocery store would be Walmart.  We don’t shop at Walmart.  I teach my kids that where you shop is your vote for what you stand for.  It’s not that Walmart has not done any good in the world, but I don’t think they do enough to offset the “we buy American” bait and switch or make up for the way they bully their suppliers.  My kids started flipping out in the car.  We decided to go to a different store.  See?  Others are more affected by all of these things we do.  Not that I plan to change that, just an observation.  😉  Continue reading

Still travelling, on a sugar high [day 11]

We reached destination #2 at midnight last night.  My sister’s house in Wisconsin, where the snow is piled high.  In a few minutes, we’re leaving for destination #3: my dad’s cabin in Somewhere, Wisconsin.  I really have no idea where it is, so I’ll just call it Somewhere.

rain drivingIn our 9 hours of driving, it rained for 8.5 of it.  We couldn’t make many stops, unless we wanted to get wet and drive until the wee hours of the morning.  Here are a few of the non-disposable situations I came across.



Breakfast was at First Watch, a local diner in the Kansas City area.  Nothing too eventful there, as they had regular plates and glasses.  The silverware was wrapped in paper napkins, so I didn’t use a napkin.  The food was awesome!    Continue reading

Observations of a mad woman [day 9]

Observations of a mad woman trying to be environmentally responsible:

I’m mad.  Crazy mad and mad that simple alternatives are not even on the radar.

Almond milk is good, but I’ll likely go back to my regular skim milk.  I will make this on occasion though.  Plastic milk containers can be recycled, wax-coated cartons cannot.

It’s not easy to be a container label-reader.  Unless you have memorized the cryptic plastic symbols or the company has chosen to be helpful, telling you if the packaging is recyclable, forget it.  Most of the time I’m guessing.

Here’s how the system works. If the packaging can be reused or recycled, or is made from recycled products, it will be listed as such.  If not, it won’t say anything.  Promote the good, ignore the bad.  If nothing else comes out of this, I should use my design skills and simplify the recycling types labels and present my simple system to the EPA.  Even is I was trying to shop for recyclable containers, many would be difficult to identify.  Next time you shop, try reading the labels.  What did you find?


I found this label intriguing.  Terracycle?  Never heard of it.  Bag the Box?  That makes sense, but I need more info.  Continue reading

Craptastic [day 8]

turtle-in-a-hamster-wheelCraptastic.  I stole this word from my boss.  It’s the word you use when nothing is going as planned and you have absolutely no control over it.  I spent a good part of the day with slow internet, partial CMS and way too much to get done.  The only visual way I could think of to depict this?  A turtle on a hamster wheel.

shredded paperWith that being said, I’m going to keep this post short.  Two of my friends brought me shredded paper to make homemade kitty litter.  I’ve had no time to do that, of course, but at least I have supplies.  That’s all for today folks!  I’m sure today will bring many adventures in the land of disposableville.

I am not a throw away girl [day 7]

rethink-good-trash-can-metal-no-symbol-tiaraI wrote this a few days ago.  It goes to the tune of Madonna’s song Material Girl.  I think I might need to do a music video with it.  :)

Not a Throw-Away Girl

Some stores discount, some stores ship stuff
I think they’re okay
If they don’t give me reusable options
I just walk away

They can bag and they can stock  
But they can’t see the light, that’s right ‘
Cause the stores without the plastic
Are always in the right, ’cause we are

Living in a disposable world
And I am not a throw away girl
You know that we are living in a disposable world
And I am not a throw away girl

Some use paper, some have bulk
And that’s all right with me
If they can’t use my glass containers
I have to let them be

Some stores try and some stores lie but
Much to my dismay, they sway!
Only stores who save their planet
Make my every day, ’cause they are

Living in a disposable world
And I am not a throw away girl
You know that we are living in a disposable world
And I am not a throw away girl

Stores may come and stores may go
And that’s all right you see
The economy will crash someday
And everyone will see, that we are

Victims of a disposable world
And I am not a throw away girl
You know that we are living in a disposable world
And I am not a throw away girl  Continue reading

Jellyfish don’t advertise [day 6]

I’m sitting here, drinking my almond milk latte, and thinking about yesterday.  My latte tastes pretty good.  No creaminess to it like my fat-free lattes, but it’s good.  I like that it’s healthy, which I suppose, makes me a quasi hippie.

breakfastBreakfast.  I started the day by cooking breakfast for my kids.  Yes, I can see the shock on your face.  My kids were looking at me like I was from another planet, wondering what alien life form has taken over their mother’s body.

Scrambled eggs and toast.  No, I did not make the bread from scratch.  It came out of a plastic bag.  We’re almost out of it, so we’ll be making our own or buying it fresh at Whole Foods.  Continue reading

I’ll trade this challenge for 5 years of no retail shopping [day 5]

jodys-homemade-almond-milkBefore this challenge, I could say with complete confidence, that I would never be making my own almond milk.  Homemade.  From scratch.  The only thing I cook from scratch is water.  Yep, boiling water.  And I’m good at it.

I have to say, frustration set in yesterday.  Why am I doing this again?  Why do I do any of this crazy stuff?  Making milk?  Seriously.  My oldest son, somewhat jokingly, said I’m insane and might need to go see a doctor for it.  He also said he would trade this challenge and do 5 more years of the no retail shopping challenge.  “Can I just go to my dad’s house while you finish this?”  No.  He asked that right after I gave him his allowance to buy the food he likes, so he doesn’t have to participate in this 100%.   Continue reading