Update, stories, stuff and things

Hey, first things first: I’m extending the deadline for The Simple Year 6 applications. HERE is how to apply — and I encourage you to do so, especially if you’ve applied in the past. I applied for Year 3, and you can see how that turned out. 😉 You can tackle something that’s already been done, or you can come up with something completely new; it just needs to be about how you are simplifying. Well, that, and something you’re willing to explore for a year.

Bag Ban recap: In depressing news, our city council decided to rethink its plastic bag ban ordinance. The bigger stores still can’t use plastic bags at the checkout counter, but now the smaller shops in the downtown core are no longer required to make the switch by July 1 — apparently it’s a hardship for some of the businesses. Which, actually, I get — this winter sucked and most of them are barely hanging on, so having to restock bags isn’t feasible for some of them.

I guess the good news is that people are settling down about the whole 5¢ a bag charge at those three stores who rolled out the change first, although wow, people were really mad at first. I decided that if I saw anyone berating a checker over a bag, I would buy them reusable ones, but I haven’t seen any such scenes. (I’ve heard about them, however.) I remain constantly vigilant.

Spreadin’ the word: Look what’s in our current Home and Garden issue!

Bringing it to the people.

I wrote this during a snowy day in January when I had to work from home (and apparently everyone else did, too, because no one was returning my calls). Anyway, you guys are the inspiration for that — I’ve got a little series going. I’m not sure I’d have had the guts to write about it without your support, so thank you.

Wow, I’m getting brave!

Some thoughts on medication: Here’s a topic I keep forgetting to broach: zero waste meds.

It actually didn’t occur to me that this would be an issue until I saw it brought up a few times on that zero waste Facebook group I follow. People seem to think that in order to be zero waste, you have to give up all medications.

I think that’s crazy talk. Science is amazing, and why would I suffer — or make my family suffer — when we don’t need to? I’ve come to see zero waste as a journey without a destination; every day, you just do the best you can. And if the best you can do includes taking meds, then so be it.

I do take in my prescription container and ask for it to be refilled each time. But there’s some other stuff that I have to take periodically that isn’t even remotely zero waste (thanks, jerky stomach!). And Eric and the girls get a few things via the mail.

I see this one as a non-issue. It’s okay if you want to argue with me about it, but for our family, meds get a bye.

Speaking of that zero waste group: I’m thinking it’s time to ditch out. It’s gotten extremely … well, competitive is probably a fair word. It’s like everyone is trying to one-up each other on who’s more zero waste. If you’re not milking your own goat in your yurt off the grid while simultaneously cooking and growing everything from scratch, you’re failing. That seems like a very limited view to me. No wonder so many people get turned off at the thought of going zero waste!

My new makeup came! Friday was a lovely, lovely day here — blue sky, light wind, it actually felt like spring. I ditched work early, changed into a pair of capris, and sat out on the deck, reading in the sun.

Zero waste thwarted by an unexpected sample.

That really has nothing to do with my makeup coming, I just felt like bragging about the sun and the reading. Anyway, my Lush box came that afternoon, and I tried my new foundation and mascara the next day.

First things first: I love the foundation. It doesn’t feel like a liquid when it goes on — it feels like a powder. I closed my eyes and sent up a prayer and picked the light pink shade (eh, what could happen?) and it turns out that’s a perfect fit for my skin. Thumbs up!

The mascara, however, is going to take some getting used to. I’m okay with the black hue after all — it goes on pretty light, so I don’t feel like it’s that much darker than my usual brown — but the application wand is so short that I feel like I’m in danger of poking out my eyeballs with the cap, especially on my lower lashes. I do, however, like how easily it washes off.

So we’ll see.

The items came packaged in biodegradable peanuts — Johanna had a good time melting them in the sink until I rained on her parade (I mean … I’m not sure that that stuff will do to our septic system and I’d rather not find out) — but it also came with a sliver of (highly smelly lavender) soap in a plastic sleeve.

Huh. I was not expecting that. Not a fan of that particular soap, though, let me tell you what. Um, everyone I know in real life: Anyone want an open package of a stinky soap sample that Johanna has used once and deemed “too slippery”? (No? Shocking. I sold it so well!)

Next up: Embracing mediocrity.

9 Responses to Update, stories, stuff and things

  1. Congrats on your article!

    With my own chronic illness, over the years I have had lots of Rx’s that didn’t work or had terrible side effects/allergic reactions and even more supplements that didn’t work out. I try to dispose of the Rx’s appropriately and then recycle the plastic bottles. With the supplements I’ve shared with other chronic illness friends for them to try or recycle the bottles of the rest. I think there is only less waste or managed waste with meds, but I think that’s all we can do, just keep trying to be conscious of where we can improve in other areas to lessen our impact. (And then there’s the whole medical waste in general – lots of tubing, plastic IV bags, etc.) I think the people on the facebook group you belong to might need to consider waste improvement outside “their own backyard”. Like how they can help others reduce their waste since they seem to have more than attained their goal of “zero waste” and a new challenge could divert their attention from one-upmanship. So many with chronic illness/disabilities don’t have the energy to even approach recycling if it’s not curbside or in their building.

    • I honestly wonder if those who are super critical of medications don’t actually have to take any … because I can’t figure out another reason why you’d think it was a good idea to just not take anything or to rely on teas or whatever. Anyway, I agree — we need to focus on what we ourselves can accomplish, and trust that others are doing the same. Everyone is on their own journey.

  2. Another thought. A home near us (vintage 1967) is being demolished to put in a new home, and I’ve been wondering about all the waste. There was a garage sale by the homeowners, followed by a charity pick up, and then the wrecking crew came, and I wondered whether or not the home had been stripped of it’s more useful elements. I noticed during demolition they tried to save some of the metal to sell but that was about it, the rest ended up in many dumpsters. In the time the home existed I know the bathrooms and kitchen had been redone so it wasn’t truly a 1967 home. What about all the nice sinks or newer doors? I did look up to see what is being done in this area and noticed that some Habitat for Humanity Restores do Deconstruction work, but is this well known? These are just average homes, nothing fancy, but so much waste! I wish some of it could be saved for another construction project.

    • Oh, that’s kind of sickening. We have a rebuild-it center that lives on calls like that, to come in and get cabinets, fixtures, etc. before demo. That would be an interesting story tip for your newspaper, FYI. 😉

  3. It sounds like you like the Lush products. in the future, if your daughter does’t get to play with them first 😉 you can drop them off at a shipping place in town for reuse. I’ve done that at a lot of different shipping places, and they’ve always been really appreciative.

    • I hadn’t thought of that! Eric put the box downstairs “for when we send Abby a care package next year.” But really, there’s only so much of that you can store. Good tip!

      (And yes, I like the makeup more than I expected to, especially the foundation. I’m going to have to visit a real store in Portland one of these days.)

  4. Wait, YOUR PHARMACY WILL REFILL YOUR OLD PRESCRIPTION BOTTLE? Ours stopped doing that more than a decade ago, citing legal reasons. (I have no idea if this is an actual law or a cya kind of thing). Nonetheless, I’m jealous. I have a med that I have to refill monthly and basically be on for life, which is a lot of script bottles.

  5. Pingback: Wrapping it up part I | The Simple Year

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