Get off your arse Thursday – week 3

Filed in Blog by on March 26, 2009 16 Comments
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get off your arse thursdayWelcome to one of my favourite parts of the week! We open our doors to you at Chez green and invite you to step inside the tunnel of procrastination with us. Any ‘pending’ jobs you have which could help you reduce your rubbish sent to landfill is going to have the spotlight shone upon it today.

I don’t care how big or small your pending list is, today is the day to pick just one job that you could achieve. It might be to change a shopping purchase to something with less packaging, ditch a landfill sin, recycle one more thing, figure out a system to help you remember your reusable shopping bags, make a zero waste card or gift for someone or start a compost heap – the possibilities are endless.

Last week Mrs J planned to start some seed sowing in the plastic trays she had been collecting but alas was called from the garden to nurse her poorly children. Carole policed her school’s paper recycling bins and was finishing out offenders such as cardboard and orange peel from them! Sarah was busy rummaging through her shed for her paper potter while John was doing a spot of sunbathing digging the garden.

Maisie was busy sorting out her boys clothes and donating them to various resources while Sandy was digging the garden and making some tasty sounding zero waste soup. Over in the East, Mrs A was delivering her recycling to her local bring bank. Across the pond, Jen was sowing her first tomato seeds!

To top it all off, Poppy bought glad tidings when she announced that her local council will be collecting ‘light kitchen cardboard’ at the kerbside from next month. Yay!wooden hangers to reduce landfill waste

The award for bestest in the class for last week goes to Maisie. Sorting through wardrobes of outworn clothes is an arduous task that I regularly procrastinate over and brings me out in a cold sweat – well done Maisie!

Your zero waste prize this week is a set of wooden hangers which should last a lifetime and will help your wardrobes to remain forever organised.

Who’s up for the Get off your Arse challenge today? I’ll be packing up the black plastic PET containers I’ve been saving for eons and posting them off to GHS. What will you be doing?

About the Author ()

I am a long time supporter of the Green and Sustainable lifestyle. After being caught in the Boscastle floods in 2004, our family begun a journey to respect and promote the importance of Earth's fragile ecosystem, that focussed on reducing waste. Inspired by the beauty and resourcefulness of this wonderful planet, I have published numerous magazine articles on green issues and the author of four books.

Comments (16)

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  1. MrsJ says:

    We did lots yesterday. Not all “zero waste” but environmentally helpful as it were. I finally ditched my caged eggs (hangs head in shame) as I discovered some happy eggs at morrisons for only Β£1 half dozen. I finally bought lots of ecocover products (again hangs head for taking so long) and we got 5 more energy efficient bulbs. Checked we had enough candles for Earth hour on Saturday, and ordered the schools resource pack for it. Made some cakes for the kids and even attempted to ice them to stop them getting bored of the same old cakes. Visited my local freecycle site, helped someone with a breastfeeding query. Today we have breastfeeding support group where I’m a peer supporter. Shall have a look what else I can do.

  2. Compostwoman says:

    Hello Mrs G! I always find Thursdays are a productive day !

    Today I aranged to get another compost bin from a fellow Freecycler.

    I have sorted out what seeds I will plant from tomorrow on a waxing moon

    I have loaded up the car with recycling so when I go to get the compost bin tomorrow, I can drop off the recycling on the way.

    What else? Hmm… I have sorted out the Master Composters attending our Bishops Wood ( nr Stourport)Recycle and Composting event on Sunday 29th March, and sorted out who is doing what and when…and made sure I have requested the stuff we need to do our stalls from Worcestershire County Council ( who are there with the recycling bus and stuff) and that there is cover so people can get a break.

    I am about to go and empty out 6 compost bins and use the compost to fill some new raised beds and then I can put more stuff in to the empties from the other 6 compost bins, so I can get at the finished compost underneath….

    Will that do for now ? πŸ˜‰

  3. Dormouse says:

    Walked the dog and as usual found a plastic bag to fill with plastic bottles, cans and glass bottles that “decorate” the path edges. Five minutes to pop them in the suitable recycling receptacles at home (including the plastic bag!). There’s a few of us that have started doing this and it’s made a difference, as I only found 5 items today whereas a few weeks ago I could fill the bag in the first 100 yards. I could tell you what beers are on special offer though!!

  4. Poppy says:

    I have tried to keep on top of things this week and tackled many CBA items, but there is one biggy that I would appreciate some advice on. The wallpaper in my living room really needs to come off!!! The problem is – what do I do with it? Having done so well with keeping the contents of my bin down, the thought of filling it with old wallpaper turns me cold. Any ideas?

  5. Carole Blake says:

    @Poppy: Hi Poppy, I had this problem too, although it was just a long frieze type strip along the top of my lounge wall. I’m afraid the backing was full of paste, so I didn’t think I could put it into the recycling, I mentioned it to John, and he agreed it was a difficult one.

    In the end I binned it. I’m not sure how hamsters/rats/mice/rabbits etc, if you have them, would cope with it shredded up for bed linings? Probably the paste wouldn’t do them any good. If it came off in large strips, maybe school text book covers? Or papier mache for modelling?

    Carole

  6. Carole Blake says:

    @Poppy: Or, if you have, or know someone with a coal/open fire, maybe twist up as lightings? Grasping at straws now I think.

