Saturday, June 18, 2011

What I won't be doing.....

I'll be glad when the madness of end of year activities is over and the lazy days of summer begin.  The end of June is a whirlwind of year end school parties, birthday parties, sports tournaments, dentist/doctor appointments and other assorted things that life throws one's way.

Barely having time to breathe, I haven't really thought about my next eco-change.  But I have given a lot of thought about what I won't be changing.

I reviewed Vanessa's list this week, and realized that several of her items just aren't going to happen in my suburban family of 5.  So to give my readers a chance to realize what I'm not capable of, I hope I'll be forgiven for the lack of major change in some areas.

1.  Cancelling my cable - I rely on my electronic babysitter too much to give it up.  "Please kids, mommy needs just 5 minutes to {insert item here}.  Why don't you turn on the TV for a few minutes while I finish up here?"

2. Not driving my car on weekends - living in the suburbs, we don't have access to ready transit.  Most things in our small community require some form of driving.  Many of the kids' activities happen on the weekend, as well as DH needing to go to the hardware store or Canadian Tire for his latest household project.  I just can't see how we can avoid driving on at least one day of the weekend.

3. Turning off my freezer - feeding a family of 5 healthy food while being cost-effective requires a lot of storage.  This includes a freezer for bulk meat, bread, jam, and veggies.  Turning it off?  Not going to happen!

4. Turning my oven off for good - I use my oven for everything from dinner to baking to preserving foods.  I don't think I'd be able to survive with out it.

5. Not using the air conditioning in my car - during the humid, sultry days of summer, I need to be cool.  If I'm hot, I'm grumpy.  And you know the old saying "When mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy".

6. Only using spices/herbs I grow at home - we cook a variety of cuisine at our house.  If I only use herbs I grew at home, we'd eat a pretty bland diet.  In order to try to encourage my kids to expand their culinary horizons, I can't, in good conscience, restrict my spice use just yet.

7. Unplugging my fridge - see my comments about the freezer

8. Selling the car - NOT!

9. Only staying at eco-friendly hotels - if they are inexpensive yes, but would they really cater to three kids and a dog?

10. Eat food straight from pot/pan - given that I'm trying to teach the little monkeys some manners, I don't think making this change would be useful.

11. Using hand-held fans instead of electric ones - only if the fan comes with some nubile young Greek god.....

12. Not wearing a gown at doctor's office - it would not be fair to subject my doctor to visions that might given him nightmares for weeks....

13. Reusing a fake Christmas tree from last year, not buying ornaments - we use a real tree, and part of our family tradition is buying a new ornament every year.  Maybe I could switch to enviro-friendly ornaments.

14. Packing carry-on rather than check-in luggage - again, when travelling with 3 kids, not going to happen.  Travelling by myself?  That's not going to happen either!

15. Sleeping more - I wish....

16. Sleeping naked - not until the little ones are grown and out of the house.  I can just picture the school yard or play date conversations...  "Guess what mommy?  So-and-so's mommy doesn't sleep with any clothes on."  How do you explain that to 4 and 6 year olds in a way that doesn't make you sound like a creep?

So, readers, forgive me my sins.  I'll try my best to make up for them in other ways.


  1. Let me know when you find those nubile greek gods and I'll order one for every room in the house. Come to think of it, any dude with an Irish brogue or Scottish lilt will do just as well, but only if he's feeding me something straight from the pot, while fanning me and pulling my rickshaw so I can do my weekend errands without airconditioning ;)

  2. I hear that nubile gods of all origins are in short supply...
    As for the Christmas tree, if you're buying from a local grower, it's usually the more eco-friendly option. And many Canadian cities have a tree recycling service in place (as of yet, I do not know of anyone who recycles plastic trees -most of which contain PVC, a major no-no.) Otherwise, Ikea will take back the trees you buy from them.

  3. Doing everything extreme is just not in the cards for most people because of the infrastructure of society.

    We managed to unplug the freezer from the end of April until July simply because we ate down all from the previous year.

    As for the oven -- I have a sun oven on the way (once Canada Post goes back to work, it should arrive). Will this replace the oven? Nope... but will reduce oven use in the summer which will also reduce air conditioning.

    As for the nubile Greek Gods, I tried looking on Kijiji for a used one, to no avail.

  4. Great post! Of course, not all of us can do all of everything! Your faqmily situation (fiamily of five vs a singlton or family of two, three, four) makes a difference. v And what you ARE doing is making a difference. -Deb

    P.S. I didn't unplug my fridge or freezer either. But I *did* buy a smaller, way more energy efficent one when the old one was done.

  5. Thank you everyone for your support and encouragement. Our Christmas tree comes from a local tree farm, about 15 kms outside of the city. We are able to mulch it through the city in January.

    As for the fridge/freezer/oven issue, it's something to keep working on, but probably not at this cycle of my life.

    I did try Freecycle and Craigslist, but no one was willing to part with Greek, Irish, Scottish or any other type of god. *sigh*

  6. LOL! You are a girl after my own heart. I'm all about being frugal and eco friendly, but some things are just necessary evils. Your list is pretty much the same as mine. With four kid's you pick your battles (and how do you keep enough food in one fridge to feed four eternally hungry children? I would be a the grocery store every other day to buy milk!).

  7. Thanks, Tightwad Mom, for your support. I like the idea that my nubile Greek gods are necessary evils.... ;)