Blog Update!
For those of you not following me on Facebook, as of the Summer of 2019 I've moved to Central WA, to a tiny mountain town of less than 1,000 people.

I will be covering my exploits here in the Cascades, as I try to further reduce my impact on the environment. With the same attitude, just at a higher altitude!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Sleeping Naked Is Green: Discussion 3

Sleeping Nekkid is GreenWelcome to the third discussion post of Vanessa Farquharson's book, Sleeping Naked Is Green. For those of you who are just joining us, we are smack dab in the middle of the book. Vanessa is the writer of the green blog, Green as a Thistle and the book summarizes the 366 green changes she made over the course of a year. In this installment we'll be covering the fall chapters.

September: During September, Vanessa stops using toilet paper for #1, stops buying DVDs and rents them instead, switches to eating ethically raised fish, switches to cloth menstrual pads instead of disposable ones and exterminates bugs with eco-friendly solutions. Finally, that slut uses a natural lubricant instead of K-Y and stops using birth control pills.

I see now that she switched to cloth wipes for #1 during my first Cloth Wipe Challenge. I can't remember all the participants that first year since that was the same time my husband was diagnosed and I immediately ended up in a fog for a few months (some might say years).

Anyway, this month Vanessa realizes her relationship with Mark isn't really going anywhere and punts him back to Oregon. This is immediately remediated by a funny interview with hottie, Jake Gyllenhaal, where soul searching questions revolving around pets and cilantro ensue. Life could be a whole lot rougher.

October: In October, our heroine starts working from home twice a week, lowers the temperature on her water heater, starts air-drying all her laundry and switches over a menstrual cup. I totally loved her description of the rotting mass collecting in her now-turned-off freezer. But she never said what she ended up doing with the infestation.

Vanessa had a few issues when first using the DivaCup. Apparently, she has a black hole for a vagina and couldn't retrieve it after first inserting it. But, Vanessa managed to overcome the escape velocity issue and, with a little counseling, she figured it out. Or, rather, got it out, and she was officially a happy convert.

November: November is a little bit light as far as changes go, but she still manages to eek out learning how to sew and mend clothes, knit her own scarves and mittens, ask for only green gifts and make soup broth from scratch.

There were a lot of homey, craft oriented changes this month, which makes sense given the holidays and season. Oh yeah, and given the fact that she bought a house and just about had a nervous breakdown. But, those are minor details, really.

Random discussion questions:

  • Would you be brave enough to stop using toilet paper for pee? If so, sign up for this year's Cloth Wipe Challenge (insert shameless plug here).
  • Do you use an eco-friendly form of birth control?
  • Do you air dry all or part of your laundry? Even if you live in a small place?
  • Do you use a menstrual cup, like the Diva Cup (ladies only)?
  • Do you know how to sew your own clothes and mend them? Or do you tend to just throw them out or donate them?

    Related posts:
    Sleeping Naked Is Green: Discussion 1 (Spring)
    Sleeping Naked Is Green: Discussion 2 (Summer)

    Eco Yogini said...

    ouu first comment! I thought she was super brave using cloth wipes for pee and it was fantastic to read about her experience.
    That being said: I'm not quite ready, but I am definitely a step forward than I was say... pre-SNIG :)

    I LOVE my DivaCup. I also had some "panic" moments when I couldn't retrieve it... it even says in the instructions in caps DO NOT PANIC. lol. Thankfully, I didn't have to call their helpline.. HAH

    I stopped taking the pill (who knew that prolonged oral contraceptives can damage your cervix???) for health reasons.. but we use condoms. not so great for the environment.

    we air dry 2/3's of our laundry in our 600 square foot apartment.

    can't sew to save my life. :)

    Anonymous said...

    Yeah, like others, neither my family or I are ready for cloth wipes. I use Lady-Comp (corny name, but AWESOME BC) no waste, but does use electricity and is plastic. Air dry my laundry? Ha - it has been so humid here it won't dry. I do maybe half the time when it isn't humid. Divacup and cloth. I went to school for pattern drafting etc. so I do sew and mend a lot of our clothes, if I have the time.

