Saturday, 29 August 2009

TLBG - Round up post

Just thought I'd stop by and do a little round up of this weeks TLBG posts that you had all written. Wow what a response!! I loved reading through all of them.

Lisa Ridgeon Originals wrote a post about organic food and plastic. I loved Lisa's post on striving to buy organic meat in the hope of the animals living a good life before they are consumed, but frustrated by the fact its all presented in plastic (not good!). Lisa also writes about her frustration that the government released a statement saying, organic food has no more nutrition than non organic food.....Durrrr!!!! They are totally missing the point!!! You buy organic food because there are no pesticides or chemicals used in the growing/rearing process - therefore better for human consumption (I'm sure we wouldn't like to drink these chemicals they use on crops!!), better for wildlife and certainly better for the environment!!! WAY TO GO LISA!!!!

Alex over at Pink Feather Paradise wrote a great post about plastic milk bottles and how she is trying to go back to glass (which can be re-used - not all plastic can be recycled!!) which also takes me to the post that Rachel (TLBG) wrote about using milk bags!! Which I am going to give a go.

Marmaladekiss wrote a totally awesome post about a book called 'Small Wonder" pop over and read her post if you haven't already.

I also loved all the posts that were about the little things like using a Ferrero Rocher box to store your threads in rather than buying new (SweetMyrtle).

This is what TLBG is all about, I'm overwhelmed with the response to our new blog and all the posts that were written this week. I'm learning lots of new ways to be greener and its making me think about the decisions I make whether it be shopping, cleaning, throwing rubbish out, re-using things and even making tasty mish mash meals out of food that needs to be used rather than throwing it away after its gone a bit yucky because I didn't. Just because the combination isn't in a cookbook doesn't mean you cant eat it together!!

I hope you are all getting something out of TLBG - I'm looking forward to reading your next posts. We'll be setting the topic for the next post here Wednesday 2nd September for you to write a post for Wednesday 9th September.

See you then!!
Emma xx

Wednesday, 26 August 2009

TLBG Wednesday - Rachel

One of my biggest "green" concerns is plastic. The stuff is just everywhere! I was rather horrified recently, waiting at the supermarket checkout, to realise that, with the exception of a box of eggs, every single item I was buying had some form of plastic used in it's packaging. Not cool. I'm sure you all know that plastic is bad because it doesn't bio-degrade, which means that, although it might break down into smaller and smaller pieces, it will never completely go away. Once it's here, it's here FOREVER. Whilst recycling is a good thing, where plastic is concerned it is not the solution - only a tiny proportion of the plastic produced ever gets recycled, and the quality deteriorates when it is recycled, so a plastic bottle will not "come back" as another plastic bottle. The best solution is to simply use less plastic. Easier said than done. We've been using our own fabric shopping bags for groceries for several years now, and I'm getting better at remembering to take them on other shopping trips too, so our plastic bag use is pretty low. But the next big hurdle is bottles. Here are a couple of things we've done recently to try and reduce our bottle consumption:
We now buy our milk in bags! You do have to buy the special jug to use with them but this apparently reduces packaging by 75%, plus they are cheaper than the plastic bottles of milk, and you can still recycle the bags. I've got to say, I'm very impressed with this. They are very easy to use, you just put the bag in the jug, pull a corner of the bag over the edge and close the lid to secure, then push in a spout and that's it! You get two spouts with the jug, so there's always a spare and, providing you check that the bag's not leaking, we've not had any leakage into the inside of the jug either. They're only currently available at Sainsbury's and Waitrose - you can check the website here to see if your local shop stocks them and for more info. We probably use between 3 and 4 2pint bottles per week, so this will be saving us approx 150-200 bottles per year.

I've also just invested in a couple of stainless steel drinks bottles for the kids' lunchboxes (see bottom photo above). Prior to now, they would take either a juice carton (which can't be recycled) or a bottle of flavoured water (which shouldn't be reused as the plastic used for those kinds of drinks is not intended for long term use and can leach chemicals into the liquid if washed and reused). Now, these bottles were not cheap, but they are reusable, will not taint the liquid or leach anything nasty into it. And they should pay for themselves within a couple of months. Plus, we are saving approx 300 or so bottles over the course of a year! I bought them here. The first thing I did when they arrived was a leak test - put in some water, put on the lids, turned them upsidedown and SHOOK! Not a single drop escaped. I'll let you know how they hold up once the kids are back at school.
The next thing that needs to be tackled in our house is soft drinks bottles - hubby & I both like a bit of fizzy and with the warm weather we've been going through bottles at an alarming rate!
Looking forward to reading everyone elses posts!
Till next time...
Rachel x

Thursday, 20 August 2009

Wed 26th August TLBG Topic

Hello 'thatlittlebitgreeners' I've just popped by to let you all know the topic for this up and coming TLBG Wednesday post.

We're going to ease you in gently ;) so the topic will be just for you to write a post about a tip, tutorial or website/book/link that you'd like to share with us all. So for example you could write about a way you save energy or re-use something, or maybe its a recipe for using up leftovers or just a super website or link that we can all visit.

Its totally up to you! Looking forward to reading your posts. And dont forget to follow the other members so that you can see what everyone has posted. Rachel and I will be back to do a round up of our favourite tips from you all.....

