Plastic Free Living

Make Your Own Beeswax Wraps

I’m not entirely sure why making these wraps made me so excited! It’s possibly because making them has been on my to-do list for so long, that it was incredibly satisfying to actually get it done.

The purpose of beeswax wraps is to eradicate the need for cling film in your kitchen. Not only is cling film not currently recyclable, it also leeches chemical nasties on to the food you cover it with when heated.

Cling film is banned in the USA, but not currently in Europe, despite scientific research now proving years of claims that it’s bad for our health.

It’s also bad for the health of our planet, so I’m not sure why I waited so long to make these extremely simple natural alternatives.

To make your own you will  need:

  • Thin cotton (I used 100% organic cotton, think sheet thickness). Cut it into the sizes you want. I made mine 25cm by 25cm, but some bigger and some smaller would be handy.
  • !00% organic beeswax (you can buy a bar and grate it, or buy it in pellets)

Here’s how to make the wraps:

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Lay your fabric on a clean baking tray or sheet and sprinkle about 2-4 tsp of beeswax pellets giving an even coverage. Pop it in the oven on 180 C for 5 minutes.
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Remove from oven and check the beeswax has covered all areas. If you have a look at the photo above you will notice some lighter areas where the beeswax didn’t reach. Simply sprinkle a few more pellets on and pop back in the oven. If you got a nice coverage the first time, carefully and quickly pick up your fabric by two corners and hold outside for 30 seconds to dry. You can peg them on the line, but seriously they dry so fast the trick to a lovely smooth coverage is speed!

Once your wraps are dry you can just leave them as they are and tie up sandwiches with string or you can make some sandwich pockets using sew on snap fasteners if you are handy with a needle and thread (I’m not). Avoid Velcro because it’s made from plastic!

Tips:

Gently wash after use with a cloth and cold water (don’t use hot water, the wax will flake off).

I don’t think these are a perfect solution, the beeswax does flake in areas where you continually fold, but it has to be better than using cling film. If they start to look tatty where the wax is flaking you can simply fold out flat again and sprinkle on a little more wax and pop back in the oven.

So far I’ve only used them for wrapping food, but you could make smaller squares and cover leftover bowls of food with the addition of an elastic band to keep it all in place.

 

Plastic Free Living

Plastic Free Living

I was recently sat watching ‘top 10 funny’ you tube clips, and one of them was a skunk wondering around with a coke can stuck on it’s head.

It really got to me. I couldn’t stop thinking about it and it really wasn’t funny! I’ve been talking the talk for so long about rubbish, but meanwhile loading my own bin every single week.

Image result for animal with coke can on head

This September we subscribed to the Global Guardian Project which is a wonderful interactive e-magazine encouraging worldwide sustainable living. Both my children have enjoyed the monthly capsules, and we created a ‘real-life’ group to work together on some of the activities and challenges.  We’ve talked about plastic, fair trade and so on. We’ve sympathised with sea turtles who eat plastic bags thinking it’s food. We’ve created artwork, written poetry and we’ve even been on a beach clean for the Marine Conservation Society, where we collected bags of rubbish from the beach, much of it plastic.

Image result for ocean plastic

We do basic everyday plastic free things, like trying hard to remember our bags for life when shopping and buying local box schemes, but we still manage to fill our waste bin with plastic items that cannot be re-used or re-cycled.

It’s not enough, not nearly enough.

The time to make a change is right now. The actions of one person or one family does matter. It’s time to stop shrugging our shoulders in defeat, to stop just talking about it and really take action.

Tackling our household rubbish is a big task, so I’ve chosen to start with plastic.

I want to take on the challenge to go completely plastic-free as a starting point. I am really excited about this and will be using the blog as a way of holding myself accountable.

This is a blog about education, but any kind of education starts with yourself. We teach our children everyday, by our action and our inaction. I want to inspire my own children to care for the earth, but I need to lead by example, because if unschooling is about anything at all, then it’s about leading an intentional life.

Will you join me?