Thursday, April 12, 2012

The Green Party



Betty tries to be an earth-friendly citizen, but I need reminding from time to time of ways that I can show Mother Earth that she's my Number One Gal.

When I was planning Kitty's birthday party, I was all ready to go out and get some disposable tablecloths, some heavy paper plates, and some plastic cutlery. Then I remembered not too long ago, my good friend Karen gave a speech at Toastmasters titled "The Green Party." It was not a speech about the political party. Instead, it was a speech about how just by using reusable items at parties, we can avoid adding gunk to the landfills.

I called Karen and told her I wanted to give a Green Party. She squealed. She was happy. Another convert. And she was kind enough to loan me her supplies.

What Karen did a few years ago was invest in some white tablecloths. (She has different runners for them for different kinds of parties.)


Then she bought some sturdy but fairly cheap silverware.


She bought simple glass plates at the 99 Cent store. (These aren't her plates, but you get the idea.)



She keeps all these neatly packed away in her garage and then when it's time to throw a party (or her friend is throwing a party) she just gets it down and uses it. Genius!

Yes, after the party, I did have to wash the dishes and the tablecloths, but it was really not a big deal. In fact, it was really pretty easy and I was happy that my garbage can was not full of trash from the celebration.

I think about all the kid parties I threw when my boys were younger and I wish I would have just invested in some really good plastic plates and plastic cups and kept them to use over and over.

Sure it was a little easier just to gather up the plastic tablecloth and dump all the plastic forks and plates in the trash at the end of the kids' parties, but what kind of example was I setting for my kids and their friends? By purchasing reusable items, I would have been a better earth citizen and saved money too.

(Crafty people out there! Wouldn't it be a good idea to give a parent of a toddler a "Green Party Set" complete with sturdy, reusable party ware? You could include all kinds of cute cloth, or oilcloth tablecloths with runners and rugged plastic cups that could be used for years and years. A carrying case for all of it would be a bonus too!)



Since I plan to be a party girl for a very long time, I will invest in my own Green Party goods very soon. Think I should get this many plates or maybe a few more?

Thanks, Karen, for inspiring me! I will vote for the Green Party from now on!





Today, I am linking up with Rural Thursday!


35 comments:

Tabor said...

I love those last two photos. So rhythmic. Yes, if I threw parties I would do this. I could try to get my daughter to do this but her husband thinks I am a little too environmentally crazy as it is!

Madi and Mom said...

Not only was it a Green party it was also a Rainbow party. Love the brilliant colors in the plates!!
You'll be happy to know I'm a Green kitty. I eat my meals from a Winnie the Pooh plate that was my human sis's when she was a wee lassie.
I love it when Pooh has Fancy Feast on his face.
Happy Thursday,
Madi

Larri @ Seams Inspired said...

Great ideas, Betty! I guess I've been throwing Green Parties forever, because I rarely use disposable partyware. Love your idea for the toddlers. Can't wait to see your Green Party supplies. Be sure to keep us posted. Happy Thursday! ☺

ellen abbott said...

As a shunner of disposable goods, especially plastic disposable goods, and a recycler from back when it wasn't popular and a user of my own canvas bags for groceries when I was the only one doing it and got really weird looks from all the cashiers, I salute you!

Shelly said...

Now that's an idea worth pondering and investing in. You know, I think that's something I can do, too. So, another convert here~

Old Kitty said...

Yay for you lovely BB!! What a great idea - I hope many more will opt for reusable, recyclable materials for parties etc! Yay! More please!! Take care
x

EmptyNester said...

Betty! What a fabulous idea! I'm so glad you shared this! I'm heading out to the Dollar Store today! :)

Nancy Claeys said...

This is pure genius! Thanks for stopping by Betty -- you should link this post up to Rural Thursday (my hop.) So many would benefit from this information. Have a great rest of the week!

Leah J. Utas said...

Green is good. Great ideas.

Olga said...

That is genius--green yet so versatile.

Brian Miller said...

i love this because it is very practical and does not cost much...but can make all the difference in the world...good on you...and nice pics too...

Marg said...

