Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

reduce reuse recycle

 As part of my quest to become more frugal I have become much more aware of how much stuff we WASTE.  I’m always telling Aaron that the trash men must hate stopping here because we always seem to have more trash than anyone else on the block! 

I saw this video the other day that is really eye-opening.  Go to and watch it.  Yeah, it’s 20 minutes long but it is well worth the time.  I have started doing a few things here and there to help reduce the amount of stuff that we use.  Such as not taking a shopping bag every time I buy something.  I will ask the clerk if I can just put the merchandise in my bag.  Also, I found these neat lightweight canvas bags at Target that fold up and fit right into my pocketbook or diaper bag.  I can put lots of stuff in it.  On the times that I do take plastic bags I keep them and recycle them at Food Lion, Martin’s or Wal-mart.  They have boxes right inside the front door that you can put them and they don’t have to be from that particular store. 

I’m still learning how to reuse things around the house too.  My latest thing has been plastic baggies.  (I just told Annagrace to be sure she brings home her ziploc bags tomorrow so that I can reuse them!).  Yeah, I know–just call me Grandma.  But maybe our grandparents were on to something.  I used to think my Granny was crazy for keeping twisty ties off her bread and for washing out ziploc bags but now it totally makes sense to me.  Just yesterday I was at an elderly patient’s home and her husband went to get a cup out of the fridge.  He had placed it in the fridge that morning half full and wanted to cover it up so he had taken an old bread bag, washed it out, cut it and covered the cup with it attaching it with a rubber band.  Some people may have thought that was crazy but I thought, that’s ingenious!  He couldn’t stand the thought of throwing out a perfectly good peice of “plastic wrap”.  When you think about all the saran wrap and aluminum foil and ziploc bags that we throw out that take YEARS to decompose in the landfill, it makes sense to reuse those items or switch to other reuseable items instead.   

So tonight I was thinking about what types of things I waste the most.  We throw out a lot of plastic items.  Did you know that it takes 700 YEARS for a plastic bottle to decompose in a landfill?!  700 YEARS!  That is insane!  Reading this makes me want to never buy another bottle of water!!!  (I have already switched to using a refillable bottle anyway!)  I’m planning on dragging out my recycling box and actually USING it–and I have no excuse not to because we live less than a mile from the recycling center AND the city recycling center is next to my workplace!  But what about the stuff that I can’t reduce or recycle?  Like egg cartons.  A co-worker of mine used to raise chickens and I always brought the empty cartons to her and she would fill them up and often I would find a dozen eggs on my desk!  Well, the chickens are gone and now what I am to do with my egg cartons?  That is one thing that for some reason I just hate to throw in the trash.  I literally cringe everytime I throw one away.  I did some searching around tonight and found this site that gives some ideas.  I also thought about asking the art teacher at Annagrace’s school if she has any need for them.

If anyone has any good ideas for Reducing, Reusing and Recycling please add a comment!  I’d love to hear ideas!  The site Earth911  looks like a good place to start too! 

2 Responses to “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle”

  1. 1 Karen March 7, 2008 at 8:56 am

    Loved this post and keep up the good work. You might want to take a look at this blog which is brilliant and has some great ideas.

  2. 2 lsaufley March 7, 2008 at 7:26 pm

    Thanks Karen! I liked that blog link so much, I think I’ll blog about it!

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March 2008

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