    Jan said...

    Don't have the book yet so I'm wondering....what is she using in place of the pill? Just curious as I had that little issue dealt with permanently many years ago.

    kerri said...

    I don't use the cup because I never got into tampons, but I do use cloth pads. I used to use them exclusively and sort of stepped out of habit a few years ago, so I'm transitioning back, mixing those with the commercial throwaways. Even using them part of the time, it really cuts down on waste.

    Anonymous said...

    Hey Jan -- just a quick response to your question: I'm relying on the calendar/rhythm method. So far it's working; using temperature and other bodily signs, it's pretty easy for me to tell when I'm ovulating, so there are really only 5 days during my cycle when my partner and I avoid sex. So far, so good.

    Billie said...

    I think I could be ready for cloth wipes. I just need to organize myself.

    DivaCup? Not necessary. The flow is just about non-existent and I am still using my package of pads that I bought several years ago.

    I just finished mending a pair of jeans for my husband and Max (my son's stuffed cow) this weekend. I can mend and sew my own clothes if so inclined. I just haven't been very inclined lately.

    I air dry nothing but some unmentionables. It would drive me nuts to have clothes hanging all over the house.

    Vegan Burnout said...

    I've been using the DivaCup for almost 2 years. It's pretty awesome and I haven't had too many issues with it (aside from it being really awkward to insert/remove at first!). I definitely don't miss begging friends for tampons, etc.

    I've acquainted myself with my thrift-store sewing machine, and while I haven't learned to make clothes, we are repurposing old pillowcases into produce bags. One pillowcase = 4 bags. So we don't have apples rolling all over the place and don't need to use the plastic produce bags at the market, either. I can fix buttons, seams, etc. by hand.

    Radioactive Duck said...

    Once I got over the gross-out factor (and handling my financial situation) switching to cloth wipes was a breeze. And my cat can't unroll my cloth wipes which is a great plus.

    Me and the DivaCup are still trying to work things out. I may just not be cut out for it with the exception of maybe swimming. I'll give it another go next month.

    I stopped taking the pill almost two years ago because a) it's impossible for two women to get pregnant together and b) it wasn't helping to regulate my cycle any more.

    I wish I could air dry my laundry, but there is something funky about the water at my apartment. If I air dry then everything is stiff. I have know idea what the issue is.

    I can sew, but clothes I make never look or fit just right. I usually make bags. I have a new skirt that I need to finish and hopefully that will fit (my last skit was too small:( ). I keep trying to make my own clothes, but they seem to all fail or never get completed.

    Amy Estrada said...

    stop using toilet paper for pee? Sure.

    birth control? Well, I'm prego so...

    air dry all or part of your laundry? Even if you live in a small place? Not allowed in my apt. We can be fined $250. And they say Portland Metro is green!

    Diva Cup? Yes, please. (Well I guess after the little one comes.)

    sew your own clothes and mend them? Yep. I make a lot of my daughter's clothes. I've also made a lot of our cloth house products (napkins, table towels, scrubbies, etc.).

    Adrienne said...

    I do use and love the diva cup (it took a couple months to get used to).
    I can sew simple things like pajama pants, and can fix things usually.

    Since i moved and have more room I've been air-drying some stuff and will probably do everything during the winter- free humidification!

    As for birth control, I'm on the pill but w/o it I get out of control cramps, I mean lying on the floor in a cold sweat missing at least one day of work a month and no amount of advil or motrin is helping pain. So I consider that medically necessary.

    And no, I am not brave enough for the cloth wipe challenge.

    Cave-Woman said...

    1. I may be up for the cloth wipe challenge, but I don't think my husband is yet. Maybe in a year or so...

    2. At this point, it is the pill----but by the end of the year, it's a vasectomy. So, that's probably eco-friendly.

    3. We air-dry most of our laundry.

    4. I use glad-rags. Re-usable and comfortable.

    5. I sew and mend my own clothes, but I am also a fan of a first-run good quality product.

    Spice said...

