Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Little things

As the theme of my blog suggests, I am constantly striving to be a better steward of all my resources. I have a long way to go in the area of being more environmentally conscious, but I find that regularly taking small steps in the right direction is more motivating and effective than setting my sights unrealistically high.

Here are some of the little things I've done just this week in this area:

*Opted out of receiving a local phone book (Thanks to this site for the inspiration!)

*Used this quick and easy "salad spinning" method instead of buying or even desiring a gadget that would do the same job. (hat tip to Small Notebook)

*Took advantage of this discount offer to order some essential oils for making my own cleaners, which I've been experimenting with (my swap partner included a book in my shoebox that has been very inspirational--look for the link on Friday!)

*Picked up litter (Nathan loves helping by pointing out every scrap he sees!)

*Walked across town to deliver a bill, instead of driving the car. (This was a sacrifice as it was 86 degrees outside!)

It seems most appropriate to end this post with one of my favorite quotes, a gem from Mother Teresa: "Be faithful in the little things, for in them your strength lies."

What are some of the *little things* you've been doing lately?
And now for a little, but very off-topic question: a friend recently gave us bags of green beans that were frozen from last year's garden. I've tried both steaming and baking them, and they've turned out quite mushy. Any suggestions? I don't want to waste them, but we don't want to eat soggy beans, either! Thanks for your help.


Katie said...

This post reminded me of something our Pastor passed onto us ~ that if we are faithful in the little decisions of life, the big decisions won't be that big! Great job on all the steps you are taking that collectively (especially sharing about them here!) can have a large impact!

Also, I never thought of opting out of the phone book ~ what a wise idea! I don't really use it, and the old one goes straight into the recycling.

Some of the little things include sharing magazines, reusing tin cans for many things I'd usually buy, being intentional about making less laundry, making our own laundry soap and housing it in an old ice cream pail, opting out of paper newsletters/bills, and attempting to teach my little ones about shutting off the water and turning off lights.

Carrie said...

Oh my. Opting out of the local phone book would be AWESOME! I wonder if I can do that here. I should look into that. There is a serious lack of need of the local phone book now, thanks to the internet!

Mom said...

Thanks for the link for how to opt out of receiving phone books. I don't mind have one because we do occasionally use it, but receiving multiple copies is wasteful and unnecessary!

Our grocery store has a secure drop box for the utility company, so I try to remember to drop our utility payment there rather than using a 44-cent stamp to mail it.

We are trying to hang out at least a couple of loads a laundry each week now that the weather is nice, we've changed our newspaper subscription to be Sunday-only rather than daily, and I'm trying to take shorter showers (a sacrifice!).

This post reminds me of what Wanda Urbanska used to say on her simple living TV show -- "Nothing's too small to make a difference!"

Love you, Mom

Ginger said...

How about a green bean casserole?

I pay bills online when I can, use canvas bags for the grocery store, make one trip a week to the dump and then I recycle plastics and cardboard as well as any newspapers I may have.

Molly said...

Loved this post and the salad spinner tip is great...thanks! As for the green beans...I like to cut mine up very small and use them in stir fries with whatever assortment of veggies I have on hand. I throw in some chicken and serve it over rice. You don't have to cook them long and it might keep them from getting soggy, plus if they are cut small enough and with the other veggies, even if they are soggy it might not be so noticeable.

Katie @ said...

Those little steps all add up, don't they?! So glad you like our lack of salad spinner, too.