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How to recycle and reuse everyday stuff

Posted by on Dec. 17, 2008 at 5:41 PM
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1First of all - look at the packaging your purchases come in. If you have - say - a jug of fabric softener for your wash, buy the refill carton of fabric softener instead of a new bottle of it. It's usually less expensive than the bottle anyway! Use a damp, matchless sock and pour about a tablespoon of fabric softener on the sock, rub it in, and then into the dryer - cheaper, easier, and no gunk to clog your dryer filter like those dryer sheets! I almost always miss the rinse cycle anyway and we all have a matchless sock or ten lying around! Mine is a goofy color that I can't miss in the load - but you can always mark it somehow if you know you'll never find the match.

Step 22
Stuff To Save Stuff In! Stuff To Save Stuff In! I will be adding more "Make Your Own Mixes" like the biscuit mix soon, but making your own whatevers reduces a whole lot of packaging and you can be sure of it's freshness. Save containers with good tops and strong, durable bodies to save stuff in - like peanut butter jars and cottage cheese containers. Or cruise the thrift stores for glass jars with good lids! I use an old popcorn can for 17 to 20 pounds of dog food. Coffee cans with lids are great for all the small junk drawer stuff you might want to clean out (And hide in the closet - smiling!).
Step 33
Freeze It! Freeze It! This may be drastic but we have pretty much stopped drinking sodas that come in bottles or cans. We make sun tea with a packet of drink mix powder for a flavored type tea. Cyclecyco, my brother, has a great recipe for sun tea on eHow. (He saw me make it and loved it at first sip!) We also make glasses of lemon aid with concentrated lemon juice and sugar in a glass of ice water, as desired and "to order". Since I can't make root beer, my fav, we pick up a bottle once a month - maybe - or Mountain Dew for Primefalcon. We also save those individual sized bottles from bottled water that we got for free as a reward for a $50 purchase - or some such - and fill them half way with water, loosely cover with cap so it can breathe, and freeze. Later, fill up the bottle with water and you have long lasting ice water. (I saw Cyclecyco do that!) I also added containers to the freezer to keep things organized a bit. I put the extra pork chops or chicken pieces in a sandwich zip bag and put them into the white container. Cut up peppers and extra cut up onions go in the green one. (The white one was the ice tray from my last refrigerator!) I buy onions on sale (cheap) and chop up to freeze until needed - perfect for pizza! (Hehehehe..... my frugalness makes me want to shout - close the freezer door dang it! - when I look at this pic!)
Step 44
Mulch or compost your grass cuttings instead of bagging them. Mulching is by far the easiest and most beneficial to your lawn by putting nutrients back into the ground. You will save on fertilizer as well! Cut just often enough, and not as short, mulch and use less fertilizer - can't get much easier or cheaper than that! By NOT cutting your lawn within an inch of its life roots, you give your lawn a better chance to resist the heat without turning brown, too. Also, gently hose down animal droppings if you have a dog instead of bagging. Talk about great nutrients for your lawn!
Step 55
Bags of Bags Bags of Bags Keep a bag of bags. Instead of buying new garbage bags, we use plastic grocery bags whenever possible. (Sorry - the paper bags disintegrate the moment water or condensation hits so are not very useful for recycling with most things. Also, our garbage rules tell us to put garbage in plastic bags & tie shut - I use the handles to tie so I don't add a twistie to the landfill!) Also - double wrap your frozen items with the grocery bag you brought it home in by simply twisting the top and tucking under. (Be sure there are no holes in the bottom of the bag!) Most of us don't double wrap stuff in the freezer the way we "should" - this is a quick, easy way to do it as you put your groceries away! In addition, we often shop at Aldi's - and we keep a supply of used grocery bags in the trunk of our car because they only sell bags - which cuts down on excessive bagging and why not use your own bags? I have purchased a couple of Aldi's plastic bags because they are good and sturdy!
Step 66
Plenty of room Pantry! Plenty of room Pantry! One closet in our house was build over the basement steps and I made it into a pantry by using base board material cut to fit and thick ply wood - nothing fancy but strong! I put plant hooks on both sides of the bottom and keep things like bags of noodles or choco chips in bags hanging on one side and the bags of bags on the other side. I also brace the bag of potatoes way on the bottom. I marked an old container in quarts because I often can and cut my produce into the container to get a good idea of how much I have to can. Otherwise, it stores the big baking potatoes that I pick out of any bag of potatoes I buy (After I line the bottom with cheap paper towels). The other big container above hold onions. Note: neither container has the lid on it - onions and potatoes need air circulation.
Step 77
Nibbles - Yum! Nibbles - Yum! I have actually purchased items for their packaging and potential continued use. The brand of cat treats I buy comes in a simple bag but usually doesn't open and close easily. I bought another brand for it's container about 7 years ago and keep refilling it with the treats my cats loves. BTW - my cats were not crazy about the treats that came in the container originally but I "made" them eat them before I bought new.
Step 88
Don't buy things in single serving packages! What a horrid waste! Single serving hot dogs - are you guys kidding? How about an 8 pack and throw it in the freezer until needed, then a nice zip sandwich bag for the ones left over? (You only need to let the hot dogs thaw a little while to "break" one or two off the rest!) No one is so bad at cooking that they can't do a hot dog in the mike - are they? Just downright lazy and wasteful!
by on Dec. 17, 2008 at 5:41 PM
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