Alright I admit I am not a "Green" person. I don't bring my own cloth bags to the grocery store (though I usually do to the library, but that's self serving, I hate it when the mountain of books I get break through the plastic bags), I used disposable diapers with my kids when they were babies, and I don't eat organic free-range vegetables and meat that has volunteered to sacrifice it's life for my carnivorous pleasure.
Until we moved here, I also didn't recycle.
Understand, for years I *thought* about recycling. Every time a visitor would ask if we recycled cans, or one of the kids would come home fresh from a Save The World lesson at school and lay the innocent Guilt Trip of "mommy why don't we recycle"? Truth is, I was lazy. I didn't want to figure out HOW to, I knew there was some other truck that picked up that stuff, but where do I get the container? When do they pick it up? What stuff do I put in there? Bah! I don't have to pay for regular trash pick-up I'm glumping it all together in the regular trash.
When we moved here, I discovered we had to PAY for trash service. BUMMER. You pay a different price depending on the size of the trash can you have. The bigger the can, the more costly. Also, they give you a separate recycle trash can too that's included in the price, that they will pick up every-other week. If your regular trash is overflowing they charge you extra too. See where this is going?
We immediately found with a family of four that we generate enough trash, that we can easily make that medium-sized regular trash can overflow before trash day. Time to start Recycling! I grabbed out their brochure, and typed up two signs to tape above the recycle trash can in the house. DO Recycle and DON'T Recycle. And thus it began.
As time has gone on, I've discovered something. I *LIKE* recycling. There is a certain satisfaction with breaking down food boxes, washing out cans, and definitely with not paying extra for overflowing trash or a larger trash can. Also, it feels GOOD. I like that my kids are seeing us and participating in us recycling. I don't feel guilty anymore about throwing stuff away for it to end up in a landfill somewhere where it oughtn't. It's funny that a decision based solely on saving money ends up being a decision that also makes us feel better about ourselves and our care-taking of this planet.
I'm still going to use plastic bags at the store, though. Where else will I get my lunch bags?