Green Resolutions

Crunchy Domestic Goddess, one of the many wonderful green blogs that I follow, issued a fantastic challenge: share your green goals for 2009. One thing that I love about the blogs I've lurked around is how open they are to followers, commenters, and general participants -- there's a real community in the green blogging world, and I think it's wonderful how bloggers can lead each other to fresh ideas.

How about a review of 2008's successes? I didn't have a really green agenda at the beginning of the year, so this is really just a list of things I'm particularly happy about from the past year.
  • Stepped up farmers' market patronage significantly (now only shop at grocery store for flour, sugar, and some other necessities not available/affordable at the FM)
  • Cut out most paper towel usage (I still haven't bought any, but future MIL keeps supplying)
  • Baked bread at home
  • Switched to "green" cleaners like vinegar, baking soda, lemon juice, and Clorox's GreenWorks cleaner
  • Didn't buy a car, even in car heaven (i.e. I use public transportation, walking, or biking)
  • Slowed down unnecessary purchases
  • Cooked more at home
  • Greened up the office (more recycling bins, healthier/less packaged snacks, more annoying reminders to recycle)
  • Started worm composting
  • Increased knitting skill (+2 intellect, +3 dexterity, -4 exercising time)

And now for this year's goals:
  • Learn to can (like Crunchy last year, I'm a novice to "putting things by," but I love the idea of making my own apple sauce and preserving it for Southern California's brief off-season)
  • Completely ditch paper towels
  • Completely ditch unhealthy cleaners (that bottle of 409 has got to go)
  • Increase knitting skill further. More specifically, complete a major project (sweater, blanket, or stockings) before 2010.
  • Start a container garden.
  • Join the local CSA. This is unfortunately a long-term goal because the annual sign-up isn't until autumn.
  • Seriously reduce consumption.
  • Plan a green wedding (I'm getting hitched in June 2010).
  • And, finally, get out an enjoy this beautiful country. I have so much to see in the U.S. and I am aiming for 2009 to be a good time to accomplish some seeing.
I hope that everyone else is successful in their New Year's resolutions... I certainly hope I am! Do you have some green resolutions? Share them in comments.


Dan said...

So you finished the sock?! Nice

confiance said...

One thing about the Greenworks... none of them are actually 100% natural. And some of the natural stuff is kinda nasty, like soda ash. I've been sticking with the vinegar and baking soda since I read the label.

Me? I'm gonna work on buying more local and/or organic foods, recycling - I have to drive my recycling to the plant, or carry it onto campus, and once the weather clears up, walking or taking the bus to class and work. I'm also looking at more natural/healthier diets for the cats that I can afford. Stupid grad school student income.

Jaclyn said...

Great list, Amanda! My biggest green goal for the year is to start composting. If you guys can do it at your place, certainly we can do it in ours. Planning and growing a bigger garden is an important goal, too. I gave up paper napkins completely for this year and I'd like to take the paper towels down significantly (even though I already have, I'd still like to see more progress in that department).

Also, how about 100% sustainable produced meat? Obviously very easy for me since I don't eat meat at all, but what to do with a husband who love lunchmeat?


amanda said...

@Dan: I did! Here's another pic of them: http://tinyurl.com/8zxgv7
@Confiance: oh no! I had no idea soda ash was bad. =/ Well, I guess I'll finish what I have, then move over solely to vinegar. It sounds like you've got an ambitious and awesome resolution year ahead of you. Good luck finding more sustainable kitty food, maybe Fake Plastic Fish has some suggestions. I'm pretty sure she's got the kitties. http://www.fakeplasticfish.com/
@Jaclyn: Thanks! We'd be more than delighted to offer you some composting tips and tricks. As soon as I get a chance, I'll head out and snap some pictures for you.
I really hope your garden goal is successful... if only for my own selfish reasons (those fresh peppers over the summer were soooo good!).
In terms of sustainable meat, I'm not sure what you can do for lunchmeat, but we were able to get sustainable/humane beef and pork from our local farmers' market. Does hubby love the texture of the lunchmeat? Maybe you could procure some sustainable cuts and, after cooking, just slice them as thin as you can for a more texture-ful, interesting sandwich. Think leftover Thanksgiving turkey sandwich style.

Janice said...

Another good resolution: wash your clothes in cold water, and line-dry them afterward. Saves all kinds of energy and your clothes will last so much longer.

psuklinkie said...

@janice: we already do! I posted a humorous picture of our temporary clothes line in my "the second r" post. We only use warm or hot water when the clothes are really really dirty (or that time that our rescue kitten gave us fleas!)
Great suggestion, though!