She is a mum. She is honest. She is hilarious. She is angry (which I am too when it comes to plastic). And she is an ECO-WARRIOR Legend!! No doubt.
I am so pleased Eloise agreed to take part and answer my questions as I found her so inspirational when it comes to reducing our waste at home. When I came across her account on Instagram it gave me such a boots that YES others are as pissed off as I am when it comes to supermarkets over-packing but it isn’t always so easy to say no to them. Yes, talking about you, baby snacks. Yes, I am still buying them individually packaged and it is killing me but baking is something I keep putting off every day.. anyhow it isn’t about me. So without further ado read her words here and get inspired!!
What made you start your Zero Waste Journey?
I was in Devon with my family for New Year and my sister was telling me about Lauren Singer from Trash is for Tossers. She told me that this woman hasn’t created any trash in about 4 years. My ears instantly pricked up. Why would you not want to create any trash? And how would you do that?!? I had never heard of the concept before and it sounded like a great challenge to me. Then I saw Jeff Bridges video: Open Your Eyes, and I found out the truth about plastic. Suddenly it just seemed crazy not to give this a go myself.
The first five things I gave up?
Plastic water bottle was no.1 and the easiest change!!! I used to buy a bottle of water and reuse it for a month or so, which I found out was so bad for your health. I bought a glass one that I take everywhere with me and it’s so much better! Second was I made sure I always had a bag with me when I went to the shops, I had an embarrassingly large plastic bag collection behind my kitchen door. It just so happened that when I started this journey I ran out of cling film as well. So the next change was easy too, I just didn’t buy any more clingfilm because, I mean what a waste! And I started using glass jars and plates over bowls instead. Fourth one was I changed my shampoo to a bar shampoo and conditioner, and I bought bar soap instead of hand pump soap. That was fun because it was the first time I had been into a lush shop since I was a teenager!! Made me feel young again. The last one was I started making my own multi-purpose cleaner. It is soooooooo easy and cleans way better than my old stuff and I’m not just saying that. It’s simply white vinegar and water. Sometimes if I’m feeling fruity I may add a couple of drops of essential oil.
5 things I found hardest to adjust/give up?
Oh gosh I don’t think I’ve quite got to the point of giving up what I find really hard at the moment. I never buy anything in a plastic bottle anymore. To me they seem to be one of the biggest nuisances. I used to love drinking those crazy healthy juices you see in stores, I often find myself staring at them and I contemplate getting one but I always refuse. Food is definitely the hardest thing. EVERYTHING is packaged in plastic. Some days I don’t buy the things I really want in plastic but some days I do. I am finding myself buying those plastic items less and less though. When I did my plastic free week challenge I had to make lots of changes to what I buy and those changes have stuck around which I am very happy about. It was a good way to reset myself and my shopping habits. Secondly, I have been really procrastinating about using reusable nappies, but this week I am finally getting my hands on some which I feel really excited about. Another hard switch has to be how I deal with my monthly cycle. I actually got my 1st period back after having my son when I started this zero waste journey (great timing), but I can now say that next month I will be trialling out my first menstrual cup. It’s taken me 3 months to build up to it, but I am ready now. The fourth thing is although I’ve changed my face wipe use, I still am partial to a baby wipe. I have a whole host of recipes and ideas that I’ve saved but I just haven’t got round to doing it yet. It is slightly overwhelming me because the days where I have tried not to use baby wipes I have gotten myself into a right mess!!! In fact I think writing this has given me the push I need and I am going to sort that shit out soon!! Literally! Ha ha. The last thing is baby snacks. I had to give them up in my plastic free week and it just didn’t go down very well. I made all sorts of biscuits and cookies and they all tasted horrible!!! They just didn’t cut it the way a rice cake or a carrot puff can. I am still working on recipes and one thing that he does like is toast which is easy to do plastic free, but baby cannot live off bread alone!! So if anyone has any good recipes let me know.
Who would you recommend as inspirations?
My main inspiration and where I get a lot of my tips and tricks from are @1million women. They are a group of Australian women battling climate change. They have a great Facebook and Instagram page with easy to understand facts about how devastating single-use plastic use is. Their page has lots of simple information on things such as how to grow your own veg from scraps, to things you can do to avoid impulse buying.
5 Values I want to raise my kid with?
Oooooo this is a big one. I’d love him to be a little feminist!! Ha ha. But I suppose above all I want him to have compassion for our planet and every living being. I want him to be at one with himself and the planet and know that he has the power to make a difference, and that his actions have an effect on the world around him. I feel like in today’s society it is easy to become disconnected with nature and think that you are above it and not part of it, but we are animals just as much as the lions in the jungle and I want him to know this. I suppose I can’t force any values on my child, all I can hope is that as long as I demonstrate, love, compassion, empowerment and empathy in my daily life, I will be a good role-model for him. He has been such a determined little soul from the moment he was born, so I hope to nuture his natural qualities and give him space to grow as an individual.
How does your partner like the lifestyle?
At first, he wasn’t massively interested and I think he was a little worried that I might get too involved in the social media hole!! But as time has gone on he is really on board and he is loving the new things we are discovering in a bid to live a more environmentally friendly lifestyle. When I am having a “I can’t be asked” day, he quite often keeps me on track, and says “no we are not buying that, it’s got too much plastic”! It makes me fancy him a little bit more every time he says that! Ha ha. When I did my plastic free week challenge, he did it with me, which I was not expecting, and it was so lovely to support each other in it. He loves re-purposing items that we have around the house and using the jars we save as food and drink containers. We dream of travelling with our little boy and getting involved in an eco project abroad somewhere. It is great sharing the same passion and building our family life with the same values.
5 words I say most often/everyday to my kid
“ I love you”, because my god I love him so much! It’s mad isn’t it!!! I literally say it to him a gazillion times a day and also “bumface”! Ha ha, for some reason that seems to be my nickname for him. It’s either that or “monk a chunk”.
Thank you Eloise again xx