Wondering how to live greener? You've come to the right place. Each week we challenge ourselves to try a new task ... or "amp up" something we're already doing. We raise our awareness, learn from each other and develop Eco-friendly skills which will improve our lives and protect our planet. Doing so together gives us power ... the power to Change The World!
If this is your first visit, please click HERE for information and a complete list of all the challenges we've taken on so far.
This post contains great information and I encourage you to read through it at your leisure ... however, if you are short on time, you might find the following quick links helpful:
Last week we got creative and upcycled items which typically would be tossed out. As I went through the week, I realized several benefits to the challenge. The most obvious was that "stuff" was reused and kept out of the landfill. Not so obvious was the benefit of saving money. Often, reusing meant that I didn't have to go out and buy something else. A total win-win! I also liked the thought process ... thinking creatively instead of just automatically tossing things out.
The Honor Society are those people who help us spread the "green" word by writing an article about our challenges and/or leaving pertinent comments.
From our previous challenge on growing food, Lisa wrote Harvesting and planting more. I learned so much in that post. For example, did you know that there are many perennial varieties of vegetables? As one person put it ... plant it and forget it. That's my kind of gardening!
Ann stopped by and shared this: "I learn to quilt from my grandma. I remember she got my mum to go to the tailoring shops to get scraps, when she saw the pants scrap were black and grey, only then she bought some colour ends of fabric from the fabric shop. I am the only grand daughter who learn to sew a quilt because I helped her. Will show you my queen sized quilt another time. Lots of memories." She also shared an interesting gas-saving idea. You can see it HERE.
Clare accepted the challenge and said, "I re-use those plastic tubs (yoghurt, ice cream) and toilet roll centres / cores for planting seedlings or seeds. The plastic can be re-used many times, the cardboard degrades naturally into the soil. There are 4 rather unusual ways of re-using things here: http://www.ecofriendlylink.com/blog/4-things-not-re-using.
And sometimes I build up a collection of odds-and-ends which I then use to barter with friends for something I can use (How to Barter for Fun and Profit) - it's so true that one's rubbish is another one's treasure. I'm really enjoying the tips in the other comments - wonderful ideas which I will also implement - thanks everyone!"
This edition of the Hottest Writers on the Web gave CTWW a nice mention. I also found an interesting article entitled "The World’s Tiniest Washing Machine Will Fit Into Your Pocket". Check it out!
Mary joined us. Here are her comments: "I think cardboard boxes and documents that you no longer need are very handy when it comes to organizing your desk. A small cardboard box can hold office supplies and be placed on the corner of a desk. Extra paper is invaluable if you notice that you are constantly ripping out blank pages from a notebook to write a reminder, for instance."
Alicia accepted the challenge and shared this: "What a fun challenge! A few months ago I started taking the jars that we get our pickles in and taking the Trader Joes label off cleaning them and then putting things like our flax meal, rice, coconut and chocolate chips in them. I made labels for each of them. The jars keep everything airtight and it has helped me be more organized. My husband has given up drinking coffee but I use to buy the large plastic containers of coffee for him. I use them to put the smaller type of toys that our grandsons play with in them. The top pops right on and keeps all of those toys together. I had some curtains that I was going to give to Goodwill but instead I made several reusable grocery bags from them.My husband had some wooden boxes out in the shop that he was wanting to get rid of. I brought them inside and made a cute planter box from one of them and used the others for organizing our cloth napkins and one for holding and keeping up with office papers. I am excited to hear what everyone else has come up with."
EcoGrrl joined us and said this: "While I prefer to recycle rather than keep too much stuff around, I do keep little glass jars (think mustard and similar sizes) for the garage to organize screws, nails, etc. I thought I was so innovative at one point for doing this then realized my grandpa had the same thing in his garage where the lids were actually nailed to an overhang to keep the counters clear. Some similar ideas are here: http://www.familyhandyman.com/workshop/storage/hardware-storage-diy-tips-and-hints/view-all. I also like to reuse glass jars for the bulk aisle - peanut butter, nuts and other snacks, etc., that I don't need to use my huge canisters for. (Side note - I try to not buy anything in plastic packaging and don't like to reuse it so what I do get all gets recycled - Portland has reopened recycling rigid plastics so all the lids and prescription bottles once again can go to Far West Fibers, yay!) PS -thanks for the shout out on our wedding !! :) " She also gave CTWW a nice mention in EcoGrrl-icious. That post contains some great upcycle ideas and links.
Argentum Vulgaris came up with some very creative uses for "stuff". My favorite is the brick which became a knife/utensil holder. Read Change the World Wednesday – 11th Jun for more excellent ideas.
I knew that Lois would offer us all kinds of fabulous reuse ideas ... and she did. In Change the World Wednesday: It’s time to Reuse she presents ways to reuse old coffee containers, sheets, and even tires. Check out her post and be inspired!
Our Twitter friends joined the conversation and shared the following:
- Transform rusty, old tomato cages into artsy plant supports: http://t.co/c85tc6vQ43 Â #repurpose #DIY http://t.co/BNn5ysZMdx
- Don't toss that old sheet make a cotton nightgown! http://t.co/fHa9Vkad6V Â #repurpose #upcycle http://t.co/AxBuySiPcW
- REUSE old license plates. We made a screen for our wood shed! #repurpose #upcycle http://t.co/PTZAbIZaWa
- Thx for including~glad to say I regularly re-use/re-purpose items :))~
- Reusing wine corks to make a cork board is a great way to reduce waste. What's your favorite thing to reuse? #CTWW
- Video: Reuse plastic bottles #CTWW http://t.co/YTioS0xebs
- Give Your Screen Another Go | 10 Uses for Window Screens Â http://t.co/lw9vqudFZP #CTWW
- Edible Gardening in Small Spaces: Repurposed gutters make the perfect hanging vegetable patch: http://t.co/jyyKh0BDlG #CTWW
- How to Make Rag Rugs Â Tutorial How to Make a Beautiful Braided Rug http://t.co/ZY4YtXURzy #CTWW
- Pallet Gardening 101: Creating a Pallet Garden http://t.co/vez5rcBau6 #CTWW
The #CTWW Gang are those folks who tweet our challenges using the hashtag #CTWW. If you're a Twitter member, I recommend following them ... they share great things. Let's meet them:
Thanks, everyone! If you wrote an article, I Stumbled, Tweeted, Facebooked and posted it on Google +. You can help spread the "green" word by using the share features located below this post.
This Week's Challenge:
|A standard size bathtub|
(5 feet long x 30 inches wide)
will hold approximately
50 gallons of water
Did you know that if you leave tap water running, more than 2 gallons of water per minute goes down the drain?
Here's another interesting statistic ... on average, washing your hands uses between 1-5 gallons of water. Wow!
Doesn't this sound like a great opportunity to conserve?
Here's your challenge ...
This week, find creative ways to use grey water. For example, Agnes, a true "greenie" and CTWW participant, uses bath water to flush the toilet. Some people take shower water and use it to feed their plants. My grandmother (way ahead of her time) diverted rinse water from her washing machine to a tub. Then, the water was sucked back into the machine for the next load's wash cycle. The idea, this week, is to prevent as much water as possible from going down the drain.
Are you ready to put grey water to use? I know that you are!
Until next time ...
WE'RE CHANGING THE WORLD ... ONE CHALLENGE AT A TIME!