Tag Archives: military

Recycling on base

I don’t usually write about the actual military. I try to focus more on one single family trying to fight against the waste that we’ve found within the confines of the U.S. military.

I did want to share with you what I found on some of the military bases in the south of the United States. Though they could/can be doing SO MUCH more. It’s a start:

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Happy 4th of July

Today my man  was actually off work! Can you believe it? He’s NEVER off work. Ever, ever, ever. Ever.
Okay, he did have to go in from 5:00-7:30 a.m., but I was awake when he got home. (Which is a rarity, me up early,  eyes not propped open by toothpicks.) When he came in the door, I jumped at him, and he gave a little scream. Just kidding. But I did scare him.

“Let’s go to the beach! Right now before it gets muggy and sunny.” I’m not a big fan of sunny. I like it when it rains, and it’s cloudy. When it snows or storms blow through knocking over small trees. I didn’t eat breakfast or wash my face. I brushed my teeth and we flew out the door.

The water was perfect.

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Buying Organic

Buying Organic

Honestly, I have a difficult time buying fruits that are twice as expensive just because it says “organic” on the labeling. Is it really organic? How do I know? Is it an investment in my health or a marketing ploy to get my money?

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Making your own food

Making your own food

What we recycle and how to reduce it.

Trying to rid ourselves of the glass jars and cans that we bring into the house, I’m attempting to make as much food as possible rather than purchase it. I’m now making my own peanut butter, bread, hummus, soups, juices, Greek yogurt, muffins, pesto, cappuccino, beans, nut mix, and salsa. I shall next attempt marinara sauce. If I could figure out how to make my own cheese, I would. I’d like to figure out how to make crackers! Besides cutting back on packaging, we’re getting less preservatives, sugar and other goop in our systems we don’t  need.

My man wants to learn how to brew his own beer. Think of the glass bottles we’d save! A friend of his gave us a tour of a self-brewery in his basement and showed us how it was done. The beer, however, hmmm…how could I say it in a nice way? It tasted like lukewarm yeast. But that was years ago. I’m sure he’s perfected it by now!
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Gardening

Gardening.

Zucchini for zucchini bread!

Our first garden together was last year. As children we watched our parents garden, but neither of us had ever tried a garden ourselves.

When you rent, you must ask permission. Some owners are more open than others. We’ve been lucky. Not wanting to destroy the yard, however, we took up only a small space. We bought two raised bed sets  so that we could break them down and take them with us when we moved. We didn’t harvest much food. The cherry tomatoes did okay. We had cucumbers out our ears. We had one tiny cantaloupe and a few jalapeno peppers. We planted the seedlings in the peat pots, which didn’t break down and caused the plants to grow root bound. And apparently, you need two of most plants to cross-pollinate. Now we know. Continue reading

Composting

Composting.

Grubs from last summer!

We compost absolutely everything—food scrapes, grass clippings, leaves and yard waste, coffee grinds, dust and dirt from the vacuum, fingernail clippings, my husband’s hair from his haircuts. We shred all paper in the house and dump it in, and recently learned entire pizza boxes can be added. You don’t even need to break them down! After dinner this week, we looked at our plates and my man asked, “We can’t compost fish remains?” I jumped online and though some advised against it, others said to bury them deep within the middle of the bin. So it looks like fish heads, scales, fish skin and bones are compostable too. So far, it doesn’t smell bad. This is only recommended, however, if you have an enclosed bin because it can attract animals. If you know of anything we’re missing, by all means, comment on the post and let us know!

My husband’s all-time favorite line is, “Throw it in the compost.” His hobby and passion is making dirt. He’s had a compost pile every place he’s ever lived.  Continue reading

The very beginning

This is our attempt as a traveling military family to live the zero waste lifestyle.

This isn’t a recent idea, but it is an improved one. Brought up in a recycling family, I started my first recycling program in high school. I placed plastic-lined boxes beside each trashcan with a homemade sign that read, “Please place all cans, cardboard and plastic in this box. I’ll recycle it.” Each Friday my dad picked me up from school and emptied them with me. They were almost always full of trash.

In the military, I was the only cook in the missile field who recycled. The other cooks and facility managers made fun, telling me I was making my life difficult. Difficult was the word they used. To me, it was normal. The guilt of throwing recyclables in the trash kept me from sleeping at night.  Continue reading