    Carole

  7. Deb from Boston says:

    Since today is curbside trash and recycling day in my neighborhood, last night I finally got around to collecting & flattening all of the cardboard food boxes in my basement/ pantry, and sorted through a few weeks of mail (recycling envelopes, filing, etc)

  8. Carole Blake says:

    Hi Mrs G,

    Absolutely exhausted tonight, and think I might have to wait till next Thursday to “get off my arse”.

    Here’s a run down:

    Dropped youngest son off to school, reminded him I’d pick him up again at 11 to take him to flute exam.

    Got to work, taking over school secretary role again for an hour as she has been on a two day admin course. Went to class and supervised/supported classful children making powerpoint presentations on points of grammar! Picked up son from school and took him several miles away to grade 6 flute exam where he was told he could ring back for results to his music teacher this evening (after dark as she had to see to her horses!!).

    Got back to school in time to grab some lunch, catch up with some ICT technician admin,(50% of my school role as well as being a teaching assistant), then back to Wadebridge to take a swimming group of 16 at the local pool.

    Home to try to get the remaining two window catches fitted (been decorating my lounge evenings for the last month!!) so that I could fill the old catch’s screw holes with filler (takes 6 hours to dry!), then tomorrow evening I can get the new coat of stain/varnish on. Managed to fit one only as trying to screw into a hard wood window frame and it is a ******** and I’ve got a big blister on my hand now.

    Ran to shop to get some readymade pizzas ( I know, I know, lots of packaging including plastic) but had to go quick as had to take youngest son back to music location again for brass band practice!! for 7.30 start.

    Youngest son phoned music teacher just before going in to play his trombone, and was told he’d got a “merit” and a pass mark of 81% which he was WELL pleased with as he said he fluffed part of it because he was shaking so much with nerves, poor soul.

    Got back home at 10pm to fit very last window catch, (got son to help), tidy up tools etc, and collapse into bed just aafter 11.30, from where I am typing this.

    I have saved all the old metal catches to put at the local recycling site, and the screws etc.

    Carole!!!!!

  9. greenlady says:

    I didn’t have quite such a busy Thursday recycling and zerowasting wise as some as was away at a work meeting most of the day, but did get home in time ( when my arse was absolutely dying to sit down and not be got off of ! ) to go to the local health food store and refill my Ecover bottles – detergent, fabric conditioner etc. To my mind if this was a more widespread practise, not just for Ecover but for many other products, it would save huge amounts of waste. Just think how many years your average plastic bottle/container has got in it – I’ve been using the same fabric conditioner bottle for four years now !

    I think it’s a case of a) would be more people be bothered to go and get refills b) would more shops take part c) would the companies producting cleaning goods etc be willing to support this.

    all in all I think there’s probably a good case for returning in some way to the old fashioned grocer store way of wrapping & presenting goods ! if only people would not expect so much of their stuff to come prepacked or companies/stores put stuff in plastic wrapping because of health and safety regulations.

  10. I didn’t really manage to do much above the normal this week as we had an open day in school, and as chair of the PTA I was in full organising mode.

  11. Mrs Green says:

    @MrsJ: Sounds like a very busy day, Mrs J. I’d like to hear more about the school resource for earth hour.

    @Compostwoman: blimey – to the top of the class you go! That sounds very busy and productive. So far we have four potatoes in the ground at Chez Green LOL!

    @Dormouse: Wow, Doormouse, I love what you are doing to serve your community. That is very altruistic. I have a bit of a thing about other people’s litter. It really annoys me, but I rarely pick it up **hangs head**

    @Poppy: Did you make a decision on the wallpaper, poppy? Is it painted? carole’s ideas are good, but you’ve really stumped me with a decent answer. I’m not sure burning it is a good idea because of the glues πŸ™

    @Deb from Boston: Well done deb; it always feels good to get these things sorted.

    @Carole Blake: Well done Carole – that sounds like a very busy day – congratulations to your son for such a great result; I bet he is so proud of his achievement!

    @greenlady: Thought provoking stuff, Greenlady. I think refills should be the ‘norm’ and I’m sure people will take advantage once they realise they can save money πŸ˜‰

    @maisie dalziel: Sounds like a busy time for you Maisie; I expect an open day takes weeks of planning. Did it go alright?

  12. Everything went fine and we also raised Β£140 for the PTA funds, by having a cake stall and a chocolate tombola(the kids all paid to come in non-uniform with a chocolate item of some description)

  13. Mrs Green says:

    What a great fundraiser – all pretty much zero waste too! Although not zero waist πŸ˜‰

  14. MrsJ says:

    @Mrs Green: It went straight to the school and my 5 year old (not the most reliable source mind) said no-one said anything about it. Wouldn’t surprise me if they were just humouring me but I shall keep perserving with it all.

  15. Carole Blake says:

    @Mrs Green: Hi Mrs G, yesterday we had a Get off your Arse Sunday instead and took stacks of recycling out to the local Sita site from my fiance’s house. It was really busy out there with people offloading garden waste, and decluttering.

    I remembered the old metal window catches too!

    Carole.

  16. Mrs Green says:

    @MrsJ: Yep, keep getting that message across, Mrs J πŸ™‚

    @Carole Blake: Oooo, get off your arse Sunday – good for you. It’s great when we can declutter without adding things to landfill. Well done!

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