Going Brown

Our household wasn't one of the first to jump on the environmental bandwagon. Plastic bags continued to bring the groceries into the kitchen. Incandescent bulbs illuminated the night. Cars made the trips to the grocery store for a forgotten ingredient. Until the economy changed all that.

Grocery stores began offering discounts for every reusable bag used to carry your purchases home. CFLs used less electricity, thereby reducing the monthly power bill. And gas prices soared to new heights making walking to the store or doing without the better options. Until living the Green life changed all that.

Fact Number One: I'm cheap! I was using the plastic and paper-inside-plastic bags as trash bags around the house. Since the kids are responsible for taking out the trash, complaints were rampant when there were no liners to carry out to the big garbage can. It also meant that the person in charge of the monthly cleaning of the interior trash cans (moi) had a harder time getting them clean. And I wasn't about to spend money on trash bags when I could reuse the ones from the grocery store for free.

Fact Number Two: I like bright rooms. Even with second generation CFLs, the quality of the light they give off is far too far behind my adored incandescent bulbs. Even though I spent beaucoup money to switch out all the bulbs in the living room, I hated the way they took so long to warm up. And the light they gave off was too harsh for actual living in the living room. The usurper bulbs have now been replaced.

Fact Number Three: It's not that I'm lazy, just feeling the effects of age. Gas prices went back down. Okay, okay, they're up again from a few months ago. But overall, they're down from last summer. We didn't fork over the money for a Prius. But we did give our very old station wagon to the Salvation Army in favor of a very non-Mom car with better gas mileage. Now driving to the grocery store for a forgotten ingredient or even to Starbucks just because is a treat. Not because I'm no longer in an older model gas-guzzling station wagon, but because I have two teenagers who beg to drive me anywhere to get the experience under their belts.

But we're not all Brown again. The computers and chargers still get unplugged when not in use. Curtains and windows are used to control the room temperature as much as the thermostat. And my husband still rides his motorcycle to work (over 60 mpg city!). Like today, the annual Ride to Work Day.


  1. Sometimes I remember to take my handy-dandy canvas tote to the car when I go to the store. Unfortunately, I can't seem to remember to actually take it into the damn store. I'm halfway there, though! Old dogs...

  2. Hi! Remember me?? Still kickin' but it's been awhile. Bab on my part.... Hope you're doing well and stay Green when you can.

    Take care and be well,