Day 30 – Bring your DAMN CUP! (Campaign!)

I’ve always been bothered by the overflowing garbage bins filled with every coffee brand paper cup out there.  A sunny Sunday afternoon walk on the sea wall always seems to guarantee garbage after garbage of overflowing cups.  I’m no angel.  I too have helped fill these bins on numerous occasions.  “It’s just one cup.  I’ll bring my mug next time.  Oh well!”. I’ve been known to say these types of things too many times.

The other day I had a coffee bought for me and without even thinking I got a to-go mug even though my pretty stainless steal mug was sitting in my trucks’ cup holder just outside the coffee shop happily waiting to be enjoyed.  I remember thinking ‘oh shoot’ and even said it out loud.  I was tired of adding to the pile of garbage.  “I want to start a campaign to stop this bad habit”, I said out loud.  The two friends I was with agreed.  This would be a good idea.  But how?  There are so many good ideas but how do I make them happen??  It was when we were on our nature adventure this past weekend that the idea just came. I brought my idea up with Josh and said, “so what do you think about encouraging people to not use paper cups for one month?”  His answer: “a month?! Make it a year!  Bring your damn cup!

So thats where this idea came from.  From the awe-inspiring feel good moments of being in nature and doing someothing I love.  So here’s the plan:

Bring your damn cup (campaign!).  No paper cups for ONE YEAR.  That’s right. One year.  It’s so easy.  All you have to do is bring your damn cup.  And if you forget your cup one day?  Too bad – no coffee for you.  It’s that easy.  Or better yet, enjoy your time in a coffee shop and order it for here!  Enjoy the moment – now you are forced to by ME!  If your friend forgets their cup, you know what to say: “BRING YOUR DAMN CUP!”  How often do we seem to forget that it is possible to have coffee/tea in a cozy mug.

Help decrease the amount of paper cup consumption in your town.  If you are up for the challenge write your name below in the comment area, underneath Josh and I’s, and please share this post on Facebook (click on the Facebook ‘share’ button below in the comments area) or email it along.  Paying it forward.  If we can all get 5 people to join in on the challenge, imagine the difference that will make.  All it takes is ONE SMALL CHANGE.  Starting with you, right now.  I’m going to start another tab at the top (I know, I’m running out of room!).  Once you add your name to the comments, or email me, I’ll add it to the list under the post.  You can do it.  All it takes is one small change at a time.  Done!  And you start today by the way, so bring your damn cup!!!

Smile with your heart!

(p.s. If you have any ideas for some penalties of ‘forgetting your damn cup’, then please share!  My idea is this:  No coffee cup – no coffee to go.  I haven’t come up with something if you accidently forget though – something for charity?!  Ideas please)

BYDC Campaign!

Jenn Thiel, Josh Henshaw, Sarah Connerly, Kristy Maute & her boys!, Rikst + husband!, Amanda Svidron, Candace McLellan, Rachel Schmitz, Bree DePutter, Lisa Petrucci, Jess Martens, Jackson Zhao, Christine Nairne, Emily Schach, Ashleigh Kirkham, DaniellaSMF (Edmonton, AB, Canada), Heather + Madi, Caitie Baldock, Krista Schaus, Brooke Schena, Julia Larson, Diana & Kent, Natalie Tyron & Geoff Pyke, Nicole Lynamn, Cornelia McFadden (Edmonton, AB, Canada), Alanna, Clorinda Van Kleek, Natalie Groenewoud, Marquita Hain, Chrissy Thiel, Natasha Sumera, Daniel, Andy, Jana Wilcox, Sonya Kelly, Lauren, Ian Pratt, Vanessa Brown, Laura Pollock, Sam, Carolyn Kirwan (Vancouver Island), Rachel P, Amberle Bocsy, Jordann, Cheyenne, Bria Anderson, Megan Palloway (Lethbridge, AB, Canada), Sheeners, Mandy Hengeveld, Michelle (Minnesota), Ali, Madelin Ell, Jacob Gregory, Cory Bayers, Jenn Coe, Michelle (Minnesota), Katelynn Ingraham, Melanie, Vicki, Michelle (Calgary, AB), Grace Choi, Elizabeth de Jong Westman, Sheryl Petschl, Louise Chiasson, Kimberly Bennett, Whitney Cross, Jamie S, Meghan K (Burlington, VT), Anna Rathgeber, Chris Pedersen, (your name here!), ……..

