Reuse plastic containers in the garden

Lisa’s low cost ways to reduce waste

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“​Having our first child on a budget,” was what was prompted stay-at-home mum of two, Lisa to start managing their waste. “We couldn’t afford a lot of baby ‘must haves’, so we borrowed and got a lot of things second hand instead of new.”

When her first child started eating solids, they realised how much unnecessary packaging there was. “We cut out most of that by making our own baby food and using reusable storage containers. We then discovered food pouches, beeswax wraps, silicone baking trays as alternatives to traditional glad wrap and baking paper options.” 

After that, Lisa found more alternatives. ​She started useing “cloth nappies and wipes, reusable menstrual pads, lunch and storage containers, shopping and produce bags, and beeswax wraps.” Lisa began “purchasing second-hand or borrowing over new, especially toys and kids clothes,” and started offering unwanted, unsaleable items on the Free For All website.

“It just seems pointless to spend money and energy on items that ultimately will end up polluting our planet,”

They grow their favourite produce and use the vege co-op to reduce packaging waste. They buy stainless steel straws/pegs/drink bottles, use a yoghurt maker and sodastream and bake when time allows. “It just seems pointless to spend money and energy on items that ultimately will end up polluting our planet,” she says. She aims “to become more self-sufficient and less reliant on single-use convenience items and pass these skills to our children,” but finds it hard when “everything in the supermarket is in plastic, and that the packaging on shelves and new items is often pointless, single use and unavoidable.”

Short term they’re focussing on “not creating additional waste with a growing family. Long term we aim to reduce and I would love to cancel my rubbish and recycling collection. ​We have saved thousands of dollars, almost always the things we have chosen to do have saved us significant money.” 

Lisa’s tips to help you on your journey:

Tip 1: Borrow or buy second hand baby items

Tip 2: Make your own baby food and store it in reusable containers

Tip 3: Grow your own vegetables

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