How many of us buy things that we just throw away? I know that I have many times. Throwaways add up to a considerable amount of cash over a years time. So in order to save some cash and not throw it in the garbage, we have really thought about what we are throwing out over the past year.
We no longer use paper napkins at meals. We have plenty of cloth napkins. When we used paper, we had a tendency to throw them out after each meal whether they were dirty or not. With cloth they are easy to just throw them in with the regular wash so they aren't really costing us any more money in water use.
Don't use paper towels. Use microfiber cloths or rags that are cut from the old clothes or towels that are worn out. We keep one roll of paper towels in our kitchen but that roll is over a year old. I put a couple of paper towels on top of a section of newspaper to drain bacon or other fried foods. I don't want newsprint on my food. But that is the only time we use them. We dry our hands on dish towels that we change every night. We have towels for drying dishes (they are green) and towels for our hands (all the other colors).
Do you really need Kleenex? Buy some pretty hankies for yourself and some plain white ones for Hubby. Let the kids pick out their own. I keep a couple of boxes of Kleenex in the stockpile in case one of us gets really sick with bronchitis. That is when we would not be able to keep up with washing the hankies. Otherwise, we use handkerchiefs. I wash whites in hot water to get rid of the germs and bacteria.
When my children were in diapers, I used cloth. They were easy to wash and I would hang a load outdoors every day. If you use your dryer, it is even easier. Throw a wash load in at night and put them in your dryer in the morning. I can't even imagine how much money we saved by doing this. I look at the disposables pictured that I purchased for the baby shower and cringe over the thousands of dollars that will be going in the garbage.
Are you using paper plates? I don't. Use your everyday dishes instead. If you have a dishwasher it doesn't really take any more effort.
I see no reason to buy newspapers today unless you have a husband that gets enjoyment out of doing the crossword every day. So this is one area where he wins. However, make your newspapers do double duty. We save ours to start fires in our outdoor fireplace. We also save the majority of them so that our family can line their ferrets cages with them. At least this way I feel like we got our money's worth out of them. The rest that we don't use in those ways get recycled.
For the ladies, do you realize how much money you can save by not buying pads or tampons? It's thousands over a lifetime. Instead go to Walgreens or another drug store and get yourself a Diva Cup. I only wish that when I needed it they would have been available. It would have saved me a fortune. I think of all of the years that I cleaned up dirty diapers and kids puke so this has no squeamish factor for me.
Do you buy disposable plastic knives, spoons and forks? I quit doing that. I bought a set for 12 of flatware years ago specifically for parties and outdoor picnics.
Don't buy candles that you burn and then throw out. Use the ones that have LED bulbs in them and run on rechargeable batteries. I have these all over my house. They last forever and are safe around children. If you want scents, there are many other ways to get that.
We only use disposable cups in the guest bathroom. Since we rarely have overnight company, a pack lasts me for years. In our master bath, we each use a washable cup.
I got rid of deodorants that have disposable containers. I use a deodorant stone. One lasts me over a year.
This is the last container of Glad Wrap that we have in the house. When it is gone, it will be reusable glass containers for leftovers for me. For large leftovers like a roast, I use my Temptations containers with a cover or a stock pot.
And lastly use rechargeable batteries instead of regular batteries. They have saved me a fortune over the years.
I am sure there a whole bunch more that I substitute but I have a busy, busy day here so I have to run.