Sunday, May 31, 2009

Staying Green on a Budget

Whether the economy is up or down a person should be proud to find Green ways of living at a good price. Here are some simple things a person, at little cost, can do and be proud of.

Recycle, Reduce, Reuse

Yes your recycle bin is the place to begin. Make sure it is full each week and walk it to the curb with pride. In our case our toddler likes to drag it out with giggles while exclaiming Choo-Choo. Imaginative play is a bonus.

Are you remodeling? For hard items like removing old sinks, cabinets, windows, tubs, and even bricks, see if you have a Habitat for Humanity's Restore, a non-for-profit like Buffalo Reuse or just drop it at your local Amvets Thrift Store or Salvation Army. You'll get a tax deductible receipt, make sure it is dated. Also, consider looking for replacement materials in the news paper classified, at the Habitat store and other reuse facilities.

Kids toys do not need to be new. Head to garage sales, the classified, or consignment stores. You can often find out where all the garage sales are through the local news paper or even on Graig's list under the name of the city you live in or near. To find consignment stores you can Google the name of your city and the words "consignment store". Be diligent shopping at the consignment stores and do not e afraid of telling the owner to watch for certain items. I recently asked my local store to look for leggings in a certain size.

My grandmother always said (which was told to her, by her mother) no matter how much funds we have coming in, we will always either make or buy clothes on consignment. The point was made as a reminder that it is not the retail price you pay but the quality of the sowing, handiwork, and the highest quality garment for the lowest dollar spent at the store that makes a woman. Quality, Quality, Quality.


The products you use for cleaning have a hug effect on your family's health. Good cleaning products go a long way at protecting your children. In my house we prefer EcoCover - "no sent" for dish washing detergent and Seventh Generation for laundry- "no sent". The "scents include in many detergents always give me a headache. Natural scents like the ones in Ecocover and Seventh Generation were the first ones not to cause the brain pain. I have always been the canary in the coal mine even when I worked in laboratories and factories. Despite the fact I have a poor seance of smell I could always tell when the ventilation of the fume hoods were not functioning well. The fume hoods were suppose to suck the air, that was filled with chemicals like acetone and methyl chlorine, out of the room and through a cleaning funnel. I always could tell they were not functioning even before the emergency sensors went off.

Yes, safe, healthy cleaning products cost more then the non-healthy ones. The non-healthy ones are cheap because they are made from materials sane people do not want. So, how do you save? We save by buying in bulk, by the case or two, on We get free super saver shipping to our door. So we save both money and time by ordering on line. I did a spreadsheet to demonstrate this. Bulk shipping saves on gas too. Having a year's supply shipped once rather then buying by the bottle is a big difference. Plus we get to budget our money.

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