Is it time to Rethink “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle”?

We can thank the environmental movements of the 1970s for the catchy “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” slogan. It is important to realize that while these events led to the creation of the EPA in the United States, and the founding of Earth Day, society has remained in the cycle of consumerism.

Reduce Reuse Recycle for a sustainable future

The following concepts can be applied to almost any type of item that creates waste from textiles to electronics, food to paper.


The first step is to stop and rethink.
Do you really need it that item?
Can you change the way you shop in an effort to reduce waste?
Can you borrow the item?
Have you thought about the whole life cycle of the product?
What goes into making the item?
Where does the item end up in the world?


Avoid buying products like single use plastic and that use excessive packaging.


If you are not able to refuse, reducing your usage of waste-producing goods is the next step. This is the first “R” in the traditional “reduce, reuse, recycle” model.

Reuse and Repair

Simply stated, when you reuse or repair item for it’s intended purpose instead of rushing out to replace it you avoid the waste of the original product and the waste generated from obtaining the replacement.

Some of the most well known reusable items include shopping bags, cloth napkins and paper towels, reusable coffee pods … just a few of the numerous items that can replace single-use and disposable items.


Similar to reusing, re-purposing uses the item for a different purpose. It can be something as simple as using an old metal bucket for a flower pot. The possibilities are endless!


If possible, compost organic matter as it creates methane gas in landfills. In my city, we are fortunate enough to have a city-wide composting program available. However, apartment complex landlords are not required to offer this service, especially when they opt for the dumpster instead of the bins.


Check with your municipality, town or city for your specific regulations. Many retailers offer basic e-waste recycling. Be careful when buying items that you don’t fall into the trap of thinking that because something is recyclable that it’s free of consequences. While it’s great that an item can be diverted from the landfill, it doesn’t always end up being recycled. As consumers, we get tricked into buying more of an item and made not to feel bad because we think once it hits the recycling bin that the story is over.

In conclusion, the bottom line is that recycling should be the last step.
When teaching and talking about the three basic R’s, the other R’s -to rethink, to refuse, to re-purpose, to repair, and to rot – are important additions to the standard Reduce, Reuse, Recycle everyone knows.

It starts with rethinking your habits and considering the whole life cycle of the product.

reduce reuse recycle can we do more to be sustainable

Fall Essential Oil Diffuser Blends for a Healthy Home

Fall is hands down, my favourite season.
With the air getting crisper, the fantastic warm spicy smells and the leaves changing colours, it means that its almost time for Halloween Fall.
Halloween happens to be my favourite holiday. People think you’re weird if you embrace the awesomeness that is Halloween more than just a couple of days around October 31st. But I digress.
Here is a small selection of essential oils for fall that you can diffuse to celebrate fall, while also keeping your home or work space healthier and toxin free.

Fal essential Oil Blends

Why use essential oils?

I used to love candles.
There is something comforting about a warm and cozy flickering candle, which also smells amazing. To me, it’s calming and relaxing.
I have the Desert Mist diffuser from Young Living and LOVE the flickering light mode.

When you burn candles, they release volatile organic compounds and particulate matter in to the air. You are essentially creating indoor air pollution. Paraffin, what most candles are made of, is a petroleum waste product that must be deodorised and chemically bleached before it can be made in to wax. When paraffin wax candles burn, highly toxic compounds such as benzene and toluene, which are known carcinogens, are released. Oh, and then wicks have been found to contain lead… Even thought they are supposed to be made from cotton and paper in North America.
Then there’s the fragrance. The majority of the chemicals that make up “fragrances” are derived from petrochemicals including benzene benzene derivatives, aldehydes, phthalates — which are known to cause cancer, birth defects, nervous-system disorders and allergies. Phthalates are added to products to make scents last longer have been shown to disrupt hormone activity, reduce sperm counts, cause reproductive malformation, and have been linked to liver and breast cancer, diabetes, and obesity.

Concentrated plant extracts, essential oils are obtained through steam distillation, cold pressing or resin tapping resulting in distinctive molecular profiles giving the oils specific aromas and properties. Essential oils have been used by people for thousands of years.

Fall Essential Oil Diffuser Blends

Crisp Fall Air

  • 4 drops Bergamot
  • 3 drops Lemon
  • 3 drops Elemi
  • 2 drops Wintergreen

Snickerdoodle Cookies

  • 3 drops Stress Away
  • 3 drops Cinnamon Bark

Warm Spiced Cider

  • 1 drop Thieves
  • 1 drop Ginger
  • 3 drops Bergamot

Holiday Hustle

  • 2 drops Thieves
  • 3 drops Lemon
  • 2 drops RC

Fall Romance

  • 3 drops Cedarwood
  • 2 drops Patchouli
  • 2 drops Geranium (or Jasmine)

Changing Leaves

  • 6 drops Northern Lights Black Spruce
  • 2 drops Wintergreen
  • 2 drops Eucalyptus Globulus
Fall essential oil diffuser blends

Apple Pie

  • 2 drops Clove
  • 2 drops Cinnamon
  • 2 drops Ginger
  • 1 drop Nutmeg

Pumpkin Pie

  • 4 drops Cardamom
  • 2 drops Cinnamon Bark
  • 1 drop Orange
  • 1 drop Clove

Chai Tea

  • 3 drops Orange
  • 1 drop Nutmeg
  • 1 drop Cinnamon
  • 1 drop Cardamom
  • 1 drop Clove

Essential Oils For Fall

One of the oils mentioned, Stress Away, is a blend which is available from Young Living. If you’re interested in becoming a member, you can follow my link, or contact me and I would be more than happy to talk to you about the wonderful world of essential oils. [Disclosure: if you sign up with my link then I will make a small commission from your purchases]

Thieves Essential Oil Blend

The Clove in Thieves helps to relieve symptoms of cough or cold when inhaled or applied to feet and wrists. The powerful essential oils in this blend creates a warm, grounding aroma. The story behind this oil is that during the Black Plague, thieves would use a blend of spices and oils to be able to rob the corpses without becoming sick themselves.

Thieves essential oil

Stress Away Essential Oil Blend from Young Living

As primary ingredients in Stress Away, Lime and Cedarwood combine to create the perfect solution to combat everyday stresses.
Featuring Lavender essential oil, Stress Away helps to calm the nerves thanks to the relaxing properties of the Lavender oil.

Stress Away Essential Oil from Young Living

Elemi Essential Oil

This is a new oil to me, and one that sounds like it needs to be part of your essential oil diffuser blend for all and winter.
Like Frankincense Essential Oil, Elemi Oil is rich in monoterpenes. It is often called “poor mans frankincense”. It can be especially helpful in wound care and for supporting respiratory health.

Elemi Essential oil used in fall essential oil blend

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