In my last blog post a few weeks ago you may recall I had a little rant about how many townsfolk where I live have been complaining about their general rubbish bins being too small. Most households in this predicament have one or two kids in disposable nappies. Judging by the large amount of dirty nappies decorating our footpaths (thanks crows!), it’s obvious just why their general waste bins are bulging to capacity just a couple of days after being emptied.

I expressed that I was a little … okay, maybe a bit more than a little, frustrated with this situation; parents in our town have the opportunity to pick up a Cloth Nappy Trial Pack at $100 less than rrp thanks to an initiative between my eco-parenting biz Sustainababy and our local Council.

Anyway, I asked you if you had any ideas on how I could influence more people to either (1) take up the generous cloth nappy trial pack offer or (2) care about the volume of waste they’re producing.

Well, I was inundated with replies.

Mostly from cloth nappy users but also from parents who had tried cloth nappies or were having trouble adjusting to them. I also had a few people remind me to go easy on mums as they have enough on their plate already.

I know only too well how much mums have on their plate. I struggled through the first 18 months after my second son was born and have actually shared my story over on Pinky McKay’s blog. It included a message for mums to back off on their eco mother guilt and cut themselves some slack in hard times like I experienced.

But, I also recognise that women, and especially mums, have the MOST power in making positive change to our planet. We’re raising the next generation after all!

And so, I thought I’d share my top five tips on how you can reduce household waste without using cloth nappies full time (just in case you haven’t yet been convinced of their magical powers)………

My Five Top Tips to Reduce Household Waste

  1. Waste Not, Want Not – Food waste is actually the largest component of waste in a typical Australian household, making up around 40% of the waste stream. By planning your meals, shopping to plan and composting or giving your scraps to chickens or a worm farm, you’ll keep a heap of food out of your bin.
  2. Smarten up your Shopping – Obviously it takes a mindset shift to look at every single-use item you use in your home and ask if there’s a better reusable alternative but it’s a mindset that will save you heaps of money and reduce household waste considerably. From using reusable drink bottles to replacing your snap lock bag habit with reusable food pouches, this mindset is fundamental to becoming an eco-goddess.
  3. Aspire for your WHOLE diet to be wholefoods – I appreciate that packaged, processed foods are convenient, but they’re also costly, nutritionally poor and produce sooo much waste in packaging alone! So, bit by bit, try and replace one processed food on your shopping list each week with a “real food”.
  4. Go for QUALITY over quantity – When it comes to purchasing most items including toys, clothing, appliances etc. buy the best quality you can afford. Of course this will mean you buy less stuff, and this less stuff won’t break down as much as the large amount of cheaper stuff, resulting in less rubbish (and less crap in your house to try and keep tidy!).
  5. Say NO to freebies – I know freebies make us feel fabulous (for a split second anyway), but no household needs fifty thousand pens, stubby coolers, magnets or a bathroom cabinet brimming with mini hotel shampoos and conditioners. For extra brownie points, see how long you can go without falling for a “gift with purchase” advertising campaign…..

Okay, so there you have it peeps!

Now there’s NO excuses for your bin to be overflowing, ever, ever again

its not gone when its gone