- Unless we're headed on a trip, we rarely drive more than 50 miles a week - in fact, we're often right around 20 miles per week;
- We clean greener - more rags, mostly eco-safe products;
- Everything but our dryer is an EnergyStar appliance;
- We cook at home, eating out infrequently instead of daily and consuming lower on the food chain than before;
- We recycle diligently and have cut our weekly garbage output to around one kitchen-sized garbage bag;
- We carry cloth, reusable shopping bags everywhere;
- The paper products we do use are as green as possible.
There are a few other changes we've made:
- Our water use remains low - about 40 gallons per person, instead of the average of more than 70;
- Even in humid DC, we keep our AC set no lower than 78 degrees, and normally it's around 80. We make up the difference with ceiling fans;
- We're buying more of our shoes - one of those things that I find nearly impossible to get second-hand, especially for our toddler - from companies like Simple and Keen with sound eco-practices;
- We're just plain not buying much!
But I've also written about our Top Ten Eco-Sins. Maybe they're trivial in relation to our sweeping lifestyle changes. But every little bit helps, and so we're taking on the following challenges for the next few months:
- We'll be using cloth diapers combined with Seventh Generation disposables when baby Fiona arrives in October. Yes, yes, I know all about how it really isn't necessary to change out of cloth for a trip to the library, but I'm not feeling quite that brave - yet;
- We're going to start using a drying rack for at least some of our laundry;
- I'm going to continue to cut down on my use of disposable cleaning products, especially those pre-moistened wipes. I mean, do I really pay $2 for 40 little pieces of paper wet with chemicals? Am I crazy?
- We're continuing to spend more of our grocery budget at our local farmers' market.