Updated: Nov 25, 2021
We have been moving away from paper as much as possible, including the following:
We've put all bills on electronic only delivery, and pay our bills online. This is an example of using modern technology to reduce waste.
We would like to reduce the amount of junk mail solicitations and catalogs we receive. In the meantime, we shred them and use the shredded paper for worm bedding (mostly unopened and unread!) We also shred the packing paper and cardboard boxes from deliveries and compost it. Large cardboard boxes have been handy as weed barriers at the bottom of our new garden beds.
We use cloth cleaning towels and rags as much as possible, to reduce our use of paper towels. We also use cloth napkins instead of paper ones at the table. When the kids were little, each person had a different napkin ring, and the used napkins went in a basket so they didn't have to be washed every day. They got washed once a week, or whenever they were dirty. Cloth napkins are nicer as well as more environmentally friendly. These are both examples of going back to the traditional ways of doing things to reduce waste.
We bought a bidet toilet seat to reduce our use of toilet paper. This is an example of using an approach common in other cultures to reduce waste.
We use washable cloth face masks instead of disposable ones. The ones we have are highly rated. They are two-ply and fit tightly enough that we are breathing through them, rather than around them, so we don't feel that our health is at all compromised by this choice.
I bought some organic cotton handkerchiefs (from a woman-owned company in the US, not from Amazon). I plan to carry hankies in my pocket. I'm glad they won't shred in the wash when I forget to pull them out. And I'll be happy to reduce my use of paper tissues. This is another example of going back to the traditional ways of doing things to reduce waste. My dad always used cloth handkerchiefs, and they work fine.