Saturday, May 8, 2010

So I got to thinking...

So I got to thinking about yesterday's blog and how my family is doing on the list of 15 Totally Recyclable Materials That Most Of Us Keep Forgetting About (yesterday's blog).  How are you doing with the 15 materials?  Here's how we stack up so far...

✔✔ We already recycle aerosol and aluminum items.  And we have been good about recycling crayons too.  Crayons can be reused by melting them down and making multicolored crayons using molds, but my favorite use for them is as fire starters for a campfire (I know, I know, campfires add to global warming, but I justify my campfires as a small vice that help me achieve serenity in an otherwise chaotic word, and offset it with the other green choices!) 

As for asphalt shingles, I haven't had the need to recycle them, but hopefully roofers know about this option :)

✔We've always been good about recycling or passing along VHS and DVD to the library, cousins, or schools.   CDs have been used in many craft projects along the way for scouts and schools.  If you need some craft ideas for CDs check out this cute fish craft:  We've done this one several times and it comes out very cute.  Other craft ideas for reusing CDs in crafts can be found at this link  What I learned from the 15 Totally Recyclable Materials Link is that Best Buy has  in-store recycling kiosks for VHS, DVDs and CDs!  

✔Check, we also recycle eyeglasses OR just the lenses via the Lions Club.  The Lions Club has boxes at many libraries and eye Dr's offices to make it easy for everyone to recycle eyeglasses and help out others in the process.

✔Check on recycling metal AND plastic hangers.  Either we recycle them and use them for our clothes, or they get recycled in our bins.  

Hmm, as for fishing nets, we don't have reason to recycle those, but it is cool that there is a resource to do so! 

✔As for hotel soaps, we don't spend much time in hotels, but when we do, I do slip them into our luggage and finish them up at home, so we don't leave them behind as trash, so I think we get a check mark for that too! I do think is great that the
nonprofit group Clean the World offers the unique recycling service by sanitizing leftover soap bars from 80 Orlando, Florida hotel rooms!  Now for other states to jump on that bandwagon!  

✔Around here, household paints also get recycled into projects such as Cubscout pushmobiles, and Destination Imagination projects as well as other school projects.  But I also like the idea of helping out others and donating to Habitat for Humanity and high schools!   

✔Check! Our automobile oil is recycled when we have an oil change, and the fee to do so is included :)

✔Styrene packing peanuts...well I've already blogged about these babies, I hate them!!!  BUT, I do my part and they are recycled into outgoing packages, and I've also been known to use them in the bottom of flower pots to use less soil in a larger pot.  The downside of that is if you go to reuse the pot and need to empty it, then you have dirty packing peanuts that can't be recycled, so I stopped doing that.  If you ask me they should be outlawed, as I've already indicated I'm in favor of the biodegradable type, NOT styrene packing peanuts!!! In my opinion, they make a mess, they come from petroleum, and there are other eco-friendly alternatives. 

We don't surf, so I guess that is one less item for us to recycle!!!!  But, I'm glad to know that those that do surf have options for recycling :)

✔Tyvek envelopes...well, I'd have to give myself a check on this one because I recycle them by reusing them.  I did not know they are made of flashspun high-density polyethylene fibers.  If this is the case I wonder if they could go in the recycle bin?  But I did think it was VERY cool that there is a group that recycles them, who would have guessed!  However, to encourage recycling, I think they should provide mailing labels at no cost like Terracycle does :) 

✔ WOW, I had no idea that 52,000 tons of wine and champagne corks were generated and go into landfills!!!  No WAY I'm gonna give up my wine, another vice that keeps me sane....BUT, I've been recycling my own corks, and those of family and friend for awhile.  I have made them into beautiful wreaths and corkboard strips under my desk cabinets, and my sister-in-law has made some very nice trivets (which will be a future project for me).  They can also be used for craft projects like this cute santa and reindeer, It is also a handy way to use a razorblade to clean off cooktops and paint off windows; if you make a slit in the cork, you can use it to hold the razorblad during your task, then turn the blade around when you are done so that the sharp blade is in the cork (to prevent yourself from getting cut unexpectedly). I did know about Terracycle's cork Brigade too, but so far I've found too many uses of my own to send them into Terracycle :)  

So let's see how my family is doing with these 15 things... Out of the 15 totally recyclable things, my family uses 11, and out of those 11 we either reuse or recycle the items...WOWZA, not too shabby!!!

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