What are we talking about today?

Some days have themes. I don't necessarily post something in each of these topic areas every week.

Sunday: Church-related or spiritual things.
Monday: Running.
Tuesday: Books.
Wednesday: Transportation.
Friday: Green living.

08 January 2011

One Resolution Done. I Hope.

Chad and I have the same problem with our attempts to live in harmony with the earth as have many before us: We live on a budget.

Inside Whole Paycheck.
Not that I think earth-friendly living is necessarily costly, but in this era of free-range eggs, grass-fed beef, and organic produce, all of which are more costly than their more traditional counterparts, it's easy to believe that only those with disposable income can afford to love the earth. All it takes to "confirm" this suspicion is one trip to Whole Foods (also known as Whole Paycheck).

However, that's not an accurate picture of reality. Chad & I each have a genealogy filled with working-class people who had to spend every penny wisely. Indeed, our families had sustainable lifestyles long before we knew there was such a thing.

Reuse everything that is reusable. Don't waste. Walk when you can instead of driving. Grow your own vegetables. These tenets of the eco-friendly crowd are all part of the lifestyle that I grew up in, and to me are just common sense.

And it's to this end, reusing, that I'm learning how to make my own yogurt. Because there are only so many ways to reuse yogurt containers, and only so much limited shelf space to keep them in. And while I am willing to forgo yogurt for the good of the planet, my husband is not, and I feel guilty every time I throw away one of those non-recyclable plastic containers.

So, today is the day! I have armed myself with milk, plain yogurt for a starter, jars, a large pot, and thermometers to keep tabs on the temperature. I'll let you know how it goes.


erica and christy said...

Yikes, that sounds complicated. My husband and I raise grass-fed beef cows. But we live in Wisconsin, so we need to feed them over the winter and organic feed is almost impossible to get, let alone afford around here. So we're trying, but trust me, us small farmers make nothing. In fact, many of us are losing - money and cows. We don't vaccinate or give antibiotics, either - unless there's a life at stake. Loss of a cow can be loss of thousands of dollars vs. something like $20 worth of medicine. It's tough. But (sometimes) worth it.

Su said...

I'm from Indiana-- I've seen the struggles of small farmers. :( It makes me sad that it's so complicated to live simply!

Grandpa said...

Do let us know how you get on with the yogurt Su.

Re Erica's comment and your response, it seems a universal problem that while you can live happily on a farm, it's tough to make a living out of it.

Su said...

Will do! I ended up not doing it yesterday b/c I overslept & it's really an all-day project (the yogurt has to sit for 8 hours to firm up). It's on the cards for Monday.
Such a bummer about farms being so hard to keep viable. It's so easy to get this romanticised ideal about farming, but reality is not nearly so easy--or fun--as the daydream. :(