We live in a throw-away society. It is often easier to toss something in the trash rather than try to find a way to reuse or salvage the product. But many people are finding ways to keep things out of the dump and give items a second chance at usefulness. Here are 10 Things We Can Reuse that you may not have thought about.
This post includes affiliate links.
10 Things you Can Reuse
Toilet Paper Rolls:
When the toilet paper is used up, don’t toss the cardboard. Stuff them with dryer lint or roll up newspaper or magazines and slide them inside the cardboard tube to use as fire-starters.
Just because a t-shirt has stains or holes does not mean it is ready for the trash. Cut it up and use as a cleaning cloth or stuff them inside a pillowcase. Sew the pillowcase closed and you have a perfect bed for your dog.
When socks are no longer wearable because they have holes or have lost their matches, drop them in your cleaning bucket and use as polishing cloths. They are perfect for dusting shelves or cleaning fan blades.
Banana peelings & Salad:
Save the left-overs from your fruits and vegetables and toss them in a compost pile. If you don’t have room for a full compost bin or pile, just use a ceramic compost keeper in your kitchen. When it is full, take it out and put it where your garden will be planted. It will enrich your garden soil when you till it in the spring.
Cardboard or Newspaper:
Save your cardboard and newspaper to use the next time you start a garden. You can line the bottom of the garden area to help prevent the growth of weeds. These also make great table covers when it’s time to start your next craft project!
Plastic grocery bags are perfect to use in small trash cans in your house. Grab one on your way out to walk the dog instead of having to buy poop bags. Loop one over a doorknob in your kitchen to collect recyclables. Keep a handful of plastic bags in your car to use as trashbags or extra grocery bags.
We have not bought new birthday candles in many years. We simply wash them off after we use them and put them in a Ziploc baggie. Now we have many colors, numbers and styles so we can pick and choose what we want to use on the next birthday cake.
Plastic table cloths:
When the kids were little, I bought a plastic birthday balloon table cloth at the dollar store. We have reused that table cover for many birthdays. Over the years, I have picked up additional themes and colors. Now when we have an event to celebrate, we have a box of plastic tablecloths for us to choose from.
Tip: Make sure the cloth is clean and dry before you fold and store. Once the tablecloth gets too ratty to use for a party, you can use it as a table cover for craft time.
The best way for me to conserve resources at the holidays is to reuse decorations from year to year. We have a tote box for Valentines and Easter that is filled with plastic eggs, little bunnies and enough Valentines to last a lifetime. I never have to buy any more decorations because I save them from year to year.
Tip: I often buy the Valentines cards on discount after the holiday when they go on sale for 90% off so the kids will have choices the next year.
There is no reason anyone should ever have to buy a vase in the store for full price. Glass vases are easy to store and last forever. If for some reason you need one and don’t have one in your garage, you can almost always find a vase at the local thrift store.
What else can you reuse? I’d love to hear your idea!