Monday, March 25, 2013

Growing a greener life

I am amazed at how my life is changing and how easily Hubby goes along with it.  I've always wanted to do greener things.  Growing up I wanted to change the world.  In sixth grade I was first exposed to recycling when I took a recycling/planet/general healthy earth class, I wanted to do something to help the world.

In college I decided I was going to major in environmental geology and geoscience.  For various reasons (only one being me realizing that the degree wasn't what I was looking for), I left college.

This left me in a predicament.  How was I supposed to change the earth if I wasn't fixing it on a grand scale?  Recycling wasn't enough, everyone recycles.  I knew there was more I could do, I just had to find it.

Around this time I discovered cloth diapers, mama cloth, cloth wipes, and homemade/organic/or concentrated cleaning supplies.  Some have worked better for me than others, but they were all working towards the same cause.  Throughout this though, one (of many) that has continued to bother me is the disposal for food, food scraps, and other organic waste.  We've used the garbage disposal but I keep hearing about the negatives to the water treatment plants not to mention my pipes.  I cringed every time I threw something in the garbage can, those items that should decompose in days will last in landfills for years, sometimes decades.

This left me with one solution: composting.  I looked and decided doing a compost pile probably wasn't what I wanted to do, but a tumbling compost bin sounded perfect.  I was able to keep everything contained and turn it without the aid of a pitchfork.  A few spins every few days and it was good to go.  We're able to fill up our plastic collector container in 2-3 days; the recommended number of days you should leave the bin without spinning.

I was absolutely amazed at what I was able to put in my tumbler.  It wasn't just food scraps, paper products such as paper towels and egg cartons.  Odder things that I hadn't thought of such as pickles and alcohol, and very strange things like moldy soy "milk" and dryer lint.

We keep our container in the bottom drawer of the refrigerator.  At first I thought this sounded gross, keeping old, yucky food in the 'fridge.  Then I realized that I've had food go bad in there before, this was being stored for 2 days and in 2 days it wasn't going to go bad or get moldy.

Tumbling composters take far less time simply because they are in an enclosed black container.  I have little patience when it comes to some things and when I decide I'm going to do something like this, I want to do it now... and I expect it to work.  Now.

As I said, Hubby was a bit leery of getting it, especially in the middle of winter when the temperature is usually below 20 degrees.  I think I've turned him to the crunchy side enough that after watching the amount of food scraps go into the garbage that he finally decided that it was a good idea.  He still thought I was crazy and teased me about being excited BUT he was the one who rushed to put it together when it arrived in the mail.

I'm hoping the location works out.  It's right off the deck, next to our clothesline.  I knew I wouldn't want to go out all the time when there was a foot of snow out there if I had to walk across the yard.  I have a feeling it won't be easy to move if we don't like the location.

Only time will tell how our composting excursion goes, but for now, I'm looking forward to using it in our garden this summer.  (Our garden is a whole different issue!)


1 comment:

  1. Keep us posted on how it works out. I would like to set up a compost bin, too.