    Cloth wipes for pee-- sure. We also tend to spread the pee around our trees. It's good nitrogen! (I know Crunchy's gonna make another Greenpaps comment about this one!)

    I don't use a diva cup. I actually have an IUD, and I'm one of the lucky 10% that totally shuts off with birth control. Hee, hee. *evil laughter*
    I guess I kinda take care of two birds with one stone here.

    We also line dry here. As much as possible. Sometimes I sin and use the huge driers at the laundry mat. We do, however line dry in the middle of winter in MN. It's acutally really funny to watch.

    I have a love hate thing with sewing. I actually love it, and am good at it. Just did some mending the other day, and am sewing a cinderella dress for Smidgeon (pink of course as per orders fro the itty bitty dictator). However I used to sew for weddings and still have horrible flash backs!!

    So Crunch. Hit me with your rude, crude comments... I look forward to them!

    Little Green Penguin said...

    I'm not there yet when it comes to the toilet paper, but I do see it coming. It would certainly make sense for me, seeing how as I travel a lot on the motorcycle, and when I gotta go, I gotta go - and often that place is the side of the road.

    I do enjoy my Diva Cup. Yes, I was nervous and skeptical at first, but I have to admit, this thing really works. And yes, it got "lost" the first time in, but after learning how to "bear down" retrieval is no problem.

    I stopped the pill in June, and I honestly feel healthier. Sure, my skin isn't the greatest, but I think my body, after 10 years of hormone assistance, is finally learning how to work on it's own. And sex? Please. I don't have sex. But I'd like to.

    Air-drying laundry is not an option in a small condo, and there are bylaws and condo regulations against hanging laundry on balconies.

    I love to sew, and I'm good at it.

    R3 Method Show said...

    I have never heard of this book. Thanks for the rec. I am sure people will find many nuggets in it.

    Robj98168 said...

    I lol'd about the diva cup- you gals sure go through a lot. And when she bought the house it reminded me of when I bought my house- moved out of the mobile home into a real house. When she interviewed Jake made me smirj only because when I am done talking to somebody famous or someone I admire a lotI forget to ask what I wanted then sit there going GODDAMMIT! Why didn't I ask this or that question.

    Azulao said...

    Question 1: Already do. I like it. The green washcloths are for the bum; the white ones are for the face, is how I arrange it so as not to be totally disgusting!

    Question 2: Nope. Would love to get the hubster to get a vasec but he won't.

    Question 3: All laundry is air-dried, very easy since the humidity is around 10% here. It's all washed in cold. (Amy, you are *not allowed* to air dy in *your own apt*??? WTF?)

    Question 4: Diva Cup, thanks to Crunchy. Love the Diva Cup.

    Question 5: I make small mends, but sewing is about 100000 times more trouble than it's worth when there are thrift stores full of lovely items than need no more than a button if that. I donate my clothes when I no longer like them.

    Mrs. Money said...

    Hey Crunchy,
    I was wondering if you could link to my contest where we are giving away Moon Cups and Keeper menstrual cups. Last month we gave away 10 cups! The more people that enter, the more win. Thanks for your help!

    Anonymous said...

    1) lesbianism

    2) in the winter; too humid otherwisse

    3) cloth pads; I'd try the cup, but the pads I own should last me through menopause, so no new purchases!

    4) can do minor repairs

    Jenn said...

    1) I'm with anonymous - at least I try to use that eco friendly form of birth control whenever I get a chance (women are so hard to get into bed!)

    2) yes - even in the winter - indoors

    3) yes

    4) yes - have been known to sew my own clothes and often repair clothes - just repaired a 50 year old robe/dressing gown that was my grandfather's last week...

    Crunchy Chicken said...

    Vegan Burnout - Good idea with the repurposed pillowcases.

    Radioactive Duck - Two women can't get pregnant together? What the? You guys need to try harder.

