What I Eat in a Day

I'm working on a post with the EWC where a whole bunch of us are recording what we normally eat in a day.

If you follow me on instagram stories, you know that I roast a lot of cauliflower and sweet potatoes! I was in the habit of prepping my lunches for the week on Sunday, but I've dropped the ball the last couple of weeks. 

what I eat in a day zero waste edition from www.goingzerowaste.com #zerowaste

Everything has been a little topsy turvy since I started working full-time freelance for Pela. I love getting to work from home, and that I have access to my stove top. 

I try to eat seasonally and locally by shopping at the farmers market. I also buy all of my grains from bulk bins which you can read more about here. 

I wake up around 7:30 or 8. I like to go on an hour long walk with my dog. Once I get home, I start working on projects. I don't get super hungry in the morning. 

breakfast:

I make a smoothie around 10 or 11 and sip on it for an hour or two. My favorite smoothie right now is made with beet greens. 

  • 1 handful of steamed beet greens
  • 1 lonely banana
  • 1/4 cups of peanut butter
  • 1/2-1 cup of nut milk
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 10 ice cubes
what I eat in a day zero waste edition from www.goingzerowaste.com #zerowaste
what I eat in a day zero waste edition from www.goingzerowaste.com #zerowaste

I always try to eat all of my food scraps. I have a great blog post on ideas for using the odds and ends of vegetables you might be composting but could be eating!

Not only is it a great way to save money, it's also a great way to save resources. A lot time, energy, and water goes into growing our food.

lunch/snacks:

After I finish my smoothie, I like to snack on carrot sticks and hummus, brownie bites, or toast. I really like avocado toast and hummus toast with salsa. 

what I eat in a day zero waste edition from www.goingzerowaste.com #zerowaste
what I eat in a day zero waste edition from www.goingzerowaste.com #zerowaste

dinner:

I like to eat an early dinner and always cook up something tasty like nachos, veggie burgers, stir fry, fried rice, grain bowls, or pizza. I recently made a loaded sweet potato which was SO tasty. I will definitely be adding that to my menu rotation!

  • 1 roasted sweet potato
  • 1/2 cup of pinto beans
  • 1/2 cups of quinoa 
  • 1/2 an avocado
  • 1/4 cup of salsa
  • 1/4 cup of cheezy sauce
  • garnish with green onions and lime juice 
what I eat in a day zero waste edition from www.goingzerowaste.com #zerowaste
what I eat in a day zero waste edition from www.goingzerowaste.com #zerowaste

I tend to base my meals off what I have in the fridge and I try to listen to my body when it's hungry. Some days I'm super hungry, and some days I'm not. 

dessert:

I also finish the day off with a handful of pretzels and chocolate chips! Growing up I loved Flipz chocolate covered pretzels. Luckily for me, I can buy pretzels and chocolate chips in bulk from Rainbow grocery. 

I have found one pretzel + 5 chocolate chips to be the perfect sweet/salty combo. 

I drink mostly water throughout the day, but I'll occasionally have a glass of red wine to go with dinner. 

Check out what other eco bloggers eat in a day: 

How to Make the BEST Choice for the Environment

I ask myself a lot of questions these days. Whenever I make purchases, I'm always looking to make the best choice for both the planet and my pocket book.

For instance, I recently bought some undies. Some had a plastic tag, but were made in the US. Others had no tags but were made in India. The other pair were made in US, had no plastic tag, but were pricey. 

I find that everything is a balancing act. So, how do we make the BEST decision? How do we know what we're buying is going to have the BEST impact? 

How to make the BEST choice for the environment from www.goingzerowaste.com

I started questioning this as I was riding home on the train from Rainbow Grocery. I finally got to meet the wonderful Shia from Wasteland Rebel. After many hours on online chatting, we met in the flesh, IRL. 

It was so crazy, because it felt like we'd been friends for years. I mean we have been online, but in person we didn't miss a beat! It was also so nice to meet her husband. I just have to say they are adorable together! It's so stinkin' cute. 

