The Year of Living Minimally – Week Thirty-five

My mission to reduce plastic is continuing. It’s growing. And it’s frustrating as hell.


Yes, ditch the plastic straws. That should be easy. Refuse a straw in a restaurant. Don’t even let your server bring you a straw. I usually ask for a glass of water, no ice, no straw, please. Simple. But the problem is so much bigger than straws.

This article says that ocean garbage is now twice the size of Texas. There is so much crap plastic in our oceans that sea life is dying. Humans have produced 18.2 trillion pounds of plastic since the 1950s. That’s equal in size to 1 billion elephants.

Plastic is everywhere. Every one of us should be using a refillable water container and a refillable coffee/tea container. No more Dunkin’ Donuts coffee cups! No more Dasani water bottles! (Oh, and did you read the story about microscopic plastic particles actually in the water in the water bottles?) More bad news here.

It’s impossible to not get things in plastic. Buy organic chicken at the market. It’s not wrapped in paper. I tend to pick up easy-to-prepare meals from Trader Joe’s – usually from their frozen food aisle. Garlic naan. Kung Pao chicken. Frozen strawberries for the morning. All in plastic bags. And I’ve been putting them in the trash. I’m ashamed of myself.

So I am now trying (I really am) to separate what goes into my trash bag. We don’t compost (we probably should, my sisters both do), but maybe if I rinse out the plastic bags after I open them, I can find a place to bring them. Because I’m sick about the plastic. Our poor, poor planet.

7 thoughts on “The Year of Living Minimally – Week Thirty-five

  1. Congratulations on getting started on this, Martha! Composting is easy, and you can get a composting bin for not much money at RIRRC (at the landfill).
    Plastic bags go back to the supermarket. There is a bin in the entryway of Stop & Shop, in the exitway of PriceRite, inside the door of CVS….if there’s not a bin for them at Trader Joe’s, let them know that they need one!
    I’m lagging behind on the Dunkin Donuts cups issue, since I use the drive-thru. Maybe some day they’ll figure out a way to make that possible.
    One of the worst plastic things is the tiny little beads in hand lotion, shampoo, etc. I made the mistake of buying some hand lotion with them once, and now I’m not sure how to get rid of it ecologically.
    Keep up the great work!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Deb. I don’t think TJ’s has a bin for plastic bags – this can be my new project! This morning as I went through the market, I really paid attention to what I was getting (‘is this container recyclable?’) Fortunately, most of them are.


  2. Martha,

    I’ll be honest…….I have not read much of your series “A year of Living…….” It has been in the back of my mind, but somehow I missed it. Regardless, I am “tuned” in now and look forward to binge reading everything from the start! That’s the good news……the bad news; I might have to continue to comment! Hahahahaha! Zulu Delta


  3. Recycle Recycle Recycle ♻️
    I started out real slow on using my Recycle container, but now I have more recycling items than my trash container. I mean it has taken me years to get this right. Now I can’t stand seeing how much trash at other houses than can be recycled. We can all do this, Recycle Straws even.


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