Green Living Challenge 2013: Practicing Green Living

Another year — another Green Living Challenge! How will you reduce, reuse, and recycle in 2013?

Happy New Year! Three years ago to the day I tried to launch a green living challenge. I’m not sure how many readers got into it, but I wanted to give it another shot. Reducing, reusing, and recycling everything and anything you can makes the most sense financially and environmentally. Especially when you have kids. So here’s how it works: Every two weeks integrate some new “green lifestyle” practice into your life. Then jump on the Hudson Valley Magazine Facebook page and tell us what you did. This way we can inspire each other and share tips for best practices. If you’re not sure where to start, here is a list of ideas. Feel free to share anything else you think might help get another mama’s ball rolling.

  • Buy a countertop water filter system whose filters last for one-to-two years, instead of using unfiltered water or pitcher filters that need to be frequently replaced.
  • Stop buying bottled water and use aforementioned water filter to fill your own reusable water bottles.
  • Try eating vegetarian for one or two meals a week.
  • Replace plastic snack bags with the cute reusable kind, and brown paper lunch bags with lunch boxes.
  • Wash your clothes in cold water (it’s just as effective as warm, I promise).
  • Turn off all lights in rooms not being used and unplug electronics when not in use.
  • Buy your meat and eggs from a local farm where they are humanely raised and slaughtered. Avoid factory-farmed meat and eggs at all costs.
  • Switch to naturally derived cleaning products, or make your own.
  • Use cloth diapers (or make a baby step by switching to a chlorine-free brand like Seventh Generation).
  • Use rags instead of paper towels (or make a baby step by switching to recycled paper towels).
  • Shop for kid’s clothes at consignment shops.
  • Walk or bike more, drive less.
  • Sign onto Catalog Choice and opt out of receiving catalogs and unsolicited mail.

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