Category

environment

Category

How my bum saves the Planet!

Hands up those of you that buy the toilet paper for the family?  Don’t be surprised if it’s mainly the women reading this that say “Yeah, that’s me”.  Recently the Sydney Morning Herald stated that women makes 75% of the everyday purchasing decision for the family.  And I’m thinking 75% people reading this post agree with that statistic and 75% people reading this wish that some other lazy SOB would pick up some damn toilet paper on their way home from work before the family has to resort to the box of tissues, paper towel, phone book or even leaves!

Our toilet paper, can anyone tell me what its made out of?  99% of our toilet paper is made out of paper (duh), which is made from trees!  So I want you to think about toilet tissue in terms of trees, yes trees.  9 million trees are flushed down the toilet every year and 8 millions tonnes of plastic enter our landfill just to make toilet paper!

Let’s put it this way…Imagine you are walking in the forest, say your local state forest, enjoying nature listening to the breeze in the trees, the crickets rubbing their little legs together and all of a sudden you hear a distant flush, and all around you in 1 minute 17 full grown trees disappear from all around you!  Seventeen life giving, carbon absorbing, oxygen producing trees gone! Forever, well not forever but to regrow those trees takes on average 30 years.  Just to produce toilet paper.

Now imagine, at the end of a hard days work you are soaking in a full tub of lovely warm bath water, maybe with a glass of wine and a good book (ebook) and that same distant flush happens and suddenly your bath empties!  You see it takes 140 litres of water to make one toilet roll, that’s enough to fill a large bathtub.

Most of the toilet rolls that you buy in the conventional fashion from the supermarket are covered in plastic, even the eco friendly ones using recycled paper are wrapped in non biodegradable plastic, and why?  If they were wrapped in paper we would save all that plastic entering our landfill, the outer covering could be used to write on, wrap veggie scraps and ultimately composted.

The roll in the centre of the toilet paper is the subject of hundreds of Pinterest Boards on the internet and yet how many of these biodegradable, compostable, useful handy crafty things and squashed into the garbage bin every week. Average toilet paper consumption across the globe stands at 100 rolls per person per year, so an average family of four uses 400 rolls that you could use to sprout seedlings in, create Christmas crackers from or feed to the worm farm or compost heap.

Now given my comments at the beginning of my post, I don’t want you to think I am advocating using leaves to take care of business, or to renounce the use of toilet paper altogether.  What I am encouraging you to do is finding alternatives to the supermarket toilet paper rolls.

Now I’m not going to leave you hanging, I have some answers and whilst this is a product it is not something I make any money from endorsing, but I feel the need to educate all bum wipers that they do have choices.  My toilet paper of choice comes from pureplanet.com.au  Pure Planet, an online shop that produces toilet paper that is tree free, chemical free, totally biodegradable, hand wrapped in tissue paper and sent to you in a recyclable cardboard box which even has colouring in panels on the sides to keep the child in you amused.

You may picture sticks of bamboo as scratchy things you wouldn’t want anywhere near your nether region but if you have ever felt the undies, tee shirts and baby blankets that are being produced from sustainable bamboo you would recognise that bamboo has the ability to produce a soft, smooth, breathable product.

Remember the 30 year trees, well bamboo takes only 3 months to regenerate, making it super sustainable.  This toilet paper is made from 100% bamboo and sugar cane mulch.

There are other alternatives if you google them you’ll find another company which has colourful paper wrapped toilet tissue called Who Gives a Crap.  They divert some of their profits from their recycled toilet paper to provide sanitation in underdeveloped countries which is fabulous.  But I’ve been the test dummy for you all and have tried both and for the reasons I have stated and a degree of comfort I have chosen Pure Planet as my tissue of choice.

You see we are all just so busy, head down bum up busy and many times as the person most responsible for making the purchasing decisions for our families we forget to choose #consciousness rather than convenience  when it comes to our consumer choices.  I know, I live this too, I’ve also been caught short without my reusable tote, bread bags, keep cup, but when I am, I just think outside the box.

To save you doing your research I have done it for you with just this one product, but there are many other everyday products that we should be finding alternatives for, like plastic toothbrushes, party balloons, disposable plates and cutlery.  What I want to do is encourage you when you shop to #use the Planet as your lens when you make your purchasing decisions.

