Wednesday, August 17, 2011


I confess, I do something that really, really disgusts my husband. No, it's not leaving my hair in the drain, drooling on the pillow, or discarding trash everywhere I go (those are all his jobs)- it's something I'm doing to be eco-friendly.

Ever since Jackie got her compost bin, I've been storing kitchen waste in plastic bags in the freezer.

This drives my husband -nuts-. It is his firm belief that trash goes in the trash, and doesn't hang around where you store food you're actually going to eat. Never mind that it doesn't smell, and I keep it in the door so it doesn't get in the way. I empty it at Jackie's every week, and usually even remember to bring the baggies back home with me to reuse. He even likes the idea of composting...

...but he hates seeing the waste!

Well, I'll train him to put the stuff in the freezer eventually, or we'll get our own compost bin. We'll see. We'll see. One step/shade at a time!

Friday, August 5, 2011

For the Charitable...

My father donates to a lot of charities. A lot. Because of his generosity, charities like to send him things in order to bribe him (or guilt him) into sending them more money. They send address labels, pennies, notepads, and calendars. The calendar issue is what I'm going to discuss here. Let's face it, we only need a few (three would be excessive) but we get a lot more than a few. What to do with the excess? Clearly it would be best for everyone concerned if they weren't sent in the first place, but since they are, how can they be disposed of?

Recycling would work, yes... and I hope they all end up there eventually, but reduce and reuse are higher on the list than recycle. So the question is- can we reduce or reuse? Reduce, well, only if charities stop sending. So reuse... or repurpose?

I spent some time the other day pulling all the pages out of a stack that we've accumulated. Then, with glue, I sealed the sides up and left a top flap thus creating- an envelope. There are a myriad of links online on how to make your own homemade envelopes, and they look much nicer than store bought. Now I can send all of my letters (for the rest of my life) using cool looking homemade envelopes.

So, I'm saving money on envelopes, paper that would otherwise have made envelopes, finding a use for that huge stack of calendars, using the address labels, helping the postal service stay in business, and making people I love smile when they get a neat looking letter in the mail. There is no down side to this- save the excessive tedium of tearing all those pages out and doing all the folding, etc. (More tedium than even I enjoy!)

In addition, you can use the preview images on the back cover (pretty pictures!) to make homemade magnets. You can easily pick a sheet of sticky backed magnet sheets at the store. Cut, stick and go. After that, not much is making it to the landfill or the recycling plant!