Hand washer / wringer
If there were a patch for weaning us from our addiction to oil, endless consumption and energy use, then we’d be first in line. However, in the event that scientists and doctors don’t come up with it (grin), our family has to take it upon itself to quit the addiction. We have the choice of “quitting cold turkey” or slowly weaning ourselves with certain steps. And we choose: weaning ourselves with a “one step plan.”
A friend told me on the phone the other day that we’ve never gone to see her (she lives 45min away in Long Beach). And before I could give her an excuse or comeback to her question, she said “you couldn’t be PTF if you did.” Rather perceptive observation. She recognized that for our family it’s about the choices that are made. Our choice was that even though we have a car than runs on an alternative “green” fuel, we still choose to ride less. Sometimes it’s not a matter of what you do but what you choose not to do. I have heard people proudly say that now that their cars runs on vegetable oil/biodiesel they don’t mind driving more than they use to. Really? Does “being green” give us the “green light” to be lackadaisical? This logic is persuasive and it’s a fight not to fall into this way of thinking (we have fallen many a times). Sure, it’s tempting to drive more because you can truly justify that reasoning process since the car now runs on an alternative fuel, but is that the right thing to do? Which is worse – a person who has a gas guzzling car who rarely drives, say, less than 5,000 miles a year or a person who has a hybrid who drives 100,000 miles a year?
In the next few months/year we hope to implement planned programs of “ONE-LESS,” “POWER-DOWN DAY” and take part in the already coined “100 MILE DIET” (started by Bay Area Locavores as they challenged people from all over the world to eat within a 100 mile radius of their home).
We like to challenge ourselves even more this year to action and change. Sure, we are already doing some of these actions/non-actions already, but how much more can we do.?
What do we mean by “one-less”? One-less meal cooked on a gas stove, one-less hour(s) spent on the computer, one-less trip with the car, one-less food product or item purchased out of state and so on.
Our goal is to work up to “Power Down Day” as it goes hand in hand with our “One-Less” program which is one whole day without using any plug or hook up that includes: lights, gas stove, tv, washing machine, computer (don’t have much else) sans the refrigerator that will have to stay plugged in (for now!) and that includes the phone since we are in business).
The bike blender attachment arrived in the mail so that’s another new “wip” project that we are excited about. Also, we are awaiting our order fromMountain Rose Herbs that will include ingredients so we will be able to make our own herbal toothpaste and deodorant. Another skill tackled, one less thing bought at the store.
In a few months we’ll be running out of homemade soap, so I want to have all ingredients on hand to make a few more batches of soap when the time comes..
A few skills that I’d like to revisit this year is making yogurt (again), making my own baking/soup mixes, sprouting (more), drying (more), canning (more).
PTF’s Zero Waste Pledge
We, at Path to Freedom, endeavor to make our each of our events as “eco- friendly” as possible with solar (or other “alternative green”) electricity, oil/biodiesel lamps, candles and a “low or zero waste policy” by providing reusable plates, cups, and utensils to ensure there is no unnecessary waste.
All other waste (i.e., plastic wrappers, glass bottles, food containers, etc) and food scraps are recycled, reused, composted or fed to our pet chickens and ducks. Read more about holding a zero waste event
Your ecological footprint is the amount of land it takes to support your lifestyle. We (PTF) compiled a few handyselection of calculators to determine the size and impact of your footprint.
Killing Our Planet?
The mock vehicle violation notice you candownload (pdf format, 372kb).
Eat Local Score Card
Even though the challenge was issued in summer of 2005 by folks in Portland Oregon, the scorecard & pledgecard are very useful.