Source: Helen Pond
As daughters, as we age, we can feel like we're becoming our mothers. Sometimes that's good, sometimes it's eye-rolling. In this case, it's stated with pride. My mother has always been an advocate of not wasting. To her, it wasn't purely economical, it wasn't just environmental and it certainly wasn't fashionable at the time...it was just the right thing to do. So, the timing of celebrating the gifts our mothers have passed on to us is perfect...Mothers' Day.
We've all witnessed an abundance of waste - the tossing of untouched food at the end of a party; a dumpster set up around a demolition site containing perfectly reusable items; the myriad empty plastic bottles littered everywhere (and creating an enormous plastic island in the Pacific Ocean). And, the plethora of plastic bags handed out by stores (some with a single item per bag). Waste is wasteful! On our current trajectory, we are destroying our environment and hindering future generations.
So, how can we stem the tide? We can pass on the gift of teaching our children to be interested and responsible by living a lower impact life. We can practice being less wasteful ourselves. We can set good examples for our children; we can teach them that we need to cherish our environment and respect it. That it's the right thing to do. We've all heard of the places to donate our unwanted items. Take the time to create an outbox and move the items to new homes. So much can be recycled or reused: clothes, house wares, cell phones, computers, furniture, books, TVs, batteries, printer cartridges, eye glasses, etc. Keep your eyes and ears open for outlets to bring your unwanted possessions. Or, search online if there's a specific item you want to move along. You can get your tween involved and create a drive at school to find a home for your leftovers. For example, my daughter's school recently had a travel toiletries drive. They collected the small sized containers that can accumulate and shared them with a homeless shelter. The kids felt great doing a good deed and we were able to move along something that was simply taking space in our bathroom cabinet.
Every step makes a difference! The best possible Mothers' Day gift we can ask for (and offer) is respect for our world. You might be interested in checking out Real Simple Magazine's suggestions about How to Recycle Anything . Happy Mothers' Day!