We met up at Gracias Madre in SF which I've been really wanting to try. I was very, very impressed with their offerings. They're a vegan restaurant committed to local and organic. 

From their website, "Our Menu is seasonal and determined by what is currently available at our Organic farm in Pleasants Valley, California, the Be Love Farm. Our cheeses and milks are made using nuts. Our tortillas and tamales are handmade from non-GMO Organic heirloom corn, some of which is grown by us on the Be Love Farm."

To top it all off their menu is absolutely divine, I think I could have devoured all of it. They serve water without straws and have cloth napkins to boot! 

It's definitely worth checking out if you're in the SF area. 

Photo from Gracias Madre

Photo from Gracias Madre

After we ate a delicious lunch, we headed to Rainbow Grocery. I plan to update that post with better photos, but it is the land of all things in bulk. And, I mean ALL things.

They have adaptogens, herbs, coffee, every type of dried fruit imaginable, fresh pasta, dried pasta, honey, maple syrup, the list goes on and on. 

But, the question popped up when both Shia and I were purchasing chocolate chips... 

How to make the best choice for the environment from www.goingzerowaste.com

There were organic chocolate chips and there were fair-trade chocolate chips. We spent a while debating the two. 

Which one is better? Ideally you'd want both right? 

I mean, ideally you'd be able to buy everything:

  • fair trade
  • organic
  • plastic-free
  • local
  • palm-oil free
  • vegan
  • in budget

Do you know how many things actually check ALL of those boxes? Not very many 

In fact, until this conversation moved from internal to external, I never even realized how much time I spent running down this mental checklist. I spend a lot brain power weighing the pros and cons hoping that in the moment, I pick the BEST option. 

I'm going to guess many of you who pride yourself on being conscious consumers also run down some sort of mental checklist when looking to purchase items. 

So, how do you know you made the best choice for the environment? 

Honestly, you don't. 

We don't live in a perfect world. We can only do our homework, and work with what we have. The choice I make, might not be the choice you make. That's totally OK! We have to remember that we're all on the same team. 

We're all fighting for a better world, and it's OK if we come to different conclusions as we might have different priorities. 

Being allergic to dairy, box number one for me, is no dairy. Clearly, I cannot compromise on that aspect. Plastic-free and package free is also on the top of my list. Which means organic and fair-trade might take a backseat. 

You might however, have organic and fair-trade first and foremost. It's OK if we come to different conclusions. We both, made the best decisions we could. 

It's why perfectionism has no place in this movement. More than anything we need education and awareness. Hopefully with more people making demands for products that check every box on the list, the more of those products we'll start seeing it in the market place. 

That takes voices, and it takes people working together. So let's support each other and work towards making a better world. 

.... but really which of the chocolate chips would you have bought? 

How to make the best choice for the environment from www.goingzerowaste.com

5 Places to Find Zero Waste Supplies

When going zero waste it's of utmost importance to remember the first couple of steps. First we refuse what we don't need, we reduce what we do need, and then we reuse what we have. Buying something new is pretty low on the totem pole. 

As the green movement flourishes, marketers are going to try and capitalize on it. They are going to try and sell you "green" products that you absolutely "need!"

While you might need this item and it might make your life easier, it's definitely worth spending some time and thinking about it.

Five places to find zero waste supplies from www.goingzerowaste.com

I made a great flow chart to help you make smart purchasing decisions. Similarly, make sure you're not being greenwashed

I have nothing against buying items that will truly improve your quality of life! These items are different for everyone. One of my purchases was a potato masher. Could I use a fork? Yeah, but it made me miserable. 

I bought a potato masher and magically mashed potatoes were a treat again. Every time I see my potato masher, I am filled with joy! This is how all purchases should make you feel. 

You should feel overjoyed at the sight of that object because it improved the quality of your life. 

