Utensils = REUSEtensils
Food for thought: Every piece of plastic ever made still exists today…
My question for all of us is how much are we willing to leave behind? And I mean this in the sense of how many tangible somethings of STUFF are we, ourselves, ok with leaving on this earth even after we are gone. My goal is not much, but rather memories, stories, photos and a whole lot of great impacts on people’s lives. I want to make a mark of sustainability so that others can see how every decision we make in our daily lives, no matter how small, makes a difference and echoes far beyond what we can see in the immediate future. So the product I would like to highlight is something all of us utilize every single day, which are utensils, specifically To-Go Ware Bamboo Utensils.
I was introduced to this product three years ago while I was on a field trip with The Surfrider Foundation West LA/Malibu Chapter. We bussed across the Mexican border to explore the Tijuana Estuary and the sustainability projects that were being implemented using plastic waste as building blocks to create public park areas. Besides learning so much about alternative resources and being innovative with reusing trash, I had an amazing change in lifestyle when we all sat down to eat homemade tamales from our local tour guide. One of my Surfrider buddies, pulled out this odd pouch and in it contained a spoon, fork, butter knife, and chop sticks. “What are those?” I asked. He replied, “These are my bamboo utensils. They’re reusable.” How brilliant! I know it is not an entirely new product to the rest of the world but in my world it was definitely a new fantastic discovery. When I got home the first thing I did was I drove over to the Patagonia Cardiff store to purchase my own pair of bamboo utensils. Since then I have never walked out of the house without them! After researching more about this product, I learned that the company that makes them is called To-Go Ware. They come in different colored pouch cases and can be embroidered with your own logo or design. The following year I made them into great Christmas gifts for my family and friends to enjoy one of my favorite products. My aim was for them to join me on this journey of a sustainable lifestyle. Here is a note I wrote as encouragement and an inspiring statement to the people I care most for:
Here is a little reminder of how small
steps can make a big difference.
I’ve learned that it takes just one small move,
and another side of perspective,
to really reinforce a healthier future.
So I would like to share this amazing
example of a reusable bamboo utensil set
that I adopted in order to help reduce
my disposable imprint on the wild places I love.
I do this because I care about
the blue water,
the green grass,
and our one true sky.
My hope is that we can all try and
MAKE A CHANGE.
Carry it with you , use it when it’s needed,
and I promise that you’ll make a difference
to me and this lovely place,
that we call home.
I absolutely vouch for these bamboo utensil sets because I have taken them everywhere from work to social outings at restaurants and BBQs to eateries to farmer’s markets and on camping trips. They are easy to clean, have their own carrying pouch, and are friendly to the environment. Whenever I am offered a plastic spoon or fork, I politely say, “No, thank you. I brought my own.” You will not believe the look I get on people’s faces when they see me whip out my To-Go Ware utensils. In fact I have even gotten strangers to look up and order online their own pair right in front of me! It is amazing when I can share a little piece of my story and make others aware of how much pollution is caused by disposable spoons, forks, and knives every day.
I will add my awe-struck moment when I met the woman who makes these awesome products. I was sitting with a friend at Mozy’s Café in Encinitas, CA when I ordered a burrito bowl. I started eating it with my bamboo fork (as I mentioned I carry them with me in my bag everyday) when this woman and her two children sat down next to us. She commented, “That’s a cool fork you’ve got there.” And just as I was about to speak my testimony and go on my whole spiel of how great they are, she smiled, “That’s my company, we make those.” Folks I’m not star-struck very often, but that day I turned into a total fan girl. I was so excited and ecstatic to meet the person who created the product that I love and am so inspired by! Plus she posted a photo on the To-Go Ware Instagram photo of me using the utensils… an in-action find of a bamboo utensil user. I was such a proud kid, you can ask my friends.
Anywhos, this is such a huge way to lessen our carbon footprint and disposable waste we leave behind. My goal is to continue using these utensils for the rest of my life because they are biodegradable, are eco-friendly to the environment, and are made of alternative materials from the bamboo plant, which grows in abundance. I have been using the same set for over three years now and I am proud to say it is one of the best lifestyle changes I have ever made. For as long as I use them, I know I will be contributing less trash pollution into our landfills. It is a conscious CHOICE and PLEDGE I have made to myself and the world. No more plastic spoons, forks, knives, and chops sticks for me. And even though it may take awhile for others to follow this mindful habit, I still make an effort to pick up plastic spoons and forks I find on the beach or on hiking trails because I know it does not belong in these wild places.
So how much am I willing to leave behind? Definitely not my To-Go Ware bamboo utensil set. I’m taking them with me!
P.S. If you’re looking for a great functional gift this year and cost effective, purchase a sets of these, personalize them in different colors and paint a statement on them. I ordered several sets for friends and family in different colors, painted “Make A Change” on them, and added a global embellishment pin on them. Doesn’t get easier than that. Start spreading the love and awareness!