Earlier in the year I read a bit about One Word 365.
In their words, this is what it's all about.
One word can change everything.
Forget New Year’s Resolutions. Scrap the long list of goals that you won’t remember three weeks from now anyway. Choose just one word.
One word that sums up who you want to be or how you want to live or what you want to achieve by the end of 2012.
One word that you can focus on every day, all year long.
It will take hard work, and will require intentionality and commitment. But if you let it, your word will shape you and your year. It will guide your decisions and help you grow.
Discover the big impact one word can make.
A changed life.
I liked the idea of having a general goal to work toward, something that tied together the initiatives (fads) I was working on. Nothing too specific, but something I could still keep a direction on.
I decided my own word would be sustainable. I think it sums up the new focus I have for myself and my family for this year.
In thinking about this year and the seemingly huge list of things I want to tackle, I began to look at the start our family made on this journey in 2011 and before. It made the 2012 list seem not so daunting, because we have already achieved so much. So over the next couple of days I will be sharing my Toward Sustainable Living lists. Things we have already achieved toward sustainable living and sustainable living goals for 2012.
(things we achieved before 2012)
-grow limited varieties of organic veg; corn, tomatoes, broccoli, herbs
-have planted out young fruit trees, nut trees, berry plants; apples, olives, pear, nashi, plums, nectarine, apricot, guava, quince, walnut, almond, blackberries, loganberries, strawberries, black & red currants.
-sorted an area for housing backyard chickens
-use recycled materials for building and landscaping projects
-have and use two compost bays
-moved to a property with more available land for growing produce
-learning about permaculture ideals
-installed insulation in roof space
-reduced use of clothes dryer
-purchased HE (high efficiency) washing machine
-purchased some second hand furniture
-installed low flow and dual flush bathroom fittings
-use both inside and outside clothes lines for clothes drying
-reduce clothing, based on inspiration from project 333
-purchase and swap second hand clothing; school uniforms, kids play clothes, my clothing
-accept hand me down kids clothes and shoes
-use home made and natural remedies for minor illnesses
-use oil cleansing method to clean my face, see crunchy betty for more info
-make home made yoghurt. I use the easiyo maker.
-use vinegar as rinse aid in dishwasher
-use towel offcuts as general kitchen wipes to be washed and reused
-compost kitchen scraps
-recycle plastics and paper in council bins
-cook many meals from scratch
-actively reduce the consumption of preservatives, artificial colours and artificial flavours in prepared foods
-menu plan weekly
-reduce the consumption of meat
-use reusable fabric bags for shopping
-make handmade gifts for family, friends, teachers...
-purchase Christmas gifts from Tear Australia's Really Useful Gifts, instead of buying more stuff!
-do kids birthday parties at home, with no plastic junk loot bags!
-choose to own only one car
-give away items no longer needed; toys, clothes, furniture, building materials
Writing everything down made me see that we have already done alot and that we are not starting from scratch in this.
We do still have a way to go to be living the sustainable life, but it is not an impossible dream.
It is something that we are working towards one small thing at a time.
What are the small things you have done to improve your lifestyle and become more sustainable?
I'm linking up to Your Green Resource at Sorta Crunchy. Check out the other great sustainable ideas there.