A review of 2016

Well this year has been a big year and I certainly didn’t stick to my goals of blogging about different topics each month but instead of entirely giving up, I just tried to do my bit, one step at a time. And what is the saying?

“If I shoot at the sun, I may hit a star.”
—P. T. Barnum

I’ve done well at reducing my plastic bag consumption;

I’ve used my Keep Cup where possible to save on the amount of takeaway coffee cups in landfill;

I’ve taken my stainless steel Kanteen Klean water bottle on lots of excursions (a wonderful Christmas present from last year);

A wonderful bulk foods shop (Soul Food Market) has opened up in Mackay which saves buying nuts + dried fruit, flours + spices in plastic;

I’ve discovered a whole new world of doTERRA essential oils and have opened a wholesale account through my friend who also sells gorgeous diffuser bracelets + jewellery- Essential Obsession. Oils and Beads with Bec;

I’ve continued to buy Who Gives a Crap toilet paper (whose Christmas edition has illustrated wrappers by the talented crew at The Jacky Winter Group  and I have used it as wrapping paper and I’m hoping to make some Christmas crackers too). This toilet paper uses recycled paper or bamboo and isn’t wrapped in plastic.

I’ve taken my plastic cereal packets, rice packets, postal packaging, and other soft plastic packaging which I have inevitably collected to the Coles drop off points to be recycled by the The Red Group’s  program Red Cycle.  Recycling is not the solution and I still feel guilty that I have got them in the first place but at least they aren’t going to landfill and my husband isn’t going to give up his Weetbix any time soon. They use the packaging to make outdoor furniture for public places and schools.

I’ve started a worm farm to go with my compost bin (my daughter loves to go and feed the worms!), I haven’t started my vegetable garden properly – I’ve got herbs which don’t appear to be doing too well in the scorching Summer heat at the moment but as I type we are getting a nice downpour of rain so hopefully they come back to life! and i really want to grow lettuces and spinaches to avoid the plastic packaging in the shops. And cherry tomatoes and strawberries! I’ve asked for a built-in garden bed for Christmas so I’d better get designing!

I donated to the Boomerang Alliance towards their Ban the Bag campaign which is going to be implemented in Queensland in 2018. Hurray!

I had wanted do start sewing bags for Boomerang Bags but I might have to try and do this in 2017.

I’ve picked up rubbish on the beach and on walks around the neighbourhood. Keep Queensland Beautiful has initiated a ‘One Minute a Day‘ campaign which asks people to put aside some time each day to pick up rubbish and save it going down the drain into our waterways.  They are also trying to raise more awareness about releasing helium balloons. We often see this happen on special occasions or to mark a loved ones passing. The idea is nice but in reality, it is pollution. Those balloons might end up killing sea-life.  You can also read more at ‘Balloons Blow’.

Generally, I feel happier about my contribution to planet earth to keep in tact for a little longer.

The books that I have read this year have had a big impact on my views about the world and they all have something in common – to be happier, you need to live a simpler life that is more about the people you love and less about owning the latest and greatest gear and keeping up with the Jones’. In fact, in Scott Pape’s most recent edition of The Barefoot Investor, he reckons that the magic number is $70k a year. Once you earn more than that, you aren’t necessarily going to be any happier. It’s all about financial security and having a plan.

Zero Waste Home – Bea Johnson

The Simple Home – Rhonda Hetzel

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying – Marie Kondo

Both editions of The Barefoot Investor by Scott Pape (he has just released his second updated edition)

Sweet Poison – David Gillespie

 

 

 

 

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