Home Forums Philosophical Discussions What can I do?

This topic contains 55 replies, has 19 voices, and was last updated by  Blue velvet 2 months, 1 week ago.

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  • #479476

    Babeth
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    No chimical in the garden, plants to attract insects, no food waste, priority to second hand objects and clothes (except underpants and shoes, but keep them until there are holes in them !).

    No gadget in the kitchen : a manual balance (no battery), no robots. Re-use the platic boxes we had when we bought occasionaly ready meal at our butcher for freezing my own ready meal. Pyrex forms are perfect too in the fridge, and easier to clean than plastic.

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    #479603

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    But Babeth , you are really “marginal ” None of the consumption society necessities ! :-)

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    #479629

    Babeth
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    I had some of these gadgets in the past, they looked so magical ! At the end, didn’t work for me : they take a lot of space, not easy to clean, and not using them. I would describe myself as “pragmatic” more than marginal. At the opposite the house is cluttered with “antics” found in vide grenier, but this is an other story !

    I’ve learnt to ask myself when I’m attrated by something : Do I really like it ? Do I really need it ? Am I going to use it (or wear it) ? Where am I going to store it ? If it is yes to all those question, then I buy it, if not, put it back on the shelf, which is what happens most of the time, but no regret or frustration.

     

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    #479632

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    That is a very good view on life and consumption Babeth . I think we are all guilty of having things that we don’t really need . I find that the older I get ,the less materialistic I am becoming , but then as a young man leaving home I wasn’t materialistic at all. So we return to our youth ?

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    #479647

    Pete James
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    Agreed Chris but times change. What would have been considered ‘materialistic’ a few years back have become staple requirements nowadays like :
    Mobile phones and a computer which are indispensable today in fact, it’s difficult to have a normal life without them.

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    #479648

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    Good morning Pete , we have a pay as you go mobile phone that never leaves our “office room table”  We don’t use mobile phones . I only have the machine so I can pay online. I agree about the computer  , but that is something that has been “forced” on us , there is no alternative anymore. I can’t think of many things that I couldn’t do without .

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    #479760

    Babeth
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    I’m still using plastic freezing bag for certain things, any suggestion to replace them (there are thing I can’t put in boxes)

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    #479767

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    Try to eat fresh , vegetables in season and not freeze too much ?  We still freeze vegetables , but best is to grow and eat . I have the habit of growing a lot of veg for the looooooong Winters , but we don’t have long winters anymore , so we end up with too much in the freezer .

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    #479769

    Babeth
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    We haven’t got a garden big enough to feed us. We can grow courgettes, pumkins/butternuts, onions, garlic, salads, keep trying tomatoes and few potatoes. But that’s all.

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    #479779

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    That’s quite a lot Babeth , well done , we always grow too much and then give it away in the village, it’s quite funny to watch how people don’t trust it when it is free !

    We have a large politunnel for early and late veg ,plus the tomatoes . It’s very difficult to grow tomatoes outside and they need covering from the rain that brings phytophthora  ( blight)

    So we try to grow fresh all year but with the weather changing as it does now ,it is not getting easier . :-)

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    #479780

    Blue velvet
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    It’s happening here again in the U.K. on tv this morning and a programme tonight seeing what more can be done . I am old enough to remember pre  Supermarket times , corner shop days with the blue bags for tea etc. What highlighted this morning using 3 peppers (red and green sort!) that un packaged peppers were more expensive ! Not a big incentive to buy !  I am consciously trying to remember not to buy anything triple wrapped in plastic, it is quite difficult here, the programme is blaming the Supermarkets, Waitrose is trying , with paper bags . I’ve discovered too that face wipes to remove makeup have plastic in them too, who knew that?  I remember  the fabulous selections of yoghurts in France , are they still in plastic pots ?  All cleaning products are in plastic containers, the list is endless! :rose:

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    #479781

    Fruitcake
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    All your efforts make me feel decidedly guilty, having been the one that started the thread! You’ve brought to my notice, by reading your posts, that I still use an awful lot of plastic – freezer bags, cling film, plastic bottles of washing liquid and washing up liquid etc, so I am going to try and be more mindful of all that I use.

