5 Ways to use Recyclables as Household Items
We make choices almost daily about what things to keep and what to throw away. In the spirit of being environmentally friendly it is helpful to reuse as many items as possible for daily living. Here are a few ways we can substitute a recycled item for a new purchase.
Crafting with kids is a great way to make use of recyclable materials. But I find myself looking for other ways to use items that simply get thrown away. These are some of my attempts at repurposing recyclables!
In the Kitchen
Left: Store-bought glass cookie jar
Right: Recycled glass peanut butter jar
Use for storing crackers or cookies.
Left: Recycled plastic produce box with lid
Right: Store-bought plastic bowl with cover
Use for storing pasta or muffins.
Left: Store-bought plastic colander
Right: Recycled plastic berry box
Use for rinsing fruits and vegetables.
Left: Recycled glass jam jar
Right: Store-bought drinking glass
Use for drinking water and juice.
Front: Store-bought serving dish
Back: Recycled plastic cracker package
Use for serving cheese and mini baguettes.
In the Arts and Crafts Corner
Left: Store-bought wood craft sticks
Right: Recycled clothespins and frozen treat sticks.
Use for kids crafts.
Left: Recycled plastic muffin tin
Right: Store-bought plastic paint tray
Use for painting activities.
Some recyclables have characteristics which may limit their usability:
1) flimsy plastic that is not sturdy enough to hold food or drink
2) narrow impressions in the plastic that are hard to clean
Use these items as paint pots in the art corner, or as containers to hold crayons and glitter.
Along with our expectations that manufacturers generate environmentally friendly packaging, as consumers we can also be diligent and creative in how we make, restore, buy and discard items everyday.
Consider these tips for recycling:
- purchase items without plastic packaging whenever possible
- shop with your own cloth bags
- balance prepackaged foods with foods prepared at home
- shop for lightly used items such as clothes, furnishings and appliances when appropriate
Many of these practices we already know or follow, but sometimes it is good to remind ourselves what we are currently doing to be environmentally friendly and reflect on what more we can do.
Can you suggest other items you have repurposed with success?