Give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread - Proverbs 30:8

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Being Intentional ~ Living Green (and a giveaway)

St. Patrick's day is just around the corner and it's the holiday that makes us think of green.

But today I'd like to talk about a different kind of green ~ living green or being green. I prefer to refer to this lifestyle as creation care, because as a Christian, I believe I have a responsibility to do my part in caring for the beautiful creation God has given us.

In the past couple years I have taken some simple steps to better stewardship of our earth and I'd like to share them here.

1. Cloth napkins ~ Sometime last year I resolved not to buy anymore disposable napkins. I invested in some cloth napkins and haven't looked back. It wasn't a very big adjustment, but I'm sure it's had a big impact. 

2. Natural cleaners ~ It's amazing what a little vinegar, water and baking soda can do! I did try making an all-purpose cleaner with castile soap, but didn't like it at all. I much prefer using soapy water or vinegar/water spray for my all purpose needs. My husband still prefers Windex to clean the ipad, but since I'm the one doing 95% of the house cleaning and I prefer the natural cleaners, our chemical level is MUCH lower. 

3. Cloth cleaning rags ~ When I switched to cloth napkins I also tried to eliminate paper towels. I haven't been able to eliminate them completely, but by hiding them under the kitchen sink I have greatly reduced the number of paper towels we go through. Instead of a roll or two a month it's more like a roll or two every six months.

4. Compost ~ I have myself a little compost bin in my backyard and have already filled it once this past year. It was great fun to spread the new "dirt" into my garden last fall and I'm anxious and excited to see  what effect it will have on my harvest this year. Composting is such a great, easy way to reduce waste and benefit the environment.

5. Reusable shopping bags ~ We live in an area that rewards us for bringing our own bags. It's only a $ .05 credit per bag, but it's still nice to get a little savings for using our own bags. I've added produce bags to my collection this year and it's helped reduce the amount of plastic bags I have to recycle.

6. Diva Cup (or other similar menstrual cup) ~ I could write a whole post about this, but I won't. Let me just say I love this product. I was curious for so many months and finally used up my stash of products and was ready to give it a try. It's brilliant. Brilliant! 

7. Garden ~ A couple years ago I was finally able to plant and harvest my own garden. What a joy and blessing it is to go out to the garden and snip lettuce for lunch or dinner. I'm still learning as I'm going, but each year I get more and more excited about growing my own food.

8. Consignment shopping ~ Although it takes a little more effort, I love the idea of buying used clothing for myself and for my girls (my husband is in charge of his own wardrobe). Hand me downs are even better because there is no buying involved. 

and now for a little giveaway...

I keep a couple of these little, reusable shopping bags from IKEA in my purse at all times. I love how small they fold up and I find myself using them quite often. They hold quite a bit of stuff and have held up well. Last time I was at IKEA, I picked up a couple extras (orange, blue and gray) and would love to share one with one of my readers.

If you are interested in winning one, simply leave me a comment telling me your favorite way to be green. This giveaway is limited to US and Canada residents. I will announce a winner on Friday, March 15th at noon EST.


  1. Great post! I think cloth diapers are the thing that I feel make a huge impact for our family. I can't even imagine the piles of diapers that we would be responsible for if we had done disposables for all of ours! Oh, and you were the one who inspired me to switch to cloth napkins so thank you! I was decluttering and going to get rid of these cloth napkins that we've had and never used and then realized I may as well try them. I haven't bought paper ones since!

  2. I make string bags. Details here:

    In the winter I live in an RV. My water heater is only 2 1/2 gallons. I've learned I can turn it on for 10 minutes then turn it off and take my shower using only hot water. It is just the right temperature and keeps me from wasting a lot of water. When it turns cold, I'm done. :)

  3. I like the term creation care. I also love my cloth napkins. We also set out thermostat cool in winter and warm in summer. (65/80)

  4. I make my own laundry detergent and use cloth rags for cleaning - I've even cut up some of my husband's old t-shirts, and those are my favorites!

  5. Kathy has left a new comment on your post "Being Intentional ~ Living Green (and a giveaway)":

    Favorite way to be green . . . .We recycle as much as we can (Portland is pretty great for that!), I walk to work (only 1/4 mile), I use only natural cleaning/laundry products, we shop resale as much as we can, I could go on and on and on . . .

  6. to keep things green at our house, we're also using vinegar and baking soda. Thanks for the giveaway. I'm very forgetful, so having a couple of these little bags in my purse would definitely help.