Sustainability Pledge to 2019

Its another year here (that sounds so cliche, I cringed). but it means another sustainability pledge!!! I talked in the post “Letting Go and Welcoming In” how difficult the last three years were for us, but even then we kept creating plans - we just REALLY stunk in 2018.

Oh well, its a journey and we just pick right back up.

So without further ado:

Sustainability Pledge to 2019

Moving into our 4th year of these pledges, we have noticed that the list was not also providing real life practices to support the goals. This year, the pledge also includes the steps we can take to make these a reality.

In 2020, we would like to see a large amount of reduced financial spending (inspired by No Spend Month/Year and Buy Nothing Groups) so 2019 will have an additional focus of really creating a sustainable home where buying things all the time isn’t as needed.

For 2019 our pledge for continuing on our journey to live a more sustainable, environmentally conscious, and financial responsible life includes:

Handmade gifts for Yule and birthdays

1) Gifts should be of natural materials and/or promote a sustainable lifestyle

Yarn will be 100% wool (not superwash) and preferably from a small shepherd and/or fiber shop

Projects that take longer will be started first to allow for plenty of time and the spacing out of purchases

Shop second hand first

1) If not available at local thrift shops, Bookoo, or Craigslist; check eBay or other second hand online retailers

2) No settling, items must still be natural materials and follow our belief guidelines

More local and seasonal foods

1) Leesville Farmers Market

2) Local Farms

Rabbit Ranch

Revolutionary Meat Co

From the Ground LLC

Inglewood CSA (small variety though - check for buying larger amounts)

Grow as much as we can

1) Purchase greenhouse

2) Build raised beds

3) Fix compost area (use old pallets)

Forage!!!!

Continue learning food preservation techniques to stock local and seasonal foods for year round.

Follow the 5 R’s

1) Refuse

Think about if this is something we really need and if it fits into our sustainable, ethical lifestyle

2) Reduce

Reduce packaging - buy bulk

Conserve electricity and water

Line drying clothes

More efficient climate control in house - sweaters and socks instead of heat etc

Share showers and baths, when possible

3) Reuse

Repair/mend

Utilize scrap materials first

Second hand

4) Rot

Compost

Buy compostable packaging

Use shredded paper from Oaken’s work to help balance compost as needed

5) Recycle

#1 & #2 plastics only if plastic needs to be purchased

Glass to Alexandria every other month *create space in the garage

Cans - find alternatives!

Cardboard/paper is used in fire building or compost

Quit single serve beverage in plastic/can

Suck it up

Cook from scratch more

1) Meal plan

2) Bulk cooking days

3) Cooking over fire days

4) Don’t make packaged convenience foods available

PURCHASING GUIDELINES

  • Cleaning products will be 100% biodegradable - in reusable or recyclable packaging

  • NO PALM OIL

  • Clothes should be natural fibers, organic if buying new

  • Small businesses with ethical practices get our business first

  • Walmart and Amazon get our business last

  • Don’t forget refuse, reduce, and reuse before purchasing

SKILLS TO LEARN OR IMPROVE

  • Dyeing with plants

  • Field dressing (hunting)

  • Food preservation

  • Cooking over fire

  • Mushroom identification

A big reminder to myself (and others) that its all a journey and that our pledge is designed for our family where we are at on our journey - and pushes us where we struggle. Some challenges are unique to our area - which can change with a move. Some challenges come into our pledge because of our belief system.

As long as we are moving towards a more sustainable, ethical, zero waste, and plastic free life - we are moving in the right direction. I’m not going to get into all the politics of “the movement” here. My walk is my talk.

If you are interested in creating a pledge and wanting some accountability - I started a FB group designed just for that! Sustainability Pledge 2019 Accountability Group