Wednesday, April 30, 2008

The challenge is over

Buy Nothing Challenge - April 2008

The Buy Nothing Challenge is officially over.

I'm feeling particularly virtuous I have to say. Apart from the birthday banner splurge I have been extremely restrained.

While I have bought some new clothes for Munchkin, I have found New Zealand made, and usually WAHM made options I even found NZ Made socks at http://www.cosytoes.com/ - and they are the best socks ever. Most of her winter wardrobe I bought second hand.

My biggest oops was a new duvet inner for Munchkin. After a particularly chilly night I decided we needed a new duvet right now - no messing around looking for second hand options when a good night sleep is at stake. I was delighted to find what appered to be a 'made in New Zealand' wool duvet inner. 100% Pure New Zealand Wool. New Zealand's Warmest Wool Duvet. And the name of a New Zealand company, with a New Zealand address.

Yet, when I opened the box, took the duvet out of the very eco-friendly calico bag, and spread it out - I found the tiny little label. Sure enough "Made in China". Disappointing, but not suprising.

This challenge has really made me think, hard, about what I buy.

I don't think I will be able to buy Made in China again without serious consideration. The human rights abuses, the coal generation, the political system, the miles things must travel, the workers rights or lack thereof ... its not something I feel I can support.

Hubby is feeling a bit over all this 'crunchy-ness' though and has begged me to stop trying any new ideas. On the weekend my friend confessed to buying 3 tops from TNT (a very cheap children's clothing company here) for her daughter. On the way home Hubby suggested that it would just be easier if I would do the same, and questioned whether it was really worth the effort - wouldn't there be more productive ways to spend my time. He may be right - but as those of you who read my earlier post know - it would break my tree-hugging heart.

As much as I hate to admit it, its really not that easy being green.


Crunchy Chicken's new challenge for May is a great one - an extreme eco-throwdown. It has got lots of ideas spinning around my head. But for now, I think I'll keep on with the no-made-in-China, second hand where possible, buy local, regime. I can't wait to read how everyone else goes with it though.

4 comments:

Dawn said...

Great job on the buy nothing challenge! I just went and looked at the extreme eco challenge and I'm inspired. I feel like I've been losing my focus lately on some of my values regarding environmental responsibility and I need something to kick me back into gear. I'll think about challenging myself somehow with one of those ideas.

highwaycottage said...

You did heaps better than me, however the birthday didn't help, and apart from the Springbug, the rest was for the new sleepout, so essential i think. It does make me have second thoughts about what I buy, so it was a worthwhile exercise. I night have a look at the extreme eco challenge, but it might be a bit scary for a beginner greenie like me.

Nikki said...

Yeah, I find it very hard to buy MIC anymore and NZ made definitely wins over (and 2nd hand is also the preferable first option when possible). Shame about your duvet cover with all those things you checked before buying *sigh*

anthromama said...

Even if the raw materials are domestic, so often things get shipped overseas for manufacturing. It's hard! Like here, you can find "Made in the USA" labels, but only rarely.