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AMANDA'S DIARY

 

DAY ONE OF CHALLENGE WEEK

Ok. Day 1 of Faversham say 'No' to throwaway plastic. I informed the family that I wouldn't be buying crisps, biscuits or in fact any plastic that cannot be recycled. The cry went up 'What about Snickers bars?' No no no no snickers bars! In fact no soft brown sugar, pasta, rice, sultanas, currants, nuts of any kind, cocoa powder! 'So what are we going to eat? It's just say 'no' to food week!' Well, potatoes, bread, fruit, fish from the deli counter packed in my own take home tupperware box. Tins! Don't worry you won't go hungry! I promise! Wish me luck! Here's to being creative and looking for alternatives!

DAY TWO OF CHALLENGE WEEK

I took my flask to work, instead of using a plastic cup which would just end up in recycling. Now, look at all this food I picked up on my way back from work. Walnuts in shells, fresh fruit and vegetables, meat wrapped in grease proof paper and fish in a reusable plastic container! Yay! I put out my rubbish today and only had 2 bags of rubbish. That's one bag of non-recyclable rubbish a week. How proud am I?

DAY THREE OF CHALLENGE WEEK

The highs: bamboo toothbrushes arrived last night, but in loads of packaging, albeit cardboard. Reused my egg boxes and picked up a dozen loose eggs from M&B farm shop and a cucumber not wrapped in plastic! First cucumber I've bought since November! It was wrapped in plastic, but Mrs M&B farm said she's taken off plastic from some of the cucumbers to see which sell faster and if plastic free cucumbers sell better then she'll look to source them without plastic! The Lows: Tonight, we will be eating pasta from the store cupboard (eek cheating already!) and some breakfast biscuits arrived in the post as a free sample! Ahhh, don't they know I'm trying to go plastic free!

DAY FOUR OF CHALLENGE WEEK

Have felt hungry today. I realise as a family we snack quite a lot! But we can't buy crackers which is one of our staple snacking foods. Carrot sticks, cucumber, walnuts and fruit are all good, but have their limitations. Fruits all gone now and the carrot cake I made on Sunday's all gone too. I've just made flapjack and a pizza base for tomorrow. My son took one look at it and said, 'What's that?' 'A pizza base' I replied, and he responded: 'Hmm, interesting!'. Sorry I'm not going to provide any photos for you to all scoff at too!! Just got to think now how to source the ingredients for the top! Maybe, that'll improve its appearance! Here's hoping!

DAY FIVE OF CHALLENGE WEEK

I ordered a moon cup today. Hope I fathom how to use it! I've been told it's a game changer. My mother didn't menopause until she was 57. I think I might be the same. So, as I see it, I think there are a few years ahead yet to use it!
Also, I took grease proof paper and scissors to Macknades. They wrapped my Toscana Prosciutto and Milano salami from the cured meat counter in it and then I refilled an old plastic tub with olives. So, tin of tomatoes, onion and garlic chopped and fried and then you have a plastic free pizza topping! Yay! However, the bad news is I found a crisp bag and Cadbury's chocolate wrappers in my bin, but not in my name! Do you hear people? Not in my name! I'm being sabotaged!

DAY SIX OF CHALLENGE WEEK

'm going to describe it as Black Friday. Two of my family and I'm not saying who (they know who they are) independently fell prey to the temptations of a snickers bar. They were respectful or secretive enough to dispose of the waste elsewhere and not in my bin! Glad to get to Day 7! I will post some reflections of the week later. Now, I'm making a lemon cake and some parsnip soup!

REFLECTIONS

Some reflections on my say 'no' to throwaway plastic week. The pros and cons. Firstly, I think it made us eat more healthily and we've definitely made less rubbish. No non-recyclable packaging was tricky, but not impossible, but we did cheat. We had packets of cereal, rice and pasta in the cupboard. We did buy 3 large cartons of yoghurt, sunflower margarine, milk and a newspaper, but these are all recyclable. Was it more expensive? My shopping came to £128 this included refilling 1l extra virgin olive oil bottle (£10.95 I nearly fell over when I found out the price!) and my liquid washing detergent refill and a couple of other house hold items. Otherwise, it was just food and we are a family of four adults. I think it more or less compares to what I normally spend. I did bake and make a lot, but the extraordinary problem is that even that was difficult because I had to find ingredients that came in recyclable packaging. I had to constantly plan and think about where to source ingredients which was time consuming and meant going to lots of different shops. It did mean shopping more in the town which was good for local business, I'm sure. However, I'm lucky because I work part-time and could shop before 5.30pm. For a full-time working parent, the supermarket really is the only option. Today, I stocked up on the food that I cannot source locally in non-recyclable packaging as shown in the photo. Ok, I've decided no more crisps ever and I will continue to use the butchers, fishmonger and grocers, but I will not be refilling my oil bottle. It's too expensive! For the women out there, the moon cup was amazing. I'll stick to that! The bamboo toothbrushes are also good. So, that's the end, I hope I haven't bored you. For those of you who read my diary, thank you. I hope it was useful and helped you think about your own use of throwaway plastic and the possibility of cutting back!
Amanda Croft