Painfully Honest Green Goals Review 2009, aka, can't we just skip to the new goals??

Way back on January 21st 2009, I took a environmental awareness inventory of my lifestyle, and decided that my shade of green need considerable darkening. I set myself 5 goals that I wanted to attain but that seemed way too daunting (not to mention expensive) to do all at once, and broke those goals down into smaller chunks every couple months to tackle things little by little. And really, by and large it worked! My shade of green has darkened hugely over the past year. Let's take a look:

Green Goals, 2009 Edition

Go organic on the all the majors, as listed here by the Environmental Working Group. Hurrah, mission accomplished!! I personalized the Dirty Dozen to eliminate the fruits and vegetables that you would never find me eating anyhow (celery, nectarines, and pears) and bumped up 13th, 14th, and 15th ranked-worst to replace them. Buying these twelve items only when I can do so organically is pretty much second-nature to me now:

Sarah Eliza's Personalized Dirty Dozen
Bell peppers
Green Beans

Plan and execute a small kitchen garden Also successfully completed! My then-boyfriend-now-fiance and I kind of made up the whole gardening thing as we went along, and as a result all our squash and zucchini died tragic powdery-mold deaths. However we had much better results with our peppers, and learned a great deal that we're looking forward to putting to use again in a month or two.

Use only recycled paper products and natural cleaning products. This is almost true... I need half of a check-mark here. I still use my swiffer, and recently documented my fervent love for the Woolite Rug Stick... but all paper products coming through my door are 100% recycled (and we've drastically reduced our paper towel consumption as well), and I use only natural cleaning products for everything BUT the floor. If you're horrified at me, keep reading and I'll try to make amends!!

Consistently use alternative transportation and walk to destination whenever possible. Ok, when I lived two blocks from the shuttle-stop that took me to work, I really worked hard at this one and I did decently well. According to the Georgia Clean Air campaign site, I logged 112 alternative-commute trips, and saved myself 300 miles of vehicle travel. By doing so, I personally kept .15 tons of pollution out of the air. But then the Atlanta summer rolled around, and it was HOT... and then I moved three miles further away from work, and with the two things together I gave up the alternative transportation just due to the fact that I was going to end up arriving at work really late and disheveled each day. If I changed the word "possible" to "feasible" then I could give myself a check-mark for the efforts I made, but as it stands unfortunately not.

Always use canvas grocery bags, unless deliberately "restocking" plastic bags to use as wastebasket liners. This goal was a hard one for me since I'm notoriously forgetful, but I worked hard at it and made a lot of process. Also I recently indulged in an $8 investment in this goal that I think is going to pay off in spades... check it out! It's a great reusable tote from Origins that folds into a built-in pouch that clips onto your bag or belt with a handy little carabiner. As I bought it I vaguely worried that stuffing it into the pouch would be sort of like rolling a sleeping bag, only tiny, but its actually remarkably easy to get it back in there. Very fun and useful!

Now for new goals!

Darkening My Shade of Green, 2010 edition

1. Continue to buy only organic for my own personalized Dirty Dozen list. Get in the habit of buying locally when produce is in season via farmers markets, including trying to avoid imported goods at the International Farmers Market as well.

2. Plant a container garden and make it thrive. Sprout my plants from seeds rather than buying seedlings, and use the potato bins I purchased last year.

3. Buy reusable swiffer pads via Etsy, and consider buying floor-mats for high-traffic and spill-prone areas in my apartment to avoid using non-natural carpet cleaners. Buy reusable sandwich-bags to phase out ziplocs in that role, and switch to cloth napkins.

4. Limit driving whenever possible. Walk or carpool if the option is available, and get in the habit of mapping out my destinations PRIOR to leaving, so that I avoid backtracking and going the long-route out of distraction.

5. Always remember to bring reusable grocery bags. Buy another Origins bag for Andrew to have on hand, and eliminate using plastic bags to carry lunches.

6. Switch entirely to organic meat.

7. Blog to report my progress every two months. Accountability really helps!

8. Find a new use each month for something that otherwise would have been discarded.

*Whew* that all seems like a lot now again, but those are my goals for the year so I'll be tackling them gradually again -- I'll post with specific Jan/Feb goals in a day or two. Do you have any green goals for the new year, or something environmentally-friendly you've just been meaning to try? I'd love to hear about it! Keep me posted, and I'll do the same. Green is gorgeous my friends... save the world with me, one day at a time!

No comments

I love to connect with new friends online! Please share your thoughts with me! :)

Back to Top