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Reuse IT

Read some great ideas for reusing and recycling items that may not serve there original purpose anymore.

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Family Fun ~ Reuse and Recycle

"Reuse IT" Ideas:

These submissions are posted like they are received as much as possible however, we do make corrections to grammer and such for the ease of reading and we may also edit out some text for space.

Carol Y. of PA
Greeting cards, many of which are absolutely beautiful, are so expensive and it always seems like such a waste to just throw them away after reading them. So, I have come up with several ways to reuse them. My favorite is to make postcards out of the front by using a straight edge to cut out the picture so that it measures 4" X 6". I use them to enter contests and send greetings to my friends and relatives. Not only do the cards get a second life, but the postage is less than a letter would cost!

I have a large glass cutting board that is too beautiful to give away or store, but dulls my knives so I do not use it for its intended purpose. Instead, I have it on my craft table to protect my wood tabletop from damage. It is perfect for hotglue crafts (the drops of glue lift off cleanly) and tolepainting (great for blending colors of the water based paint and it easily wipes off when I'm done)! It adds such a decorative touch to my otherwise boring tabletop!!!

Jennifer W. of KY
Ideas for reusing, Carrier bags and twist ties. Carrier bags can be reused in the shops or as (garbage) bin bags around the house. Paper bags make useful wrapping paper and twist ties can be used to secure loose items together, such as computer wires.

Danille G. of NY
Mesh produce bags are great pot scrubbers.

Brenda S. of FL
Use the old style light bulbs for Christmas, or any holiday ornament , even a birthday decoration ..by painting on them.

Denise D. of MI
There's lots of items you can recycle to edify your garden...I have tested and tried and these things work wonders!
1. Lay pocket sized mirrors and or reynold wrap scraps scattered around your newly planted seeds...will stop Birds from coming down and eating the seeds.
2. Old raunchy belts can be placed in your garden to scare bunnies and little critters from coming through.
3. Old coffee grounds and eggshells make great mulch. Along with dead leaves from the fall.
4. Use extra garbage bag ties and pretty ribbons to brace your tomato plants.
5. Placing moth balls in the ground surrounding your edibles will stop moles from eating them up. Note to place them about a foot away surrounding the plant.
Hope this helps all and may everyone enjoy a healthy Harvest!

*Cindy L. of WV
Worn out pillows make great dog beds, just cover with pillow case. Flannel pillow cases are the prettiest.

Old coax or cable makes great clothesline wire and it almost never needs replaced. (Use only plastic coated kinds.)

Use your old sheer or lace curtains to cover berry vines, berry bushes and fruit trees to keep birds and squirrels away from the fruits.

Use old sheets and blankets as backing and batting for homemade quilts.

We get free wood chips and sawdust at our local sawmills to use as pet bedding n litter. Just bring your containers with lids. Its free for the asking.

Ellen O. of NY
Little girls and teens just love a shoulder bag made from a pair of jeans. Just cut the jeans at the crotch, hem across the bottom, add a shoulder strap, line.

Janet S. of NC
If you have any empty prescription or over the counter pill bottles, these are really good to wash and then use to carry small powders such as some instant coffee or Splenda to sweeten your coffee. My mother also uses it to carry some powdered Metamucil. These small containers can easily fit into a purse.

Betty W. of GA
Pill containers I reuse for buttons, snaps, Velcro, hook and eyes, and several other things. It is clear and I can see what I have in the bottle.

Cereal boxes and detergent boxes I reused by putting paper or cloth left overs from other projects to decorate and use for patterns pictures and even let the grandchildren do one for their color books and crayons plus other items. Kind of a filling system for my familytree notes.

Michele T. of ON
I use shoe boxes for storing quilting fabric. The boxes are sturdy, uniform and don't let light damage my fabric. Additionally, I label the different boxes according to the types of fabrics stored inside (ie. Christmas, light fabric, dark fabric etc.)

Karen C. of IA
I reuse the plastic bottles from dishsoap to hold water to water my plants and not buy a plastic household watering can made in china. These dishsoap bottles make great squirt bottles for kid's waterfights outside. I use one filled with water to discourage wild cats from eating my 3 outdoor catís food. No cat likes to get wet! I cut the top off the old dishsoap bottle to use as a vase or pencil holder. Sometimes I glue paper or fabric scraps to the vase/holder to change the look of it.

Robyn C. of NC
I reuse 2 liter cola bottles in my garden. If I have a plant that needs alittle extra water I cut the bottom off of a 2 liter bottle and bury the neck of the bottle so that the open end is up toward the sky. The water will go down into the ground where the neck of the bottle is.

Gloria T. of LA
You can save your 16 oz or 20 oz. plastic pop bottles by cleaning them and put water in them. You can freeze them and put in ice chest to keep things cold or bring it with you when you leave for awhile to have cold water to drink on hot days.

Barbara M. of MI
I have saved jars of all sizes (from baby jars to canning jars) through the years. I use them to hold my craft supplies and tools (ie. nails, ribbons, buttons).

Sue N. of WI
Take an old bed pillow fluff it up and reuse the inside for making your stuffed dolls and things.

Jeffrey A. of WI
I use old jewelry to make (embellish) cool looking cards for like christmas or birthdays or anything really.

Pamela W. of WA
I use old metal colanders as container planters. I use moss and moisture retaining soil and plant annuals. No problem with over or underwatering. I also use them to spring plant bulbs that need to be pulled up and stored from severe weather.

Nyla T. of SD
Ice cream pails are used for carrying water to plants, and to bring vegtables into the house. They make a good container for cookies or bars for the grandchildren to carry to school scouts, and games.

The back sheets of (used) computer paper is used for grocery lists, notes, and left by the computer to quick jot down something of interest from computer.

Worn out towels are used for hand wipes in garden and garage. Also for grease rags, dusting and outdoor window washing.

I have converted a 5 gallon pail into a garden tool bucket. Now when I go to the garden all the tools I could ever need are handy and the bucket keeps them from getting lost.

Mary C. of NY
Take an empty plastic quart size bottle [milk or bleach] and rinse well. Cut it with a sturdy pair of scissors to make a scoop for pet food. Keep the handle for your holder and leave a generous amount of plastic for the scoop. If you find it's too big you can cut again to re-size. I use one for rabbit food and one for bird food.

There are many ways to reuse old cards. Cut them with scalloped or fancy scissors and use them for scrap booking. Kids can make a collage, cover it with a clear adhesive wrap and use it for a reusable placemat. I use old Christmas cards as gift tags. I remove the back of the card that has the words and discard it. Then I fold it to get the part of the design I want and use a decorative scissor to cut. I can be creative with the shapes and write a name or short message inside. It can just be taped to the gift or you can make it more fancy by punching a hole and adding some string or ribbon.

Thank you to everyone who entered their "Reuse IT" ideas!

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