New Mama Musings

Friday, October 19, 2007

Where Frugality, Natural Living and Environmentalism Meet

When I was growing up one of my first chores was emptying all the wastebaskets in the house. I'm not sure why there was a trash can in every room, but I never minded emptying them because I often found treasures: Broken necklaces. Empty Tic-Tac containers. Pieces of wrapping paper. Treasures.

Well, I was four or five.

It probably won't surprise you to hear, then, that as an adult I have a serious aversion to waste. At one point a lot of our furnishings, and some of our clothes, were picked out of trash piles I found by the side of the road. (We've since upgraded to hand-me-downs or thrift store finds with a few new purchases thrown in.) I try to get the last little bit out of every product I buy, even going so far as to cut bottles open. We recycle everything we can, including scrap paper, which requires a drive to a paper recycling facility a few miles away.

I'm always trying to figure out how I can waste less of something.

This started out as a way to cut expenses. Slowly but surely, though, the health and environmental benefits started to become just as important. For me, frugality, natural living and being green (mostly) intersect nicely and define how I try to live my life. It's how I run our household and what I hope to pass on to Henry.

For instance, I wash my face with raw honey, which I can buy a pound of for $6.28. I'm not buying a product by Neutrogena which costs more than twice that and contains ingredients I can't pronounce. Honey is cheap, natural and kind to the environment. (And amazingly, it works great.)

I've been thinking a lot about this recently, since moving to the new house in February has strained our finances and forced me back into guerrilla frugal mode. Often just thinking about how I can waste less -- less electricity, less water, less food -- or how I can use natural products instead of things companies try to brainwash me into thinking I need (disposable dusting cloths?) leads me down the frugal path.

In the next few blog entries I'm going to discuss some of the areas where living frugally, naturally and green intersect. Feel free to move along if all of this bores you. I'll be back to posting amusing anecdotes about Henry soon.


  • how do you wash your face with raw honey? sounds interesting. i've read about people using extra virgin olive oil for washing and moisturizing.

    i just use the water in the shower. ;) (that's right, i don't offically 'wash' my face)

    By Blogger mamafitz, at 2:38 PM  

  • I just rub it on (over make-up if I'm wearing it), let it sit while I brush and floss, then rinse off with warm water.

    I tried using just water for a while but I never felt like it took the make-up completely off. I still do this if I'm bare-faced and feeling lazy though. :)

    By Blogger New Mama, at 8:19 AM  

  • Great post. I can't wait to see what other ideas and insights you have to offer.

    By Anonymous Leigh, at 10:47 AM  

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