Weirdly, we haven’t blogged a lot lately about buying nothing new. It’s funny how starting out this project we had so many concerns about challenges that might arise. None of those things we worried about have been an issue so far. The things that trip us up tend to be smaller things, the day-to-day. We have conversations often that go a little like this:
Mama: “We need to start brushing Little Fearse’s tooth soon.”
BP: “But we don’t have a tooth brush for her.”
Mama: “Are we allowed to buy one?”
BP: “I don’t know, are we allowed to buy one?”
I mean, ultimately, of course we’ll buy Little Fearse a toothbrush if we need to. But finding a common solution to simple issues is a regular conversation starter in our household now. I think this is a really good thing. We purchase things only when there isn’t an alternative solution. For instance, some people use a bit of baking soda on a face washer to clean their babies teeth. This is probably a good option for us and something we would not have researched if we weren’t trying to be more aware consumers.
Other minor issues that we have had to discuss include purchasing:
- dish washing brushes
- plastic wrap
- baking paper
- smoke alarm batteries
- tampons and pads.
We intentionally didn’t add a ‘consumables’ clause to what we’re allowed to purchase, because we believe that we don’t need to use all the consumables we buy. We avoid using plastic wrap and in most circumstances can use a lidded container instead. We have decided that we won’t purchase any more of this when we’re finished the current roll.
Make Do and Mend Year‘s recent silicon baking sheet disaster made me realise that with a bit of forethought we could have dealt with the baking paper issue. We may have a little hunt for one of these second hand before we run out of baking paper, as I use this quite a bit.
We will not replace our dish washing brush, instead we’ll use a coth as others do. We have reusable / machine washable cloths and (due to a well meaning house guest) an abundance of disposable sponges.
We will definitely be replacing the smoke alarm batteries. No ifs or buts.
Tampons and pads is something that BP wisely has no opinion on. Many people have asked me about this and although I am aware of the many alternatives I’m not ready to start exploring them yet. I’d love to hear from people who have looked at other less disposable options.
Buying Nothing New, or becoming a more aware consumer, isn’t just about the big purchases or the major items that cause large and obvious impacts on our environment. It’s about all those little day-to-day things that we often don’t think about. It’s those things that are filling up our rubbish bins and toppling into our landfill more than anything else.