    We grow some, but not all, of our vegetables, we have in the garden at the moment; tomatoes, peppers, broad beans, runner beans, two varieties of French beans, onions, spring onions, marrows, butternut squash, a few potatoes, radishes, have sown carrot and parsnip seeds and have two thornless blackberries. The broad beans are our freezer vegetables I don’t like anything else from frozen, so we eat or distribute among neighbours and friends the rest. Oh and I forgot Mr. F. has some melons in the greenhouse.

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    #479814

    Witchy Poo
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    I’m ordering some beeswax to make cloth food wraps, it’s a replacement for cling film, I’ll let you know how I get on Fruitcake and if they work I’ll make some for you, Babeth apparently you can use them in the freezer but as they are breathable there is a limit to how long they can be used in there, a few weeks apparently. I’ll post the link to making them when my friend has sent it on.

    Blue Velvet, I think you can make your own face wipes using cotton wool, coconut oil and other things. I’ll try and find the link for that too. There was a piece on TV about wipes and how they are forming huge clumps in rivers and changing the shape of them, think it was This Morning, I only saw the you tube clip of it.

    Like many of you have said I think it’s  about being aware and trying to make changes, everybody doing things imperfectly is better than just a few doing it perfectly.

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    #479815

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    Like many of you have said I think it’s  about being aware and trying to make changes, everybody doing things imperfectly is better than just a few doing it perfectly.

    I agree entirely Witchy Poo, We still buy veg in the shops because we have failures too, but always check to see where the veg comes from and buy that which has the least air miles . Luckily there are still shops ?

    I have always had comments about being hypocritical , but usually from those that just live and don’t think.

    You can’t live in this part of the world without money , so will always pollute . I have had many discussions with young alternative people who think they can just live , but a lot of them get their cash from the government so are subsidised by those that they dislike .

    We would be interested in how to make beeswax cloth food wraps , we have bees . :-)

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    #479816

    Jazzy
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    We moved into our new eco house at the end of April and this is the view after the soil excavated for the foundations was re-distributed over the garden last August. The land was previously used as grazing for sheep.

    before

    We got a quote from a paysagiste for leveling and grassing. I was clear I didn’t want any weed killers used which he was surprised at, everyone seems to chuck weed killer around like there’s no tomorrow including lots of Brits I know…😢

    Anyway we decided to leave it be and spend the summer thinking about what we want to do with it. Glad we did as it’s turned into a lovely meadow with lots of different species of grasses, ox eye daisies etc. the insects and birds love it, have seem some bugs that I’ve never seen before. Here’s a photo taken yesterday…

    after

    We think it’s beautiful and so good for wildlife so we’re going to leave it mostly be. Cut it back later in the year and broadcast some wild flower seeds such as poppies and cornflowers. Also plant more trees. The chickens can roam free in it too.
    Will make a lawn and flower bed area in front of the terrace and that’s it. The land behind is meadow and orchard too so should blend in nicely….and a lot less mowing to do…

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    #479822

    Fruitcake
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    Oh wow! I love that Jazzy! what a perfect haven for wildlife!

    Beeswax food wraps sound interesting WP! The only time I ever use face wipes is on holiday but I shall stop now I know what they can do! I do use the round cotton wool discs for cleansing, I presume they are okay does anyone know?

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    #479823

    Babeth
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    My colleagues who like sewing, do their own washable one, and seem happy about them.

    Here is a tutorial but in french

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    #479968

    Witchy Poo
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    @jazzy that looks amazing, it will just get better and better each year.  This is absolutely something I want to do, we leave bits of our garden to go wild (handy for not doing so much weeding) but on a bigger scale is so effective for bringing nature back in, Your chickens will love it and will make little paths through!

