The Slow Home Podcast



We live life in the fast lane. We race to keep up with The Joneses. We are over-worked, over-committed and over-stressed, and we compete on how busy and important and sleep-deprived we are. But we don't need to.

There is an ever-growing group of people who are saying no to life lived at 110%. They are opting to slow down, simplify, say no and focus on the things that are truly important. I'm one of them, and in The Slow Home Podcast I chat to others who have adopted a similar approach to life - slowing down, opting out, saying no.

Listen in to learn what makes people change, how life is different once you adopt a slower way of life, and what their advice is to anyone looking to get out of the fast lane.

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Slow Home: Minimising Cleaning Waste

Slow Home: Minimise Cleaning Waste

One of the biggest changes I’ve made in cleaning our house over the past few years (aside from my love of vinegar and citric acid!) is to really think about the materials we use, and to start looking at ways of reducing waste.

I’d simply never thought about it before, but when I realised that the dishcloths we used at home were made from plastic and would spend hundreds of years in landfill, I was a bit shocked. It doesn’t seem like a big deal really, but for such a ‘disposable’ item it was entirely the opposite. So I started using compostable kitchen cloths instead and over the years have developed a lifecycle of products that makes a big difference to our waste output.

In today’s poggie Ben and I talk about that lifecycle and how even the simplest of changes is having an impact. Specifically we look at:

Cleaning cloths: We buy compostable dishcloths and use them in the kitchen. Every Monday I wash them under boiling water and then use the cloth to clean the kitchen. Then it’s washed, dried in the sun and put in the laundry to be used as a cleaning cloth. Once those cloths are spent, they get composted.

Tea towels: We buy pure cotton or linen tea towels, and once they’re too old to be used in the kitchen any more (we’re talking years and years here) they’re used as cleaning rags. Again, once they’re spent, they can be composted in our backyard heap.

Vinegar: I wasn’t aware of this when we recorded today’s episode, but you can buy vinegar concentrate (20%) online and dilute it at home. This helps reduce even further the plastic bottles needed for vinegar and something I’ll be doing from now on. (Thanks for the tip, Em!)

ecostore products: We use ecostore dishwashing liquid and laundry powder as they’ve been far superior to any homemade product I’ve tried (give me your suggestions though!) and while some ecostore products come in plastic bottles, it’s actually made from sugarcane as opposed to petroleum. They’re fully recyclable too, and a pretty great compromise for the items I haven’t yet found in plastic-free packaging.

Pot brush: I bought a wooden pot brush recently to replace steel wool pot scrubbers, and while Ben’s not sold on it I’m a big fan. Particularly of the fact it will last for many years, and when it’s spent can be composted.

These changes all seem so small, so insignificant even, that it can be tempting to ignore them. But even the smallest changes have the potential to make a big impact over time, and with that in mind I’d love to encourage you to try this week’s simple action: Buy some reusable, compostable kitchen cloths instead of the plastic ones. Or, if you’re a crafty person, try your hand at either knitting or crocheting a few instead – even better if you can use scrap yarn! You can find links to instructions below.

Enjoy the episode!

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Purpose (and planet) beyond profit with Dane O’Shanassy of Patagonia

As someone who espouses simplicity and buying only what we need, I have an uneasy relationship with the idea of capitalism. But as a business-owner, a traveller and someone who does indeed purchase things on occasion, I recognise that I take part in a capitalist society on the daily. During a conversation with Carolyn Tate back in September… Continue Reading

Slow Home: Green Cleaning Tips

Just quickly, I want to say a big thank you to everyone who has given such great feedback on our new Monday episode format. It’s been fun to make a shift after the experiments last year, and we’re really enjoying it, but to hear that you lovely folk are too is so ace. I thought… Continue Reading

Slow Home: Cleaning with Vinegar

OK. Let me get this out in the open before we move ahead… The next few Monday shows are about cleaning your home BUT BEFORE YOU GO AWAY BECAUSE THAT SOUNDS INSANELY BORING I want you to know that the info we’re going to share is actually interesting and relevant and designed to help you:… Continue Reading

Creating a Slow Home with Amelia Lee

Given the name of this podcast it’s perhaps unsurprising that Ben and I often talk about the idea of creating a slow home – that is, a home that works for you, dependant on your lifestyle, circumstance and priorities. So often we talk about this in really broad terms though, not necessarily getting in to the nitty-gritty practicalities… Continue Reading

Rituals: Gratitude

We’re wrapping up the simple rituals series with today’s episode, which is all about gratitude. Now, I think gratitude gets a bit of a bad wrap, because we see it as an attempt to Pollyanna ourselves out of challenging situations, or to avoid dealing with negative feelings. But I’m a firm believer in the power… Continue Reading

Rituals: Three Things

In last Monday’s episode, Ben and I spoke about the ritual of brain dumping. Where you take a blank piece of paper and write down everything that’s on your mind – big or small, important or not. We spoke about the ways in which it helps us to let go of anxiety and avoid that paralysing feeling… Continue Reading

One Part Plant with Jessica Murnane

If you’ve been listening to the show for any length of time you’d know I’m not a big fan of labels. I don’t like putting people in to boxes (even when we do it to ourselves) because boxes don’t grow as we do. They’re inflexible and restrictive and we find ourselves changing course or choosing… Continue Reading