THIS IS AWESOME!!!!  Keep ’em coming!

Categories: Uncategorized


  1. Jenn and Josh, I’ve thought about doing a year without a paper or plastic cup and blogging about it for almost a year. I too have simply let it slide–until now! : ) We all get busy and let our everyday lives take priority, without paying attention to what we can do within the spectrum of our everyday habits in order to make a big impact. I’m in. –Sarah Connerley.

  2. Kristy Maute – and my boys! We are in!

    We’ve been boycotting bottled water for the past 6 months now. We haven’t purchase or used one plastic water bottle since January! (watch the documentary Tapped. You won’t want bottle water again.)

    My penalty for accidently using a throw-away cup – 1 hour cleaning up trash in local park, beach, etc!

    I LOVE THIS!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE IT! I am generally good at lugging around my coffee/tea mug but I can definitely get lazy about it and this is the kick in the pants that I needed! (and my husband too as he will find out later:) THANK YOU for this and all your inspirational blogs … you are all around awesome!!!

  4. Awesome idea! Sign me up:
    Amanda Svidron

  5. Missy!!!!

    I am very guilty of getting a cup of coffee every morning or even twice a day while at working. I am happy to say that the majority of the time I bring my own mug to the coffee shop, however, when I am grabbing coffee with friends, I am highly guilty of adding to the overflow of starbucks cups all over BC. I will take your challenge and prove that I can make a difference in my life and encourage many others to do the same!!

    Love you missy….hopefully see you soon.


  6. Count me in, too! And I like the idea of the 1 hour trash pickup penalty!

    Rachel Schmitz :)

  7. Love this! Count me in :)

    Bree DePutter

  8. great idea…
    Jess Martens

  9. THANKS GUYS!! This is awesome!!! Keep ’em COMING!!!! You all ROCK!!!! Changing the world one less paper cup at a time!!! (and many many more smiles :) )

  10. Count me in!
    DaniellaSMF (in Edmonton!)

  11. I’m in!

    Caitie Baldock

    I think the reusable water bottle thing needs to happen as well. I have about 5 so I am never without! I havent bought bottle water in forever:)

  12. I certainly will! I just began about a month ago to improve my budget and the planet but simply making my own coffee at home. Less paper cups and less money! However, when I do indulge occasionally at my favorite establishment, I will bring my own cup. Simple!

  13. Love This, I’m In!
    Brooke Schena
    As a penalty you should forfit your own cup of coffee and then give the cashier money and tell him you’ll pay for the next coffee of someone who brings there own mug!
    This will give me a reason to pick up a new coffee mug too! :)

  14. Diana and Kent are in :)

  15. Fantastic idea! I’m sooo in!

    Cornelia McFadden – Edmonton, AB

  16. I’m in – been in for a long time. If I don’t have the appropriate recepticle for anything i.e. bag, cup, container, then no soup for me! I once even stuffed my pockets full of green beans (after weighing them) because I had ran out of reusable bags and I refuse to take even one plastic bag (or paper cup or anything disposable) home.

    So much of reducing of waste is refusing the item in the first place.
    Glad you started this.

  17. I am totally in!!! I have been bringing my own mug or having “stay” coffee for a while now. People have to be retrained to think about bringing their own cup. Just like bringing your own bags to the store!!! Great campaign, Jenn!!

