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If there is one thing that gets me upset, it is when I come across garbage on the road, my hiking path, the beach. Most of the time it is an empty plastic bottle. Luckily, I live somewhere where this is not such an issue but visiting other parts of the country I see it often. When I walk my dogs, I have picked up other people’s garbage, as it bothers me just so much. I find it is disrespectful to the earth, the environment, and the people walking and living in the area. Considering I live in a very beautiful part of this country, I cannot take it for granted I have recycled all my life. Growing up in Germany we had recycling systems in place 40 years ago. I never drank from a plastic bottle until I came to the States. Recycling is the only way I have known to live. The town I grew up in is today self-sustainable through wind, solar and hydropower systems……Just incredible.

Think about how much money you spend every year on plastic alone! You may be wondering what I am talking about, as you may be immune to just how much plastic there even is. I know I was, and I still am. The next time you go to your grocery store make yourself aware of how much plastic you are surrounded by while shopping. Being able to eliminate plastic completely from our homes is pretty much impossible, but we can take action steps to cut down on the daily use of plastic. I find most of us are so consumed with our everyday lives, that we forget what it is we surround ourselves with. Just 30 years ago there was not half as much plastic as there is today. We have become a world of use and never reuse. Even though plastic is a small fraction of our environmental crisis today, I believe that if each person could stop buying plastic water bottles and replace them with one single reusable stainless steel water bottle, this small fraction of impact in our environmental crisis could make a large difference towards  reducing the pollution of our waters, beaches, landfills, personal health, and the environmental effects of our children’s future.

Just think about this for one minute and tell me how many water bottles you purchase to use and throw away every single day. Then think about where these bottles go. Are you recycling them? Are they going in the garbage? How much money do you spend every day just on plastic water bottles? On top of that, count in all the sandwich bags, snack bags, plastic wrap, freezer bags, garbage bags, plastic silver wear, plates, cups, bags, and containers your foods come in, take-out food containers, hand soaps, body soaps, dish soaps, laundry soaps, toys, the list just doesn’t stop. I’m not sure about you, but when I grew up, I never played with plastic toys, I had wooden toys, dolls, metal cars, I played outside with sticks, sand, flowers, water…Maybe have our kids get back to the good old times, instead of plastic or electronic toys. Whatever you may choose to do is great, I believe every little step does count. It grows awareness and encourages us to do the right and the best things for us.

Once you see how much plastic you actually do use, you will realize that many of them are unavoidable, but some of them we can replace with reusable options.

Why? You might be thinking! I could give you a million reasons but the main reasons for your own personal benefit for today could be:

  1. Saving money! Who doesn’t want to save money?
  2. Less garbage for you and the rest of the world!
  3. Better for your health. Plastics can contain toxins that are bad for your health and the environment. Who doesn’t want to feel healthy, right?
  4. Keeping our earth, a better place for our children, grandchildren, wildlife, farmers, for our food to grow in a healthy environment, for our drinking waters not to be polluted.

What I like to do is:

  • I reuse jam jars, coconut oil jars and any kind of glass jars that come with a lid for snacks.
  • I use a thermos for hot food, instead of a plastic container and then heat the food up in a microwave.
  • I use reusable stainless-steel water bottles for my cold beverages.
  • I use stainless-steel containers instead of plastic containers for sandwiches, snacks, salads, vegetables…
  • I use reusable heavy-duty zipper bags, that are washable, dishwasher safe, and can be used for storage.
  • I always use real silver wear, plates, cups, and glasses.
  • I like to use mesh bags instead of plastic bags, or by the produce lose without any bags when I food shop.
  • I like to buy my milk in glass containers.
  • I like to use my own grocery bags for shopping.
  • Buy refills for my hand soaps, laundry soaps instead of buying a new bottle every time.

These are steps anyone can take today, without even thinking too much about it. I love to encourage everyone to consider these steps towards a healthier lifestyle and environment. I like to say we are what we surround ourselves with.  I hope this blog encouraged you to take a step in a direction that will help us all in the future. Thanks so much for stopping by. Till next time!