Yes its about your bum saving the Planet, yes its about your teeth saving the Planet, but its all about You saving the Planet by implementing incremental incy wincy changes that will be multiplied by the people you influence, the family, the check out operator, the lady at the bakery, the person standing next in the queue.

One Planet, one person, one bum at a time, we can all make a difference.

Love

Julia

x

Edible Six-pack Rings Developed by Brewery in Florida

For years now I have been cutting up these nasty little rings, hoping and praying that none slip through the cracks and end up in the waterways, potentially harming our beautiful marine wildlife and birds. Now a solution has been developed by the Saltwater Brewery in Florida that solves the issue of plastic six-pack rings.  Made with a byproduct of the brewing process, these rings are edible by the fish and totally biodegradable.  I hope that we see more brewing companies taking this sort of initiative.

 A six-pack packaging design that instead of killing animals, feeds them. Go figure.

Edible Cutlery!

Imagine this… over 120 BILLION pieces of plastic cutlery are used and discarded in India every year, 120 BILLION!!!!!!!  Without an alternative except endless washing of silverware in potentially unsanitary conditions until recently when an amazing mind came up with this idea, edible cutlery.  Made predominantly from millet and spices (or sugar for the sweet variety), these spoons are not only saving the planet but are nutritious and tasty.

I sincerely hope they make it out to this country and the USA where we discard so much single use plastic ware because of our addiction to take away food.  Plastic doesn’t biodegrade (t photo degrades which means it just breaks up into smaller and smaller pieces of plastic) and leaches toxic chemicals into landfill and ground water and inevitably our oceans.  This is a fabulous alternative and a healthy treat.

Urban Gardening – our food future

I’ve been into gardening for some time now, and while I have discovered that although I have a green thumb it is more avocado green than the lush, forest green of people who have been gardening for many years.  That’s why I consider myself a naive gardener and tend to learn by my mistakes and what I information I can google or Youtube.  So when the people at Urban Food Garden asked if I would like to “road test” one of their self contained Vegetable Pods I was ecstatic!

IMG_8240

The system is so simple; they consult with you over the phone about your own particular level off skill, space available and the particular veggies that you would like to grow, they then go and design an Urban Food Garden to suit your requirements, from raised beds, to vertical gardens to pod gardens or a combo of all of them.  They send you a quote for the whole kit and caboodle and when you say “YES” they come and install your garden for you, including soil, plants and mulch!  Then there is an optional step to have your garden maintained by the people at Urban Food Garden.  They will even pass on their knowledge to you so that your thumb becomes the perfect shade of green to keep your family fed on healthy veggies, herbs and fruit for many years to come.

Here’s a little more about it in my video.

If you would like to know more please feel free to email the company on info@urbanfoodgarden.com.au and mention my name!

How to make a foot stool, recycling paper and growing Oregano.

Mamma Mia, can’t have a pizza or pasta without this delicious little herb, oregano.  But are you aware that it also controls weeds and the pests that would attack your beans and broccoli and has some amazing health benefits as well.  It’s drought tolerant and a real all rounder so you really should consider growing oregano in your herb garden.

Have you been told to put your feet up recently?  Well, what better place to do that than on a foot stool you made yourself!  I show you how to make a snazzy footstool with left over timber and some offcuts of foam and fabric that will take pride of place in front of your thinking chair.

With Christmas time comes wrapping paper and cards so we look at why we should send all of it to the recycling bin, once the celebration is over.  Did you know in Australia we send 1.9 million tonnes of paper to landfill and only half of our paper used is recycled.  y recycling 1 kg of paper and card we can reduce our green house gas emissions by the equivalent amount!  Reduce, reuse and recycle your paper and cards this Christmas (and every day ending in a Y).

Welcome to Farewell My Manicure TV.  I hope you enjoy the show!

Julia

x

EPISODE TEN.png

Halting Climate Change – it’s up to YOU!

At a time when I thought my message wasn’t being heard and was thinking, who am I anyway to make a difference… this came up in my inbox this morning. From www.treehugger.com .

climate change

If you aren’t part of the solution you are PART OF THE PROBLEM.

Not all of us have got it in us to be a lobbyist or activist but ALL OF US PLAY A PART IN CLIMATE CHANGE.

If you are one of those people in the checkout queue next to me taking home billions of plastic bags, if you are one of those people taking the two “free” plastic bottles of water when you fill up with petrol, if you are one of those people who still uses cleaning products full of micro beads, then it’s time to wake up!

Soap box oration not finished by a long shot.

