None of us can deny the barrage of information and knowledge that shines through from our kids when it comes to talking about being environmentally friendly. Sometimes we are bombarded with the "go green" campaigns, or our kids come home from school with their well thought out eco-conscious schemes for us to take note of and implement in our own homes.
The whole idea around being eco-friendly is the drive to reduce our levels of pollution and help save the environment that we live in. From previous evidence around the pollution that our lives make to the planet, and damage to the air we breathe, we need to do something.
The news last year that the 7 billionth person was born into our global population means that we all need to take account of how we use our planet's resources such as water, oil, gas, and landfill for our rubbish in the best way.
My kids came home from school recently with the news that we had to list how much water we use at home, and then commit to showing how we could cut down on water waste.
Here are five home projects that our whole family is involved in for eco-friendly living.
Our recycling at home is pretty well-established. Our recycling bin for outside garden waste, also takes kitchen scraps. It means that we have to make sure scraps go in the small kitchen holder, rather than go in the regular bin, so that they can be transferred to the outside bin later. Two children have the responsibility to empty the recycling bags and bins at our local recycling points.
We have a dedicated waste basket for our paper and cardboard waste, and the gerbils take care of toilet roll and kitchen roll inner tubes.
A tub for plastic, tins and clear glass waste means that the kids can get involved in taking the labels off and putting those in the paper basket, then rinsing out jars and bottles to go into the jars and bottles tub.
We gather our old clothes and shoes, and either take them to recycling points or hand them into charity shops.
Reducing our water use
We counted how many times we flushed our toilets on average and were given guidelines on how to cut down on the amount we use on a daily basis.
We decided to:
- use showers rather than baths
- switch off the tap when we brush our teeth
-flush the toilet less frequently (we struggle to keep this one up)
A project we plan to get going with, would be to set aside an area in our garden and get a compost bin to put our waste fruit and vegetables in. Hopefully we can use that in the future to help our ongoing plans for growing our fruit and vegetables. We'll look for ways to install our own compost heap later this year.
Growing our own vegetables
We began small, and although we are still in the play stages of growing fruit and vegetables, we are getting a better handle on how to go about it. The kids love potting their little tomato and strawberry plants and taking turns in watering them.
We managed to grow leeks and onions quite easily last year. Sadly we had very few strawberries and no tomatoes at all. Hopefully we make a better job of it this year.
One of the biggest problems we have as a gadget loving household is to persuade everyone to switch off lights, TV's, appliances and chargers at the wall, rather than just leaving them on standby.
Our final agreement was to appoint an electric monitor every day, so that someone is in charge of going around the house and checking for sockets that are still on before we leave the house.