Thursday, March 29, 2012

Reusable Changes for the Planet = Frugality

This week I've been doing a lot of online research regarding healthier, greener, and cost effective ways of 'baby proofing' or getting our home ready for baby.  Though I don't really want to call it 'baby proofing' because its not just for the baby's sake its for my husband's and mine as well.  I already told you that I eliminated phyto and xenoesterogens from our home last summer and I got pregnant, that was step 1. I've been trying to make a greener living for myself for quite some time, I attempt it with my husband and he says he's on board but its me more or less making sure things get done.

People say a baby changes your life forever.  Not just the fact that you are now responsible for someone other then yourself but that person depends on you for everything.  50-60 years ago people lived a lot more frugally then they do now and they didn't have the health problems we do now and they didn't abuse the earth as much as they do now.  We are not changing for a greater good, maybe we are now as we are seeing our irresponsible careless attitude has had on our environment.  We need to change.

I found a great blog this week: its a great resource for a ton of simple, greener changes we can all make.  I don't agree with all of her ingredients in her various cleaners as I have a real issue with Borax.  But she grounds you in your thought process, reminds you of how life could be simplistic, happy, and frugal all at the same time.  Its through her blog that I've decided to forgo toilet paper.  We go through a lot of it right now as I'm 8 months pregnant and well nature calls quite often.  We go through so much toilet paper its amazing and its mostly me.  I always cringe when I have to buy more because its not cheap, plus it feels like sandpaper.  We have to chop down so many trees in order to produce it, and its carbon footprint is quite large.  So I'm in the process of making flannel wipes for my son's bottom as well as for my own.  My husband sounded like he might try it too.  You use the flannel wipes vs toilet paper and put it in a wet bag or similar to a diaper pail when done, soak, and then wash and dry like I will soon be doing with diapers.  Material that can be reused and still sanitary, eco friendly, cost effective = Frugal.

Other changes we will start making as our paper counterparts run out are using microfiber cloths for cleaning vs paper towels or items like clorox wipes.  Using only reusable sandwich bags vs plastic bags (my current selling item, our local whole foods co-op just purchased their first order this morning!), making fabric napkins vs paper towels or paper napkins, handkerchiefs instead of kleenex, natural cleaning supplies which cost a dime a dozen vs the conventional cleaners you buy from your local box store that are full of carcinogens, chemicals causing reproductive issues, and a host of other ailments and diseases.  Even businesses out there like Melaleuca claim to be all-natural are a joke.  We live in Northeastern Minnesota so we can't always bike/walk to get groceries or run errands so we will still need the use of our vehicles but even that will be cut down significantly by only shopping once a month, sticking to the budget we already do for every payday, and buying items on sale and only items we are going to use.  I am usually a home health aide though I'm with out a client at the moment and I don't think they'll find me a new one till after my son is born and I have my doctor's permission to go back to work if I want to, so my gas consumption is quite low, but only shopping once a month, will save even more.

I told my husband this afternoon when we walked to Subway for lunch that by the time our son is in Kindergarden we should have our home paid off.  He looked at me surprise.  He earns the money and I budget the money.  When we got married he was deployed for 6 months and when he returned and we did credit checks we found he had a lot of bad debt and his credit score was in the toilet.  I got him out of his rut and into a decent credit score within a year and half.  We are almost done paying off his car that he was upside down in.  Then its paying my dad back for my car.  Our credit cards will be paid off in 2 weeks and then cut up.  I started the budget back in January so we could get his car paid off and our credit cards paid off to get those monthly bills out of the way for when our son arrived and my husband wouldn't have to work so much as I'm not working and so he can enjoy our son.  When I lost my client I prayed that God would help us stay on budget so those big bills could still get paid off and we could still stick to the budget.  And prayers truly do work because we are still on budget even though my on-call hours on the weekends don't bring in much money.

I can only imagine how much money we'll save by replacing our paper products with reusable products and natural cleaners which when made in bulk will last a year or longer.

I'm happy to say I'm happy living simplistic and frugal and healthier for not just me but my son and my husband.


  1. Great post Jenni! I too try to be frugal, I have a really long way to go though. :-)

    1. Let me know if you need any help. Great blog I found that I read daily and am trying to catch up on their posts is they have a lot of great info. I change up the recipes a bit like omitting the borax but they just put one up today for homemade sunscreen.

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