When going zero waste, you're probably going to be switching some disposable items out for reusable items. You also might be looking to swap out consumable items for non-plastic alternatives like cleaning products, makeup, skin care, toothbrushes, you name it. 

When it comes to consumables, you're almost always going to buy those new. Sometimes, a friend might have bought a shade of lipstick she doesn't like and offer it to you. But, nine times out of ten, you're going to be buying those things new. 

1. ask a friend:

The smartest thing to do is ask your friends! Most people have too much stuff. They tend to have duplicate items they never use.

While your friends might not have an extra bidet attachment lying around their house, they might have extra mason jars, cooking utensils, pots and pans, or an extra water bottle. You really never know until you ask.

2. estate sales:

I've gotten several of my zero waste items from estate sales. Things are not made like they used to be. The older generation tends to have very high-quality zero waste friendly items, simply because they lived life before plastic. 

They're also sold relatively inexpensively. Things I would look for at an estate sale. 

handkerchiefs: I bought a whole bunch of handkerchiefs at an estate sale for a quarter a piece. Just make sure to wash them with really hot water. 

linens: While I wouldn't classify this as a zero waste necessity, it is a great place to find very well made products that will be easier to repair. Hand made quilts, crocheted blankets, place mats, table runners, I've bought them all at estate sales. They're a great price and very sturdy. 

cast iron pots and pans: I've picked up a pan that just needed a little seasoning. It's always worth looking! 

tea strainers: I inherited my tea strainers from my great grandmother, but I can only assume that they would be fairly common at estate sales. 

tea towels: Look for larger weaves that absorb water instead of push it around. I also inherited some tea towels from my great grandmother which do a pretty good job of absorbing water. I also have a set from Sur La Table that do well too. 

coated pots and pans like Le Creuset: I have two orange Le Creuset pots that are vintage and I love them! I got them for a total steal, and I use them almost every day. 

tools: I've picked up several very sturdy tools from estate sales from hammers to wrenches. I've also picked up several wooden and metal crates! Not related to zero waste at all, but super attractive additions to my home without the hefty price tag from pottery barn. Plus, they weren't manufactured in China either. 

furniture: Not entirely related to zero waste supplies, but it is a great place to find really well made furniture that can easily be repaired. 

canning jars: Vintage jars here you come! Estate sales are a great place to stock up on plenty of Ball jars. All of your zero waste pantry dreams can come true. They tend to sell for pretty cheap, and I also see lots of one gallon pickle jars. They're perfect for storing things like flour or other items you use often.

safety razor: You might be able to find an old school safety razor. Not much has changed in the world of safety razors. You can still find blades for them, and they're easy to take apart and clean. Rinse with really hot soapy water. You might even find a vintage blade bank too. 

3. thrift store and antique stores:

You will be able to find many of the same types of items at antique stores and thrift stores, although I have noticed the prices to be slightly in higher in most cases. 

I found a lot of my mason jars at thrift stores as well as several Klean Kanteens. Could not beat the price of a $1 water bottle! 

It's always worth a look because you never know what you're going to find. 

4. second hand online:

I had a lot of trouble finding any sort of metal tiffins second hand. While metal lunch boxes certainly aren't necessary, they are a lot lighter than carrying around their glass counter parts. It's also difficult to shove a sandwich in a mason jar. 

I've done it, but it just doesn't feel as practical. 

Checking eBay is a great way to find some second hand items. While it's always preferable to buy second hand in person, it's another great option for hard to find items. 

5. first hand online or in person: 

Look for companies and people you trust. I'm really impressed with the offerings of Refill Revolution in Boulder. Life Without Plastic is always a good place to shop and Tiny Yellow Bungalow offers a pretty good selection too. 

If you have a health food store near you or a co-op they might have some zero waste supplies too! I've even found safety razors and menstrual cups at Target. 

So, always take a look around town, you never know what you might find! I think I'd rather support a small business that offers sustainable products than a corporate giant like target. But, on the other hand, it's great to let places like that know there's a demand for sustainable products. 

I see value in both sides. What do you think?