Monday, December 9, 2013

My hippie ways (no judgment here), part 1

I hesitate to use the term "hippie" to describe a few "green" habits that I've adopted. As my mom and I discussed, there are (1) "tree-hugging" hippie ways, like recycling and repurposing; and (2) "free-love" hippie ways, like, well, I won't go into it. For my purposes it's just an affectionate, common term I use to describe my efforts to conserve energy and resources in everyday life. For reference: I love the book Cooking for Geeks, which is where many of my food habits originated.

       The outside refrigerator. I don't have a picture of this, but imagine you just made dinner. You dished out delicious goodness onto your plates, and you have hot food sitting in tupperware, ready to eat tomorrow or for lunch sometime in the week. Your choices are to leave it out at RT (room temperature) on your counter and wait for it to cool before putting it in the ice-box, or put it into the refrigerator while it's still hot. I really don't like either option, because at room temperature you're creating the perfect environment for harmful bacteria to grow in your food (yes, even for a couple of hours), or you're warming up everything else in your refrigerator, warming up the milk (eiw) and forcing your machine to work harder than it needs to.

My solution: it's 30-f'ing degrees outside. Take that tupperware and put those suckers right outside your front door while you're eating dinner. Before you go to bed, bring in those (now very cold) tupperware and put them in your fridge! Boom, problem solved. This obviously only works if it's less than 40 degrees Fahrenheit outside.

       Homemade laundry soap. My love-hate relationship with Tide needed to end. I love it because it works so well, is familiar, and smells so yummy. I hate it because it's expensive, and all of the surfactants that go down the drain are probably bad for the fishes. (That's complete conjecture, but I still worry about all of the soap that goes down the drain). I use this recipe, and soak the laundry for a few hours before running the machine, and our laundry comes out exactly as if we were using Tide. It's also cheaper and I know everything that's going down the drain. For reference, I also buy baking soda in bulk from Costco and convert it into washing soda (sodium bicarbonate to sodium carbonate) by heating it up in the oven when I'm baking something else (might as well utilize that heat). This is necessary, because washing soda is significantly more basic than baking soda, and therefore cleans much more effectively.

       Homemade dishwasher detergent. Will go into this later.

       Homemade dry shampoo. Mix 2/3 baking soda and 1/3 cocoa powder. I sprinkle some on my hair, mix it in with my hands, and then comb. It smells wonderful and is perfect for dark hair. (tip: I also use this as a face scrub, add a little water and let it sit. My face feels so soft after this!). Try not to lick your face when you use this as a face scrub, it's still basic.



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Sophia said...
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