2011-10-08

Regents Center

We moved from Avignon to Regents Center in the fall of 2010. We were moving to a bigger apartment, but we decided to actively start caring about the junk we brought to our new home. We had too much of it. We had boxes at Avignon that we had never unpacked. Most of that ended up being paper that we were at least able to recycle.

In an effort to reduce the amount of Stuff we owned, we went on a little diet. We collected a bunch of things we hadn't used in ages and schlepped it all over to Mom and Dad's for a little garage sale. We ended up making probably around $200, which was the biggest haul from a garage sale I'd ever seen. Not only did it help tidy up the apartment, it meant we had a lot less to pack. And once we arrived in our new home, we boxed up even more stuff to sell. We moved to a bigger place but ended up with less stuff to fill it. I like it.

Here at Regents Center we began to be more aware of our environmental impact and that's where this story really begins. We made several changes pretty early on at this apartment and I don't know exactly when they all happened.

First, we started making our own laundry and dishwasher detergents. This was largely spawned after reading posts on BoingBoing about the no 'poo movement and things of that nature. While the no 'poo thing didn't last long for me--I made it about a month--a few things did change as a result. We went on a small-scale homemade items spree and ended up with two major accomplishments and a minor one (to me).
  • We make our laundry soap. It's 1:1:1 of borax, washing soda (sodium carbonate), and bar of soap (we use Zum's frankincense and myrrh). One tablespoon per load.
  • We make our dishwasher detergent. It's 2:2:1:1 of borax, washing soda, kosher salt, and citric acid (one pound bags can be had at a homebrew shop; I get mine in Olathe). I use one tablespoon loose in the machine and one more in the little thingy that pops open during the second wash cycle. Oh, and if it would work I would also put some vinegar in the Jet-Dry thing.
  • We made some foot spray, the goal of which, I understand, is to refresh your feets after a long day in shoes. Or something. I don't remember exactly how we made this one but it involved mostly vodka and a little bit of tea tree oil. And we added some sort of scented oil to make it smell all pretty.
A couple other achievements we've unlocked since moving here include acquiring nooks to replace paper book purchases, buying only Shatto milk that comes in glass that can be returned, growing some basil we've used once so far, and adding reusable produce and hemp bulk bags to our repertoire.

This is about the point where I can get more specific, date-wise.