Told husband to start baking bread again. He experimented with different starters and flavors. Plastic free bread selection is limited and homemade bread is so much better.
Also on the list, home made yogurt (also hard to find without plastic).
Took my containers to the new store in our neighborhood:
Public Goods and Services: Sustainable Products and Bulk Refills
I immediately loved the clean design of the store. The store clerk was very knowledgeable and friendly. We explained all the different products and options and I bought:
- locally made toothpaste in a glass jar, refillable
- refilled by big body wash and shampoo pump container I drove around for almost a month on my quest to refill it
- got a sample of a plant based deodorant in a tiny glass jar
- got a mason jar full of dish soap on sale
- some beeswax
- and some free bamboo band aids
After some inspiring chitchat about beekeeping, my Wildplant class, plastic free shopping, I felt so accomplished and happy leaving the Public store.
Ranted at my deep listening group tonight about my experience shopping plastic free, about the rude Safeway deli guy, about every grocery item being carefully wrapped in plastic, about my frustration finding very limited items compliant to my quest to shop plastic free, especially for cleaning and hygiene.
Everyone in my group then shared their zero waste shopping experiences. Loved it.
One of the other ladies shared with us we do have a new store in our neighborhood refilling lots of cleaning and hygiene products. I almost could not believe what I just heard. I will need to check out the store tomorrow.
Plastic free packaged foods beside fresh produce was the antipasti bar, the bulk section with the biggest candy selection and some lonely bagels and donuts in the bakery case.
We could get some artichokes and red beet we usually buy in glass here with our containers in the future. The deli counter was already closed so I had to get a plastic bag of turkey breast instead.
The fresh cookies come in a paper bag, but I skipped the extra calories tonight.
We fixed an issue with our old dryer a couple months ago (dryer would not heat and would not stop anymore) by ordering the broken part after some google searches and replaced it, which seemed to help.
But now the problem is back and instead of replacing the part again for another month or two before it breaks again, we decided it's time for a new washer/dryer set.
A new set would be about $2,000 and a big carbon footprint (think about all the parts needed in a big appliance like that, plus transportation and packaging), so I checked craigslist for a new used set for about 2 weeks.
Today we picked up a new washer and dryer from a family in Renton (not too far) with our minivan. The set is about 6 months old and was left by the previous owners of the house before they sold. Score.
Went to Grocery Outlet (which I love for deals on some items and for browsing random stuff as their products constantly change. I left without buying anything as everything is packaged in plastic other than the produce, which does not seem to hold up very well in our house, so I passed.
There is no bulk section, no deli or meat counter and finding even a single product just packaged in paper (even the bakery items come in plastic) is a real stretch.
Very excited I explored QFC's bulk section. For snack foods, my kids love carbs (tortilla chips, pretzels, gold fish, cracker), but all of these come in plastic bags and I am very committed to not buy anything in plastic for as long as possible.
I got some banana chips and found a flax seed tortilla chip that is a bit salty, but definitely a carb snack option. I also got some chocolate covered raisins as the chocolate almonds were such a hit, but raisins are much cheaper.
Our QFC has a scale with a price label printer right in their bulk section. I could not figure out how to take of the weight for the container, but weighed them in a fabric snack bag which does not weigh much.
At the meat counter I bought chicken breast, who got just wrapped in butcher paper as I requested. I also got some shrimps but those ended up in a plastic bag before I could say something to prevent it. Next time... I am very grateful each time I ask for plastic free the conversation does not take a dive.
It was like Christmas when I spotted a freezer full of bulk frozen entrees. There is NOTHING plastic free in the frozen section. And having to give up all frozen foods going plastic free is definitely a sacrifice. But now, I see Thai Curry, Salmon Ravioli, Mango Chicken, Mac&Cheese and a potato dish in bulk. I took one of the big paper containers and filled it up with frozen Ravioli - and I filled up my small take out container with Thai Curry.
At the deli counter I asked if I could get turkey breast in just butcher paper and the guy told me he also doesn't like that they use so much plastic. Yeah! LOVE him already. He went out of his way to get me butcher paper which I put in my dedicated turkey breast container. I challenged my luck by flirting with the chicken salad and asked if there is a way I could get some plastic free - and he made it happen. I definitely will be back and I will even write a facebook post about it being the highlight of my day.
I needed a quick dinner, so I got some chicken pieces packaged in a paper box. On the way out I grabbed 2 croissants and 2 donuts out of the bakery bulk case for dessert.
Self checkout took a bit with scanning all the bulk labels, but I got it done and left very satisfied.
Challenge of family of 4 living the WWMFD ('What would Michael Foster do?') way. Inspired by our friend, the Climate Warrior Michael, we are doing our part to reduce our carbon footprint at least 10 % each year by going plastic free, travel less, being a more mindful consumer.