With a holiday as huge as Christmas, it’s inevitable that there will be some leftovers – and not just food.
What about all the wrapping paper and bows, old tinsel and trees, the gifts that you didn’t want to begin with and won’t return because it’s just too much trouble?
Here’s how to re-organize your house for the New Year while reducing your carbon foot print and your trash bill:
- Happy Unreturns– Let’s face it: We all receive gifts that we just plain don’t want. Sad but true, especially if you’re a little old to still believe in Santa. And many times it’s just too much trouble to return or exchange the gift. Don’t leave them in a box in the closet for re-gifting opportunities. No matter what it is, local charities can use it. Several, like the Salvation Army and the Disabled Vietnam Veterans, will come to the house to pick your stuff.
- Christmas Tinsel & Package GeeGaws– If you’re like most people, you hate to throw away the decorations from your really fancy packages and the stuff you wrap around the tree. Don’t. Next year when you’re gifting or re-gifting, re-gift some doo-dads as well. People who don’t know you will be impressed that you have that kind of scratch to blow on the wrapping, and those who do will get the joke. It’s like the fruitcake that you and your in-laws keeping re-wrapping and passing on. The fancy bows and tinsel and what have you are expensive. Put them to work again so you get your money’s worth.
- Old Wrapping Paper & Big Boxes– They’re just like newsprint – they recycle. If bundling paper and cardboard for the city trash service isn’t cool enough, tear it into shreds and mulch your flower beds. Paper makes excellent bedding mulch and even better composite, especially after the kids build forts with the big boxes then bash them into pulp.
- Packing Peanuts & Other StyrofoamWaste – Use them to fluff up couch cushions, pillows and to pot plants. It’s true enough that most styrofoam is now bio-degradable and that some recycling programs actually accept it. Save yourself the hassle and still do an environmentally-correct thing – pot plants, use to help retain moisture in gardens.
- Dried-Out Cut Trees– It’s true nowadays that most city recycling programs accept trees. Sometimes they’re shredded into mulch and others they’re used in local water courses as cover for fish and other water babies. While this is mostly true in GreaterJax™, if your city doesn’t recycle old Christmas trees, then call your county and state parks services and see if they do. Try the local fish camps and lakes to see if the want your tree. Some will even come to the house and fetch it.
Gone are the days when you could just smile those first days post-Christmas while the wind blew the old bows and packing peanuts off the trash pile into the neighbors’ yards.
Even they are useful now.
Nope, can’t just laugh and walk away.
Don’t you miss that?
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OFFICIAL BIO: K Truitt is a second-generation, native Floridian born in Jacksonville. Truitt worked in public higher education for 25 years, most recently in Texas, is a successful grant writer, knows newspaper publishing, printing and graphic design and wants to work in the public sector. Contact: email@example.com