A Plastic-free Life

PPF: No Impact ‘R’ Us
May 31, 2010, 10:09 AM
Filed under: Shocking!*#!, Triumph over Plastic

We watched the movie ‘No Impact Man’ last night (http://noimpactman.typepad.com/; We got our copy from the Seattle Library.)

I was a bit nervous about watching it – fearing Vinnie would be inspired to embark on an even more extreme deprivation lifestyle but to my amazement, we were pretty much already there!

With the exception of the no electricity and no car parts – we are already doing the organic, local food, farmer’s market thing; the worm bin, compost, grow-a-garden part; and last summer when our washer broke down and we awaited the new one, we even enlisted our granddaughters to help us wash clothes by stomping them in large buckets in the backyard. (The truth is – it was a hot day, and much more fun to slosh around in wet laundry outside than sit and watch dryers spin at the local Laundromat, inside!)

I wouldn’t mind trying a few evenings by candlelight, though. When our kids were younger, we would occasionally eat dinner by the light of an old kerosene lantern  – just for fun.


PPF: Another Response!
May 30, 2010, 10:08 AM
Filed under: TAKE ACTION, Trumped by Plastic

I heard back from someone! Here is the email response to my letter to Golden Glen Creamery (aka Jensen Family Dairy and Creamery, LLC) suggesting non-plastic tops for their glass milk bottles.

Brandy Jensen brandy@goldenglencreamery.com

May 11, 2010

Roslyn –

Thank you for your letter that you sent to Char regarding plastic caps.  We have, in fact, looked in to foil and wax caps because of our concern for plastic, but found that they are outdated and no longer meet food safety requirements, so they are not an option for us at this time.

We will keep your letter and suggestions on file, and if we come up with a satisfactory resolution for this problem, we will let you know.


Brandy K. Jensen

Managing Member

Jensen Family Dairy & Creamery, LLC

d.b.a. Golden Glen Creamery

15098 Field Road Bow, WA 98232

(360) 766-6455 (office)

(360) 661-3490 (cell)

Dear Brandy and Char,

Thank you for your response.

The issue of plastic pollution is so important that I hope you will continue to explore non-plastic options for your bottles. I am confident that safe alternatives can be found once we all see this as important enough issue and continue to innovate and seek solutions.

Every step toward a sustainable future requires brave pioneers. Please know that your courage and efforts will be supported and are appreciated.

Thank You,

Roslyn Duffy

PPF: Morning Meltdown
May 28, 2010, 9:55 AM
Filed under: Shocking!*#!, TAKE ACTION, Trumped by Plastic

THERE IS TOO MUCH C R*!%#P in my kitchen!!! !!! !!! This morning I went a little (a sort of lot) nuts!

There are drying plastic bags hanging from the kitchen curtain rod above the sink; more bags are draped over the blender and Cuisenart (sp?) on the countertop; and another pile awaits filing away into the organizer bins they sit atop.

Colored Plastic Bags

Pile 'O Bags

To the right of the sink is a black tub of food scraps for the worm bin; an empty plastic yogurt container filled with clean eggshells awaiting crushing and transport to the garden; and a third plastic container of ‘yard waste’ such as paper towels, butter wrappers or non-compostable food scraps – like bits of cheese. Oh yes, and on top of that container are pieces of bread to feed to the crows and a cantaloupe rind destined for Jeffrey, the turtle’s, dining pleasure.

All I wanted to do was make cherry muffins for breakfast – but there is no place to even set down a bowl. My oh-so-sensitive and perceptive spouse sensed my less-than-cheery mood and said, ‘Maybe I should stop my morning stretches and take some of that outside.’


window with plastic bags drying on rod

Kitchen Window Drying Rack

Bags on top of storage bins

To Be Filed Bags

No matter how committed I want to be to living an earth-friendly, sustainable and largely plastic-free life – sometimes I just wish I had a nice, pristine 1950’s kitchen, all shiny and tricked out in lovely appliances without a single shred of rewashed, drying and meant-to-be reused Saran Wrap in sight.

Even without bringing in new ‘stuff’ we are being overrun with  ‘STUFF’! The commitment to reusing instead of tossing or recycling means there is a never-ending stream of new items to process and store – until we get around to reusing them.

So, just for the record, to those of you who say it is too hard to recycle and reuse and generally reduce the plastic in your lives – you are absolutely right. It is hard – but most of the time – not ‘too’ hard. Although, there are definitely meltdown days! I’ll get over it. Just had to vent.

Oh yes, I forgot to mention the lineup of former pickle jars, empty yogurt and deli containers, and plastic or glass bottles – all washed and awaiting transport to the already overflowing re-usable container storage cabinet. ARGH!

Cupboard of reusable jars

Got Jars?

PPF: The Unexamined Life
May 27, 2010, 9:53 AM
Filed under: Shocking!*#!

Tempus fugit! There is much to be said about the discipline of blogging. Not only does a daily Blog entry keep up the writing chops, it also provides a daily dose of contemplation.

What have we just done in our lives and why?

Now that the daily living experiences of our plastic-free-life are past, it gets harder to sit down and write or to follow through on plans. But I have been thinking about it!

This, and the posts that follow have all been incubating to some degree, over the last weeks. So, stay tuned and – read on.

PPF: A response!
May 5, 2010, 9:23 AM
Filed under: TAKE ACTION, Uncategorized

I got a response to one of my letters. I had written to Central Market thanking them for packaging my tortillas in the recycled bags I supplied (I wrote a second time to an actual person) and for not using a band of plastic to seal their store brand honey. Here is their response:


I wanted to thank you for your letters. I shared your story about the tortillas with the bakery department and commended them on meeting your request to bag them in your own bag. I was so happy to hear the story. I shared part of your letter at our quarterly department meeting as the topic on the table was sustainability and living up to our Core Value of Environmental Stewardship.

Thank you so much for the feedback.

Joel Larway

Store Director

Shoreline Central Market

Joel Larway <jlarway@tc-markets.com>

Hooray! Let’s hope this plants some seeds and reverberates.

I also sent the blog info to Danny Westneat (dwestneat@seattletimes.com) (206-464-2086) telling him about our experience and this blog plasticfreelife.wordpress.com). If you want to recommend he look into what we have done / are doing, feel free to email or call him, too.