I'd like to start by saying that these are just a few of the many things we can do to help out the environment. We are not obsessive about pollution, global warning, and other environmental issues. However, we do believe that since God has given us the privilege of living on this earth, we should be good stewards of the blessings given to us.
The first, and probably simplest, thing we do is reduce our consumption of "one-and-done" type items (such as plastic bags). We purchased the black bags in the photo below at Wal-mart for about $1 apiece, and use them for all of our shopping.
If you don't care for bags that say "Wal-mart" on them, there are much cuter bags you can buy that serve the same purpose :-). We keep three of the bags in each of our vehicles so we always have them when we need them. This same concept can be applied to many, many other things (such as water bottles and dishes). We also try to not buy individually packaged things when it's possible to buy items packaged more in bulk (less packaging equals less waste).
Now, because we live pretty much like typical Americans, we do generate waste. Of that waste, we try to recycle everything that is recyclable. We, unfortunately, do not live in a community that makes recycling very easy, so we have this set-up in our garage:
The top two flatter bins are for slick paper (mostly junk mail and a few magazines we get in the mail) and newspaper/phone books. On the middle shelf, we have our cardboards bin (red lid), and our office/regular paper bin. The shelf below that holds the metals bin (this holds mostly soup cans, although in this photo you can see a diet DP aluminum can) and the plastics bin.
Once the bins get full, we load them in the car and take them here:This is our local recycling center. We take our bins and dump them in the appropriate "window". We have to do this about once every three weeks.
Recycling can be a hassle at times, but we feel that it is worth it. Because we try to keep our waste to a minimum and we recycle, we only generate about one bag of trash a week. It ain't easy bein' green, but once we made it our way of life, we hardly notice the hassle anymore.
Stay tuned for my next green post on mulching!