A not-so-green confession

Try as I might to lead a green lifestyle as much as possible, I sometimes fall short. I think some people might get the impression that I live by the green book and, while I appreciate the vote of confidence, I want you to know that I am not all green, all the time. Today I’m confessing my dirty little secret.

Although Ava’s preschool is about four blocks from our house, I drive there almost every time. Awful, right? I know! It’s something I feel badly about and I’m actually trying to do better and walk more often. The main reason I choose to drive most days is because I don’t feel we have the time to walk there. I’m a habitually late person as it is (doh, you just got another confession out of me), and after you add getting two kids ready into the mix as well, I fall flat on my face. And there are some mornings (and some afternoons with naps) where I let Julian sleep in until the last possible moment, then get him up, put him in the car and off we go.

Now that it’s summer I have no weather excuses (other than when it gets too hot! *wink*), I am working on it and trying to do better about walking. Maybe I need to set a goal of walking at least one of the three days to start off and then increase it from there. In fact, I think that’s exactly what I will do. Can I get an “E” for effort? ;)

Do you have a dirty little not-so-green secret you want to confess?

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36 thoughts on “A not-so-green confession

  1. My city’s recycling program is woefully inadequate. They only pick up the first and third Friday of each month. So depending on how many weeks there are in a given month, plus when the month starts, plus holidays, we easily go three weeks between pick ups. As city residents, we have to worry about rats and other pests. So when my bins (with lids) get full, anything else goes into the regular trash, because that gets picked up twice a week.

    I feel terrible about it though, and I recently learned that there are recycle-specific dumpsters in the area. So I guess I’ll have to start hauling my overflow over to them.

  2. I sometimes let my two year old play at the kitchen sink for like, ten minutes, with the water running, just so I can get the kitchen clean without him getting in to everything. Wow. It actually sounds worse when I type it!

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  4. I love posts like this – we did a few over at Tree Hugging Fam. My biggest green sin is Raid. I’m terrified of spiders, so I keep a can in the house. This goes against everything green I believe in, but what can I do? It’s me or them.

  5. Ugh…yes…I cannot conform to the short showering. It takes forever for the hot water to get to our shower in the first place and I cannot commit to a 5 minute shower. I have guilt over this. Big time. :)

  6. I have two confessions.

    One is that the 5 minute shower is just not working for me. :( It’s the one place I can relax, be completely by myself, and unwind a little. I’m just one tired mama!

    The other is that we still aren’t recycling. :( Recycling in this town is almost a lesson in futility. Pickups are a pain in the hiney to arrange and there aren’t very many drop-off points; it’s just all too much for me in the dead of summer when I’m 8 months pregnant.

    But I promise I’ll get better soon!

  7. My sin is letting the water run in the kitchen in the morning. We have sulpher-y water and something happens just in the kitchen plumbing overnight that it smells a little off in the morning (we have filtration on our water that makes it smell normal everywhere else) – so the faucet has to run for a few minutes or else it’s stinky water for coffee.

    Re: recycling, I can’t believe that some communities make this so difficult to do. We’re going on vacation at the beach in Delaware, staying at a condo and there is no on-site recycling. I had to contact the state recycling and find out where the closest drop-off area is, so we’ll be hauling our recylcables to another town while on vacay.

  8. We have 2 computers that are almost always on.My computer has all the energy saving gadgets and I at least try to turn it off when I leave the house or go to bed,but there’s no attempt at all from anyone else.So,I guess that’s my thing.

    Oh…and we still haven’t made that step to eliminate ALL paper products. We still use paper toilet paper but I can’t bring myself to be on washing detail for cloth toilet-non-paper when there’s 7 people in our house. Yeah, I used cloth diapers and cloth wipes with no issue whatsoever but somehow it’s a bit different when the wiping is done on full-sized children and people and I’m the one who has to wash it.

    So, we use A LOT of toilet paper.It sucks but there it is.

  9. You’ve inspired me to confess: I drive to my parents’ farm to work. I only live like 2 minutes away, by car. But the problem is that the roads are really busy, and I’m afraid I’ll get hit by a car, seriously. It’s not just an excuse. I’m also not an experienced bike rider, and again the car thing scares me. I don’t blame you about not wanting to walk with two little kids, especially if the road is dangerous.

  10. Try as I might I cannot get showered in 5 minutes either. And here’s my confession – I ~LOVE~ air conditioning. It’s on practically all the time the minute it gets the least bit warm (I do live in the deep south!). I am many times thanking God for whomever it was that invented it :)

    ~Heather

  11. Sorry to say it, but I’m glad you have your green flaws, too! :O)

    I am HORRIBLE at remembering my grocery bags. My Mom even came over to play with the boys last night so I could grocery shop by myself (BIG treat for me – ain’t that sad?) and I *still* left them at home. At least I could bag the groceries by myself – the kids who work at the store usually want to put EVERYTHING in bags. I leave out and then carry separately things like bottles of juice, a bag of fruit or potatoes, milk, tp, etc.

  12. Well, as far as recycling goes, our town doesn’t pick it up at all, and there is only one drop! But I can’t tell you all my green confessions, because you’ll ban me from your blog LOL!

