No Plastic- Where do you draw the line? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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Old 03-22-2006, 02:00 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lissybug
Anyone have ideas for a non-plastic wipes container? I make wipes solution, put in wipes and put them in an old Huggies plastic container right now.
What about a lidded soup tureen? I've seen that recommended by a lot of family-cloth users in the natural beauty area. You'd probably want to add more solution than usual to keep it moist since the container wouldn't be as sealed.
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Old 03-22-2006, 07:19 PM
 
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I wouldn't describe myself as a "no plastic" mama for sure. But I've definitely drawn the line at cheap plastic toys. At Christmas, I spent a little more on quality non-plastic toys that would stand the test of time instead of opting for lots of plastic junk. Also, I've nearly eliminated the use of baggies and sippy cups by replacing with products I've purchased at www.reusablebags.com. A fabulous site! And they have have lead-free lunch boxes!

Any plastic food containers are rinsed and placed in the recycle bin. Basically I am trying to reduce our material stuff and so that when we do purchase something, it's quality and useful and non-plastic!

Lisa mom to Gillian (7) : and three : :
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Old 03-22-2006, 08:13 PM
 
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I'm always trying to reduce our plastics load.

Currently, we have about 5% plastic toys. The remainder are wool, cotton, metal (Matchbox cars that have a bit of plastic), wooden and two stuffed (polyester) animals.

We have all glassware storage containers and pitchers. There is, I think, no plastic anywhere in our kitchen, except a sugar canister that I just haven't replaced. We soooo rarely use sugar that I never think to unload it. The rest of the kitchen is bamboo, wood, stainless, pyrex, glass, cast iron, etc. The storage containers have silicone lids.

Our bathroom has plastic bottles. That one's nearly impossible to avoid. Actually, there is a little bit of plastic in the kitchen, too, in the form of bottles. Though, I try to buy as much in glass or paper as possible. We basically buy NO cans, though, as cans are lined in Bisphenol A, which is extremely toxic.

Our curtains are all natural fibers, our blinds are metal, but our shower curtains are both some sort of unusual plastic, not the normal PVC variety. They aren't any safer, but they're nicer quality which means less replacement. I've had the polyester cloth curtain and it was nice enough, but mildewed in about a year. That cloth curtain also let super-tiny droplets of water through, but it wasn't enough to damage anything in the bathroom or cause trouble. I would try a canvas one next time.

I'm currently pricing a stable of cloth grocery and produce bags from www.reusablebags.com. How many bags would you get to shop for a family of three?

As Lisa writes, we are trying very hard to reduce our material things and get quality/durability when we do buy things.

SAHPilot Mama to a 5yoson, a 17 mo old daughter, and wife to .
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Old 03-23-2006, 12:13 PM
 
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Hey Jaclyn, I'm so glad you are checking out reusablebags.com!! I would definitely recommend the freezer bag that you can stash frozen foods in. I sometimes shop at a whole foods market in Cambridge, MA (about an hour from my NH home) and that bag keeps frozen foods from melting on the way home. I also stick my refrigerator stuff in with the frozen items. Anyway...I have a pile of canvas tote bags that I've collected over the years and found at yardsales, etc. A great option to purchasing new. But to answer your question, I think it depends on how often you shop as to how many bags you need. Think about how many paper bags you come with on average and reduce by a few since you can load up the canvas bags a bit heavier. You can always get more later if you need them.

Way to go!!

Lisa mom to Gillian (7) : and three : :
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Old 03-23-2006, 02:13 PM
 
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Good advice, Lisa.

I have one cloth bag right now, a giveaway when I talked to a hotel rep about using them frequently. I am always keeping my eyes open for things, but since I don't have the patience to sift through yard sales, my opportunities to find them are limited.

Ack....Jett's running off....gotta go. (I'm at work...sorry.)

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Old 03-24-2006, 04:40 AM
 
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NAK...

We try to minimize our plastic usage. They are a few areas that I feel are REALLY important:

Babies: no plastic or polyester. For toys, bedding, clothing. (Obviously some things such as bucking them into a plastic carseat are unavoidable)
But toys are really easy- there are lots of great wooden rattles, organic cotton or wool stuffies, etc. My baby does not need to be sucking on petrol. Diapers are especially important to me to be OC, & wool...you're putting it on their very sensitive parts...plastic IMHO is a bad thing to put there (and that includes fleece)

Children: no polyester (or poly-blend) clothing. ESPECIALLY pjs...they're in them for at least 8 hours out of every 24. This is the one item of clothing that I INSIST on being organic cotton. (we can't afford to do ALL OC with 6 kids...but we can buy a couple of pairs of PJs or nighties each...we like Hanna Andersson, Under The Nile & Ecobaby. )
Toys- the only plastic items are Lego & Playmobil- both European made with higher standards of acceptable toxic-plastic levels. The cheapest toys usually contain the highest dangerous levels. And as for used toys- a BIG no-no. Plastic breaks down over time & releases harmful fumes, particles, etc. into the environment.

Wherever possible I try to choose natural materials over plastic/polyester to minimize our exposure to carcinogens.

