Friday, April 24, 2009

Zero Waste Report #5: Zero Waste Week!! :)

This is how we started - quite good, from last week!! no?
(Truly only sis & I were at home most of the time!)

(paper on the right, mixed trash in the front, Mum's cleaning chemicals & some plastic bags to use for trash in the back)

Okay, it isn't finished yet.

& methinks we won't do so fabulously as Mrs A (who only produced one plaster!) - but it was a great experience anyway, & we did do some things that well, we I just kept putting off before.

DAY 1: Monday
I managed to talk to a local popstar's Mum about music & garbage - all before breakfast!
(maybe she'd be interested in doing/supporting a Swaporamarama/swishing event?!! keep your fingers crossed!)
She also said they find new homes for all furniture & clothes (teenage girls get pretty excited!)

Dad threw butter wrap in the bin. I yelled: 'No! We have zero waste week!'
He was slightly confused. 'You promised,' I said. (Actually, this was extending it a bit, he didn't actually promise, but I said it was my wish for birthday!)

Then, he needed a plastic wrap for his tax ID & I happily provided one I got in the bank the other week & felt guilty about!
'But it doesn't fit in my wallet!' he said & asked Mum to cut it off.
'Oh no,' I was desperate! 'It'll land in trash!'
'Oh no it won't,' Mum said, 'It'll end up in recycling!'
(Hmmm..? unlabelled unidentifiable plastics..?!)

I helped prepare zero waste lunch (with leftovers & lamb's lettuce from garden! & hokkaido pumpkin from the cellar!)

Went to town in search of eco yarn for dish cloths, didn't find any.

In the evening, some plastic-sausage wrapping was in the bin too! /sigh/
(Sis decided to fry some, it was a bit old already.. so I guess it's better to eat it than throw the whole sausage away!)

/My secret sneaky plan was to just extend the zero waste week so we will have 1 whole week of 'zero waste'!! lol!! hmm..?!
Of course I didn't tell anyone yet!!/

DAY 2:
The unidentifiable plastic foil chocolate wrapper ended up in the bin too!! :( Grr!! (I know I should've hidden it!! even Sis says it's better to just hide chocolate from her!! ugh)

On a happier note: My Dad is now anti-nuclear! :)
/He used to be pro-nuke! so this is huge accomplishment! :) not exactly sure how it happened, but it did!/
He also accompanied Mum & me to the place where computers lie on the grass..
(Though he still refuses to accompany me to a great site where they have best trash-separating record in Slovenia! 50% diversion from landfill! The #2 is said to achieve only 20% diversion! - I called the probably #1 trash expert in Slovenia & he invited me to visit! I'm so excited! Can't wait!
Or to the sub-mayor, his mate, about the computer monitors & TVs etc. 'It's none of my business,' he says!!)

It would be best if the computers would be put into a container, the expert said. Like my neighbours figured out already (I talked to a bunch of them about this!)
Most were supportive that this isn't right, one who used to work for a similar trash company said the computers are probably waiting for the other company (that deals with them later on) to pick them up!

Everything is behind the fence...

So does it make sense for the trash company to put the monitors into their own container, or would it be better to rent one from the 2nd PC-handling company?
I am still a bit confused about it all, & too much of a chicken to call anyone! (& not sure who to call or see about this!)

Dad bought some bread in paper bags, even though we've discussed cloth bags before. But he didn't know where the cloth bags were! /sigh/

Oh, & my Mum fished paper towels out of the mixed trash! (Quite promising!)

The bin magically doesn't seem to have any more trash than before!! YAY!! :)
/am afraid to ask where Sis's non-cloth-hankies end up!/

DAY 3: EARTH DAY!! - sunshine!
Mum & I planted the tomatoes to the garden, Dad worked in the garden almost the whole day too..

We planned a fancy meal to celebrate Earth Day, but ran out of chicken!(that was stored in reusable plastic containers in the freezer)
So I finally braved out & bought meat with a reusable plastic container, at the mini supermarket!! Quite an accomplishment for this ex-vegetarian!!

A keep-it-cool bag inside a cloth bag! Mum invented this & it looks & feels pretty nifty!

Not only that, I even washed the darn plastic containers by hand! (yuk!)
/It's better to not put plastics into the washing machine, as heat makes them emit iffy chemicals../
Oh, things we do for Earth!! /I think I wouldn't do it if it wasn't for Earth Day & zero waste week!!)

I also managed to buy 1 eco healthy carob spread (Sis complained 'there was nothing in the fridge!') - alas, not ideal packaging!
glass jar, & recyclable #5 PP lid, but unrecyclable wax paper under the lid! Also, the lid not so easily reusable as metal lids for new jams or such!
It seems the local stores have only jams or pickles and sauces, or unhealthy sugar-laden choco-spreads in fully reusable glass jars!! :(

& I did buy eco bananas in a non-naked state! /Oi!/ They seemed to be going bad & I feared they'd just chuck 'em away at the store! (better to just chuck the packaging - plastic foil! :( - I did talk to the sales assistants & they agreed less packaging would be better!!)

