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Old 12-20-2008, 04:09 PM   #21 (permalink)
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I like the absorber idea

We normally just use regular towels and throw them in the wash.

Having just left the kitchen, I remembered something we do that some don't.
Re-use small water bottles.
Those 16 or 20 ounce ones in the pack.
I rinse them in the sink and refill them and put them in the fridge so my Honey can have a nice cold water after work.
We will use them until the top becomes loose enough, to not be water tight any more, then recycle them.
Then we find another case on sale somewhere, (being down to four available I bought a case this morning, 24 16.5 oz. bottles for $2.45), and use them for another six months.
Yes it was before Aug that we last bought water.
So now instead of spending $3.00 to $4.00 a week on water we spend $2.50 to last us six more months.

just .02 more,
S.


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Old 12-20-2008, 07:07 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trikkonceptz View Post
In an effort to cut back on paper towel usage, we use an absorber.

Funny story, one day I was walking into the house and the wife dropped a cup of water right off the counter. I had just finished washing the car and had the absorber in my hand, of course I quickly cleaned up the mess and Viola .... the absorber became the quicker picker upper .. lol

I have noticed that we use 1/3 less towels now because of it. Hell it dries, is washable, then dries again, quickly. We've used it to dry the dog, our selves ... on seperate ocassions of course.

So while its not exactly recycling its using one product in place of another that gets thrown out ..
K, I'll allow it!

I got to thinking tonite/day, since shultz up there said of candles...

Ya know those glass candle thingies that people buy? The ones that are almost always 6-8 fl oz capacity? Yeah.. you know the ones... people throw those away. It actually bothers me how many of those I used to see in trash and recycle bins, and then see the same people going to the store to buy a whole new set of dishes because they broke a glass... when they could easily clean those spent candles from the glass, and use THE CANDLE HOLDER!

I've actually got a set of Vodka glasses in storage (shhhh don't tell my friends) that came from 8 flavors of scented candles. They are the perfect size to hold 2 rocks (ice) and a good slug of liquor on a cold night with friends.
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Old 12-20-2008, 07:15 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by metroschultz View Post
We normally just use regular towels and throw them in the wash.

Having just left the kitchen, I remembered something we do that some don't.
Re-use small water bottles.
Those 16 or 20 ounce ones in the pack.
I rinse them in the sink and refill them and put them in the fridge so my Honey can have a nice cold water after work.
We will use them until the top becomes loose enough, to not be water tight any more, then recycle them.
Then we find another case on sale somewhere, (being down to four available I bought a case this morning, 24 16.5 oz. bottles for $2.45), and use them for another six months.
Yes it was before Aug that we last bought water.
So now instead of spending $3.00 to $4.00 a week on water we spend $2.50 to last us six more months.

just .02 more,
S.

My wife pretty much only drinks water or juice, and goes to school 4 days a week, so she takes water bottles with her.

I still purchase new bottles for her, just for the sake that our water here sucks, but when she's home, she'll just refill the day's bottle and drink it.

Also, at times, her step dad brings home 5 gallon bottles of water from work (he works for Unilever/Exel). We fill smaller bottles from it (re-used juice bottles) and store them in the fridge to drink on a daily basis. We use sink water to wash and etc.

Paper towels - Has anyone considered using the "sham-wow"? I've not gotten the chance to buy one yet, though I would love to test them personally. Even if they're not as good as they say, it's still an OK deal for a set of re-usable shop towels.

Aside that, I usually have messes to clean up that are bigger than one PT can handle... I buy towels that I can rinse out and re-use.. and I get them from the parts store. They're blue, and you can actually wash them in the washer (as long as you haven't used them on dangerous chemicals.)