That is such a good idea. So you have to wash a few dishes but at least it saves filling up the dump. Great stuff. Take care.

Tanya said...

what a great idea! although i do our parties at places where i don't have to clean up, this would be a nice alternative!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

You probably just gave a lot of parents a really good idea.

Alison said...

If we are all invited, you are going to need more plates. And some wine glasses. Though I'd be happy to supply my own, if necessary.

Brian said...

That is some fun party, no matter what the color!!!

Hilary said...

Good for you.. and for your friend, Karen for inspiring greenness in others. Love these colours.

Tracy said...

well, good for you and I am so bad at 'going green' for events as it is so much simpler to 'throw away' but shame on me! Good idea Betty and have a great time!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Betty - isn't it a great idea .. when I restock I'll do that - definitely so they are there for the future ..they look so colourful too ..

Cheers and enjoy the memories of the start to your party season .. Hilary

Ms. A said...

I think this is a great idea. I'm a very frugal person and can't stand how disposable everything has become. I'm more of a re-use, and re-purpose type.

Pat Tillett said...

It's a fantastic idea! No sense filling up the landfills with stuff that was only used once. Our party stuff all came from Cost-Plus. They have very reasonably priced dishes, glasses and silverware that comes in storage boxes. It's cheap and pretty good stuff.

jenny_o said...

Karen's commitment is impressive! And I like your idea for a gift to parents of little ones. So many younger people are much more aware of environmental issues than our generation, and would welcome this gift.

Ann said...

What a great idea. I guess none of my parties have ever been very green. Shame on me

Daisy said...

This is a great idea. It makes good sense. I like the stack of different colored plates. Just the bright colors of those say, "Party!"

Mimi said...

Great idea to borrow the plates and cutlery! My friend/neighbour and I do the same- we bought same glasses and when either is having a party, we borrow from the other! Works great!
It really surprised me on a visit to the States a few years ago how people used paper plates at a bbq. i think it's nicer using real plates, and I find it helps me unwind afterwards to wash the plates as I'm thinking about the fun of the party. Maybe that's just me!!

Lin said...

I'm halfway there....

I absolutely despise plasticware, so a few years ago, I bought a couple sets of inexpensive silverware. (It goes on sale in January - FYI) And I do just that--I keep it on hand for whatever we have going on at the house. It is really nice to just put it in the dishwasher at the end of the night. LOVE it!

I'm working on the plates--my only problem is storage. Currently, I have service for 12, but I'd love to get 24 for my everyday dishes. They are white and can go with anything. I may have to consider the plastic plates.....that might be fun to use instead for parties.

Crack You Whip said...

Super idea! I love the idea of re-use items.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Great idea. I stopped buying paper plates and cups a while ago. It also saves lots of money.
Like you, I threw a lot of parties for my kids when they were little, all those comic book character theme paper ware. I've learned.

Theresa Milstein said...

This post resonates with me. I cringe at parties when I see all that stuff go in the trash. A little effort makes a big difference, doesn't it? Thanks for the reminder.

Deanna said...

It makes me happy to hear about people giving serious thought to preventing waste. I have enough dishes to host as many people as I am likely to want to. I'm getting close to having enough cloth napkins, too. I love your toddler party gift idea!

Slamdunk said...

Worthwhile ideas Betty--things I never would have considered a few years ago. We are not party people, so we just serve either the kid-friendly washables or the fancy dinner wear when their are folks gathering here.

Sush said...

I live 'just down the road' from Replacements Ltd., and they used to have a 'yard sale' where for five dollars you could fill up a huge cardboard box with all they offered. Close outs, odd pieces, etc. I now have a lovely assortment of plates I use besides the regular china from wedding days. I love to mix and match all kinds of plates and it makes for a fun meal.

Keep it green!
Hugs~

Nancy Claeys said...

PS -- thank you, dear lady! :)

Jenny said...

I always use cloth and 'real' vs disposable. Love the idea of a green birthday gift set! We have a new Grand on the way. I need to think about how to adapt that.

Happy Homemaker said...

Yay! Thanks for posting this fabulous message, Betty! Your friend is pure genius! : )