Mig McMillan wears mismatched earrings, orange and navy John Lennon-inspired specs, clothes from an op shop and a handbag that's recycled from truck curtains, bike inner tubes and an old seat belt.
She dares to be different, but not as different as she was 12 years ago.
The 51-year-old mother, primary school teacher and cartoonist made national news in 2007 when a front page Bay of Plenty Times showcased her drastically sustainable lifestyle and the story was subsequently picked up by TV1's Sunday and Close Up programmes.
Described by a friend as an "environmental wāhine warrior", she was at the time using a bucket of water and cloth instead of taking a shower, didn't use shampoo or conditioner and recycled water from the final washing machine rinse for the next load.
To avoid oven use, she would wrap a lidded pot of cooked pasta sauce in a sleeping bag, then place it in an enclosed chilly bin to keep it warm for use later on.
"It's like a crock pot without the electricity," she explained.
She even ripped up a section of her carpet so the concrete could take in the heat and release it at night.
While she's eased up on some of those practices (she showers more these days and has an energy-efficient washing machine), McMillan is still making continuous changes to her habits.
Her lifestyle in 2007 was considered 'out there' but she's no longer part of a small minority trying to save the planet.
In the last decade, the evolution of sustainable living has evolved from trendy beeswax wraps and natural cleaning products to collective consciousness raising that's now bringing legal change.
The latest Colmar Brunton Better Futures survey of 1000 people found 42 per cent were highly committed to living in a way that did not ruin the planet; and for the first time, a majority of New Zealanders expressed "a high level of concern" over the impact of climate change on New Zealand.
In 2017, just 30 per cent of people expressed concern over plastic bags; whereas in 2018, a year after removing single-use plastic bags from supermarkets, 84 per cent said they were concerned about plastic bags.
McMillan recalls how her daughter Harriet, 16, screamed at her at age 10: "I am trapped in a prison of sustainability!", when McMillan refused to buy packaged potato chips.
"People just thought plastic was fine, didn't they? Even taking your own supermarket bags was considered a bit odd, whereas now it's the law.
"Change comes eventually."
Businesses are embracing sustainable practices, as are farmers who work "really hard" at every level, she says.
Asked if she still does anything other New Zealanders might not, she muses.
"Most of my friends are pretty much like me. Some of them probably shower more frequently," she quips. "But I just think it's all moving in one direction, let's face it.
"Everyone's got a compost bin and I think everyone's got a bamboo toothbrush."
"Do they?," I question.
"They do, don't they?," she counters.
"That plastic bag ban generalised itself in people's minds to all plastic, straws and coffee cups. The amount of that kind of rubbish in public has plummeted."
McMillan knows this because she often picks up rubbish when she's out walking.
On one of those trips, she recalls.
"I was looking at a big poster ad, maybe insurance, and there was a guy in a suit running with a coffee cup ... I couldn't even concentrate on the message because he wasn't using a (reuseable) keep-cup!"
She and husband Grahame Fitzgerald, who works at Ballance, have made an effort to make environmentally friendly decisions on a personal, household level since they were at university.
McMillan avoids using her car as much as possible, buys in-season fresh produce (unless growing it herself in her pollinator garden) and has committed to returning food waste to the earth.
"I have tonnes of compost."
They recycle everything and only put a rubbish bin out every six weeks.
They have solar panels on their roof, rain barrels, chickens and an outdoor bath that the neighbours can't see because it's hidden behind a plant-covered fence.
"I hope they can't see," she wonders. "They hope they can't see too, I'd say."
The McMillan-Fitzgeralds were winners of the 2010 Bayfair Sustainable Family Competition and did try to grow rabbits for food but found it too emotionally taxing on everybody.
"We've got pet rabbits now and we love them and they do a nutrient-rich poo for the garden."
They buy their milk from The Good Farm in Welcome Bay, in recyclable glass bottles.
Toilets are only flushed when necessary and they're frequent shoppers at Bin Inn where everything is purchased in bulk and taken away in their own containers, which also happens when they visit the butcher.
Having four children, McMillan notes, isn't mathematically great for the environment. However, all of them are largely on board with her green ways, although don't favour public transport as much as she does.
"It's hard being a teenager but they're lucky that with Greta Thunberg (the Swedish teen who shamed world leaders over climate change) and a whole lot of other stuff, they're actually going: 'S***, Mum and Dad were right'.