In the evening, Mum & I went to a book presentation by a relative!
He told about the old times & how things were done then.. Very interesting!
The book is very interesting too!

/I was afraid to approach the sub-mayor & mayor & network & ask them about the PCs on grass & under pine trees though.. Chicken!! It just.. didn't seem an appropriate setting, & I thought more privacy for such discussions would be better! - Also, didn't want to 'steal' attention or limelight from the author!!/

DAY 4: Thursday - rainy
I read the book by the relative.. very interesting!
Was amazed how much hard work was necessary for some things in the old times (& decided there must be better ways!)

Mum & I went shopping. Bought only 2 naked avocados in another mini-supermarket! (We wanted to buy more, but what?! Almost everything was overpackaged, or unhealthy, or both!!)
I am a horrible sister!! - I didn't let Mum buy yogurt for sis in tetrapaks or plastic packaging!! (We have sour milk/homemade yogurt at home!! If sis wants bought dairy, she can buy it herself!)

Mum & I bought a sticker for 'no catalogues'!
Mum had been swearing at the damn catalogues before, & said she'd buy it!
'But what will Dad & Sis say?' - 'Oh it'll take a while before he even notices it!' lol!! My Mum ROCKS!! :)
/pic & explanation in Slovenian on what is & isn't stopped by the sticker found here - stops supermarket spam mail, to not get free newspapers you need to contact the post office & pay a small fee again/

We'll see.. It's cheap, less than 0.50 EUR - comes with a bit of waste, though - as all stickers do! It prohibits by law to put unwanted mail/catalogues in the mail box! (Got an odd look from a post office worker that always gives me odd looks, but she gave it to me, lol!)

& if Sis peels it off, she can be fined about 50 EUR?!! (Much bigger penalties for a biz, up to 5.000 EUR! - article in Slovenian)

DAY 5: Friday - today!
not sure what will happen - stay tuned! :)

OMG My Mom just did WHAT?!!

/will let you know as soon as I get some pics!/


  1. Gosh Layla, you are flying with your successes and your family and gradually getting on board too. It's great to see so much progress - you are so motivated and inspirational.

    Well done! It sounds like you have had a great week :)

  2. Thank you Mrs Green!! :)

    It feels like doing 'nothing', compared to what I 'could' be doing...

    Some bits were really 'great', some not-so-great.. :)

    But I have some things planned for May already!! :)

  3. Hi Layla - what a fantastic week. That's brilliant and to see your family making changes is wonderful. What an ugly sight to see those tvs and computers. In the UK, we'd be able to ring the local council. I love the quote about the recycling centre with the 50% success rate. That's amazing. Keep it up, you're doing brilliantly.

  4. So, finally here's your zero waste week!!!
    Well done! Now you should have ended... and I'm curious to know how! :) Or will you extend it?
    Don't mind if something wasn't exactly as you planned! Your efforts and determination will inspire me... they're the very important things that will change your habits for the future! ;)

  5. lol Danda, officially it's ended, & I've just written a blogpost about it!! :)

    Unofficially, it'll go on...!! ;)

    Yes, please, be inspired & make your own zero waste week - maybe when your relatives or friends are visiting?!! :) To teach & inspire them?!! ;)

    I'm soo happy if I can help inspire you - you & other wonderful zero waste ladies & gentlemen totally inspire me too!! :)

  6. Mrs A, thank you so much for your support & cheering on!! :)

    I did badly need it in the 'zero waste week'... It's much better now that it's ended, lol!! :)
    I really felt like a horrible being making my family do all these horrible things!! :)

    Do you mean you could call the local officials or the waste company? (or both?)

    Well, officially, I 'could' ring the council/local garbage company too, & that's what I'm gonna do (it's a holiday today!) - if they don't do anything, I could still see the sub-mayor or mayor, or go to the press, afterwards..

    It's just that our local garbage company isn't very well educated, & I wanted to figure out what would be the best option.. so I called the expert from another council..

    It they just chuck these monitors into a big container, some may break etc?
    but is there any other option? at least I can tell 'em to be careful, & put them in lightly...?

    (I also had a bad experience of calling them about something before, & they said they'd do it & then they didn't..?!! hmm??!!)

    I wish the top centers would have better than 50% rate... I was quite surprised with the low rates actually!! & that 20% is the best next result!! ugh!!

    More stuff to do Slovenia-wide & worldwide!! :)

  7. Calling the press would be a great idea. Not only will it highlight the problem, but you could also tell them about your project too. Good luck :-D