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Greening Room by Room Series Part 1 Bedroom

By Larraine Roulston:

Most people are happier once they start to simplify their lives and adopt eco-friendly practices. However, making too many changes to your living space all at once may seem a rather daunting task. Instead, take your time to scrutinize each room individually, and soon you will experience energy savings, waste reduction, less indoor pollution, and freedom from unnecessary clutter. As space will not allow every room to be covered adequately in one article, “Room by Room” will be a series of ideas and tips to transform your home one room at a time.


I expect the easiest room to tackle first is a bedroom, where even here opportunities abound to recycle, compost, achieve energy efficiency and rid yourself of clutter.

  • By using LED lighting, you will save energy. In addition, wipe light bulbs from time to time, as they will be more energy efficient than if they are covered in dust.
  • Bundle up all unwanted clothing and other apparel for charitable donations, or take them to IMG_8790 (1)consignment shops. Be sure to retain several sweaters to wear in layers when temperatures drop. If you are yearning to change some of your wardrobe as well, host a clothes-swapping party.
  • Save water and energy by laundering bedding sparingly. If you do not have form-fitting sheets, replace the bottom sheet with the top sheet each time you change your bed.
  • It is healthier to let your bed air every day rather than make it up upon rising. When discarding worn bedding, take the sheets to animal shelters, then use your power of purchase to buy organic cotton replacements. If you are about to replace your mattress, some areas will recycle them. This now is your chance to discover healthy mattress options such as http://naturelleorganicbeds.ca.
  •  Give your bedside waste basket an audit as well. Check out each item and decide if there is an alternative for it. Used facial tissues, for example, are accepted along with food scraps in municipal green bin collections where organics and yard trimmings are taken to a large composting facility. When a tissue box is empty, it can be flattened for recycling. Ensure that your recycling collection system will accept the attached plastic film also.
  •  Examine your jewelry box. High percentages of cadmium have been discovered in some bracelets, necklaces and earrings. If an infant in your arms grabs glittery beads and puts them into his/her mouth, it could mean a trip to the hospital. As safe and sturdy as some jewelry appears, it may not be suitable for a toddler to use as a rattle either. As well, young daughters who have a collection of inexpensive jewelry in their bedrooms could also be at risk.
  •  That handful of hair from cleaning your hairbrush can be composted.
  •  It is estimated that we spend one-third of our lives in the bedroom. There are eco-friendly paints, furniture, decor and scents such as sprigs of lavender to help you sleep.

Next room on the agenda will be the bathroom.

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Larraine authors children’s adventure books on www.castlecompost.com

About Larraine Roulston

A mother of 4 with 6 wonderful grandchildren, Larraine has been active in the environmental movement since the early l970s. When the first blue boxes for recycling were launched in her region, she began writing a local weekly newspaper column to promote the 3Rs. Since that time, she has been a freelance writer for several publications, including BioCycle magazine. As a composting advocate, Larraine authors children's adventure stories that combine composting facts with literature. Currently she is working on the 6th book of her Pee Wee at Castle Compost series, which can be viewed at www.castlecompost.com. As well, Larraine and her husband Pete have built a straw bale home and live in Ontario.

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One comment

  1. I wanted to find something to replace the plastic bags I use to line a smaller trash can. I sometimes forgot to take a reusable bag in the store, so ended up with another plastic bag to reuse at home.

    First I started to penalize myself if I forgot my reusable bags by just putting the items back in the cart after I purchased them. (Yes, it was a bit embarrassing the first and only time I had to do this with a big grocery list)

    I got to the point that I no longer had any plastic bags to line the trash can, and remembered that as a kid, we didn’t line the smaller trash cans, but scrubbed them out after a few uses. I tried that for a short time, but really hated having to scrub out the trash can. (I hated that chore as a child too)

    So, one day when a reusable bag ripped on me, I stood looking at it for a bit, and suddenly the solution fell into place~~put the older, holier ones in the smaller trash cans, and pull them out occasionally when they needed to be washed.

    Still reusing those old reusable cloth bags in a new way.

    P.S. Airing out my bed is a great excuse to not make my bed each morning at 5:45am. I let the bed air out until I can get back up there to make it. I wish I had thought of that when I was a kid! Although I don’t think my mom would have bought it!

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