Mama of 2 boys, 5 girls.grouphug.gif

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Old 03-24-2006, 02:43 PM
 
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We've gotten a bunch of cloth bags from thrift stores - you know, those company freebies and the like. Sure, we are shopping with something that says "SPRINT" in our cart, but it was $.25

We tend to use about 3 on the average run to the natural food store, 10 for our bulk runs (intended to purchase baking supplies and nonperishables for at least a month).

I forget them on occassion and that is a good thing, because I use the plastic bags to line the trash in the bathroom and to pick up particularly nasty trash outside (and occassionally inside); the former tenant here was apparently, er, not shy about leaving trash laying around in the forest : and we find bottles, cans, pots, utensils, spare parts, construction supplies....yeah.

We have eliminated plastic wrap from our kitchen. We are working on the ziploc bags and the tupperware, but slowly because DH is quite attached to both of these items. It causes him no end of strife that I haven't bought gallon ziplocs. He felt that way about the plastic wrap for a while but has adjusted. We have a lot of plastic in our kitchen and I'm pretty comfortable with that but am trying to be mindful about how it is replaced when it needs replacing. For instance, our cooking utensils are getting ragged (spaghetti spoon is missing teeth, spatula cracked...) and I won't be getting plastic to replace them, KWIM? But we're way poor, we can't just run out and replace all our plastic with glass in one fell swoop.

The kids have plastic toys but we try to avoid the worst offenders. The baby has natural-stuffed plush and plenty of wooden stuff to play with. The bigger ones are tougher though, as they've gotten into the age of legos and action figures.

Mama, homeschooler, midwife. DD (13yo), DS (11yo), DD (8yo), DD (3yo), somebody new coming in November 2013.

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Old 03-26-2006, 02:32 PM
 
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We are making the transition to a non plastic household. My reasons are the same as many listed above.

We use wooden hangers for our clothes, I have a cloth and metal laundry hamper, DD's diapers go in a stainless steel garbage can as a diaper pail (although now that I think about it, it does have plastic on the inside) . We have metal or wooden shelves. I use wooden and fabric totes to store the children's toys in. In the kitchen I use glass to store my food and have metal or wooden utensils.

The places I still have plastic are:

Appliances - my breadmaker has plastic on the outside, the coffee maker is a mix of plastic and stainless steel, the computer keyboard and monitor is plastic, etc.

Totes in my storage building - I have Rubbermaid bins to hold the children's outgrown clothing (saving them for the next one).

Small parts on toys - For the most part the kids have wooden or fabric toys but there is some plastic on DS's Thomas the Trains and on his metal Matchbox cars.

I really don't know how to eliminate those. I'm not going to take DS's Thomas away from him so we are just going to have to live with it.

Mama to:Ben (12), Natalie (9), Zoe (5)
 
 
 
     

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Old 03-26-2006, 04:43 PM
 
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I kept plastic toys to a minimum when they were little and keep plastic out of the kitchen as much as possible (use pyrex for food storage or canning jars) but reuse some ziplocks.

However- the plastic toys- I have fallen off the wagon! I got them toy animals at the thrift store. Dd is into horses and so she has my pretty ponies I got cheap used. They play with these for hours and love them. We also have legos and building waffles.

What alternatives are there for toy animals and building? They have wooden blocks and use them to build fences and houses for the animals. They love legos also.

Being right is not always fair, but being fair is always right
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Old 03-26-2006, 05:10 PM
 
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For kitchen pans and such you may want to check out Pampered Chef's stoneware. I love that stuff and if you host a PC party you can get a lot for free, that's how I got my initial stash. They also have bamboo spatulas and spoons and such and bamboo is much better than wood because it is a renewable resource and it doesn't stain.

I am currently starting from scratch because we moved from the west coast of Canada to the east coast of the US and we are pretty broke. We only shipped 18 boxes and most of that was electronics (DH ), clothes, books and my Pampered Chef stuff. I am trying to not get anything plastic but it is so hard. The kitchen is definately no plastic and will continue to be no plastic.

Everything is made of petroleum and I hate it. I can't afford an all natural bed. That makes me mad. We weren't going to have a microwave but the person who lived in our place before us left theirs behind and DH wants to keep it - I am going to try really hard not to use it.

I am hoping that moving into a place with pretty much nothing will help to eliminate a bunch of stuff and give me time to find alternatives, I'm definately going to have to hit the thrift stores.

I wish I could build my own house or make a yurt and afford to use all safe products and have our own renewable energy source and water source and all that stuff. Be almost completely independent on ourselves for most of our resources and food.

Something to work towards I guess.
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Old 03-30-2006, 02:52 AM
 
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I haven't read the whole thread because now I'm all fired up to clear out some plastic crap from my house but I wanted to add that plastic CAN be made out of hemp which is one of the most sustainable, earth-friendly fiber crops known to man (Henry Ford made a hemp plastic car that ran on hemp fuel back in 1941).

http://www.chaozation.com/politics/hemp/FordHemp.htm (cool video clip of how durable the car was - it also weighed a lot less than cars do now...)

We would love to go all wooden in our kitchen (for dishes of course... cast iron for cooking would be great if we only had a ton of money...). Thrift stores are the best!

love and peace.

mama to two girls and due in November!
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