Rather than doing New Year's resolutions, I prefer to set goals - usually monthly or quarterly. This year I have two goals for the first quarter of 2012:
I'm going to recommit to my Quaker testimony and will be focusing on the concept of sustainability. In doing so, I will be blogging regularly about the ways in which I attempt to live a sustainable life. When I say sustainability, I look to the environmental science definition which, according to Dictionary.com means "the quality of not being harmful to the environment or depleting natural resources, and thereby supporting the long-term ecological balance." My goal is to both share with others how I attempt to do this in my everyday life and to also learn new things to reduce my own environmental damage.
My other goal is to eliminate dairy from my diet. Except for the eggs produced on our farm and when I eat away from home, I want to go vegan. The main reason I am a vegetarian is because of the cruelty visited on animals in order to provide food for human beings. Although I refuse to eat animal flesh, I've turned a blind eye to the truth behind the dairy industry. Milk and cheese comes from the production of milk by cows and goats who have given birth. While the female offspring of these animals will become producers of milk themselves, the male calves and kids are useless to the industry. Therefore, they are removed from their mothers shortly after birth and become the veal and other types of meat that are consumed by others. Thus, I have been helping to perpetuate cruelty to animals.
Although I dearly love cheese, it is wrong for me to continue to be a part of this cruel industry. So, I'm going to use up the cheese that is already in our house and then no more cheese for me except when I'm away from home. If I could, I would go entirely dairy-free. However, it is very difficult to eat a healthy vegetarian diet away from home (at least where I live), so meat- and dairy-free would be impossible.