Julia

x

 

Plastic waste, Picture frames and Pineapples

Welcome to Episode Nine of FMM TV!

What do the following things have in common?

127 bus loads of straws

one metre high pineapple plants and

mini clothes pegs????

They all feature on tonights program.

Seriously though, on tonights episode I take a trip to the shed to whip up this cute picture frame, complete with a mini clothes line to hang your pictures from, as a Christmas present for a special friend.

I take you into my garden to see the lovely pineapple that I am growing that cost me nothing but a bit of love and attention, oh and two years of my time waiting for it to appear.  It is an extraordinarily long time to wait for a piece of fruit!

Considering that it is the party season I encourage you to think about the waste that is generated by plastic disposable straws!  The statistics are quite dramatic.

Please enjoy tonights program and if it floats your boat please LIKE, COMMENT and most of all SHARE with the ones you care about.

Until next week,

 

Julia

x

EPISODE NINE PIC

Five Ways to “Green Up” your Christmas Function (and the reasons why you should)

eco-christmas2

Entertaining over Christmas?  Why not send a sneaky little message with every function that you put on by going green.  You don’t need to be preachy about it, just subtle education by leading by example in the things you use, refuse and reduce at your party.

  1. Ditch the single use disposable plates and cutlery.  I know no one really likes to do the washing up particularly when you have invited all the relatives, the neighbours and your friends far and wide to your place for a feed.  So the temptation is there to buy plastic plates to make your life easier.  But did you know that these plastic items take between 500 and 1000 years to break down?  And while they are swanning around in landfill they are leaching toxins into our ground water.  So chose an alternative like compostable plates and cutlery made from corn starch and sugar cane pulp.  They are comparable in price and wont harm the environment.  Set up a compost bin close to the gathering and stick a sign on it for what can go in the bin.foodscapes-whomade-michela-milani-1.jpeg.662x0_q70_crop-scale
  2. No disposable plastic bottles.  With our beautiful warm Christmas weather the temptation is there to buy those huge packs of 24 plastic wrapped, plastic, disposable, bottles of water, or soft drinks packaged in plastic.  But did you know some plastics never break down, discarded drink bottles account for 38% of landfill and it takes seven litres of water and one litre of oil to make 1 litre of bottled water!!!!  Okay so enough preaching, what’s the alternative?  Drink dispensers, jugs, punch bowls are excellent receptacles for your Summer beverages and add just a little retro touch to your party.23386976-266
  3. Be straw free.  500 million disposable plastic straws are used and discarded in the United States each day, which is enough to fill 127 school buses daily!  As plastic doesn’t biodegrade, it photo degrades which means it just breaks up into smaller and smaller plastic particles which clog our waterways, enter our oceans and are consumed by small fish and sea birds.  The CSIRO has estimated that almost all sea birds will have plastic in their gut by 2050.  Straws aren’t a party essential so just don’t use them or if you must, then opt for the paper (compostable) alternatives.
  4. Buy in bulk to save money and packaging.  One of the most challenging parts of catering an event is avoiding packaging but it can be done.  Things like condiments can be bought in bulk and portioned out into bowls, buy meat from a butcher and have him pack into your own containers, buy baked goods from a baker and ask them to do the same.  Fruit and veggies can be bought at the market and you can take along your own produce bags or paper bags for the grower to fill.  Shop with reducing your packaging in mind and the alternatives will become apparent.  Also allow yourself enough time to shop for your food items so you don’t give in to the last minute rush to the store.Pickles_HiRes-7
  5. Opt for a BYO and TYO event.  Yeah you’ve heard of BYO (bring your own) but what’s TYO?  Well it’s “take your own”, meaning waste!  Bring your own plate of food to share and take the plate home with you.  Bring your own beverages and take your own bottles home to be recycled.  Bring your own chocolates and chippies and … leave them with me!  We are all conscious of our expenditure over Christmas and getting together for a shared meal is what it’s all about.  No one expects that you should blow your whole Christmas budget entertaining them, and many foodies love the opportunity to showcase their signature dish, so let them!  In fact, if they are willing, ask them to provide an email with their recipe that you can pass on to everyone who came (just a thought).Christmas-dinner

Well there are probably many more ways that you can “go Green” over Christmas, and these are just a few.  If you have some ideas please share them in the comment section below and help all of us to walk a little lighter on the planet.

Til the next time.

Julia

x

Scroll Up