I guess they're just called "Shop Towels" but they're usually less than $3/roll. They actually saved me money, since I don't use nearly as many of them, and they're multi-use. I buy them about 2-3 times a year, rather than spending $2/roll for towels once every week or two.
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Old 12-20-2008, 10:57 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Christ View Post
What do you do with the gift wrap that your young children open? Obviously, they're not as neat about it as we might be.
Don't have young children myself, though I have friends who do. I think the worst are my neighbors' grandkids: with indulgent grandparents and divorced parents vying to buy the kiddies affection, they get an unimaginable (to me, anyway) amount of stuff - and have more fun playing with the wrapping paper & boxes than with any of the toys.

I refill the plastic water bottles too. I'm lucky enough to have a well with really good water, but even when I've spent time elsewhere, a water filter (I think Brita is the brand name?) takes out most of the urban water taste - and most bottled water is just filtered, anyway. Also the larger 1-2 quart plastic bottles are great for hiking & long bike trips: since empty ones weigh almost nothing, you're not packing around excess weight.
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Old 12-20-2008, 11:15 PM   #25 (permalink)
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If you have a self heating dishwasher you can clean those candle jars out pretty easy.
After you have used up the candle
Use a butter knife to scrape as much wax out as possible then throw hem in the dishwasher with your pots and pans.
The really hot water that my dishwasher uses on the pots-n-pans cycle is hot enough to melt ant leftover wax and then it gets dissolved in the grease cutting soap and gone.
Before someone tells me how dangerous that is for the plumbing, let me say, I have been doing this for fifteen years and have not clogged a pipe yet. (jinx)
Then you can use them for juice in the morning, or whatever.
If your 8 year old has a sleep-over you need ten disposable (read breakable and i don't care) juice glasses. So these fill the bill perfectly.
S.
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Old 12-20-2008, 11:22 PM   #26 (permalink)
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I always had great Christmas bounties when I was young enough to care.. once we moved the last time, myself and my father as a family, and after my Grandmother died, we've pretty much been less-than middle class... and couldn't afford it anymore, so I quickly forgot about it.

Now, at 23, I don't even really celebrate Christmas like most others do. I just see it as a day to visit family, have a few drinks, relax, and get fatter.

I can honestly say though, for the most part, unwrapping the gifts was more fun than the gifts themselves. Moreso, was watching my dad and grandma fighting over how to assemble something.

Beyond that, was watching them give up, and I would go finish it, by reading the directions... a skill that most adults tend to forget.
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Old 12-20-2008, 11:54 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Formula413 View Post
Not exactly re-using trash, but I often repair things that most people would throw away.
Now yer talkin! A man after me own heart. I love tackling the salvage/repair/refurbishment of stuff that others have given up on. Not that I can't afford to buy truckloads of new crap like everybody else...I can, but I like the challenge, I like keeping good stuff out of landfills, I'm cheap... I guess I'm old school too.

It never ceases to amaze me what people throw away! My latest success story is a DVD player I found in a dumpster. Grabbed it, played with it, went online to find troubleshooting instructions, fixed it quickly and easily without buying a thing! Only "bad" thing is, I don't have the remote for it. Oh well... it is identical to the one I'd already bought and the remote works on both of em. I bet if I keep my nose to the ground, an appropriate remote will turn up sooner or later. Also found one of those "atomic clocks" in a dumpster and snagged that. Cleaned it up, put a new battery in, programmed it... works perfectly! A $27 clock for the price of a battery! Why was it thrown out in the first place? Someone was too stupid to replace the battery or program it I suppose. (Sidenote: My bicycle computer button cell battery finally died after many years. Went to WalMart and the usual places to see what they had for batteries... over $4 for one?!? Sure- I could have bought that... but I thought, how stupid! Ended up at the Dollar Store on the way home and get this- 8-packs of button cell batteries for $1!!! Got home and was amazed at all the stuff I had that needed those batteries once I started thinking about it- my digital calipers with the weak display, quite a number of calculators, mine and other people's, and so on. Only two batteries left now and I'm sure they won't go to waste.)

