Sunday, November 15, 2009

No Impact Experiment: Consumption

Today's challenge was to think about doing more with less and about buying less stuff.  The less buying part was, thankfully, not that hard -- we actually do quite well in that department.  The vast majority of our purchases each week are for food.  And, because I've got my mind set on trying my hand at making kimchi, cabbage and ginger are on my must-have grocery item list right now.  (If you have a recipe to recommend, please share it in the comments!) 

I must confess that I do have my eye out for new-to-me pants (I've worn through the knees of the ones I have, and while I've patched them, the pants are really only in wear-for-gardening condition), and for shoes to replace the ones whose soles have unrepairable holes.  On rainy days, I appreciate having dry toes.

We spent a good part of today's (warm and sunny, and did I mention warm?) afternoon gathering leaves, adding them to the compost piles, and moistening them with the water I drained from the rain barrels to prepare them for the winter.  The delicious compost we'll have by this time next year will eliminate my need to buy any compost.  So, +1 in the no-consumption column!

However, I've got a -1 in fuel consumption for today, and on most Sundays.  Even though we have a church within walking distance -- and we do walk to it when we go there -- we drive about 40 miles round-trip to attend a different one.  This is one of those trade-off situations: how do we decide between the value we get from participating in the farther-away congregation and the environmental and financial cost of the travel there and back?  At least for now, we have chosen in favor of the congregation.

On tap for tomorrow: trash!

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