Sunday, July 26, 2009

Day 11 - Use a thermos when buying coffee, instead of a paper cup

Before I begin today's post, I'd just like to say a few words of happiness. First of all, my new laundry detergent, manufactured by The Soap Works right here in Toronto is the BEST detergent I have ever used. Produced locally, it takes 1/4 c of detergent to wash a large load of laundry, it is good for the environment, and there is no need for fabric softeners or dryer sheets, which means that when my box of Downy sheets are gone, they are gone! The best part of all: this detergent gets the smell of gas/exhaust/wind out of my jeans, which is extraordinary. Normally, my jeans smell like motorcycle year round, because nothing takes out that smell. But this soap does! I'm THRILLED. Just because I ride a bike doesn't mean I want to smell like one.

Secondly, I LOVE Freecycle. I've gotten rid of my vacuum cleaner and my paper planner with all it's trappings, and met some lovely friendly people in the process. I feel SO good, making others happy and giving away things that I don't need to others who really do. Seriously, this is what it is all about folks - giving away your things, helping out your neighbours, expecting nothing in return and being filled with this sense of community and goodwill. If we all just take care of each other a little better, think of the love we can inject into the world.

So today's change is to bring my thermos every time I go to Starbucks instead of taking a paper cup. I bought a great Starbucks stainless steel thermos last fall that can stand up to being stuffed in a motorcycle side bag and not leak. Sure, it was roughly $30, but it's great. Not only does the planet benefit from this action, but Starbucks takes ten cents off your drink price if you bring your own mug or thermos. I mentioned how great this was to them, and they told me that a while back, they had a promo day where, if you brought your own mug or thermos, your drink was free, and ever since that day, more people had been bringing their own mug or thermos out of habit. The barista said the city of Toronto was trying to implement a policy at all coffee places where your drink would be 10 cents less if you provide your own drinking vessel. Awesome!

This greening process is helping my wallet as well. Vanessa mentioned her book that her bank account was loving her green year, and not only because she was no longer paying for a car and all the things that go along with car ownership. I may start calculating the difference that my green choices are making in my budget and taking the difference and setting it aside for a vacation or some other venture. Today I saved 10 cents by bring a thermos, and every time I bring a thermos, that's another 10 cents. I saved roughly 15 dollars by purchasing an earth friendly moisturizer. I saved a few dollars by going with an eco laundry detergent, and I'll be saving a few more dollars now that I no longer have to purchase dryer sheets. The trick is to actually take that cash and set it aside and not spend it on something else (like oh so yummy local cheese that I really don't need, but it's soooo good. :-)


Chile said...

Next step, brewing coffee at home. Although I suppose there's not much local coffee up north in your neck of the woods. But, brewing your own would save you a whole heck of a lot more than 10 cents per thermos-full!

Anonymous said...

I love my Stainless Steel coffee mug! One tiny tip to share: I used to get annoyed by the little drip that would inevitably be left in the cup after drinking my coffee, no matter how much I slurped. So I started sticking my (used) paper napkin inside after finishing my lunch. Voila! No more leaky drips. If you happen to switch to cloth napkins, you could just stick it inside your cup after lunch for the ride home, though you might want to rinse the cup out first. Just a thought!

As for the saving money, I also see so many links between frugal and green living. I'm enjoying your blog a lot--good luck with your daily changes!

Eco Yogini said...

I also LOVE my starbucks stainless steel coffee mug- and have been brewing my own coffee at home for a few years (I allow my budget two starbucks a week).
I know that TO has a TON of local coffee roasters that most likely sell fair trade organic beans (if Nova Scotia does then TO must too! lol).

I missed the promo day at starbucks though... oh well. I'm trying to wean myself off of them, the evil company that they are LOL. :)