plastic makes it…challenging

vitamin bottles. cheap shoes. cosmetic containers. computers and electronics. corn chips. anything you buy at trader joe’s. most toys. rice dream moon pies.

what do these things have in common? they are a very short list of things that our family will miss if we take a pledge to reduce or eliminate our plastic consumption.

i’ve been disillusioned about plastic for a long time. the primary reason being that it takes 500 years to biodegrade. oh but wait, new research shows that it breaks down quite fast in the ocean. as it does this, it creates a toxic soup of BPAs and other endocrine disruptors. the stuff that doesn’t biodegrade does this, or it creates a plastic island the size of texas.

a recent article in audubon magazine, along with a growing awareness of my own chemical sensitivities and the fact that i have an infant to protect, has pushed me over the border into a small but growing number of socially awkward plastic-less crusaders. what does this mean for our family?

it begins with looking at which plastics are the most harmful. if you go by the impact on our life giving waters, that would include… all of them. immediately, it means things like the plastic wrap on our raw, hormone free goat cheese from rainbow. canned food. plastic utensils. styrofoam (duh), anything (ANYTHING) vinyl. does it smell like a beach ball and give you that happy childhood memory? sorry, it’s in the top list of reallyreallyreally bad.

i will keep you updated with how we progress with this. for now, we will no longer be buying food that comes in plastic (never, never microwave your food in plastic). unless we absolutely-will-die-without-it, if it’s plastic, we aren’t buying it. obviously we have not, and do not want, to give fern plastic toys. and we will be saying bye bye to things like “Have’a Corn Chips” (*heavy sigh*). it means that it just really isn’t enough anymore to reduce, reuse, recycle. when it comes to plastic, it just needs to be a no-go. it also means that i do fun things like make re-usable cloth bags out of scrap material for vegetables and buying in bulk.

in other news, it was time to decant the dandelion wine this past weekend! it just so happened that we had some empty wine bottles, which i sterilized in a 200 degree oven for 20 minutes:

and then, OH NO SNAFU! in order to cork these puppies, i would need a hand corker. at $35, that is an expensive bottle of flower water. what to do? i headed over to brewcraft in the richmond district and explained my dilemma. not only were they superduper helpful and friendly, but they had the perfect solution:

no, they aren’t earplugs for giants.

T corks, which cost $0.35 ea. i didn’t have cash on me, so they let me have them on good faith. (ooops, and i haven’t gone back in yet. that will be today!).

i slowly, slowly poured the wine out, letting it glide, letting it trickle, and definitely not getting it all excited or oxygenated, leaving the sediment on the bottom of the jars. i corked these ladies and next chapter? fern’s birthday in september! (the wine will be for us, the adults, who will be celebrating having survived a year of no sleep).

shhhh, we’re sleeping.

i am surprised that only one reader (hi jen!) has taken me up on the offer to “share your spring photos.” really? no other burgeoning, amateur, or professional photographers out there who want to show their splendid springy good luck? i will wait a few more days before sharing jen’s pictures (they are good ones!), and while i will keep the offer open all season, i think you should send ’em in sooner rather than later! in the meantime, i have been capturing the juxtaposition of concrete and flowers, here in urban paradise. spring! it’s unrelenting.

at koshland park

european wild onion…invasive, resilient and delish

just around the corner

in an alley

hello? western telegraph? i have a blossom on the line for you.

can’t see the houses for the trees

the diner.

happy weekend!


4 thoughts on “plastic makes it…challenging

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