For the past three years I have grown a pretty sizable backyard garden in raised beds. We have had blueberries, strawberries, lettuce, tomatoes, peppers, green beans (oh, the green beans), squash, zucchini, cucumbers, peas, onions, garlic, carrots, radishes and probably a few other veggies I cannot think of right now. Why? Because I’m trying to eat better and trying to make food an experience and I’m trying to save money.

This year I have five resolutions (or maybe goals):

1. I would like to compost so that I am not contributing as much waste to landfills. Last year we started recycling and I’ll always be working on that one but compost will be a new adventure in not creating as much trash. For Christmas my husband gave to me a compost ball. I just put some uncooked veggies into it this morning for the first time. Now I need to go clear some debris from my 2011 garden…

My new compost ball!

2. I’d like to have at least one rain barrel in our backyard. The garden needs a lot of water and our gutters collect a lot of water and it mostly makes our yard a mush mess — a rain barrel will help redirect that water to save our yard as well as help us save money on our water bill!

3. Make a much better effort to turn off lights and other electronics in our home that are not needed or being used. Think of the savings! We’ve almost completely switched over to energy saving compact fluorescent bulbs but that’s not a reason to stop improving.

4. All batteries in our home are replaced with rechargeable batteries before the end of 2012. We love our rechargeable batteries but for some reason we still buy the “other ones”. They are cheap but like the light bulbs, in the long run we will save so much money and continue to have a more positive impact on the earth.

And finally 5. I want backyard chickens. Yeah, my husband is soooo totally against this. He’s dragged his feet for years but this is the year my friends. This is the year! I’ve been talking to my new friend over at Naptown Chickens and the hubby and I are getting signed up for a class or two about raising backyard chickens. It’s happening! Within the next year we will have a coop in our yard and by Spring 2013 we will have baby chicks. Mark my words! And if we don’t, I’ll post my husband’s cell phone number so you can all help me harass him!

One of the best parts about all of these things is that we will be an example to Lulu and teach her to be a more responsible citizen of earth, to take care of what is around her and to be a better person for it! What are some of the things you are doing in your home to be a greener family? I want to learn from you!