Confessions of a Reusable Bag Addict
Obsessed with Recycled Bags
A few years ago, it started to become popular in my area to start using recycled or reusable bags for grocery shopping. Instead of taking home plastic bags and doing who knows what with them, it made sense to have recycled bags. The trick was finding a couple of bags you really liked, getting them on sale, and then remembering to take them to the store each visit to utilize them. Since this was ever so trendy in my town, everyone started to put an effort into getting the bags and using them. However, some of us are starting to go too far.
You see, having recycled or reusable bags is a great idea. However, having a ton of reusable bags that sit around are a waste. Instead of having plastic bags piling up in a kitchen cabinet or closet (oh, you know the cabinet or closet I speak of... we all have one), now there are recycled bags replacing them. So is that really any better? Is that really less wasteful? Probably not!
For me, my addiction started out like so many others. I just wanted a couple of bags for transporting groceries. Soon that wasn't enough. Superfresh was willing to give me bags sometimes just for shopping with them. You know... give it to people for free, get them hooked, and then they are willing to pay. Superfresh bags were so adorable with pandas, baby tigers, and birds. Who can say no to a panda bag? No one is capable of turning down a panda... they are just too cute! Once you get used to having one bag, well, you need more from other stores. That is when the obsession with recycled bags began.
How Many Bags Are Too Many Bags?
You might be asking yourself, "How can I tell if I am a recycled bag addict? How much is really too much?" Here are some signs you might just have too many reusable bags:
- You open your cabinet/closet door and an avalanche of reusable bags fall on your feet.
- You think you have maybe 5 recycled bags, but when you count them, you have 25.
- You decided to get the new purple reusable bag at your grocery store because it matches the shirt you are wearing that day.
- If you go shopping at a store but don't have a bag with you, you start to panic and refuse to buy anything at all.
- If you go shopping, but don't have a bag with you, you decide just to buy a few more bags.
- You prefer online shopping, but you just wish there was a way they could ship it to you in a recycled bag, not a box.
- You bought a new reusable bag because that photo with a kitten on the front was just too cute to pass up.
All of these are signs that you are becoming a reusable bag addict. It happens to the best of us, so try not to be too hard on yourself. You started out with the best of intentions just like the rest of us. You wanted to, but instead, you began to obsess over those cute reusable bags. help the environment
The Awesomeness of the Reusable Bag
I know it can be difficult to fight the lure of the reusable bags. Some of them have pretty graphics. Many of the companies that produce those bags donate money to charities. Some of the bags have cool handles and double as tote bags. With such a variety of bags, it is tough to choose just a couple of bags to purchase. Not to mention they have so many uses!
You can take them to the beach, use them to pack clothing if you don't have a clothing basket, or even take them to the pool. Many are waterproof, which makes them perfect for travel. Some are even insulated and you can use them as a cooler. I've even seen a few with wheels and a handle. How great is that for traveling with heavy items? With so many uses, no wonder you just can't say no to them!
Break the Cycle of the Recycled Bag Addiction
Now that we've established how awesome reusable bags can be, how do we stop the addiction? First of all, once you have about a dozen, there is no need to buy more unless some start to break. Start taking the bags to different places and leaving them there so no matter when you decide to shop, you have some bags you can take along. For instance, I have bags at home and at work. After all, I've got enough. If someone invites me to go on an unexpected shopping trip during my lunch break, I can take a bag with me so I won't be tempted to buy a new one.
Another helpful tip is to accept that sometimes you will be out somewhere and you won't have a reusable bag with you. That is OK. Many stores have paper bags which are still OK for the environment. If you do end up with a plastic bag, don't panic! They make wonderful trash bags for smaller trash cans in your home. You can use them and feel good that the plastic bag served a purpose.
Most of all, don't stop and look at the recycled bags. It is fine to leave that beautiful bag with snow and pine trees decorations on it at the store. Someone else who is buying reusable bags for the first time can enjoy that bag all winter... you don't need to do the same! For instance, Wegman's is selling super cute Halloween reusable bags right now. I simply don't need that bag even if I desperately want it. I know I have a reusable bag addiction and I must fight it. You can fight it too! You are not alone.
Copyright ©2012 Jeannieinabottle
Fun with Reusable Bags
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