10 Sips for the Weekend: Reuse

Friday, December 2, 2011

I have made the Internet my personal shopper. I tell it what I want, handle my credit card and receive the goods at home. I hardly drive anywhere to shop after moving to Hoboken, as it is a work on itself just to get the kids in and out of the car: kids in the stroller, get the elevator, walk out of two doors, walk 2 blocks, open another 2 doors, get another elevator, out of the stroller, in the car. And on the way back everything repeats in reverse plus balancing the bags that hang from every corner of the stroller.

That is the easy way in and out. The hard one involves a child complaining because he forgot his toy, a child sleeping while the other cries, snacks containers, gloves and hats flying away from the stroller in every direction. So online shopping sounds very tempting. Take Luke to school, Mark for a nap, grab a piece of chocolate and head to the computer for a relaxing experience!

But with the online shopping comes the packaging that can take over your house if you are not fast enough in the recycling department. Boxes, plastic wraps, brown papers, bags. A lot of times I feel guilty that my green habit of not driving is not so green with so much garbage as a result. So I am trying to make good use of the extras, like these ideas:

  1. Wrapping paper: I just made the garland in the picture above with some wrinkled brown paper that came inside a box. Then I circled it with red ribbon, inserted file brass fasteners and tied some thyme springs. 
  2. Plastic bubble wrap: Let your kids spend some of their energy jumping on a bubble wrap hopscotch
  3. Corrugated cardboard: Make a fun job chart for the kids
  4. Cardboard tubes: This ball maze could keep Mark happy for hours, he loves balls! 
  5. Cardboard boxes: What about throwing an entire party of cardboard boxes!! Great for after moving!
  6. Newspaper: Create unique gift bags
  7. Egg cartons: Spend a snowy day making egg carton snowmen for your kids and a center piece for you
  8. Pizza boxes: From the table to the wall: pizza box art
  9. Plastic bottles: who said that mail should only go inside boxes and envelopes? Try to send inside a bottle!
  10. Styrofoam peanuts: Who knew you could use them for plants?