Monthly Archives: July 2009

A Zero Waste Community

zwsignI’ve been meaning to share this story with you for awhile.  While we were busying ourselves with our personal zero-waste project, another challenge was being hatched just down the street.

The Strathcona Zero Waste project challenges 10 families (yes, some even have kids in diapers) to try to send nothing to the landfill for a whole month.

The challenge is the brainchild of Deanna Rogers.  As a student enrolled in the Simon Fraser University Semester in Dialogue, Deanna tried her own personal waste challenge: to put nothing into the landfill and nothing into the recycler for three weeks.

After “a few weeks of awkward exchanges, long explanations, personal choices, some extra weight in [her] backpack, and a lot of forethought” she decided to take her challenge (modified to be zero landfill waste only) to a larger audience, starting with her neighbours. Continue reading



Filed under Uncategorized

Dental Bliss

toms-toothpasteRemember way back when I ran out of toothpaste and started making my own?  I have to tell you the past 9 or so months of baking soda brushing have left me more than a little wistful for that minty fresh taste.  Plus, the homemade version leaves your teeth with that “just polished feeling” but doesn’t do your breath any favors.  So when our project officially ended, we sprang for a tube of the prepackaged stuff. Continue reading


Filed under DIY, Hygiene

Secondhand Family Vacation

roadWhen I was a kid, my parents used to pack us all into the family station wagon and do some serious summer road tripping.  We drove around BC, to Alberta, to Disneyland, even to Winnipeg one summer (that’s a good 4,000 kms round trip, wedged between the car door and my sister’s car seat, listening to Tanya Tucker and Willie Nelson).  You’ll notice I said car seat; my sister is now 21, so you can guess it has been a good many years since we did a family road trip.

This weekend, my parents packed all three (abet larger) kids in the car, and hit the road.  Continue reading

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Filed under no waste on the road, secondhand

Wrap Up Results

weigh in

photos credit: Travis Smith

So we’ve had a few days to settle down here after the finale of our Clean Bin Project Year.  I know people are dying to know who won.

We had the official weigh in our backyard on Canada Day, exactly 356 days after the start of our project, and we managed to lure about 40 guests with free food and drinks.

We ranked each of the 3 roommates using three criteria: landfill garbage weight, landfill garbage volume, and consumerism (a scientific ranking of awesome to very bad depending on if you bought “stuff” during the year).

Continue reading


Filed under consumerism, recycling