Living a Semi-Urban Life

Some of you might know that I live on the outskirts of Bangalore. The reasons were two-fold I wanted a place that was far from city but not too far. That way I can avoid the pollution and traffic. Have some greenery. And yet be able to catch a flight when I need to travel. Minimize my investment in real estate because buying a decent individual house in Bangalore is extremely expensive. That is all well and good, but you have to live with some extra “benefits” of this lifestyle. For one, the roads aren’t that great. You have to … Continue reading “Living a Semi-Urban Life”

Managing Dry Waste – Part II

If you have been reading our sustainable living series, you already know that we have stopped generating any wet waste for the trash picker. In the previous post on managing dry waste, I talked about how we are trying to reduce dry waste. In this continuation post I want to talk about more ways to reduce dry waste. Use your own compostable bags When you go out to buy groceries, the vegetable and fruit vendors typically give out plastic bags. These plastic bags are one of the major pollutants in the world right now. Although they are being marketed as … Continue reading “Managing Dry Waste – Part II”

Managing Dry Waste – Part I

I have been composting my wet waste for a while now (roughly 3 years). The yield of the compost has been good and it has become an integral part of the kitchen. Lots of valuable plants have come out of it and it’s been a worthwhile experience for me. I cannot say the same about our dry waste though. Our layout has a BBMP trash van that collects wet and dry waste. I stopped giving wet waste since I have been composting all of the wet waste. However, I have been religiously giving them my dry waste. Proper segregation of wet … Continue reading “Managing Dry Waste – Part I”

The Minimalist Wardrobe

If you have read the post on my expenses, you would have noticed “wardrobe” expenses conspicuously missing. I quietly shoved them into the miscellaneous expenses. Still, a few people noticed and asked me — “what about your clothing, shoes etc expenses”. Well, I am not much of a shopper and after the brush with minimalism, the desire to buy more clothes has vanished into oblivion. As you probably already know, once or twice a year, we do a clean-up of all the things we own. We go through everything and donate, recycle or throw away anything that was not used … Continue reading “The Minimalist Wardrobe”

How To Make Bio-Enzymes – Part II

This post continues from where I left off on Bio Enzymes. If you have not read that post, please start there. Once you have prepared the bio-enzyme, you can bottle them for different uses. I am including a video (see end of the post) showing the same. There are three layers of the bio-enzyme — a thin translucent layer, a thick layer and finally the pulp. The thin layer is the topmost layer, which can be readily used in the washing machine and floor cleaning. The thick layer is the middle (second) layer which can be used for dish washing, as … Continue reading “How To Make Bio-Enzymes – Part II”

What Does Minimalism Mean To Us

Like many things in life, what something means to you may not mean the same to others. Take minimalism for example. It has a different meaning to different people, but the core tenets remain the same. Some people confuse minimalism with cheap or frugal. While it does help to be frugal, it does not necessarily mean minimalist. What does minimalism mean to us then? We’d like to think that minimalism means owning or buying the minimum amount of things that will let you lead a comfortable but simple life. That’s a mouthful. Lets break it down. Things you don’t need … Continue reading “What Does Minimalism Mean To Us”

The Truth About Organic Gardening

You have heard about our organic terrace garden. You know all the exciting projects that came out of it and the fun we had building it. Don’t forget the good harvest we had over the past year. However, not everything is always smooth sailing as one might mistakenly assume. We do have our share of pesky problems and that is what this post is about. I write this post in the hope that it may help you understand the other side of terrace gardening in case you are planning to embark on the journey. Shade net issues It was been … Continue reading “The Truth About Organic Gardening”

How To Make Bio-Enzymes – Part I

As a continuation of the previous post on how to reduce and reuse the wet waste produced at our homes, we need to learn about bio-enzymes. Bio enzyme is basically homemade vinegar made by fermenting left over fruit, vegetables, flowers, and leaves. We can use whole fruits or just the remains of the vegetables, i.e., peels and cuttings alone. As a household cleaner, bio enzyme can be used for your bathrooms, mopping floors, clean pesticide residues on produce, dish washing, as laundry detergent etc. It can be used to clean anything and everything literally. It is used to eliminate odor, … Continue reading “How To Make Bio-Enzymes – Part I”

Drip Irrigation Control System v4.0 – Web Server

In the past, I explained the hardware and software parts of the system. This concluding post on my drip irrigation control system will go into the details of the web server. As you know, I wanted to build a system that I can control from anywhere. In the previous designed, I had to be near the control system to configure the drip time and duration using buttons on the board. Sometimes I am on the terrace and want to pause or start the drip to adjust something. However, the control system is on the ground floor. Each time I need … Continue reading “Drip Irrigation Control System v4.0 – Web Server”

How To Make Homemade Compost

Most of us can manage our wet wastes at home instead of disposing them at the landfills. Have you ever passed by one of those waste disposal centers that make us close our nose and car doors? Almost all of us are responsible for that. I am not aware of how many developed countries actually do manage their wastes (I am not good with statistics or numbers as such), but I firmly believe India is definitely not one of them. Our stinking drains and over-spilling garbage on roads is almost an integral part of our lives. I can’t tell exactly … Continue reading “How To Make Homemade Compost”