    Amy Estrada - That's some serious laundry police. I'm assuming this is for hanging outdoors rather than on a rack inside?

    Cave-Woman - Vasectomies are awesome. I watched my husband's. Who knew that the vas deferens looks like a big piece o' spaghetti? I highly recommend attending it if he has one done.

    Then you can make fun and snarky comments during the procedure to make him feel more comfortable. Like, "Geezus! That didn't hurt? Well, it should have!" Things like that are always appreciated. Just like during labor and delivery.

    Spice - I have no rude, crude comments for you unless you are peeing on Greenpa to keep him warm while he's taking down the frozen, line-dried handmade wedding dresses you have hanging outside in the dead of winter. Only, then, would I have something to talk about.

    Little Green Penguin - Since Vanessa also lives in Toronto and, apparently, has a lot of sex, maybe she can hook you up.

    Mrs. Money - I'll get on it.

    Amy Estrada said...

    Not only can I not hang my laundry outside, but inside is not permitted as well! They have an ordinance that falls in " Removing Excess Moisture" to keep the mold away. They also find some reason to do inspections in our apt about every 2 months or so. Can't wait to move! =)

    Spice said...


    You always brighten my day.

    Actually cutting some of those stupid wedding dresses into cloth wipes would be a wonderful idea. I wonder if it's worth contacting those bridezillas. Hmm...

    Kate said...

    Although cloth wipes are appealing to me I think my hubby would fly the coup if I actually tried to bring them in the house. He's supportive (and has come up with) most of our sustainable changes but this pushes his limits a little too much. I did recently change to Lunapads and the Diva cup and I'm ashamed I didn't change earlier. I LOVE them! So much better and more comfortable although I might have had a similar experience as Jessica's the first time I used the Diva.....

    I stopped taking the pill several years ago as it interferes with a medication I HAVE to take for hormones. We've just been careful (the rhythm method) and soon we won't have to be so careful anymore - well, hopefully.

    Laundry has been hung (outside and inside) for some time and if you come to our house you are probably dodging clothes hanging on various doorframes around the house.

    I was 'gifted' my mom's old sewing machine and basket a while back. I can make very basic things and would like to take some classes but now that school has started back up it won't be likely. Maybe next summer...

    Jennifer said...

    Stopped using BC pills because I was cranky, didn't feel like sex, had yeast infections all the time... etc.

    Stopping cured all that.

    Now we use withdrawel coupled with the basics of the rhythm method... two years and no babies.

    Of course, we wouldn't mind having a child right now, so it's worth the risk to us. We'll conciously start trying in a year.

    Lisa Nelsen-Woods said...

    I line dry laundry indoors on the shower rod in my small condo during the winter because of summer pollen allergies. Sewing? Oh yes. I can make clothes, historical costuming,mend things, revamp old clothes into new things - turn pants into shorts, t-shirts into quilts, etc.

    Lisa Nelsen-Woods said...
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    Lisa Nelsen-Woods said...
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    Deoxy144 said...

    I haven't quite gotten around to the cloth wipes yet, but we cloth diaper, so it wouldn't really be that big of a deal. Maybe I'll have to pick up a few flannel remnants and make some more wipes.

    As for birth control, right now I have Implanon. But as soon as the wee-est one is a little older, and we're sure we don't want any more, then it will be snip time for the hubby.

    Right now, we air dry our cloth diapers in the basement. I don't want to dry more clothes down there though, or I'm afraid we'd have mold problems. We do have most of the pieces of a clothesline sitting in our garage, so we just need to get that up.

    I love the Diva Cup!!! Thank you Crunchy! Finally something that doesn't leak, is comfortable, and I don't have to worry if I have enough brought along. Yeah, it took a little bit to learn, but I will never ever ever go back.

    I do mend our clothes, and sew my own when I have time. More commonly though, I just buy all of our clothes at thrift and consignment shops. If there is anything still usable when we are done, we donate them right back.