Living in a hotel and zero waste

Yeah, not so easy.

While we wait for the closing of the house, we reside in a hotel and tomorrow we’ll be nearing a month in this room. No furnished place to rent existed and in a town with a population of 5,000, we simply didn’t have much choice. And that’s okay. I thought I could do zero waste without much of a problem here, but it’s been the biggest challenge yet.

The sink used to wash dishes, bibs full of spit up, face, hands and the baby.

The biggest waste producer? FOOD and lack of a kitchen thereof. Though I brought two knives, a cutting board and my crock pot with me, I’ve had to purchase a good amount of microwave and deli meals. In the past weeks we’ve accumulated a good amount of recyclables, about 3 plastic grocery bags full  and nowhere to recycle them.


The hotel doesn’t recycle as they said it isn’t worth the $15 charge and after storming the internet for ideas, I finally called the Chamber of Commerce and asked them what I could do…..since we aren’t official residents yet.  (And there are no drop-off recycling sites in town.) Turns out, there are three in a neighboring town. Hmm, we’ll have to drive over this weekend and see how that goes.

Breakfast is offered in the hotel on paper plates (which I use multiple times). I like that they wrap nothing in plastic. It’s always the same, but it’s always fresh and  they offer milk and juice.  🙂

Yay carbs, huh? This pregnancy weight isn't going anywhere fast with a breakfast like this.

Yay carbs, huh? This pregnancy weight isn’t going anywhere fast with a breakfast like this.

Therefore, all my trash is pretty much food scraps (as I cannot compost here) and wrappers, paper plates, etc.

Oh, Lord. And diapers. Being on the road and living in the hotel didn’t allow room for my poop/pee buckets or the bulk of 40 cloth diapers. We could have done it but it would have made life difficult and pricey with constant washing of laundry. We used drying racks at home and there is no space for that here. I gave in and decided to use disposable diapers until we get in the house. It takes centuries for one diaper to disappear. (I’ve read between 200 and 500 years.) I think of that every time I change one and am in search of compostable ones that don’t cost an arm and a leg.


As we wait to get in our new home and the new daddy of the house goes off to work, I spend the day figuring out what to cook to feed us dinner and send him with lunch so we don’t have to eat out or keep from spending $80 at the one grocery store in town.

brown hair

I snap pictures of this baby and get my fill of the History Channel. (Yay! Cable! We’ve been a year and a half without t.v. so it’s been quite indulgent here!) I do all this to procrastinate from sifting through about 500 unread emails. Eeek!

baby 2 baby 3 baby 4

baby 5 hotel living

waiting for daddy to come home

waiting for daddy to come home

Yeah, life is an adventure.


8 responses to “Living in a hotel and zero waste

  1. Temporary living is so much harder than anyone thinks, especially in a hotel with a baby. You’ll be in heaven when you move into your house. Until then, hope time passes quickly 🙂

  2. I applaud you for attempting to remain “green” under not such perfect conditions. “Disposable” diapers are such a nuisance yet too few people know about their impact on the Earth. Good for you for sharing. When do you close on the house?

  3. I feel your pain! We’ve done that a few times.

  4. This will give you such an appreciation of your new place when you get there.

  5. We just finished doing almost 6 weeks in a hotel here in Germany before we moved into our house. It is NOT easy. Keep your head up girl. This might put a smile on your face though.You might just see yourself in it!!! 😉 😉 I was reading on line today and came across this. Check it out on my blog. Love you and miss you so much. XO, ❤

  6. oh, now i do remember the month and a half in a french hotel, meals included, my well behaved darling boys so admired at dining room dinners..and cloth diapers drying on every surface, closest to vents or windows..bleach smell, soap smell..and uh know!
    eating french bread sandwiches..of course when outside..a bag full of condiments etc, and throwing crumbs or apple cores to birds on long walks..park bushes benefit from composting gifts.
    your baby looks so hungry, she’ s eating her own foot..survival of the cutest..

  7. Jennifer, I wanted to bestow you with the Hug Award and saw your “Award free sign, thank you just the same”. Please let me know if there is any wiggle room on that. Your environmental efforts deserve to be better know…just saying.
    Love the new pics!

  8. Thank you so much for your support and encouragement, ladies. I have enjoyed my “down time” playing with the baby and finally scheduling a back log of unpublished blog posts! So, if you see a lot of them lately, that’s all that is. Once I push them all out, we should be in the house and settling in. 🙂

    So I can write new ones or give this up. Can’t decide.

    @P.C. Zick—we should be in by mid-May! Fingers crossed everything goes as planned!

    @Hope–I can’t believe that picture is floating out there on line. Kind of creepy what’s out there you don’t realize, yeah? 🙂
    That girl has been long dead for a very long time. Feels like a life time ago, though it really wasn’t. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

    @Nadine—you used cloth diapers in the hotel because you are SUPER WOMAN. I am more and more impressed by you every line I read!

    @Claudia—a big ol’ hug for you for even thinking about me. You are the sweetest!

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