These days, most of us are trying our best to be a “green mom” with recycling and doing more things to protect the planet, but isn’t it sad that we are even having to think about these things in the first place? People are so quick to judge the generation before ours, saying they didn’t do enough for the future generations. However, it’s time our generation takes a long, hard look in the mirror because WE are the generation to blame. Yes you heard right. Let’s look at some examples of being a green mom nowadays as opposed to 50 years ago:
- Housework was very different 50 years ago: They didn’t have fancy mixers and blenders making smoothies and cakes for them – they did it all by hand without the need for electricity. Items were wrapped in old newspapers and not plastic bubble wrap or styrofoam that ends up in landfills. Simple, everyday items were not thrown out and replaced every time they were empty or broken – they were refilled or mended. For example ink pens and razor blades!
- Most houses in the old days probably only had one electrical outlet per room, not like we do today where we have extension chords in every socket to make extra room to charge your phone, tablet, watch, night lamp, humidifier, baby monitor and toothbrush.
- Disposable nappies weren’t invented yet – moms back then washed all their babies’ dirty nappies themselves, hung them on the line for the sun and the wind to work their magic. Now THAT’S green.
- Younger siblings received a lot more hand-me-downs than our kids do these days. As I’m sure you know already – fast fashion is becoming a major issue for the environment yet we still consume more despite having more than enough at home. There is absolutely nothing wrong with a younger sibling wearing an older one’s clothes!!!!! It’s a right of passage! Also, moms made a lot of their and their kids’ clothes by hand or with a sewing machine, which saved a lot of money and was much better for the environment since it wasn’t being produced in bulk.
- Whenever we run out of milk or juice (and even water here in Lebanon since we don’t dare drink the tap water), we run to the store and buy more. What does it come in – plastic. How often is that plastic recycled? Not often at all unless you have taken the extra steps to have recycling be a part of your daily life. 50 years ago, people had their milk delivered every morning in glass bottles that got sent back to the plant when they were empty to be washed, sanitized and refilled again for the next use.
- Before plastic was invented, when shopping at the grocery store, your items were placed in brown paper bags and those bags were later used for many other things, including being used as wrapping paper to cover students’ school textbooks that belonged to the school. Hello arts and crafts projects!!! What do we do these days? With each grocery store trip, we use about 15-20 plastic shopping bags depending on the size of our family and how much we shop. Where do these plastic bags end up? In the ocean or as part of the country fauna and flora (some even call plastic bag the national flower). Today, every single household should have re-usable shopping bags for every grocery store trip and that includes for fruit and vegetables. Old plastic bags should be re-purposed into something useful, like baskets or mattresses for the homeless.
- Back then, every household did not own a car. it was the most natural thing in the world to take public transportation and ride your bike to school… These days every person in the household has a car (no wonder traffic just keeps getting worse) and moms are glorified taxi drivers taking their kids to and from school and then to all their activities.
- 50 years ago, they didn’t have as many escalators and elevators in buildings as we do today. They had to walk up multiple flights of stairs – so not only did they keep more fit, they used less electricity to power all the lazy-man machines. They also walked to the grocery store a lot of the times, and didn’t get in the car for every little thing that is right around the corner from your house. This eliminated the need for a gym membership – imagine: driving to an indoor facility where you get on an electrical machine to run or cycle in one place. If you told someone that 50 years ago, they would laugh in your face.
- In the old days, the “Age of Obsolescence” hadn’t started yet meaning that if you bought a gadget or piece of equipment – those things were built to last a lifetime – literally. They weren’t intentionally manufactured to last only two years so that you would be forced to buy a new model every couple of years. I’m still using a Singer sewing machine that was made in the 50’s, and it works better than some of the recently manufactured ones – it will probably survive another 50 years.
Recycling is just one small way that we can start contributing to the clean up of our planet. It’s absolutely sickening what is happening in our oceans and seas – yet we are still not doing enough. Make small changes around the house – try to be more conscious of the amount of electricity you use and use less wherever you can. The same goes for water. If things keep going the way they are now, there will be a much higher price on water than there ever was on oil or gold. Think about it…