Fun New Ways to Use Buttons

Our friends at housekeeping.org have found several blog posts on how to reuse buttons you have laying around . Check it out and maybe you’ll find a fun craft to do with the kids!

18 Blogs with Creative Uses for Buttons

I especially like the DIY button monogram and recycled button artwork. The DIY monograms could be fun for older kids to make for their rooms. Have fun!

Earth Day 2013

Happy Earth Day!

Check out our Holiday Pinterest board for some fun ways to celebrate Earth Day with your kids.

Holiday Pinterest Board

You can also watch this short video on recyling from Sid the Science Kid on PBS. Our little one enjoyed it.

Sid the Science Kid: Recycling!

Have a good one!

Use What You’ve Got

box supplies

We recently redid the shelving in our laundry closet in an attempt to create more space and organize. When we bought the house all the closets had the standard builder grade wire shelving. Hate that stuff! I’ve seen many people use peel and stick tile over them, or slim boards to solve the problems that come with wire shelving. We are slowly but surely replacing them with wood. It’s a bit more permanent but we spend time working out the configurations that work for us, and my husband does it himself. We’ve gotten the pantry done, just finished the laundry closet, and will do Buddy’s big boy room next. To help with our laundry closet organization I figured I needed some boxes to help keep all the smaller stuff contained. We’re on a budget so I thought I would use what I had myself. Enter basic cardboard boxes, paper bags, and Mod Podge. I did this the first time with a shoe box and used a big flimsier box for the example below. First you need to gather your supplies. A box, paper bag, Mod Podge, and brush. I tried to cut out pieces of the bags with the least lines. I put what remained in the recycle bin.

box supplies

You will want to cut four pieces from the bag. One for each side. Cut them slightly bigger than the side so you will have some overlapping. I did about 1/2 inch. Then, apply Mod Podge to the first side and completely cover it with the Mod Podge. Once you have gotten it on and smoothed out as much as possible, you will make a diagonal cut from the corner of the paper to the edge of the box. Then make a straight cut, parallel to the side of the box so that the straight cut will be at the bottom and top of the box, not the side.  It should look like this, making a small triangle cut-out.

 triangle cut-out

Next, you will put Mod Podge on the overlapping edges with the straight cut, and smooth the paper down. You should be left with the overlapping edges that are cut at an angle, like this.

angle edge

You will then apply Mod Podge to those pieces and smooth down the overlapping edge which should cover up the rough edge of the other piece. The bottom will look like this.

bottom

You are done! I put dish towels in the box and have one other that I use for small pet accessories. The first box turned out better. It was a sturdier shoe box and was just cardboard. The one use for the example above wasn’t as thick and had some packing tape on it which I think caused more wrinkles. The shoe box was really smooth except for the creases from the bag. Overall, I’m happy with the way it turned out considering I didn’t spend any money and they won’t be seen by anyone but us.  You could also use some cute scrap book or wrapping paper if you wanted something a little more decorative to put out.

dish towels

boxes

What You Can and Can’t Recycle

Paper Recycling Bin

I remember when I was in middle school our county started a curbside pick-up for recyclables for those within city limits. I thought it was such a neat thing until I found out that there were many things we couldn’t recycle. Although most places seem to accept more now, there are still some restrictions and that causes people not to recycle. People want it to be easy. They don’t want to think about what is ok to recycle, rinse stuff out, and remove labels.

Once you are familiar with what is acceptable it really isn’t that much effort. As for the rinsing and removing, we tend to set things aside during the day and just do all that at one time at night. It doesn’t take much time. Although I will admit I don’t always do great with removing labels. Keep in mind you can’t recycle anything with food residue such as a pizza box.  Now what can you recycle? We’ll take a quick look at that.

Paper Recycling BinPaper
According to the EPA, paper accounts for the largest portion of our trash. Most paper products can be recycled. Paper, cardboard, and mail are some common things you can put in your bin. Glossy paper such as magazines is accepted at most places, but not all. Our local drop-off doesn’t accept hardback books.

 

 

Recycling Logo

Plastics
Plastic containers have a triangle made of three chasing arrows with a number inside indicating what type of plastic it is. They are labelled No. 1 through No.7. The most common types are No.1 and No.2 and should be accepted at most facilities. Some common products using these numbers are water bottles and salad dressing. You will need to check with your county to see if they accept any other numbers. Our county will accept everything except Styrofoam  Plastic bags are usually not accepted but many grocery stores will take them. Our local Wal-mart has a drop-off at the entrance.

 

Stack of Crushed Cans

Aluminum and Steel
Aluminum and steel products are widely accepted, including soda cans and aluminum foil. Our local county drop-off will even accept aerosol cans if they have been emptied and cleaned.

 

 

 

Colorful Bottles

Glass
Glass recycling is surprisingly restrictive. Most places will only accept food or beverage containers, cleaned and without the lids. Many curbside drop-off services will not take glass since it can break in transport. Light-bulbs, mirrors, and ceramic dishes are common household items that cannot be recycled.

 

 

Another thing to remember is your county run recycling center will probably accept more items than a simple bin drop-off at a small location. We usually take our recyclables to a drop-off center but we can only take glass, aluminum, and paper. Our county-run drop off will accept much more. Visit www.Earth911.com for more information and to find your local recycling center.

 

Sources: Earth911.com

http://greenliving.nationalgeographic.com/something-can-recycled-3194.html#