My name is Amanda. I am married with 3 gorgeous kids, living in Auckland, New Zealand.

Since becoming a mum I have reflected on the beautiful New Zealand that I was so blessed to grow up in. I look around and see how our country is changing over the years and realize that my children and my children’s children will not enjoy that same blessing if we collectively continue to treat the planet the way we do. That saddens me and I am committed to making environmentally-friendly changes in my life and to raise my kids to be mindful of the environment in their lifestyle choices. Hopefully I can be a good example.

The task of saving our earth seemed a little overwhelming to me. So instead of putting it in the ‘too hard’ basket and doing nothing, I decided to break the task down into more achievable ‘bits’. I’m committing to make small, achievable changes regularly (at least 4 per year), in a bid to ‘do my bit’.

This website is a diary of my journey. I hope it inspires you to consider how you can be more environmentally-friendly. There are others out there who are far more committed and inspiring than I, whom I greatly admire. I am just a regular consumer trying to make one small, positive change at a time - because I believe that if we all do a little, collectively it adds up to a lot.

I have called this site EcoMum because my children are my motivation to care for this earth our God has given us to be stewards over. The reality is that we probably won’t feel the effects of our mistreatment of this Earth, it is the future generations that will. Let’s ‘do our bit’ to ensure a bright future for them.


Monday, March 30, 2009


We have a compost container that we keep under the kitchen sink to put food scraps in. Once it's full we empty it outside in the compost bin tucked away behind the house, because it's a little unsightly. It's a bit of an 'iky' job emptying and rinsing it but 9 times out of 10 my hubby does it so that's great - thanks honey :). We use it for kitchen waste but don't actually take time to cultivate good compost by adding other ingredients to it (see below). We don't have a vege garden to put compost on so I don't see any point in doing so at this stage. (We're not at all green fingered, the only things that survive under my care are weeds and the odd succulent!) But one day in the future I hope the desire will just 'come' and then we'll live the 'good life'. I hear it happens when you get towards retirement age but I hope it will be sooner! For those of you wanting to get started now, here is some information I hope will be useful.

My Organic Gardening book suggests the following may be added to your compost:

  • Green garden waste (weeds and plant remains after harvest)
  • Kitchen waste (crush eggshells first to speed up decomposition)
  • Leaves
  • Grass clippings
  • Hay and straw
  • Manure (cow, horse, poultry, rabbit, sheep)
  • Seaweed
  • Urine (human - rich in nitrogen and potassium) This conjures up a mental image I'd rather forget!
  • Soft prunings (hedge clippings, thorn-free green prunings)
  • Woody prunings (shredded first)
And avoid putting in:

  • Cooked kitchen waste (its strong smell may attract dogs and vermin)
  • Protein (meat, chicken, fish or cheese - attracts vermin)
  • Treated paper
  • Diseased plants or pest-infested plants
  • Manure from pigs, dogs and cats (may contain diseases that affect humans)
  • Weeds with a high seed content unless your compost reaches quite a high temperature
  • Anything that won't decompose (metal or plastic objects)
  • Roots of invasive weeds
This how-to video by Kitchen Gardeners International, shows you step-by-step instructions for successful organic composting. Happy gardening!

Compost bins are available from your local garden centre or hardware store, e.g. Mitre 10. I can't recommend what type you should get or what features to look for, but staff there should be able to give you some advice. By using a compost bin for your kitchen waste, rather than putting it in your regular trash, you will save money on pay council rubbish bags and reduce landfill.

Helping to reduce landfill

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