The following is a guest post from momAgendaCOMM blogger Jill Krause.
Just because the lazy days of summer are upon us doesn’t mean it’s time to get lazy about striving for a more eco-friendly household. Come on, remember how committed you were back in April on Earth Day?
Here are 5 things you can do this summer to make your household a little more eco-friendly:
1. Upcycle, recycle, get crafty and creative:
The kids are bored, maybe it’s too hot to venture outside, and their creativity is parched and needs quenching. Before driving to the nearest craft store to buy new supplies, dig around the house and see what you can re-purpose or recycle. Have a junk drawer? If it’s anything like mine, it’s full of stuff I have no current use for but can’t bear to throw away. Go through it with the kids. Make it your mission to use half of its contents. Have a contest to see who can find new uses for the most things. Collect plastic butter tubs and yogurt cups, poke holes in them and use them for water play.
2. Eliminate paper towels:
I know, I know, summertime is messy. But you can clean up all those popsicle messes with rags, I promise. Not only will you save money throughout the year, but you’ll also be doing Mother Earth a solid by cutting back or eliminating paper towels in your house. We’ve been a paper towel free house for 3 years now, and it was so easy to make the change. Cut up old sheets or shirts into generous squares or buy inexpensive washcloths. Designate a drawer or basket to keep the clean ones in and a laundry bag or hamper to toss them in when they’re dirty. Wash them every few days. The best part? You don’t have to fold them!
3. Organize a toy swap:
Instead of buying new toys to keep the kids entertained this summer, think about hosting a toy swap party. Gather all the toys that get overlooked at your home and ask your guests to do the same. Then, simply swap! Let’s be honest, kid’s don’t care if toys are “new,” they just have to be new to them.
4. Commit to no more disposable bottles of water:
Get every member of the family their own stainless steel, reusable water bottle. If the water from your tap tastes funky, get an inexpensive water filter. Then fill your own bottles. This is such a simple switch that makes a really big difference.
5. Use a healthy sunscreen:
Just because your sunscreen claims to keep you and your family sunburn free doesn’t mean it’s something you want to use. Many sunscreens on the market are full of nasty, hazardous chemicals, and their packaging may be plastered with false or misleading claims. Check your brand with EWG’s Skin Deep database. The lower the rating, the less hazardous it is.
Now, go forth and have an eco-friendly summer!