Can you reconcile minimalism and being environmentally conscious?

I was struck by a thread I read on Facebook group on minimalism regarding disposable tableware. There was a shameful amount of people who said they cared more about being ‘minimal’ than the amount of waste they produce.

Newsflash: living simply is not about living wastefully. Choosing to buy single-use over reusable says more about how obsessed you are with your image, rather than actually only possessing what you need for a comfortable life, because you clearly need plates, bowls, cups, and cutlery — otherwise you wouldn’t be buying disposable versions, would you?

You know what’s another word for minimalism? Frugality. People set themselves these ridiculous rules for being minimalist, when it’s really just another way to spend money and being mistakenly virtuous about it.

Admit it. Being a minimalist in today’s world is the new conspicuous consumption, because with easy credit the plebs can buy loads of shit, too.

Here’s where I could get really preachy

I got to sit down and watch a bit of What the Health while nursing Eliza down for a short nap this afternoon. Here are some thoughts from other people over the claims made in the documentary.

I had a lot more to say about this and our mostly plant-based, real food diet at home, but it’s too preachy, and I hate being preached at (ask my born-again mum). It’s like there’s a Church of Vegan and while I regularly attend, I don’t want to say too much about it because evangelical vegans really annoy me.

Just eat real food, mostly plants. Your gut will thank you.

What shall we eat

A recent conversation with a friend has been centred around food and meals, as she has realised that her daughter has a number of food allergies. Having dealt with this already with Eliza (they do not have the same allergies), and with our push to maximise plant-based whole food at home, I was telling her as much as I could remember about diet and plant-based sources of protein, calcium, etc.

And I then realised, Hey, I actually know a lot about food. Not I-can-answer-questions-on-Mastermind knowledge, but it’s a buttload more than before, when my only interest was how it tasted.

Well, I feel virtuous

Four things we could do to make the biggest impact, as individuals, to combat climate change:

“We found there are four actions that could result in substantial decreases in an individual’s carbon footprint: eating a plant-based diet, avoiding air travel, living car free, and having smaller families. For example, living car-free saves about 2.4 tonnes of CO2 equivalent per year, while eating a plant-based diet saves 0.8 tonnes of CO2 equivalent a year.”

If you can (you know, based on where you live or work), you should give up the car. Just hire one when needed. It’s completely doable.

The WTF-am-I-going-to-do-with-this pesto recipe

Anne wanted a fairy garden a couple of months ago. We sowed some chia seeds because we have loads. It didn’t sprout for days, then they suddenly appeared, and now we have a bloody forest of the stuff. Neil quite liked it, but I found it a little too bitter as they got bigger. So I made pesto.

Ingredients
Spinach (I used frozen as that’s what I’ve got)
Chia sprouts
Extra virgin olive oil
Mild-flavoured oil
Salt
Nutritional yeast
Pine nuts

There are no quantities as I just bodge everything. This pesto is dairy-free and vegan. Pine nuts are seeds, so it’s also nut-free (Eliza is allergic to nuts).

Start by putting the spinach and chia sprouts in the food processor and turning it on. Slowly add the rest of the ingredients to taste.