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Double the usefulness of household items: Green friendly way to repurpose

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The whole world is looking at new ways to save the planet, recycle, reuse items and repurpose things around the house. Many items have a single purpose to them when they are purchased. That isn’t always true, a little thinking can make the light bulb go on in your brain and little by little something in the house can have another purpose or use instead of just tossing them in the trash.

Here are a few ideas to get you started by doubling the usefulness of household items:

Take the cardboard tube from wrapping paper.

Many people throw them in the garbage. Others take the cardboard to the recycling center.

Now we want to introduce you to another possibility or two. If you are a sewing or crafting person you probably have lots of fabric in the house. Instead of folding it and placing it into a drawer use the cardboard tube and wrap the fabric around it. This makes it neat, easy to unroll, keeps it from getting wrinkles and creases and reuses the wrapping paper tube. Wrap the finished roll with some tissue paper to keep dust out.

If you entertain a lot and use cloth or linen napkins don’t stuff them in the drawer stacked up on top of each other where the sets can get mixed up. Take the cardboard tube and cut it to the length of the napkins and roll the entire set together. Use the remainder piece of cardboard tubing for the table cloth. The table cloth will still have to be ironed before use because it is too large to just wrap around the tube. Now place some tissue paper over the two pieces of tubing; one holding the table cloth and the other containing the napkins. Keep both together when you place them in a drawer to store until the next time they are used. Doing this keeps patterns, colors and themed sets together and saves time searching for the matching pieces when it is time to be used.

Take a drinking straw to strengthen stems:

Drinking straws are great for sipping chocolate milk and sodas. If you take some straws and designate them to your floral arrangements they can be reused over and over again. Just slide a straw up the stem of a limp or thin stemmed flower to give it support while it stands in the vase. The stem will still be able to absorb water to keep it alive for a period of time and at the same time preventing those stems from breaking, snapping in half or drooping over the side of the vase top.

Take a penny to extend the life of flowers:

One little penny is all you need with just a pinch of sugar to keep flowers lasting longer. It is so nice to get fresh cut flowers but too often they lose that perky look and start to wilt, droop and die in no time at all. By adding a penny with the sugar to the bottom of the vase will aid the water used to feed the flowers to last longer. See a penny is worth something in this day and age after all!

Double the usefulness is easy when you just give yourself a chance to think green!

© 2014 Beverly Mucha / All Rights Reserved

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