    @jimbob Here is the beeswax wrap tutorial, my friend followed this and she said it took a few goes before she got the amount of beeswax right. She said it was fiddly but once she got it they worked well – she used an iron.

     

    This is the make up wipe tutorial @bluevelvet similar to the one Babeth showed.  I think it would be possible to use recycled kitchen roll or even those thin cotton cloths, or an old shirt, etc and then wash them in with normal washing, there is a link in this to show making household cleaning wipes.

     

    I realised a few weeks ago that I was using plastic pegs and that every time they break that waste has to go somewhere. It really made me realise how things become “normal” in our lives and we don’t realise it.  Next time I need to buy pegs I shall get the wooden ones,

    @jimbob I agree, I think we all fail but that’s ok as it’s makes us think again, it’s when we think we can’t make any difference and stop bothering that we end up in the rather large mess we are all in,

     

     

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    #479981

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    Cut it back later in the year and broadcast some wild flower seeds such as poppies and cornflowers. Also plant more trees.

    Looks great Jazzy . Very ” permaculture” .You obviously know what you are doing  , I cut swaths of my meadows at different times to allow different species to seed . If you cut the grass before it gets too tall , then you will get a lot of clover , which is very good for the soil .

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    #479982

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    I agree, I think we all fail but that’s ok as it’s makes us think again, it’s when we think we can’t make any difference and stop bothering that we end up in the rather large mess we are all in,

    thanks for the link Witchy Poo , I will put Jen on it , she is in the North visiting her great grand son ( yes , we are old too )

    As far as failure goes , I usually fail more than once before I get it right , anyone that gets it right every time , will never learn anything . Failure doesn’t really exist , it is part of experience .

    I certainly agree with you about not bothering , there are too many like that !

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    #480017

    Babeth
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    I’ve just seen in the news that some parents are going to court because of forbidden pesticides present in baby nappies (glyphosate for exemple !)

    Nappie are bad enough for pollution (I’m guilty, I’ve used them), but why on earth do you need glyphosate on baby bottom :wacko:

    Does that mean people are starting to care more about these problems ? Is the law is going to change and we can read on the stickers what we are buying ?

     

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    #480035

    Fruitcake
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    Interesting links, thank you to all.

    Pesticides in nappies? Whatever next? As you say Babeth, why? Being of an age when I used terry towelling, washable nappies for my babies it never ceases to amaze me how much the disposable nappies cost! A huge drain on parent’s resources. Plus, as you say Babeth, the amount of them that go into landfill must be bad enough for pollution without adding pesticides into the equation! Is there no thought for the fact they are being put next to a baby’s skin? Thank goodness awareness has been raised!

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    #480312

    Marie
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    With regard to plastic in nappies – why buy them at all. It’s laziness. Modern mums should use the cotton washable nappies. These throw-away ones should never have been invented. Like bottled water – what is wrong with water from the tap? If you want it more ‘pure’ you can boil it, let it go cold and then put it in glass bottles in the fridge.

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    #480316

    Pete James
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    Quite agree Marie, I suppose it’s convenience when it comes to the  Terry or disposable nappy, especially when out and about with the baby. Will Terrys ever ome back to the civilised world ? unfortunately not though maybe a biodegradable version isn’t far away !

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    #480323

    Fruitcake
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    Probably a bit of both Marie & Pete, as you say Pete, I doubt we will be seeing a line full of pure white, sweet smelling nappies on the line again, more’s the pity. In fairness, when I was boiling my baby’s nappies in the galvanised bucket I wasn’t trying to fit it in before dropping the baby off at a childminder and going on to work, nor did we do any travelling as such to have to worry about carrying dirty nappies about so I do get the need in today’s society of the convenience side of disposable nappies but wish there was a better solution for them.

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    #480336

    Blue velvet
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    I too used terry nappies when my son was small, he never had nappy rash either. I didn’t have a washing machine, just soaked them and boiled as did Fruitcake. I’m horrified by the cost of present day throw away nappies!

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