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Using less stuff

February 7, 2013 in Blog


Hi all,

It’s great that so much goes to recycling in Canberra, but sometimes the sheer volume of packaging and whatnot that we put in the recycling bin is frightening – since it’s going to take so much energy to make it usable again.

So we’ve taken to reusing old bread bags for freezer storage and to catch leaks from our plastic lunch boxes when we take them to work. At least we get a few more uses out of them. We also collect jam and yoghurt pots to plant seedlings in.

Do you have any favorite tricks to reduce the amount of stuff you use?

5 comments to 'Using less stuff'

  1. Hi @Apples,
    I try to re-use as much as I can. Any old bags get re-used, jars, containers, tins etc get used in the garden or to store things in.
    I have also started keeping wrapping paper, gift bags, ribbons and stuff. What doesn’t get re-used, is used for the kids to do craft.
    I also now look for items that have less packaging when I am buying things :)

  2. @Apples
    We use old toilet paper rolls and compostable coffee cups (from those in my house who don’t use a keep cup) for planting seedlings in the garden. I love your idea of using old bread bags, I’ll have to start doing that too!

    I often wish that there was a large-scale attitude change towards packaging etc. Canberra is a great place to obtain second hand goods as the income is high here and people often only stay for a few years and then get rid of things, but it would be even better if people were buying good quality items and holding on to them rather than getting rid of them so thoughtlessly.

  3. Hi @Apples, @quietpurpletiger and @Woyapp, the amount of packaging we throw away worries me too. We’ve been trying to get around it a bit by buying more fruit and veg and making up meals in advance. Using things like potatoes in place of rice or pasta or bread helps too. Having said that, I like the idea of re-using bread bags – that’s something we’ll definitely have to do.

  4. small containers are good for using when painting with the kids.
    If you don’t have kids you can keep all that sort of stuff or stuff that would be good for craft and give them to your local play group or day care centre to use :)

  5. I keep a bread bag from the last loaf, shake all the crumbs out. I take the new loaf, split it in half and put half in the old bag, seal the other one and put it in the freezer. This way I’m recycling and we eat the entire loaf before it goes mouldy. So we are saving there too

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