Since baby R was born, we've noticed waste creeping into our lives. We're more likely to waste money on take out. I'm certainly treating myself to more coffees during the work days. When we need to buy something, we're more likely to purchase it new than to work at locating a used item.
We've been trying to think of some sort of challenge to get us back on track. Something like not throwing anything away for a month, or not spending any money, or living without our car for a month. Oh wait. We already do that last one. We're just looking for something to kick us out of our current habits and make us pay a bit more attention. But the trouble is, the most obvious options, like not spending any money for some period of time, would take a lot of energy, and probably a lot of time, at least initially. Energy and time are in very short supply around here.
But Angela had an idea that actually may be sustainable. She was cleaning out our fridge, which happens every two weeks in tandem with our grocery trip. The fridge clean out inevitably ends with lots of leftovers dumped in the trash and piles of dirty food containers in our sink. Instead of chucking the food directly, Angela first took a picture of it.
Now we have a rough measure of how much food we wasted during this last two week cycle, and now we have our challenge. Every two weeks we're going to take a picture of what we throw away and try to make it smaller. No, it's not a dramatic challenge; it probably won't completely change our lives, and it's not a perfect measure of waste (some additional food gets wasted day to day as table scraps), but it's better than nothing. We were already inspired us to eat some leftovers for dinner that would have gone in the trash two weeks from now, which saved us time, energy and money, so we're on the right track.
We're the VC's, two mathematicians, an unemployed toddler (H. born 6/06), and baby R. (born 5/09). We live in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and rely on bikes, public transit and our feet for transportation. Want to know more? Read a little about us and about how we became car freewith kids.