We know life is hectic for your family. Between running errands, baseball practice, PTO meetings and school car lines, it’s easy to forget how our everyday choices impact the environment and increase the carbon footprint we leave behind. Surprisingly, with just a few easy-to-implement tweaks to your weekly schedule, you can “green” your everyday routine and get on the road to sustainable living… in just 4 weeks! Here’s how:
WEEK 1: Lose the plastic water bottles.
Got 90 seconds? That’s how fast and easy it is to lose the plastic! Here’s our 2 step plan: First, make a one-time investment in Klean Kanteens for the whole family. A safe alternative to plastic and aluminum-lined bottles, these stainless steel beverage holders are strong, durable, shatterproof and BPA-free. Not only will you recoup your initial investment quickly, you’ll reduce the amount your family recycles and lessen the chance that one of those bottles will end up in a landfill. Second, try using a water-filter, such as a Brita filter, for improved water quality and purity. Put together, you’ve got a plan for staying hydrated that’s not only healthier for you,but healthier for the environment.
WEEK 2: Pack a Lunch Bento-Style.
Talk about waste! From juice boxes, disposable napkins, plastic sandwich baggies, snack wrappers…the list goes on and on. With bento-style lunchboxes, say hello to a waste-free lunchtime Take ‘Bento Buddy’ from LapTop Lunches, for example. You’ll get USA made, BPA-phthalate-and-PVC-free food containers that are recycled and recyclable, and easy-to-clean. And if you’re concerned about portion control, food allergies, or nutrient content, you can take those off your mental plate (no pun intended), because Bentos put you in the driver’s seat with portable, various-sized refillable containers that are leak-free and keep food fresh. What’s more, LapTop lunches also offers cloth napkins in coordinating colors. We’re talking a totally waste-free lunch.
WEEK 3: Try a Travel Alternative.
So while it might be tempting to buy a hybrid, we all know that might not be in the cards for this week. But when is the last time you really looked at your weekly travel trip and asked some conscience questions like: Could we carpool? Could we walk or bike? Is there public transportation available? One step in susainability’s direction can significantly reduce your family’s weekly carbon footprint and dependence on limited resources like fossil fuels.
WEEK 4: Tote Your Groceries (And other stuff, too).
Never have to answer the “Would you like paper or plastic?” question again. Bring your reusable tote bags made of recycled materials to the grocery store, and join the new en vogue trend. Keep two or three handy by returning them to the side pockets of your car doors or store them in the trunk. This way, they’re already in the car every time you make a stop. And who says they’re just for groceries? Next time you go clothes shopping, be a sustainable trendsetter and take home your new duds in your favorite reusable tote! Check out Green Girl World for some fun and fashionable designs.
So, go ahead! Take our four-week challenge and implement our super-easy tips one week at a time. With just a small investment of time and resources, you’ll find you’re making big strides in greening up your family’s routine. They’re changes that are healthy for your family and show you care about the earth your kids grow up in, as well.