We Bought a Worm Farm

...not a Zoo! 

It’s not exactly the tale of Brad Pitt in that movie We Bought a Zoo, it’s a scaled down version. It’s no secret (anymore) that we are treating this planet with zero care. And by we, I mean most humans but also, we as in me, because up until recently I was without a care in the world using all of the take away coffee cups, one use plastic bags and fast fashion you possibly could. Until I had a wakeup call in the form of The War on Waste on the ABC.

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I’ll be honest. In the past year, I’ve down sized my wardrobe to a third and haven’t invested in many new clothes, because I have enough. Instead of trying to stay on trend, which for a 157cm tall chick with thighs and a butt is impossible, I have embraced my own personal style and run with it. In twelve months, I’ve bought a wedding dress, which I wore on my wedding day, not for some weird random reason unelated to a wedding. A blue cardigan because it’s getting the opposite of hot in here, a couple of pair of sneakers because they looked amazing, some bits and pieces of active wear, which I can justify because I recently opened my second gym and I spend a lot of time in active wear, it’s also a business expense, so I felt less guilty about that. And some undies. But that’s it! A far cry from the ‘Oh I can’t wear that again,’ girl I used to be. (This was partly inspired by the documentary, Minimalism, which also made me want to throw everything out, get off the grid, build a tiny house out of recycled materials and never answer my phone. But that’s a bit extreme.)

After watching the War on Waste, I am taking Maya Angelou’s advice, and doing better because know I know better, as opposed to taking Sia’s advice and swinging from a Chandelier. Here are the small changes I’ve made.

Plastic isn’t Fantastic.

I’ve started separating non-recyclable plastics from recyclable ones rather than just chucking it all in the bin because it’s late and I just couldn’t be bothered. And I did spend 5 minutes tipping the used coffee out of our used coffee pods so I could recycle the pods because thankfully the pod machine I have uses recyclable pods, not all of them do, BTW. Yes, it was a bit gross.  

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My Cup Is Half Full 

I finally invested in a reusable cup. You’d think I would have a collection of these by now, but no, I used to love having my take away coffee in a takeaway coffee cup! Well one day I found 6 (it may have been 7) take away coffee ups in my car. That’s insane. Insane because that’s a lot of turmeric lattes, but also now I just have one reusable coffee cup and it’s not even difficult to remember. Such a simple change. Such a big benefit.

That’s Not My Bag, Baby

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I was half-assing using my reusable bags. I have tonne of them in the house but I would get to the shops and go, ‘oh drats, I left all the bags at home.’ What a schmuck. Now I am more planned in my grocery shopping ventures, not only that I have focussed my attention towards a local Co-op for staples and the local farmer’s markets for groceries, and because I am more planned about my shopping hauls, I haven’t forgotten my reusable bags, yet. I have sworn off one use plastic. For good.

Food (scraps) glorious food (scraps)

The next thing I was conscious of was how much food we scraped off our plates into the bin, and how much natural packaging was being tossed out. I invested in a counter top composter to put any food scraps in (and the coffee out of my coffee pods, cardboard, ripped up paper, off milk and egg shells). And it’s surprising what would have ended up in land fill from my little corner of the world. The next natural step was the get a worm farm, right?

We bought a worm farm

It was out three-year anniversary (of the day we met, I love knowing the exact moment I met my future person). And of course, we were heading into Bunnings to scout out some planter options for our community herb garden, which we are implementing in our apartment block. We stumbled upon Aisle 17, where we stopped in our tracks. Did you know you can buy a fully functioning worm farm from Bunnings, worms not included? So we did, we bought a worm farm and worms (separately).

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The circle of scraps

So now, the food scraps (and used coffee, used tea out of tea bags, shredded paper and cardboard) will go into the composter, which will go into the worm farm, which will become fertiliser, which will go on the herbs, that my neighbours will use. We are not starting a revolution, we are just making a small and simple step in the right direction.

The more I think about it, the more my ideas about changing the world evolve. The way to change the world, is to effect one person at a time, in their world, where they are at. The little community of neighbours I am surrounded by, will hopefully see the difference I’m making, for the betterment of the planet. That will hopefully open a dialogue and a conversation about what simple changes they can make too. That’s how we do it. Well, that’s how I’m going to try.