EcoChallenge Update Week 1

A few weeks ago, I told you all about a fun way to get more involved in an Earth-friendly way (click HERE to read all about it). I am talking about NWEI’s Annual EcoChallenge! It runs for two weeks (from October 1-15) and all you have to do is make at least one eco-friendly habit change  during that time. I created a TMD team so we bloggers can participate together and we opened it for the readers to join in. For the month of October, every Tuesday, we will be updating and talking about our progress with EcoChallenge. This week, each one of us will update you all about how we are doing with the EcoChallenge.

 How did you do with the first week of EcoChallenge?What were some of your successes? Challenges?

Kelli– I did okay this week. I set up temporary bins for recycling (just some old rubbermaid totes), so we did reduce our trash output. We didn’t build permanent recycle bins, though, like I had hoped for. One success this week was that I did dry all of our laundry for the week on the clothesline. I haven’t used the dryer once all week, which was pretty cool. I love that I’m not only reducing our energy usage, but I’m also doing something that is gentler on our clothing (saving us money in the long run). The biggest challenge for me is the recycling issue. I hate having temporary bins, but I realize that that is pretty unimportant. At least we are recycling again! I haven’t pulled my compost bin out yet, but hope to this week.

Xza– This week was interesting to say the least. We were in the process of packing up our house for construction so I had a bit more trash than I would have liked. I actually went over our regular trash usage, but limited the amount of kitchen trash. I refrained from coffee drinking and refused packaged beverages while out. Biggest challenge was remembering to say no to going out to lunch/coffee with friends and clients. I brought my beverages with me and refilled whenever possible. It also happened to be my biggest sucess of the week

Jessica – I think I have done pretty well this week. I have moved to no paper towels, no napkins, no disposable diapers or wipes, recycling every scrap of recyclable material possible, and feeding my chickens A TON of food scraps. The one issue that I have run into (and I knew I would) is trash stink. Ideally, I should get a smaller trash can and take the trash out more often and in smaller bags. Even trying to not put food matter in the trash can is nearly impossible when I empty the dustpan into the trash. There are also four diapers in the trash from the days before I got my brand new diaper covers in the mail.

As far as food, I have been really focusing on getting as much food locally as possible. I try to include at least one local ingredient in every meal and often more than that. I am so thankful that I have such great neighbors and that I can reach out to them and buy local, sustainable foods that I feel good feeding my children. If local dairy was more accessible, I would be a very happy camper. I would also LOVE to get my raised beds finished this fall so I can have a small hoop house and grow greens this winter.

Misty– The first week was a lot more challenging than I anticipated it to be.  My goal was  to cut back on as much paper waste as we could. No more paper plates! Which meant when we had friends over for the game on Saturday, we had a sink full of dishes left  behind.  I also have been bringing my own coffee to work so I can cut down on the waste from used coffee cups. That’s hard for me to do! I did it and actually didn’t miss it that much.

Risa– The first week went all right. The biggest part was getting the entire family onboard and committed. For the first three days, it was all about teaching the girls what energy conservation is and why it is important. I pretty much went right over Lily’s head, but Riley is much more focused on ways she can help. Lily will just mimic Riley, so keeping my focus and Riley’s and my habits are key. Our biggest challenge is the fact that I don’t have a backyard space. I was not able to line dry all my laundry as I had hoped. My HOA would freak out if I had a bunch of clothes in the front of my house. I did, however, line dry all my diapers and made sure to run my dryer on the lowest heat for the least amount of time possible. My biggest success has been the fact that I have been hand washing all of our dishes. I HATE handwashing, but I know that running my dishwasher daily (YES DAILY) is so bad for the energy consumption of our house. Also, every single time one of the girls turned off a light without me reminding her felt like a huge success.

How did your first week of EcoChallenge go?


For more info on NWEI EcoChallenge click HERE


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  1. Joy Marie Platt -  October 9, 2012 - 5:56 pm

    I actualy found out that depending what kind of dishwasher that you have s some of them use less water than had washing. For myself I went back to cloth diapers, so far so good.

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