Category Archives: composting

Day 349: What Do You Do on a Family Vacation?

beach familyThis weekend, we went to the seaside for Grant’s annual family weekend get-together.  I started the weekend by smashing a homemade jar of jam on the kitchen floor in my haste to get out the door; I celebrated the  midpoint by dropping a mug on the tile floor of our rented cottage; but I rounded up by toting three bags of compost home on my bicycle.

Do you think the landfill waste diverted by the latter make up for the former? Continue reading

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Day 262: Cluck Cluck Cluck

henIt’s official! Vancouver has joined the ranks of such municipalities as Seattle and Victoria and has voted to allow the keeping of backyard hens.

Now, you may think that I am just jumping on the hot new trend of urban chicken keeping, but I assure you my interest is genuine.  Continue reading

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Day 163: Free Range Worms

wormsAs I have mentioned before, we have a compost.   Just the plain, out-in-the-back- garden variety.  We don’t do much to it besides throw veggies in and cover them with the occasional handful of leaves.  It’s really only in the past two years that I have bothered turning it or maintaining it at all.

It’s this lackadaisical approach (and our sufficiently large back yard) that has kept my knowledge of indoor worm composting to a minimum.  I’m talking about those small bins, complete with lid and drip tray that are basically the only option for apartment dwellers.  I have always managed to avoid them by inhabiting homes with at least a small square of grass, and hence, a traditional outdoor compost.

Now, it’s true that my compost has worms in it, but those are wild, free-range worms.  Continue reading

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Day 136: Dustalicious

vacuumWell, it finally happened.  Our vacuum bag filled up.  This doesn’t happen often because we mainly have laminate floors and prefer an old fashioned broom to the overpowering, cat-traumatizing power of our upright vacuum. But nothing beats the clean corners obtained by electrically induced suction, and now our bag is full.

In a perfect world, we would have a bagless version, but in reality we bought it years ago when we were on a pretty thin budget.  I specifically remember that we went for the second from the cheapest model, congratulating ourselves on not being the complete lowest of the low.  (This was long before the concept of craigslist or freecycle had drifted into my life.)

So the question is, what to do with the dust bag?  Continue reading

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Day 133: Backyard Compost Etiquette

compost-veggiesI’ve been receiving some composting questions as of late, and, not being a compost expert myself, I did a little online research and eventually decided to go to the source of all things compostable: the compost hot line.

Yes, here in Vancouver, we have a compost hot line where you can ask your burning compost questions and gardening experts will give you the dirt on how to turn your fruit and  vegetable kitchen scraps into black gold.

Continue reading

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Day 89: Compostable Gala at the Film Fest

The one time we forget our reusable mugs, and it’s open bar.

Last night, Grant and I went to the International Vancouver Film Festival Gala.  Our first gala.  Ever.  We knew there would be food;we knew there would be drink; we naively thought that they would serve thousands of people with real wine glasses.

I managed to snag one of the few ceramic side plates floating around, but the only beverage option was plastic.  Or was it? Continue reading

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Day 81: Sick of Tissue?

I was sick this week.  Nothing too extreme, but a pretty bad head cold, sore throat, conjestion, headache.  You know, the usual across-the-board malaise.  Enough to garner me a couple sleepless nights and a day off (you know I’m sick when I take an unpaid day off work).

But this leads me to the issue of tissue.  We’re not supposed to be buying things except food and hygine basics.  So I guess the question is the definition of “basics”.  I think we had intended it to mean soap and maybe toothpaste, but that’s about it.  Paper towels are out, toilet paper is in. . . tissue kind of falls in between. 

Originally I had envisioned using cloth hankies, but that seemed unrealistic once my nose became a faucet of snot.  Sure, I don’t mind carrying around the occasional sneeze in my pocket, but at the rate I was going, I would’ve needed a bedsheet in my purse.

Using toilet paper seems nearly the same as tissue  except that it avoids the plastic film on the top of the box and is decidedly less soft and cosy.

For now I’m in the clear because I still have a half-box of tissue on my desk at work.  (Thank goodness I made a quick recovery.)   I’m going to try to make it last all year, so i can avoid the dilemma of whether to buy a new box.  In the meantime I’ve been composting my kleenex so at least it doesn’t end up in the bin.

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