  13. I so hear you on driving! When S started school I diligently walked (1 mile each way) EVERY day. Then I got pregnant, and tired and it was hot…then it was cold and I was massively pregnant. And now I’m terribly out of shape. So I drive 4 miles a day because I’m too lazy to walk it like I should!

    My confession: batteries and #5 (ie yogurt containers) plastic. I know I should save them and drive to the right place to recycle them. Instead I throw them in the trash and feel guilty.

  14. OK… I feed my cats raw meat (that’s not the secret), and I freeze the concoction in plastic baggies. One gets thawed per day, and then… I throw the baggies out. They contained raw meat, I don’t want to wash them! I feel awful about it but I don’t know of a better system that doesn’t have me mucking around with meat even more and doesn’t involve more containers.

  15. I have several not-so-green habits I’m working on, but here is the one I’m dealing with right now:

    Some weeks, when I know I’m going to be super busy and won’t have much time for household chores, I use paper plates so I’ll have fewer dishes to wash. I justify it by telling myself it’s just me, so it’s only one plate.

  16. Oops, I didn’t finish my thought before hitting submit.

    I meant to end by saying that my justification could easily be used to convince me to just use a regular plate…it’s only one extra dish to wash. Apparently laziness wins out.

  17. You definitely get an “E” for effort. I think starting small is the best way to do anything.

    I waste a lot of electricity – forget to turn off lights and leave the TV on – I like the background noise.

  18. Hmmm, my biggest infractions (among many) are probably getting my hair done (I know the dye is toxic) and air conditioning. Our family greening process is definitely a work in progress and we are making huge improvements, but we still have a long way to go. It’s post like this that remind me that it’s ok not to be perfect. And that all the little and big changes we make have an impact. Thanks!

  19. While I am willing to embrace CFL bulbs for general lighting, there is NOTHING like a standard light bulb when to my old eyes and trying to do any kind of close work (reading, sewing, knitting). As our wise governator has sworn to ban these in the next couple years completely (hello, freedom of choice!!), I am hording 200W and 250W bulbs to carry me through to my old age.

  20. My pc stays on.

    I don’t compost.

    I don’t usually buy organic cotton sheets and clothing because I think it’s overpriced.

    And I categorically refuse to only use 3 squares of TP per day.

    There – now I’ll go to the corner ;-)

  21. Ok this is my big one. I sometimes throw the empty plastic jar of peanut butter in the trash because it’s such a pain to clean it to put in the recycle bin. You know how the peanut butter gets all yellowy and greasy and gross when you add hot water? I hate that. I always say “sorry Earth” when I sneak it into the garbage…but I don’t know that the Earth thinks that’s good enough!

  22. Yahooo! Way to go Amy! What you are is human, like all of us. My driving an SUV was my huge confession over at my blog but I’m full of things I don’t do perfectly everyday. I try everday and somedays are great and some not so great. Sometiems I do what Wendy does and throw the PB jar away (gasp). I’m just not perfect but I try very hard and that counts.

  23. Confessing this yesterday was the kick in the pants I needed to walk to school this morning. It might not happen every day, but I’m going to put forth the effort. The exercise is good for me too. :)

    Thanks for airing your dirty laundry too. Perhaps by writing about it and putting it “out there,” it will inspire you to make small changes for the better too.

    Amy
    Crunchy Domestic Goddess

  24. Thank you for this post. Sometimes I get really depressed when I realize that no matter how green I go (and I’m pretty green) there are greenzillas out there that will knock me for my very few non-green habits because, while I’m trying to be green, I’m human and I make mistakes.

    Here’s my confession. I don’t count food miles. Period. I eat as healthy as I can and which means fresh or frozen fruit & veg and no hydrogenated oils. But when it comes down to between buying a local overprocessed (and often overpriced) food item verses a nonprocessed non local healthy option, the nonlocal wins. Sorry.

  25. Amy, I have an idea for you – could you drive to daycare and then leave your car there during the day and walk home and back (only one kid to walk with)? I’m going to have to get Reid to school in September and am compromising by taking the car to school and then to a mall where I’ll board a bus. I had planned to drive downtown but can’t see the spending the time/gas/carbon on the full drive.

    My composter is full and I have been throwing vegetable peels in the garbage this week. I’ll have to drive 20 minutes to buy another but then I won’t be looking over my shoulder for the compost police ;+)

  26. I leave my computer on and forget about the lights when I go out. and my garden hose (although it does make the lawn greener…)

  27. I think everyone will always have something to improve on. Here are a few of my many weaknesses.

    1. I don’t buy organic cotton clothes.

    2. If I need to get something done and The Boy is in the way in the kitchen, I move his learning tower to the sink and let him play.

    3. I buy premium toilet paper. I like the softness. I admit it.

    4. I eat tons of nutella and drink imported beer.

    There’s so much more I need to improve on, but I’ll limit myself for now. :)

    (P.S. I did a shower update.)

  28. i have no idea what kind of cleaning products my cleaning lady uses but i’m quite sure they’re NOT green.

    and we definitely don’t always eat local. and no composting.

    ack! when i start to think about it, i think we are less green than more green!!!!!

  29. hmm a confession … I have been doing so well, but I still love my gadgets and NEVER turn off my computers. Yup both computers are on 24 hours a day. evil evil green mom.

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