A few months ago, I did my first Detox Your Life challenge (yep- first… there will be more challenges in the future)!
During that challenge, I encouraged y’all to ditch items around your home in an effort to live a less-toxic life.
These products, in one capacity or another, are harmful if you are not paying close attention to what they are made of and how they are made.
Plastic… Plastic… Plastic…
For me, plastics are a big trigger.
It’s everywhere, right? Everything you buy is put in a plastic bag, wrapped in plastic cellophane, put on a plastic hanger, or comes in a plastic jug. OR it’s a convenience thing… plastic utensils, plastic wrap, plastic baggies: a use it and ditch it mentality.
I totally understand the need and want of a more convenient life.
But I have two issues here…
The first is the idea of the chemicals, from the plastic wrap and plastic baggies, leaching into my family’s food. I cook most meals myself and the idea of toxic substances leaching into MY food is mind-boggling.
The second is the idea that once these disposable plastics are used, they are disposed of immediately. Then, they are sent to a landfill and hopefully incinerated, but often times, that isn’t the case. The plastics end up in the environment, polluting land and water, and killing animals.
Plastic-Free School Lunches
With school being right around the corner, here in western Pennsylvania, I wanted to show you how the school lunches you pack can be made plastic-free, are still convenient, won’t break your wallet, and will get you feeling better about helping the environment.
I knowwww…. it’s so easy to grab a plastic baggie to put that sandwich or sliced fruit in. BUT.. there’s another option: Lunchskins reusable baggies. They are Velcro-close AND dishwasher safe. Plus, according to Lunchskins, these baggies are “Lead-free, BPA-Free, PVC-free, Phthalate-free, and moisture-resistant.”
Lunchskins also has a zippered baggie option if you don’t prefer the idea of Velcro.
ANDDD… if you hate the idea of washing a baggie after each use, Lunchskins makes disposable paper baggies!
I have the zippered baggies and the disposable paper baggies and I LOVE them!
To clean the zippered or Velcro baggies, just flip them inside out and wipe/rinse or place them in the dishwasher (make sure you do it in such a way that the water can get into them to rise them out).
Another option is to avoid baggies altogether. I know, you are probably like, what now?!
PlanetBox makes stainless steel lunchboxes with compartments. Place the food in a compartment and close the lid. That’s it. When the kid opens up the lunchbox at school, it’s like a smorgasbord of foods.
PlanetBox also offer insulated lunchbox carriers and ice packs to help keep things cool. Save money by buying a kit which includes lunchbox, insulated/ice pack, magnets (for decoration) and thermos.
I will admit, PlanetBox is pricey, but it would be worth the money because the kit can be used for years and years.
I have not made this purchase, but it is something I’ve considered. My biggest issue is that my kids are kids… which means things get beat up and stained and ripped. I would be curious to see how the insulated bag holds up after a year or two of solid use.
We’ve tried several types of thermos and I found one that my kids really love: Simple Modern brand. It’s dishwasher safe and vacuum insulated. They have a few different bottle and lid styles (we choose the wide-mouth with unscrewing lid so no one is coming into contact with extra plastic like the straw lid). We’ve been using these thermoses for a while now and I can attest that they do stay cold for a long time and come in beautiful colors (you know, it’s all about decoration for kiddos).
If you are an adult and don’t care about colors, I recommend Life Flask. It’s what I use and I LOVE it.
If my kids pack something that requires utensils, (which is rarely ever because I’d be sending it in a glass dish which is frowned upon by the school), I just put in a metal spoon and/or fork from home. The kids bring the utensils home and I wish them. No plastic utensils used or even needed.
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Happy Homesteading! (:
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