    Marquita Hain

  18. PS… about NO PAPER CUPS for a lifetime!!!!! :-D

  19. Hi! I’m all in…I typically never buy coffee or tea from places but I will join you in making the commitment not to buy bottled/plastic water which i do on ocassion because it’s easy. FUNNY, I had the same idea with my reusable bags. It took only 2 times of me driving all the way back home to get my bags for me to remember! GREAT IDEA!! xo, Jana

  20. Thanks for this Jenn – you make things happen!
    Please add me: Sonya Kelly

  21. I put this link on my blog…lets see what we can do!!! Great idea :)

  22. I will send a mass email to all ems/fire/police in calgary asking to do this! But forsure sign me in

  23. Fab idea!!! Count me in!

  24. Excellent! I’m up for the challenge!!!!

  25. Sam – count me in.. What about some tree-planting as a penalty ?? In Oz we have Trees for Life you could donate money too or volunteer and grow trees or plant them

  26. Hey Jenn, I am a registered kinesiologist that works at STARBUCKS!!! LOL
    I CAN HELP! I CAN HELP! I CAN HELP!….I too let it slide BUT NOT ANYMORE!!! (thanx to you…p.s. way to go you!!) Unfortunately it’s not a SBUX policy for us to ask our customers “for here or to go” HOWEVER HOWEVER HOWEVER !!!! I will do my best (and to encourage my partners to do so too) AND I WILL REMIND EVERY CUSTOMER THAT COMES IN THAT THEY WILL RECEIVE 10 CENTS OF THEIR BEVERAGE EVERYTIME THEY BRING IN THEIR REUSABLE CUP!!! (our regular customers are in 2 or three times/ day so imagine how much they could save?) Also, I will order a few more tall, grande, and venti ‘for here’ cups because we are a busy & understaffed store and tend to run out of clean mugs.
    Once or twice a year (on Earth Day I believe) SBUX gives free brewed coffee or tea to those who bring in their own mug…that should happen more often..not gonna lie people LOVE free stuff :)
    Thanx again Jenn, you are genuinely an inspiration. Add me to your list!!!
    Carolyn Kirwan

  27. Count me in! – Rachel P. :)

  28. I’m in & passing it along!

    Amberle :))

  29. Great idea, I’m in. I rarely use paper cups, this will just double my resolve!

  30. I Love seeing people make the world better in there own way! I’m in and want to help!

  31. I am a HUGE fan of this! I agree with some of the others on the reusable bottles in general….water, juice, tea, whatever it may be. Add me to the list for sure!

    Thanks Jenn!


    Bria Anderson

  32. Love this! Sign me up for sure! Megan Palloway Lethbridge, AB

  33. add me me me too!!! Loving the blog miss :-) This no cup no coffee is great!

  34. Maybe I should throw in an interesting question: why do so many people rely on coffee to wake themselves up? Why is it not possible to wake YOURSELF up?

    • This is true Ish… nice question to pose. I enjoy coffee in the morning as part of my daily goodness – I just love the stuff! But I agree, it’s true that so many of us rely on it. Coffee is definitely my weakness. Everything in moderation, I believe! But there is nothing like a great morning run to wake yourself up either. Mixing it up is key!

  35. I’m in! Michelle from Minnesota.
    I already do this most of the time, but I give in too easily and say, “Just this time.” I do most of my coffee drinking at home as well.
    I love Brooke’s idea of buying coffee for the next re-user.

  36. I’m in too! :)
    Katelynn Ingraham

  37. Love it! Keep inspiring us!!

  38. I live in Adelaide, South Australia. How exciting for you! Australia is a great place to live! Where in Australia are you moving too?

  39. Absolutely love it! Count me in

    Michelle (Calgary)

  40. I’m in … bringing my own damn cup for the next 365 days!

  41. me me me!!!

    Elizabeth de Jong Westman

  42. Couldn’t have said it better myself – I am with you on this one, and more every year to follow!

  43. I am so in! I’m sick of forgetting my cup and my bags and my bottle…no more! There are consequences.

  44. Please count me! Stephanie W. (Albany, NY)

  45. I have been trying to do this for about 6 months now….but I like your idea of going without if you don’t bring a cup. Mine is going to be to buy a new cup when I forget…wash it after my coffee is gone ..put it back in my car with a five ($) in it and give it to the next homeless guy that asks me to roll down my window!!! He gets a bit of money and a cup to get a coffee….or something!!!

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