Saturday, August 28, 2010

Breaking the Paper Towel Habit!!

I have a paper towel addiction habit! I go through so many paper towels throughout the day. I use them to completely wipe down my countertops multiple times a day, to wipe my kids’ hands and faces after meals, to clean up spills on the floor, etc…

A few years ago, I started buying the “select-a-size” rolls so at least I was using a half sheet instead of a whole sheet each time. I really felt like this was the biggest change that I could make since I felt so dependent on paper towels.

Did you know?

  • 51,000 trees per day are needed to replace the paper towels that are disposed of each day. --U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
  • Once used, paper towels cannot be recycled and must go to landfill. --U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • If each household in the U.S. reduced its paper towel use by just 3 rolls per year, it would save 120,000 tons of waste and $4.1 million in landfill dumping fees. --Arizona State University study (Go Sun Devils!!) {…insert “pitchfork” hand gesture here}

Enter my new paper towels:

 IMG_7017

Target bar mop towels….I think they were about $3.99 for a 6 pack. I bought 2 packs, but I think I am going to pick up another pack the next time I am at Target. (which will probably be very soon since I also have a Target addiction habit….I’ll save that for another post though!) I found a basket that we weren’t using and put it under the sink to store the towels in.

 IMG_7019, edit

By the way, since I was able to get rid of so many of my cleaning products that were taking up so much space in the cabinet above the refrigerator, I was able to totally rearrange that cabinet as well as the cabinet under the sink. That left me with more than enough room to keep my “new paper towels”!

I also keep a regular cleaning rag under the sink next to the towel basket and I use it for cleaning up spills on the floor like this one…okay, maybe this one needed more than just a cleaning rag! Ha!

IMG_4796, edit

I have only been using these for less than a month, but it has been working so far. I usually go through about 2 (sometimes 3) towels per day. Yes, we still have the paper towels out on the counter. No, my husband is not involved in this “experiment” at all which means he still uses the same amount of paper towels he did before. Yes, I still occasionally use paper towels for: wiping down the counter after working with raw meat, sopping up bacon grease, and other cleaning events that I don’t feel like my “new towels” could possibly recover from!

Not only will this new “experiment” save some trees, but it will also help save some money on my paper towel expense throughout the year. Next up….I have all the materials ready to start making some everyday cloth napkins. I have seen lots of these popping up at some of the craft fairs that I have participated in. If it goes well, I might start bringing them to some of the craft fairs myself. Stay tuned….

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