"The way we lived was correct in the way that people are thinking now."
Thunberg copped a lot of flak.
"Don't shoot the messenger, man," McMillan says.
"I think they felt they were being blamed for something - which they are. Don't just go 'she's awful'. We can do better (and) that's what we teach our children to do, don't we?"
This sassy sustainability supporter grew up on a 4ha block in Dairy Flat, completed a Bachelor of Arts in psychology and geography and met her husband in a flat of 13 students.
"There were three marriages from that flat and 11 children."
She went on to teachers' college, qualifying as a primary school teacher, and is now a supervisor at Ōtumoetai Playcentre and teaches part-time at Ōtumoetai Primary School, although her passion is art, particularly cartoons.
Fitzgerald pursued a career in banking, primarily agri-banking, which has seen the family move frequently throughout the North Island.
They've been in Tauranga 15 years, bar a recent two-year stint in Auckland.
Her cartoons, which she makes into greeting cards, are sold at Tauranga's Books A Plenty and High Street Boutique and intended to be humorous and sometimes make light of things that may be quite dark.
"My uncle got very sick and I wanted to send him a card so I had this cat on the front going 'Carpe Diem (seize the day)'," she says in a purposely posh voice.
"Which I'm sure lots of people say to people who are going to die. You opened the card and there was a goldfish - a carp - going 'f*** that'.
"That was my first humorous cartoon cancer card. He loved it and I loved doing it."
She is aware female cartoonists are scarce in an art form that is often dominated by males.
Her uniquely female perspective combined with a keen eye and black humour means her cards are enjoying a growing following, and as a Tauranga Arts Festival patron (she does cartoon reviews for the festival), her creative side spills out everywhere.
The fence outside the family home in Cherrywood is a rainbow of colours and includes pictures of animals and handprints from her children.
She has a painted rock garden and a roadside blackboard to share her cartoons.
She's also created a 'What's in the Box?' in her letterbox, where she creates temporary art that often corresponds with current events (one example is the Christchurch mosque shooting where she paid homage to Allah) and she has plans to facilitate a living Christmas advent calendar, starting at her house and extending to 24 other houses in the neighbouring area.
A few other facts:
In summer she enjoys jumping off the Wharf and Chapel Street bridges.
She's "super forgetful". Impatient at teaching her children to drive (she imitates a yapping dog to prove her point).
She's bad at housework, gardening, and remembering to pick people up on time.
In short, she describes herself as "chaotic".
But, she makes a good sandwich, loves the theatre, reads nightly and scribbles notes inside her novels.
Her favourite quote is: "Be excellent to each other", from the movie Wayne's World.
She hates horror movies, and stock car racing.
"My idea of hell," she jokes.
And while yes, she's a greenie, she's not extremist.
"It's all contextual. My brother is a quadriplegic, so he has a lot of interventions in his life that create rubbish. Well, too bad, he needs them in his life for his health and wellbeing and that's that. The end.
"I would never be one to say to a new mum or dad who's struggling 'well, you need to be using cloth nappies'. If they're really stressed out, just stick a disposable on and put them to bed so you can get some rest. You've got to live your life, you can't be stressed."
Friend Sue Hoffart calls McMillan smart, eternally curious and one of the funniest women she knows.
"Her cartoons are wickedly witty little pieces of social commentary but she's even more fun in the flesh.
"She also has that rare ability to see things from another person's point of view.
"So, even as she lives this principled, plastic-ditching, walk-everywhere environmental wāhine warrior lifestyle, she is never preachy about it and wouldn't dream of judging other people's choices," Hoffart says.
"This woman epitomises 'open and accepting'.
"Mig will tell you she's a terrible cook - and it's true food is not her forte - but she's the first to offer a meal, a bed, a ride, a chat and quite often a home to any waif, stray or child's friend in need.
"She's not afraid to ignore convention or laugh at herself, speak to those people on the fringes of life or talk openly about all the best taboo subjects.
"Basically, the world is a whole lot better with Mig in it."
To find out more about McMillan's cartoons and to see her reviews of the Tauranga Arts Festival (on now until November 3), go to the Facebook pages Mig McMillan Artist and Tauranga Arts Festival.