How we’re committing to zero-waste eating out


A few weeks ago when I wrote about the Darshan Karat, the man who generated only two trash bags in one year, I committed to bringing my own containers to restaurants to reduce the trash generated by bringing leftovers home.  It breaks my heart when we carry home stacks of styrofoam clamshells that are only a fifth full.  Even if full, moments after enjoying those leftover enchilada scraps, the trash or recycling is ridiculously full for such fleeting pleasure.  

I regret that I didn’t institute my change in behavior immediately after sharing Karat’s story, but last week we finally did.  Anticipating the usual leftovers from our favorite Mexican restaurant (Guapo’s in Tenleytown, DC) we finally brought our containers and a tote bag! Seeing how we forgot to do this the last few dozen times we ate out, this was quite the eco victory. 

We can’t all commit to only two trash bags per year, but we certainly can do better than just recycling and bringing bags to the grocery store.  It’s so simple. 

Who’s in?  What other eco-victories have you experienced lately? What waste-free challenge will you take on?  Please share in the comments below! 


I’ve failed at bringing containers to restaurants more than I care to admit.  I somehow remember exactly as I’m walking into the restaurant.  A solution has emerged though!  I just added to my trunk a few emergency containers for when I forget.  I’m not going to rely on these solely, as I don’t want to continually be running out of them.  They actually round out my trunk’s emergency perma-collection: food containers, old hiking shoes, bikini, and dozens of one-off office supplies.


I’m fully committed to figuring out how to eradicate doggy bag waste from my life, so get so frustrated when I fail.  I can do better, will do better - and so can you! 

119 Circle

Office Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper.

She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Learn her time-tested solutions in her eBook, The Inspired Office: Organize Your Life One Paper at a Time. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking.