Friday, 17 June 2011

Going paperless challenge update

Image from here
So you may recall that after the saying no to plastic bags challenge went so well, I got all excited and decided to do something about the amount of paper that mindlessly makes its way into the house? I wrote a post about my baseline levels and over the past two weeks I have made the following changes:

1. I sent a stamped self-addressed envelope to the Distribution Standards Board to obtain a free 'no advertising materials please' sticker for my letterbox (remember that I can't buy anything new so had to find a free-option but you can buy them at the local hardware stores too). Here is the address in case you are interested:

DSB Sticker
PO Box 6252
Karingal, VIC 3199

2. I completed an online form for the ADMA - Do Not Contact Service (this is like the Do Not Call register but will take me off the lists for those direct mail mail outs that I usually just throw straight into the recycling bin). Here are the details should you wish to do the same (you can use the online form or send your name to the PO Box):

GPO Box 3895 Sydney NSW 2001 or

3. The paper towel situation has been remedied too. The lovely Lucy from Diminishing Lucy wrote a comment on my first post to the tune of, why don't you just not use them? Use a tea towel, cloths and other reusable options. And you know what? I did just that and it works.

An old nappy for floor related spills (we  have at least one a day!), cloths and a tea towel for the dinner table, bench tops etc. All into the wash at the end of the day. Easy! I have had a small stash of recycled paper towel that I have kept in the cupboard and I did use it last night to 'drain' the bacon, but absolutely no more using them for hand towels, spill cleaners or face washers.

4. I cancelled my yellow pages delivery (details in previous post).

I still have to change some of my bills over to online (and get an organisation system that will cope with the change. Anyone?) but I think you will agree that I am tracking very well? How are you going?


Posie Patchwork said...

Sounds fantastic!! As a cloth nappy user (back in the day) i even made my own nappy liners & wipe cloths to wash, so this kind of paper reduction is right up there in my dream way to do things. I am going to hire my eldest daughter to do my admin, pay my bills on line etc as it drives me bonkers & she's more organised than me. Now that is a chore worth paying for, love Posie

Jen said...

Righto, I looked at my newly delivered yellow/white pages and straight away found out the details on how to remove my details for next year. I agree 100%on using cloth nappies etc, I have been using the same ones for a few years and makes me feel better about not using paper towel. Not sure if I am ready to give up my junk mail. Jen

Amy said...

Oh, some fantastic ideas here! I've still got some statements arriving in paper format that I've been meaning to phone up and get switched for some time now- what a reminder to get onto that this week!

River said...

I'm guilty of using way too much paper towel, I'll have to do something about that.
I still have a fair bit of plastic, mostly containers, since glass jars etc are just too heavy for me now, but I limit my plastic bags and re-use them until they fall apart.
I also get and pay 99% of my bills online. It's not so hard.

ClaireyH said...

How stupid is this...I don't ever use paper towels, I just never really had a need to, but for that last two years I have a roll under the kitchen sink for when I have visitors over and they seem to need them for something.

Recently after a dinner party the ladies decided to do the dishes and needed a dry tea towel, my tea towel drawer is full of clothes, old nappies, face washers and tea towels, they were all shocked at the collection of stuff in there.

Tat said...

You've done a lot of work. Tasks like writing a letter to someone take me months... I hope you manage to keep the junk mail out of your mailbox. Ours is mostly being ignored :(

Diminishing Lucy said...

Well done!

The online bill thing. Ours are all online now. Finally.

I am the one responsible for payment of all bills.

I pay a set amount each month. (I did need to call each provider to set this up, which tool a little while, but was time well spent.)

So water, rates, power, phone, internet, insurance, school - everything becomes a monthly "fixed" cost.

Makes it easier to budget. Means that the monthly or quarterly bill that is emailed just gets reviewed and electronically filed - it never actually needs actioning, as its already been dealt with.

Does that makes sense?


Mum on the Run said...

You are inspiring!

Tricia said...

So organised! Well done.

I tried to live without paper towel for a while - but missed it when poaching eggs. So paper towel is back in our kitchen - and a roll lasts around a year. So I figure in the scheme of things it's not a biggy.

I have a draw that sounds like Clairy H's. I collected tea towells from op shops and made a load of face washers from old towels so now have dozens of each on hand.

I should cancel my yellow pages. Thanks for the reminder.

Anonymous said...

That is great! I have made many of those changes as well but need to do better about the mail. Wondering if there are those kinds of options in the states and how I would go about tracking them down...
I use cloth napkins for a lot of the kitchen messes that we used paper towels for before. Plus, I have some great dark colored/patterened napkins that actually hide stains amazingly well so we even use those to drain the bacon!
And (this may be an overshare!) we use our cloth napkins for blowing noses too! Although I do still have one box of facial tissue in the bathroom for guests to use!

emma @ frog, goose and bear said...

You're doing very well!! I had no idea re the yellow pages - II assumed we were stuck with the paper wastage - thanks so much!
I am a huge user of cloth nappies for spills. Used multiple times a day here! I used them as nappies only a handful of times with my first but as rags and spill (or wee on floor) cleaners - best money ever spent!! They've lasted me constant use for 7.5 years now and still going strong!

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