Save a Turtle, Skip the Straw

Since being on summer holidays I’ve been making a lot of smoothies and iced coffees at home for myself and the kids (only smoothies for them of course). My kids thinks smoothies are a big treat and I really don’t mind giving them one everyday, nothing wrong with fruit and yogurt. I have to say though, I don’t have to worry about sneaking any fruits and vegetables in their diets. My kids have always been big fruit AND veggie lovers. When you put a bowl of beans, peas or carrots down beside them for lunch and dinner, it’s the first thing they go for and there’s never any left! #proudmom
I just lucked out on this one though, I didn’t do some kind of magic voodoo spell to make them love fruits and veggies…they just do! Meat on the other hand….if it isn’t in nugget or hot dog form…forget it, they aren’t interested!

Ok getting back to the supposed topic of this post…STRAWS. We’ve started drinking more smoothies at home, therefore needed straws! Ok, back on track.

A few months ago, I was teaching a non-fiction literature unit to my Grade 7 students and we read an article about the damage disposable plastic straws are doing to our oceans and sea life.  I’m not any kind of scientist, nor have I ever even considered myself to be a huge environmentalist; I recycle but I’m terrible at remembering to bring my reusable grocery bags to the store with me. Help me! How do I remember??
But the article really hit me, I had never before thought twice about all the plastic straws and where they go when I’m done using it. Limiting the use of plastic straws or avoiding them all together is such a small,  SIMPLE change to make when ordering take out or grabbing an iced coffee. The straw is merely for convenience, not necessity.

turtle animal diving reptile
Poor guy just wants to keep swimming!                                                                                                    Photo by Tanguy Sauvin on Pexels.com

A couple weeks after I read the article with my class, the banning plastic straw movement was full-blown, all over social media and the news. So it prompted me to order some reusable straws. And I really love the ones I got! They are stainless steel, the set came with cleaning brushes as well, so I don’t have to worry that I haven’t washed them well enough post-smoothie AND they were super affordable.

I’ve actually ordered some more because I want to start keeping one or two in my purse and in the kids bags for when we are out and about. Especially since I’ve really started noticing more and more restaurants aren’t giving out straws unless you ask for them. Which is great! Just sometimes I get weirded out by drinking from glasses at a restaurant…I don’t know why…I should be able to trust that they are clean and sanitized but it’s just a thought I get in my head and then I just can’t shake it. So I think it would be nice to have a couple reusable straws on hand, ready to go.

Stainless isn’t the only option when looking for reusable straws. There’s also silicone or plastic as well. I debated trying the silicone straws, however I worry they could be hard to get into the lids of some cups? That maybe it would get too squished or compressed and then my kids would be having meltdowns because they couldn’t suck anything from their straw…we don’t want that!

So I ordered these ones; they’re kind of the best of both worlds- Stainless steel straw with silicone tips! The tips are removable and colored so I imagine them coming in handy with play dates and keeping the kids drinks in order.

Have you stopped using, or at least began limiting your use of disposable straws? What else do you do, or try to avoid, to help reduce waste and pollution?

4 thoughts on “Save a Turtle, Skip the Straw

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  1. I love my stainless straws too! We started being more environmentally conscious a couple years ago and it’s so simple to make lifestyle changes that you barely notice! We bought a rain barrel for watering plants and filling the kids’ water table and we started composting year-round to cut down on garbage.

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      1. You’d be surprised how fast it decomposes. We don’t even have a compost bin, we just use our old garden boxes that don’t get enough sun to grow plants in. Dig a trench, dump the pail, cover with dirt. Done.

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  2. I love the silicone straws that came with my ban.do plastic cups. BUT my mom threw it away when I was home. I will have to try the stainless steel w/ silicone tips.

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