Saturday, December 26, 2009

Movie Time

Christmas Eve, we took the kids out to dinner and to see Alvin & the Chipmunks. Going to the movies with kids is always an experience and is still just as fun as when I would go before we had kids. Over the summer, we would see one movie a week because our local movie theater had FREE summer movies. It was those weekly movie trips (and the overflowing trash cans) that made me start looking at my movie theater habits.

First and foremost, I'm a sucker for the movie experience including concessions. I buy the overpriced soda, small but pricey candy and the occasional popcorn. While I completely kind of understand the money making aspect of the price gauging... I can't understand the waste associated with the teeny tiny bag of (pick your favorite candy) packaged in a box that's 3 times the size it needs to be.

Secondly, I would always leave my trash for the theater workers to clean up. I figured that's what they're paid for, right? Hmmm...

Over the summer, I started packing my own snacks and drinks. Now, I don't carry a diaper bag into the theater... I just carry my messenger purse that I purchased while in Australia (11 years later-- I still LOVE it)... I happily refer to it as "My Movie Purse." Oh, I hope I don't get in trouble for this ;) You see... I don't do it to be cheap... The packing of drinks came from me not wanting to drink sodas and my commitment to not buying bottled water. Packing one reusable bottle of water is enough for my three kids and me. When it comes to movie snacking, I often buy in bulk and take a couple of little snack bowls for my kids. Years ago, I used to buy the little individual applesauces, peaches, etc. and not being able to recycle them at the time... I saved them. I split up the snacks between my kiddos and refill when necessary. No little plastic bags, no boxes, no lids, no straws... no trash.

Now I still sometimes do buy sodas, and popcorn-- like I said, I'm a sucker for the movie "experience". So in those times when I do produce trash at the movie theater, I don't leave it on the floor or in the cup holder. Here's why: If I leave my trash for someone else to clean up... then I'm teaching my kids that it's OK to throw trash on the ground because someone will be there to clean it up. I feel as a parent it's my responsibility to teach my children that the only person that should be picking up after them is themselves. Whether or not someone is paid or has a job to clean up after me... by leaving my trash... I'm littering. I am not a litterbug.

Litterbug: One who litters a public area.

SO... next time you head to the movies.... plan ahead... pick one waste that you can reduce. It could be as simple as buying one large soda instead of 3 small ones. AND, of course, pick-up after yourself... it's just the right thing to do :)