Thursday, 21 January 2010

Two years old today and Mr A has the last word on the matter.

1 week's rubbish, circa January 2008

It's been so busy of late, the fact that this blog is two years old today almost passed me by. So do excuse me for a moment while I grab a now defunct party blower to celebrate and give it a WhoopeyTootToot!

Yes indeed. Two years old. Whoop whoop. Toot toot!

Who'd have thought it, eh!

It's no secret that when I typed up my first blog post on 21st January 2008, I only intended to write about my run-up to St Edmundsbury's zero waste challenge and document the big week itself.

Just eight weeks, that's all.

At the time I had no idea what the heck I was doing or what I'd got myself into. But when I discovered the urgency of it all, I found I had less time to dedicate to blogging about other stuff or making money from things like this...

...because of a new-found determination to reduce the burden of this:

From designing beautiful tiaras to designing out stinky old waste, now that's what I would call a tale of chalk and cheese!

But I can certainly say that despite there being more money in tiaras than there is in blogging about bin bags, I really haven't looked back...

...except for last night, when I sat down with my husband, aka Mr A. And while we reminisced I decided to ask him what he really thought about my rubbish blog and our personal measures to reduce our family's waste. For new readers who aren't familiar with my husband's reputation, perhaps I should say now that he is rather masterful in the sport of filling bin bags with whatever crap that gets in his way.

"Just like that!"

So it's fair to say that he took some warming up on the issue and when I asked if the reputation I've given him on this blog was appropriate, he just smiled and said that it was for me to judge because all he did was "follow my draconian rules".

Now now Mr A. More enthusiasm please! I'm the gentle love-of-your-life not some haughty Miss Whiplash! Although this paragraph is beginning to make me sound like the latter.

So with a little more patience, this is what I managed to tease out of the man who's had to put up with my rubbish reducing antics for two whole years. This is what he really thinks about life in the Almost Average Household...

"I suppose it hasn't been that difficult to deal with the waste we create and it has made me think about what I buy. These days I hardly ever go shopping to the supermarket because I can't pick up anything without the thought police reminding me about packaging waste."

"And it's great to see how well things are working, whether it means me refusing new bags at the shops or seeing the success of home-composting."

Well so far so good! But with my hands almost over my ears, I thought I'd enquire about his key frustrations too....

"Well, I find it really annoying that things destined for the black bin are snaffled away and relocated to a corner of the house in a way that resembles a mini waste-transfer-station, and that they are then left to hang around on a long-term promise of being taken off to a charity shop".

Ouch! I suppose I really do need to get myself more organised.

"AND there are certain rules of the recycling industry that are hard to understand, e.g. why Weetabix wrappers end up in the black bin when other plastic film can be recycled at the Bury St Edmunds recycling centre."

I agree and well spotted. I'd forgotten about those - and indeed Weetabix will be getting back to me later to tell me what they're made of...........So is that all?

"No, there's having to put up with that plastic bag hanger on the wall, which I think is ugly and PLEASE don't get me started on having to wash up butter wrappers."

Oh dear, slightly going a bit pear-shaped there. Perhaps I have gone a step too far, but you've seen those bulging bags of plastic film that we had beforehand. So that bin has been a huge help.

But surely it's not all hassle on the domestic front?

"I have to admit the wooden toothbrushes were great and so are the washing balls that have replaced the constant need for laundry powder."

Phew, that's music to my ears and a surprise too. So anything else to say on the matter Mr A?

"Well all I can say is, who would have known that a blog could become a full-time occupation eh! And I would NEVER have guessed that family holidays would feature sightseeing visits to recycling centres!"

Now I could swear there was a smile when he mentioned the bit about the holidays. Could it be sarcasm? I suppose I'll ask him later.

But seriously, if it wasn't for the support of my husband, I could never have kept this blog going for so long. And he has had to put up with my determination in rescuing all sorts of things from the bin, such as old wooden toilet seats, unwanted slippers and cans of shaving foam. And the times I've stamped my foot crying "It's not rubbish it's a resource" is really nobody's business.

However, don't ever think that it's me who wears the trousers around here. Having given up tiara-making for writing about waste, I am now under very strict instructions to finally sort out my old bead-kit and I have also been told to buck up my ideas about rehoming my clutter too before it is too late.

So Mr A really does have the last word around this neck of the woods, honestly.

Well, that is until I remind him of the small matter, that since I took over the management of our waste, he's never had to put the rubbish bin out in all that time! Not once, in two whole years - it's me who's had to wheel it out, but then half-a-dozen times is hardly a hardship.

