I’m Anna and I’m on a Not Made in China Challenge. Today happens to be my challenge anniversary! That’s right, four years ago today I pledged to stop over-consuming, stop supporting unethical fashion brands and to buy as much (%wise) made in USA items as possible.
This pledge started my journey towards green living. Before that, I thought recycling, bringing bags to the grocery store and supporting World Wildlife Foundation with a bit of cash each month was the definition of being “eco friendly”. Yes, we all start somewhere. (If you’re not even doing those things, take a minute and reflect.)
Every year since I started the challenge, I’ve taken different steps to lower my carbon footprint like starting a compost, switching cars, limiting my shopping, quitting beef, to name a few and this year is no different.
More specifically, in 2017 I have:
- Gone plant based for real. Hardly any cheating, guys! My husband has joined in on it too – like 90% joined in. I am so proud and impressed by his actions.
- Kept up with cloth diapering our bundle of cuteness and poop. (Update post coming soon!)
- Joined the Sierra Club and Planet Parenthood as a monthly donor. So easy.
- Shopped even less (for myself) than last year. How is that even possible?!
- Seriously revamped my bathroom/beauty routine meaning fewer, only all natural products in mostly zero waste packaging. Daily make-up no more.
I’m proud of all my efforts but going plant based has been the best decision ever. It takes a lot of thought and motivation and I did cheat during the holidays because gingerbread and cheese. However, I recognize that going vegan is a work in progress just like the not made in China challenge was (and is), so I’m not too hard on myself. I’ll get there :)
So, have I failed my Not Made in China Challenge at all?
YES. Oh my god, yes.
Keeping a baby happy and healthy takes time and thought which leads to shortcuts. There’s been take out in styrofoam, some unnecessary driving around to keep baby asleep in the car, baby things I didn’t need (erhm, sorry not sorry) and also a few items MADE IN CHINA! [Insert panic emoji here.] Namely a high chair, a robot vacuum, backsplash tile, a rain cover for the car seat, a pack and go stroller and a new pod-free coffee maker (hallelujah Ninja!).
I know, I know. I’ve gotten more China items this year than I did for the past three combined!
I guess some years you “need” things and some years you don’t. Having a new baby I think automatically classifies 2017 as a year we did need stuff. (A coffee maker and a robot vacuum fall in that baby-category! They do! Both were Christmas gifts for ourselves.) I actually think we’ve done really well acquiring very, very few things of which most were made in USA, Fair Trade or second hand. Go us.
2017. It’s been an interesting year. (Don’t get me started on Trump.) It’s been a busy year too for me; not just at home with baby but at work as well. I haven’t blogged as much as I wanted to (wrote 45 posts compared to 60 in 2016) but that’s ok. This green mama/manager/newly crowned vegan cook can’t do it all. (Hint, neither can you.)
I’m thankful for everyone reading, commenting, engaging, and sharing! Also, I am so happy and grateful that I get to inspire you and be a small part of your journey towards a greener life with less consumption, better choices, less meat and most importantly: increased awareness.
Stick around for 2018 why don’t you!? I promise to do my best to make you think, smile and learn.
Happy new year guys.
Here’s to another year on the challenge.
PS. Please, pretty please, share your small or big eco-successes you had in 2017 in the comments. That would make me and everyone reading super thrilled and pumped for the new year :)