I now have three full-suspension mountain bikes, one has an aluminum frame. Two were junked and one came from Freecycle. I have all of them all fixed up. One has new tires gotten from barter. One has new cables that I already had laying around. That is the sum total of new parts it took to fix em up, the rest of the stuff I already had or I went out and bartered for. All three are now in perfect working order except I need to get 1 pair of brake shoes. Why were they in the junk???

A cheapie fanatic? Yes, and proud of it. I haven't bought paper towels or napkins in years. Why, when they are there for the taking? Seems when I go out to eat with others, for some reason most of them grab a huge handful of napkins- why? Are they planning on eating like Cookie Monster? Seems like one is always enough for me? So when we're done and that stack of napkins is still sitting there, I pocket it. Got as much as I could ever want and then some for the cars, shop, and home.




Made window plugs from styrofoam sheet, for winter. Yeah, styrofoam is cheap... but why buy it at all when they toss it out en masse at furniture stores? I got all I want for free- just go down there and ask for it.

Oh, I could go on and on, more than I already have. Bottom line is, I hardly ever go shopping for new stuff and I don't feel like I'm missing anything. There ain't much that goes from me > landfill.
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Old 12-21-2008, 12:04 AM   #28 (permalink)
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I would expect no less from a person w/ that avatar! LOL

In all Honesty, I actually got my loveseat ($400$ new) and ottoman ($600$ new) which, ironically, almost perfectly match each other, free. How, you might ask?

I used to walk out back of a Rent-A-Center when I worked at IBM Endicott (EIT, Inc.).

I spotted them, and called a friend to help carry them the 5 blocks from there to my apartment, without mentioning anything to my wife... she was more than surprised to find out that I was bringing home a paycheck AND $1000 worth of nearly new furniture.

I scored a LCD computer monitor that wouldn't turn on as soon as you hit the power button.. it took a few seconds.

Tables, chairs, etc. all free, all from "Trash".

My wife and I used to take walks on Tuesday nights, when everyone put their trash out. I can't count the amount of money I've made from selling trash, or the parts I've gotten from one thing that might be useful for something else. Almost a year of it, and only one confrontation, which ended up with the cops involved, laughing at the crazy man who called them over a garbage picker.

In some cities, they actually applaud those of us who use the things that others waste, since it keeps it out of the landfill, keeps the garbage from getting strewn about, etc.

Ironically, for the first time in my life, the cops were on MY SIDE... It felt strange.
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Old 12-21-2008, 12:09 AM   #29 (permalink)
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Yeah- I got tables, lamps, vacuum cleaners, lawn mowers, tools, oh fer cripes sakes, just about anything you could think of from the "trash". Land of Plenty indeed!
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Old 12-21-2008, 12:20 AM   #30 (permalink)
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HA! You just reminded me of a guy I know in this area... He used to pick up furniture that people threw out... and then sell it back to them, after "cleaning it up".

Goes to show exactly how persnickety some people can be... you can sell them back their own furniture, and most times, there wasn't anything wrong with it when they threw it out!

The one guy in NY that I had a problem with, he ended up being pissed because I saw value in something that he didn't. He knew, with some amount of certainty, that I would make value of his old computer, and probably end up selling it. I confirmed his belief when I answered the officer's: "What are you going to do with it?" with: "Rebuild it, a little better, and sell it for a little bit of nothing, so some kid can do his homework.. And I'm going to do it with more parts I got, probably, from this guy."

He was a little enraged by the idea that he also built computers, and found no value in something so "obsolete", but that I was willing to build garbage, with garbage, and sell it.

Other than that, I've gotten freecycle stuff, etc. as well.. I've actually used paper mache to fix stuff too... or broken glass from a liquor bottle, when something is "missing" a piece of thick glass.. The stuff is really easy to shape, if you can break out a piece that's close, you can file it down to fit.

When I used to do alot of case mods to computers and game systems, most of my acrylic sheets came from waste piles behind stores like lowes and home depot. Some of it came from people who had small pets that died, and threw out the plastic cage it was in.

In small projects, I almost never pay for material. I won't begin to fathom how much money I've saved by re-using stuff that most would consider "garbage".

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