That's blimmin' good service is it not and surely it's worth the odd hassle? I ask him and he most definitely agrees.

So all's well that ends well and here's a toast to many more rubbish reducing adventures to come. Thank you to everyone who has been following the blog, to old friends and new. Even if you feel that the rest of your household isn't quite on your wavelength, I hope this reassures you that they can come round in time.

So to celebrate, I'm turning my attention back to decluttering. If you can, please come back tomorrow to see how I've got on!

What's that Mr A...? I'd better take it all off to the charity shop before you get back from work, or you might just chuck it in the bin?


At least you get to see what I'm up against! Actually, I'm saving it up for a boot sale!

Well there's no time for arguing about it now - I've got to get on and it's time for a sing-song as I go.

"Happy birthday dear blog, Happy birthday dear blog, Happy birthday dear blo-og, Happy birthday dear blog!"



Whoop whoop. Toot toot!

Oh and I nearly's a photo of our latest week's rubbish, all dressed for the occasion.



Anonymous said...

A huge happy birthday to your blog! You sound to be doing rather good on the re-cycling front. You and my husband would get on well, he's always rescuing stuff that I've thrown out "it'll come in". He's of the old school though, not thinking about recycling!!

CJ xx

Unknown said...

Happy Blog-Birthday!!! :D
I wish you plenty of Mbytes to blog on!
Enjoy celebrations with your wonderful family!
Mr. A. and you together are learning a lot of things that are making your life easier and happier! Well done! Sometimes it's good to see things from a different point of view... isn't it? ;)

P.s.: your tiaras are wonderful as well! Why don't blogging here about them? ;D

mrs green @ said...

Happy Blogaversary Mrs A - what a wonderful celebration and your bag of rubbish looks rather dashing.

You've had a wonderful two years inspiring people across the lands to reduce their waste - I hope you feel proud of all your work and have a good celebration planned for yourself...

Much love
Mrs G x

Evil Edna said...

happy birthday, toot toot sounds like a good reason for a drink and the glass bottle can go to the bottle bank.....

Layla said...

Happy Birthday, dear blog!! :)

That bag of rubbish looks p-r-e-t-t-y!!

WOW, wonderful tiaras!! I wonder what ELSE your secret talents are??!! :)

I think Mr A & my Dad could get along quite fabulously! I often got scorned for saving the odd items 'just in case they come handy' or can be reworked into art or something??

Just 6 bins in 2 years - that's fab!!
And is January 2008 just the white bags or also the bin?

Congratulations, & hope you have a fab day & give a big kiss to Mr A (and the boys)!

lunarossa said...

That's fantastic, dear Karen, congratulations for what you have achieved in these years (A LOT)! And thanks to Mr A too for being such a supportive husband. Have a virtual glass of bubbly on me! Hope to have a real one together soon when you ever visit York again. Ciao. A.

Dahlia ChanTang said...

Happy second anniversary!
Here's to looking forward to many more years of waste reduction!

angelsandurchinsblog said...

Happy Birthday to you! There's a birthday meme over for you at ours, and it won't create any packaging waste at all, promise.

Almost Mrs Average said...

Hi CJ - thank you :-) LOL, I recognise that behaviour. I've not got to get myself out of indulging too much LOL. So watch this space :-)

Hi Danda - Thank you, especially the kind comments about my tiaras. I haven't marketed them for ages and only now make them as gifts for friends. (but wink wink, if there is anyone looking in from Bury St Edmunds, there are still one or two for sale at Cavern4 on Whiting St LOL). Well there's nothing like the odd plug is there :-)

Hi Mrs G - thank you too. She is looking a bit glam isn't she. I can see a feature coming now. Bling your bin :-D

It has really been a fab couple of years. I couldn't have guessed what would happen. It's been brilliant hasn't it LOL

Hello EE - Toot Toot. Name a date and I'll be there. And of course it was all down to your email in the first place. LOL, look what you started eh! Toot Toot :-D

LOL Layla - my other talents...hmmm have I mentioned I can juggle? Only 3 balls in a cack-handed fashion, but eh, I can still juggle.

Kisses have all been passed around accordingly. Ta lovely :-)

Hi Antonella - a glass of bubbly in York souds a must. Will have to sort out coming to see young Ruby again at a time that you're there. Will be brilliant to meet you at last and it will be lovely to have company at the bottle bank :-)

Hi djp - Cheers [raises glass] and I can certainly say there will most definitely be more rubbish reducing frolics around the corner. :-)

Hello angelsandurchins - thank you my dear and for the meme invitation too. It looks a great one and it will be fab to join in. Anything waste-free sounds fab to me...well almost anything :-D

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