Eco Living Ideas

Lifestyle, Experts

Wow, I’ve been so busy catching up with everyone since arriving in Sydney on Friday, I’m feeling rather exhausted but content all the same. I had a little setback the day before we left when I realised that my son’s passport had expired! I can’t tell you the stress levels I experienced on Thursday while I was trying to find a solution on the phone to Immigration and the airline but thankfully they were so helpful and we managed to get to Australia to apply for another passport. It’s crazy and one of those things you think will never happen to you because it’s the obvious right, to check the passports when you plan to leave the country?

Now back to what I prepared before leaving. After interviewing Bea Johnson of Zero Waste, I’ve been doing a little research into products and equipment for a more ecological approach to living. I thought I’d share with you my picks, some of them I already use, the others are on my list:

1. While I would mostly take my own shopping bags to the supermarket, I have always used the small plastic bags provided for the fruit and vegetables so they’d keep longer in my fridge. I don’t need to do this now on discovering these Organic Cotton Muslin Produce Bags.

2. I’ve been looking into getting a compost for too long but between moving often and never having that place away from the home to house it because of vermin and smells, it’s something that I’ve just pushed aside for another day. Hungry Bin is a New Zealand made worm farm compost that addresses a lot of these issues. The bin isn’t required to sit on soil, is vermin proof, easy to move around and doesn’t smell.

3. My little boy recently made a beeswax sandwich wrap at school, which we use all the time and I’ve been meaning to make some more because I’m forever wrapping things to keep in the fridge with plastic film which isn’t great. A solution to this is the reusable Abeego Flats which bend and shape around food to keep them fresh.

4. While I usually take my own shopping bags the supermarket, I have been caught out many times when I’ve taken my husbands car (I keep them in the back of mine), or if I’m out and do a spontaneous shop somewhere. I feel terribly guilty to take the shopping home in plastic bags but then I think if I purchase more of the reusable ones which I don’t need – isn’t it just more landfill? It’s always handy to have a few extra shopping bags that can be kept in your handbag and I’ve always loved these traditional string bags in bright colours.

5. I’ve long been a fan of Le Parfait jars to store dry ingredients, it looks so beautiful in the cupboard or on kitchen shelves. If you read my interview you may recall that Bea actually avoids packaging and takes them with her to bulk warehouses and fills them direct with produce. I’d be interested to know if more and more places and brands will offer this service in the future, it makes absolute sense.

6. You can pretty much spot the Eco Store products all around my home, since using it on my arrival to New Zealand I’ve been fairly loyal to this brand. The next step for me would be to buy in bulk to save on packaging as explained on their site.

7. Oh the French market basket! One can never have too many of these and they look so good wherever you may leave them in the home… They’re sturdy, can hold a good load and you can throw them comfortably over your shoulder. I’d love to replace all of my reusable supermarket bags with these  and oh did I mention look they look good?

8. More than 100 million plastic water bottles are used in the world each year and the majority of them aren’t recycled after and go straight to landfill. There obviously needs to be some other options for purchasing water with our own containers while we’re out but until then it does pay to be organized and bring your own from home. With three kids I’ve tried my fair share of water bottles, and the quality of Sigg brand wins every time.

What eco products do you use in your every day life? Do you have any tips that you could share with everyone?

I’ll see you on Wednesday with my 5 Decorating Questions!

Mel x

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  1. Will @ Bright,bAZAAR

    Sorry to read of your son’s passport nightmares but pleased it was all sorted!

    I love to use Method products for cleaning and washing – they are totally eco and smell amazing, The packaging is fab, too! (What a bonus!)

    Reply »

    mel replied:

    Thanks Will! Yes love the packaging of Method. They have it in Australia but haven’t seen it in NZ come to think of it.

    Reply »

  2. Lena

    I’m glad to hear that you made it to Australia with the expired passport – I can imagine how stressed you were! The same thing happened to my husband once when we were on a bus from Austria to Bulgaria. We were then kicked out of the bus on the serbian/bulgarian border (well: he was, and I was so kind to join him) and had to hitchhike back to Belgrade to apply for a new passport at the embassy there. And the embassy was FULL of turkish/german families who were on their way to turkey with expired children’s passports. So I guess: yes, it’s the obvious that you check your passport, but very often it’s much too late when you do it!
    The list you put together is great, I’m using some if the products already, but others like the hungry bin or the abeego flats were completely new to me!

    Reply »

    mel replied:

    Oh what a nightmare Lena and being kicked off at the border! I know so many people that have done it and I always think it would never be me:) x

    Reply »

  3. Doreen@househoneys

    I think plastic bottles should be outlawed.

    I use some of the products you featured Mel, but I have to admit although I had a composter I never used it.

    Hope all is well! Your blog looks great!

    Reply »

    mel replied:

    Thanks Doreen! I agree that they should outlaw plastic drink bottles and offer filtered water taps – I’d be happy to pay for that to fill up a bottle.

    Reply »

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