How I turn zero waste!
I’m Cindy, the ‘zero waste’ mum of two adorable imps aged 2 and 5. I am also an entrepreneur in graphic design and have owned my own company since 2013. After reading the book, ‘zero waste’, by Béa Johnson, my partner challenged me to eliminate waste! ‒ saying it was impossible given the reality of the way we live today. So, I decided to keep a blog to show people that it could be done in QUÉBEC! Today, he can hardly believe that I have succeeded.
The method was quite straightforward, but the challenge was anything but because I was taking up the challenge in a city where it had never been tried before. I had to look very hard to identify ideas and ways to avoid generating waste because bulk loose just didn’t exist; and its absence meant I had to think more carefully about cooking to limit wastage. For the last eight months, after a lot of research and effort, my family of four and I are now producing the equivalent of a 1-litre glass jar of waste per month.
What do your friends and family – your children -, think about it?
The most difficult part was getting the children on board. They are always on the lookout for the smallest useless object to bring back home. Saying no to new toys, to new clothes, or to a bar of wrapped chocolate, which is eaten in just a moment, or to a (sadly) throwaway packet of crisps, wasn’t the easiest thing to do!
Our friends really supported us in our efforts and, inspired by my blog, some of them have even changed things in their own lifestyles.
What about going out?
Of course, we had to do something about going out and restaurant meals. We cut out Fast Food restaurants for a start. But I don’t want to stop going out with friends, even if they go somewhere more ‘throwaway’. When this happens, I inform the waiter of my wishes and I refuse anything that involves waste. Most of the time, my wishes are quite well respected. The important thing is to REFUSE BEFORE it comes to you 😉
What is your advice to people wishing to go zero waste, or to those who just wish to reduce their waste?
Take the time you need to change your lifestyle. One change at a time. What’s important is that the changes you make become permanent. If you go too quickly, you’ll end up slipping backwards.
Where should you start? Getting rid of letter-box advertising, refusing throwaway items in restaurants, saying NO to straws, for example. Drink from a stainless steel water bottle or take your own coffee cup and ask the server to use it for your order. Borrow books from the library rather than buy them. To avoid sending too many recyclable items to the local landfill, find out exactly what the local recycling service can take, that’s one of the easy steps that a beginner can take 😉
Hints, tips, recipes, and tests too, it’s all on TENDANCE RADIS!