Ever since I posted about the Story of Stuff, and the impact watching the movie had on me, I have been thinking about what kinds of goals I want to set for myself.  It has been very tempting to just list a myriad of lofty ideals…but I really wanted to be realistic in my goal-setting.  So, over the last few nights of 3am nursing sessions, rather than coming up with witty posts (which I inevitably forget by morning) I have been brainstorming.  Brainstorming for reasonably attainable goals that will have a positive impact on our planet without negatively impacting my family and our life.

In order to set goals, I figured I also needed to look at what I already do that is good for humankind and our planet.  The sad part was, although I think of myself as being fairly environmentally conscious, when I counted them up, the list was way shorter than I thought!  If I counted the things that I do some of the time, it’s a little better.  And although some is certainly better than nothing, The Story of Stuff makes it quite clear that we really need to do more.  This is what I have some up with so far:

  1. Try to purchase baby/kids clothes used.  Although the lure of adorable little boy outfits on the racks at Walmart and Superstore are calling my name…I am resolving to avoid them.   Not only will I be reusing, but I’ll also be saving money 🙂
  2. Switch to environmentally friendly, biodegradable cleaning and laundry products.  We already use natural laundry soap for our diapers, so switching the other products is an easy step;
  3. Purchase organic products whenever possible, preferably products made locally;
  4. Switch from kleenex and paper towels to handkerchiefs and dish towels;
  5. Choose to purchase animal food products that come from animals raised in humane conditions (i.e., free run poultry and eggs);
  6. Purchase fair trade, organic coffee;
  7. Use up my stash of scraps for scrapbooking before I purchase more patterned paper (this one is going to be painful, I’m telling ya, pain-ful!);
  8. Join a local Freecycle group (I already did this part!) so that I can offer things I no longer need to other people who can use them, and hopefully find items that I need that have already been previously loved;
  9. Generally (I know, I know, I’m supposed to be specific…but this one is tough for me) try to buy less “stuff’.  I think the best way for me to go about this is to avoid spontaneous purchases.  From now on, if I see something I want to buy that I wasn’t planning on purchasing, I am going to make a commitment to think about the purchase overnight.  I know that this will be a real challenge…but I think it will make a huge difference in terms of only bringing things into our home that I really need, since I tend to be an impulse buyer.

So that’s my list.  I think 10 is a nice round number to start with.  I would love to hear what other ideas any of you have, though.  I know that only some of them have to do with “stuff”, but I think overall making these changes will have an impact on our lives and on the planet.  I challenge each of you to look at my list, watch the video, and then come up with a list of your own.  Remember, make it specific and realistic – that way you’ll be more likely to stick to it!  And once you’ve come up with your list, be sure to let me know so I can check it out.  I also think that sharing our lists will help provide some accountability.

Happy List Making!