5 years of Eco Thrifty Living!

This day 5 years ago Eco Thrifty Living was born! I’m feeling very Victor Meldrew about the whole thing i.e. ‘I can’t believe it’ and I know it is a total cliche, but I really can’t believe I’ve been blogging for 5 years now. I can believe it because obviously I knew I’ve been doing it for a while and I’ve enjoyed blogging so much and had such great adventures along the way, so it makes sense that I have kept going with it, but somehow I’m still surprised.

To celebrate this momentous occasion (well momentous to me!), I’m going to share some of my memories from each year of my blog

Year 1 – 2011/12

This was the year that it all started and that I went back to work after maternity leave with the aim of saving enough money in eco friendly ways to quit my job!

This year I discovered the joys of second hand furniture. I went from being a lipsalve addict to never needing a tube of the stuff again! I invested in a menstrual cup, gave daffodils from my garden as a gift rather than walking past them and buying some from a shop! I started thinking about food waste and came up with some ideas for what to do with bananas that are past their best

Year 2 – 2012/13

In November 2012 I quit my job. It was a bit of a scary decision to make but I’m glad I did! I wrote about all kinds of things this year, constantly on the look out for how to save and make money in eco-friendly ways.

I discovered Freegle and Freecycle and realised that not only could I get things cheaper secondhand, I could also sometimes get them for free via these site. We got given the scooters pictured above for free, which my children are still using now! They are also a great help when decluttering and I found lots of good reasons to declutter. To start off with I was pretty into baking and started adding the crumbs from baking I had made to yoghurt and found various other ways to save money on baking. Then I quit sugar and my baking efforts became sugar free! I rethought wrapping paper and wrapped up gifts in fabric and I upcycled some broken toddler books into wall art.

Year 3 – 2013/14

When I quit my job I knew there were lots of ways I could save money, but I wanted to have a bit of an income as well. Year 3 was the year that we had our first foreign student come to stay with us. We have continued to rent to students and currently have two staying with us! In this year I had my first cup of home grown camomile tea, I saw the the Clean Bin Project and took part in Zero Waste Week , which both massively inspired me in a zero waste direction. We grew our own garlic, waved goodbye to our microwaveditched clingfilm and started visiting our local toy library. This was also the year that I started My Year of Eco Challenges.

Year 4 – 2014/15

I continued with My Year of Eco Challenges and finished it! I blogged about how we buy onions each year from a local farm and usually last us until we can pick more/ grow our own! We did our first (and only so far :)) house swap in a beautiful area of Southern France. I spent a day gleaning in some corn fields, made some upcycled dish cloths and had my first interview on the radio! I started up the Sustainable Book Club and challenged myself to earn £10,000 in a year without getting a job.

Year 5 – 2015/16

Earning £10,000 in a year without getting a job didn’t work out and for various reasons I quit that challenge. I had lots of other fun this year including learning how to make lavender wandslooking out for hedgehogs in my garden and saving over £500 by avoiding waste on an overseas trip. This year my blog hit national and global news and I had a tv interview for the first time! My blog was also deemed worthy of the Rubbish Hot 100, I met up with some real life people into zero waste and was introduced to the joys of sugar free banana icecream. I will also never be wasting cold chips again!

What does the future hold? Honestly I have absolutely no idea! Will I still be blogging in 5 years time? It is very possible! I am still extremely slowly writing a book and my hope is that when I do get around to publishing it that I manage to sell a few copies!

No momentous occasion is complete without a few thank you’s so thank you to my husband, my mum, my dad and my friends who have supported me along the way! I couldn’t have done it without you guys!

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