Random Fact: Without some kind of stimulant in my body, I will fall asleep at approximately 10:42PM every day. It’s true, just ask my husband.
I don’t know about you, but in this house we have an over abundance of paper. Between church, school, junk mail (or trash mail as I call it) there are papers everywhere! I know I should do something productive with it, like may cage lining for homeless hamsters or I should recycle it all so I can by a journal for $50 that is made out of my recycled paper waste, but what usually happens is I throw it all away. Oh the humanity, we don’t recycle. It’s fine, the earth will endure without my recycling efforts. Just think of it as we do our part for the sanitation department. Making sure they all have jobs because of the copious amounts of paper this house throws away. I digress. There is a lot of paper that comes into this house. Because I don’t see us adding the $15 a quarter for recycling, I have a few other ideas of places that can reduce paper waste.
1. Top of the list. Church. I may be lambasted for this, but really is there any reason for churches to have more than ten copies of the bulletin any more? Any information that needs to be passed on to congregants can be done via email. Even my grandma has an email account. I think she may be the last person in America, but even she has one. I receive announcements four ways from church, the preservice slide show, the pulpit, the bulletin and the weekly e-letter. I don’t even read the bulletin. It’s often thrown out that very same afternoon. Or it’s used for doodle paper by my kids if they happen to be in the service. So I think it would save the church a lot of money and resource to just get rid of the bulletin. It could be a new way to join the older and younger generation together. Have the younger kids teach the older congregants how to set up and access an email account so they can print off the announcements. It’s a whole new ministry!
We could also get rid of the check-in card, note pad, post card. Whatever paper way your church keeps track of attendance, it could be done digitally. Maybe we all check in on four-square. Every fifth time you check in at church you get 10% off at the local Christian book store. Or maybe the ushers all stand at the doors to the sanctuary with one of those hand held counters. Since their not passing out bulletins, this would give them a new purpose.
2. Multiple fliers from school. (This came from Jen Hatmaker originally) School has to be the second worst offender. Again, they send a weekly e-letter with all the information. They send text alerts of school events if you sign up for that service. And if you have more than one child in the same school, you receive multiple copies of the same information. Again, why? With a little effort, we could reduce the paper waste. I commend our middle kids teacher. She laid down from the start that she would have her weekly news letter online for print off. Genius. I never lose track of his spelling words. If all the teachers did this (just in our school) it would use about 600 less sheets of paper. That’s a few trees people. Then, with a little coordinating at the beginning of the year, parents could check a box dictating how the flier should be sent home. Maybe they all get sent home with one kid. Or maybe the fliers are sent digitally as well.
3. Junk Mail. I have yet to find a way to not receive credit card solicitations. Maybe when we are out of debt and no longer have multiple cards, I won’t receive offers? Or maybe we should wreck our credit, would that make the solicitations stop? Probably not. Or those weekly fliers from the grocery store. I don’t even shop at the store and I get the ads every week. It drives me nuts! Does anyone have a solution for this one? Because I know someone has thought of something. And none of us like trash mail. It would be so much nicer to just receive a card from a friend rather than a pile of credit card offers and fliers to the creepy kids dentist.
Those are the ideas I had this morning. Just a few thoughts. I obviously have some guilt about not recycling, since I have ways to stop using paper so much. Any thoughts from you?