Emma x

Friday, 14 August 2009

Watch this

Alex at Pink Feather Paradise wrote a post today about "The Great Pacific Garbage Patch" and, after watching the clip on youtube I felt that I had to share the link here.

Please do take the time to watch this if you can. It's pretty shocking the state our oceans are in. Let's just hope we can change things before it's too late.

Thanks to Alex for highlighting this issue.

Rachel x

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

The very first TLBG Wednesday - Emma

Hi Rachel and all you fellow 'littlebitgreeners' just thought I'd better pop in and say hello too....first off I'd like to say a HUGE thank you to Rachel for joining me on this little venture. You're sooooo fab!!

I have to be totally honest with you all, until about two and half years ago being green and 'trying' to do my bit for the environment was never an important issue to me. And feel quite sad that only since then I have adapted my lifestyle to being more green.....In the past 2 and 1/2 years I have recycled as much as possible, we are lucky to have been provided with a 'green' bin from our council. In here we can put plastic, paper, card, cans, plastic bottles.....there's a very long list. They also provide us with a blue bottle bin too....and last year we signed up for the brown composting bin for garden and food waste.

But after seeing an interview with Vivienne Westwood it really touched a nerve with me and made me sit and think about what was actually happening to our planet and realised that so many people are just sitting by watching it happen.....surely if we all were a 'little bit greener' it would make a difference? Even if just a little we are all trying?

So this really is the reason behind TLBG, I am by no means an Eco-warrior or that I want to preach to you all. What I would love is for us all to come together as a blogging community and inspire each other to, save energy, re-cycle, etc. We want to hear all your wonderful and even wacky ways you try to contribute to being greener and have fun and make new friends along the way.

So don't forget to contact us if you want to be on the members lists, and its over to you: write a post about your green ideas, tips, tutorials, what ever you like and don't forget to put TLBG in your post title......we're following you all so we'll be able to spot your posts.

Looking forward to reading your posts, big hugs...
Emma xx

The very first TLBG Wednesday - Rachel

Hi! Rachel here. I'm so excited that this is the first TLBG Wednesday and I really hope lots of you join in too. I can't wait to start reading your posts! Anyway, back to the subject - as this is the first TLBG Weds and we have asked you to tell us why you want to get involved, I thought it only fair that I should do the same!
I've been interested in green issues since I was a teenager but, I'll admit, whilst I thought it was all a great idea, I never really got round to doing very much about it. That started to change after having the kids - as babies they both had quite sensitive skin and my own skin became very sensitive too. I became more concerned about the kinds of products we used on our skin and turned into something of a label reader! (This is actually something I have quite a lot to say about, but I'll save that for another post). At the same time, we began recycling more as a family. We currently recycle: paper, cardboard, plastic bags, plastic bottles, glass bottles and jars, tin cans, garden waste and food waste. We also gradually changed all our lightbulbs to energy saving ones, have a hippo bag in our toilet cistern, turn the tap off when brushing our teeth etc. All the easy things that don't take much effort, basically! But I know that there is a lot more we could be doing. This is why I was so keen to join up with Emma on this project after we got chatting about a post she wrote. By pooling our knowledge (through sharing our stories, links, tutorials etc), I hope that we will all discover new ways to be green. And I hope we'll have some fun along the way too!

Rachel x

Wednesday, 5 August 2009


HELLO and welcome to That Little Bit Greener! We are really excited to be launching this new blog and hope that you'll all want to get involved too.

That Little Bit Greener has been created by Emma Castle and Rachel Lyddon, two keen bloggers who have never met but who became friends through the world of blogging and who share a common belief - that the world is in trouble and we all need to make changes to try and make a difference, no matter how small. Together, we wondered if there was something we could do as part of the blogging community? That Little Bit Greener is the result.
We decided to create this blog as a place to share information, stories, links, tips and tutorials that will, hopefully, inspire you to make some of those changes. We know that we don't need to tell you about recycling, shopping locally or changing your lightbulbs! We know that many of you do lots of these things already. And we know that there are hundreds, if not thousands, of "green" websites and blogs already out there. We are not experts and we are far from perfect! But we wanted to add our contribution, to try and be "that little bit greener", and we want you to get involved too.

Every other Wednesday we invite you to write a post on your blog about your own efforts to become that little bit greener, eg. favourite "green" wesites, recipes for homemade cleaning products, your adventures with growing your own food, ideas for repurposing old items, your amazing second hand finds, book reviews etc. You could even ask a question for other members to answer!
As we get going, we will be suggestsing themes and possibly even set you some challenges! The first TLBG Wednesday will be next week, on the 12th of August and, for this first post, we simply ask that you tell your readers about That Little Bit Greener (yes, we are asking for a shameless bit of free advertising!!) and also tell us why you want to get involved.
If you would like to get involved then drop us an email or leave us a comment and we'll add you to our list of "members". We'll provide a list of links so that you can check out each other's blog posts and maybe learn something new or discover something that you'd like to try out. And don't forget to subscribe to our feed so you won't miss out on any updates. We'd also love to hear your thoughts about this project or any ideas or suggestions you might have, so please do get in touch!
It's our hope that, by making this a group effort, we'll all be encouraging each other to become "that little bit greener".

We really hope you'll join us!

Emma & Rachel xx

Edited to add: Thanks to everyone who has joined so far! When leaving us a comment could you please make sure you leave us your email address too so that we can contact you. Many thanks! R x