As I have mentioned in previous posts, I recently bought a house with my husband. We had to endure everyone’s favorite part about getting a new home- moving! I wanted to be as eco-conscious as possible when we migrated from our one bedroom condo to our four bedroom house, and I picked up a lot of really resourceful ideas on how to do so along the way. From packing, to physically moving, to unpacking and setting up our new home, we have tried to make as little garbage as possible.
I’m going to start with planning. When you want to be eco-friendly, your life usually involves extra planning. The first thing I did was collect boxes. I collected boxes from my job for a few weeks and used those to pack our belongings that did not fit into any bags or suitcases we owned. The cardboard boxes you use for moving can be recycled, or if you don’t want to make any waste, you can pass them on to someone else to use. I gave a few to my mother who needed them to pack up supplies at her school. If you don’t personally know anyone looking for boxes, you can post them on a Buy Nothing group. You can also collect boxes that way if you don’t have other means to collect them. We also saved boxes and wrappings from our wedding gifts and my bridal shower to use for packing. Most grocery stores even give away boxes; if you get their egg boxes, they are a little sturdier for packing fragile or heavy objects.
Next was packing. I got boxes from work but still did not want to spend money on bubble wrap, or use it at all if I could help it. You can pack fragile items, like dishes or glassware, with towels, blankets, clothing or scarves. Scarves actually make great packing material. You could pack your fragile kitchenware in dishtowels and other fragile items around the house with scarves and blankets. For most of our fragile items, like wine glasses, we packed them standing up in boxes that just fit them so they wouldn’t tip over and carefully packed them in the car rather than in the truck, so we didn’t even use any wrappings for those at all.
Next is moving day! We had friends and family help us load and unload the truck full of our belongings, and everyone knows that the number one rule in having your friends help you move is “pizza and beer”. We made sure to have drinks and snacks available, and also ordered pizzas. Pizza is a good zero-waste takeout option because you can use the cardboard pizza boxes as mulch in your gardens, or as a fire-starter in your fireplace. They are usually not recyclable, but you can find tons of uses for them so that you don’t make trash. We did also get donuts (came in cardboard box that was recyclable) and soft pretzels (came in a brown paper bag) but we did not make trash. For drinks, we stocked our fridge with cans of soda, glass bottles of beer, we made lemonade in a pitcher and if anyone wanted water, they used our water dispenser on the front of the refrigerator.
A zero waste move was pretty easy to accomplish! And now that we are moved into our house, we are starting a compost and growing some veggies, so I will have a lot more to post about in the coming weeks! Until next time!