Weekend Waste Diary with Catherine

About This Series  

This blog series provides readers with a chance to catch a glimpse in the life of a zero-waste lifestyle supporter. It documents the daily weekend activities of the blogger, as he/she generates waste from Friday to Sunday. Readers will be able to put their feet into someone else’s shoes through this blog series, and hopefully learn some good waste management tips for them to practice at home as well. These bloggers have experience in working with waste diversion and understand the concept of zero-waste quite well.

Let’s see how this weekend’s blogger will do!


About Catherine

This week’s blogger is a recent Mercyhurst University graduate and is a Zero-Waste Schools Intern.  She lives in a Rochester apartment with her fiancée Ian and their (her) abundance of plants. She often gardens and creates useful crafts throughout the week.  Follow along as she generates and tracks her waste through the weekend.


2:30pm - I get home from work and am starving!  I haven’t eaten since 9:15am so I make myself a pb&j and finish off a loaf of bread.  The bag the bread was in is flimsy plastic and cannot be recycled so it goes into the garbage.

8:00pm - My friend comes over and I realize I haven’t eaten dinner yet.  So, I make myself three tacos out of leftover ingredients. I used up a can of beans and opened another one.  Both the old can and lid from the new can are rinsed and put into the recycling. I put a bee’s wax wrap onto the new can so I don’t have to dirty a container.  I cut up a tomato and put it in a glass reusable storage container. The stem of the tomato goes into the organics. I drink from my reusable water bottle while eating.

9:00pm - I make myself a cup of tea.  The tea bags are compostable, so it goes into the compost.

Friday Waste

Reuse: Beeswax Wrap, Pyrex Glass Container, Reusable Water Bottle

Compost: Tomato Stem, Tea Bag

Recycling: Tin Can & Lid

Landfill: Bread Bag


9:00am - I wake up and prepare to go to my mom’s 45 minutes away.  I’m waiting for my fiancée, Ian, to get ready so we can leave. He’s running behind this morning.  While waiting, I eat my typical breakfast, apples and peanut butter. The apple core goes into the organics.  I also drink from my water bottle. I wait a few more minutes then we are ready to leave and he’s telling me I’m the one whose behind!
10:30am - While at my mom’s she gives us some leftover Halloween candy!  I eat some tootsie rolls and kit-kats. There wrappers are plastic, so they go into the garbage.

1:15pm - My mom makes us hot dogs and baked beans.  Since I don’t eat red-meat, I only have the beans.  The can goes into recycling and the hotdog wrapper goes into the garbage.  I cannot eat without drinking so I drink out of my reusable bottle that I brought with me.

4:45pm - When we get home, I’m still hungry as I’ve only eaten beans and candy, not a healthy combination!  So, I heat up some sauce and cook penne pasta. The sauce isn’t used up, so it goes back into my fridge. The pasta box goes into the recycling.  Of course, I have some water too (Ian says I’m, a plant due to how much water I drink)!

7:00pm - Ian and I are watching youtube videos and are both hungry.  So, he heats up leftover pasta, and I eat yet again, tacos! I eat tacos a lot… I use up the last two shells and resort to tortilla chips making a taco “salad”.  The shells come in a plastic wrap in a cardboard box. The plastic goes into eh garbage, the box into the recycling. Once again, I have water with my meal from my reusable bottle.

9:15pm - I am creating rice heat packs for Christmas gifts this year.  When I finish a heat pack, I put the tiny leftover thread and clippings into the organics.  They are to small to be used again and the materials are organic cotton.

Saturday Waste

Reuse: Reusable Water Bottle

Compost: Apple Core, Thread and Cloth Clippings

Recycling: Tin Can, 2 Cardboard Boxes

Landfill: 5 Tootsie Roll Wrappers, 2 Kit-Kat Wrappers, Hot Dog Wrapper, Plastic Taco Wrapper


7:45am - Ian and I are getting ready for church.  I make some tea and eat two apples with peanut butter.  Ian makes coffee and is ready to go. The tea bag, apple cores, and coffee grounds go into the organics.  He uses a percolator for his coffee so the only thing wasted at the end is the grounds.

11:30am - After church we go to my dad’s house to visit for a while, on the way home we stop at the grocery store.  We bought a 9V battery, frozen pizza, and 20lb bag of rice which we put into our reusable cloth bag. The battery is opened and put into a stud finder.  We borrowed the stud finder from my dad so we can hang-up a few pictures around our apartment. The back of the battery pack is cardboard and goes into the recycling, the plastic covering must go into the landfill.  Ian eats some leftovers while I preheat the oven and put the pizza into the oven. The box goes into the recycling while the plastic wrapping goes into the landfill. The pizza gets done cooking and is delicious! We finish it off and drink water with our meal from reusable bottles.

1:00pm - Every Sunday I water all my plants, both the regular and succulents.  I also pick off any dead pieces or leaves. My Morning Glory is growing well and as it does so other pieces die, it happens in a progression.  I extract the seeds from the dead pieces before removing them. These pieces go into the organics.

2:30pm - I start hand sewing rice heat packs again while watching Criminal Minds on Netflix.  I finished off our rice during the week, so I open our new 20lb rice bag and fill up my stockpile of cloth pouches.  The part of the rice I opened is plastic and goes into the landfill, the other half of the bag is closed up and put away.  The tiny leftover thread and clippings from sewing go into the organics.

5:00pm - Ian and I begin to make a crockpot stew for tomorrow afternoon.  The ends of the onion, carrot, potato eyes, garlic peal, and chicken scraps go into the organics.  The broth we used came in a plastic lined box, so it goes into the landfill.

7:30pm - I decided that I want to make an apron.  I taught myself to sew last week so I’m up for the task! The fabric I’m using is organic cotton and is leftover scraps from a fabric store.  When I’m done laying it out and sewing most of the apron, the scraps and thread go into the organics.

Sunday Waste


Compost: Tea Bag, 2 Apple Cores, Coffee Grounds, Dead Leaves and Stems, Thread, Cloth Clippings, Fabric Scraps, Food Scraps

Recycling: Cardboard, Cardboard Box

Landfill: Plastic Battery Cover, Plastic Pizza Wrapping, Corner from Rice Bag, Broth Box

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