Real Month of Work*

So far I have not kept to my new years resolution to post on the blog fortnightly, but I think I may give myself a free pass for the month of February as I have had several waste related projects that I have managed to get through. From my involvement in my local waste reduction community group I have been given opportunities to lead some waste initiatives. With my work* on these initiatives I hope to address sustainability at a grass roots level that is utilitarian and accessible to all. Here are some photos of this month’s work*:

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Tomato sauce making workshop

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Our stall at he Kulture & Kai Market Day in Glen Innes

These projects are low cost and utilise materials that would otherwise go to waste. Also, I am not a natural leader, nor am I particularly good at getting up in front of an audience, but I am learning and building up my confidence each time. So, if you feel that you would like to lead/facilitate/host any community projects – just do it! If I can you can!

And finally, I’m quite proud of this – the website that I created using squarespace for my community group is now live. Please check it out!

http://www.tamakiwrap.org.nz/

*doesn’t feel like ‘work’, just talking the talk while walking the walk

Real Imperfections Are OK

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Our baby recently had her first birthday and we celebrated by having a barbecue with friends and family, and of course tried to do so while creating as little waste as possible by doing the following:

Sent out SMS invitations rather than cards

Asked people not to bring gifts, or if they insisted, a small donation towards a car seat

Collected sausages, bread and produce from our local suppliers in our own containers

Used real plates, cups, cutlery and cloth napkins

Made what we could from scratch including the cake and all the condiments for lunch

Chose not to have party bags

However, there were a few items, such as cheese, that due to logistics we could not get without packaging, as much we had tried, and as proud as we were, the small amount of landfill rubbish we had at the end took the shine off our effort. We lamented this fact and that we are still producing a small bag of landfill rubbish each week and haven’t yet managed a complete transition to zero waste.

As many people who have embraced this lifestyle will know it can be something of an obsession, especially in the beginning, and it can be hard to accept that for a variety of reasons, achieving complete zero waste is sometimes not possible.

As we reflected, I was reminded of a pertinent saying, “don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good”, we had been so focused on the changes we had yet to make, we had lost sight of all the changes we had already made, and in a very short space of time too. With that in mind we agreed to make an effort to be proud of and enjoy each achievement we make on the journey towards our end goal, rather focus on the fact we haven’t arrived there yet.