Recycling – A Group Post


A couple of articles I wrote have had some great recycling comments posted on them. Most of us know about recycling things such as batteries, plastic jugs and glass. As a follow up here are a few new things I have learned about recycling recently. Additionally, read the end of this post to see how you can add to this list.

Ikea will recycle those compact fluorescent light bulbs we discussed here and here.

Co-op America has a list titled “21 Things You Did Not Know You Could Recycle”. The whole list is at that link and many I think we do know about, but here a few of the things they describe: Appliances, CDs/DVDs/Game Disks, Compostable bio-plastics, Computers and electronics, Exercise videos, Eyeglasses, Foam packing, They also mention Ikea.

Nike takes old shoes that no one wants and recycles them into running tracks, football and soccer fields, tennis and basketball courts and playground surfaces.

I have no personal knowledge of this one and don’t have a disposable camera handy to check, but apparently on the boxes there are instructions on how to recycle them. But, there is no incentive for the film developers to do so and supposedly enough cameras have been tossed, that if placed end to end, they would more than circle the planet.

I read a story recently about a woman who asks anyone who finds an odd lost glove to mail it to her. She then matches them up as best as possible and donates them to charitable organizations.

And of course there is always The FreeCyclers.

I also read about a group of women who found out a large oddly colored curtain in a theater was going to be discarded. They obtained it and made 35 quilts out of it and donated them to an orphan’s charity.

How about any other ideas? If you know of an little known, odd, unique, or just charming like the glove lady, way of recycling something, please describe it in a comment below and I choose some to add it to this post with a credit, and if you like, a link, back to you. Images are OK also, as long as I can download them legally to display here.

I do reserve the right to be discerning, but I am usually very agreeable and accommodating in nature! For example, this picture probably does not really fit the theme, but it certainly is a unique way to incorporate recycling into the landscape!

Let’s see how long we can make this post!

Kathleen at Health Matters used the metal wheels of a car as a planter. I have heard of people using the rubber tires, but know that you have to be careful about growing food in them as the rubber can leach compounds into the growing soil. I had not heard of anyone using the wheels themselves. This does remind me of a camper I met once that had used the metal wheel from an old truck and welded the steel strainer tub from an old washing machine on to the top of it. He then had a wonderful portable fireplace that gave off a tremendous amount of heat through the steel strainer. Thanks Kathleen!

Jen at Humble Opinions has a sister that recycles old jeans into thick, winter quilts or curtains. A great idea as I usually wear mine to the point that I have to toss them into the trash. But, there are always some parts of them in good condition, if you can sew. Thanks Jen!

Anna from My Only Photo adds that her mother uses the plastic grocery bags as packing material. This is much better than those annoying styrofoam peanuts that spill all over the place when you open a box. I mean, how can anyone stand them! Ignore their environmental impact for a second and recall the last time you had to deal with them. First they spill all over the place. Then when you go to pick them up, the static electricity glues them to your fingers and you have shake your wrists silly to get them off. Then the dog comes over to see what all the fun is about and sticks her head in the box and sneezes from the styrofoam dust, blowing a shower of peanuts from the kitchen to the dining room. It takes longer to clean up the stuff than it did for the package to get from Florida to Oregon!

Also, here we can collect and return the bags to stores. They get picked up and recycled to make lawn furniture and tables, and deck material. I have heard, however, that it costs about $1,000 dollars to recycle a ton of plastic bags and the end result is worth less than the cost of the recycling. Luis mentioned LivePaths in his comment on this post. I am not sure if it is his site. If it is he is anonymous on it, which is odd, but the site does talk about the economies of recycling the bags and a unique use for used bags.

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Will Sig
1 ModelElaine

Very interesting post. I have never really given much thought to the subject of recycling. It’ll give me an opportunity to take a deeper look into it.


2 Will

Welcome Elaine! If you find something unique be sure to come back and let us know.



3 Kathleen

Well, this isn’t a big deal, but it did work nicely and it’s still there. I found two old wheels with no tires, flipped them over, filled them with dirt and planted in them. They look fine placed between the other foliage.


4 Anna

Will I don’t have any ideas on the grand scale, but here is small one: I take junk mail from the credit card companies, take the provided envelopes and reuse them for storing receipts, etc. But I think some of them must have found out about it, because, they stop sending envelopes with the applications, lol. Others are like we reuse plastic containers and then recycle them after, so we don’t have to buy extra. I come back if I get any more environmental Eureka’s, Anna 🙂


5 Just Jen

Hello, first time visiter I think? lol
Anyway, knew all of that but the nike…good idea!
My sister makes thick winter quilts out of old jeans. They are heavy and warm and they look neat with all those different patches of denim!
She also decked her out her son’s room when he was younger by making curtains to match his quilt and she used old resewn bandanas as ties to hold the curtains back….
my ds’s baby quilt was made of denim and thickened with a quilt badding and the underside was a sewn-in baby blanket. Making it soft and warm, great to be used in the winter over his legs in his stroller! It’s now been through 4 other families and it’s still in excellent condition!
I will be back!


6 Will

Hi Jen! I see you are another north of the border neighbor. Welcome! I looked at your site and yes, I think you are here for the first time as I had not seen it before. I liked your post for the latest Writers Island prompt. A little disturbing, but I am a sissy about things like that. Good piece, though.

I like your Sister’s idea of reusing old jeans. Even mine, which I wear to death, have some parts of them that are in great shape.



7 Anna

….I have another one, but not my idea – my mother in-law was using reusable grocery bags to stuff gifts, as opposed to use wrapping paper or the gift bags – I think that is really good idea! Anna 🙂


8 Will

Thanks Jen, Kathleen and Anna. Your contributions are added to the end of the post! With a little commentary 😉


9 nick erickson

Anybody interested in diverting electronics from landfills and stopping e-waste from getting sent overseas should have a look at Intercon Recycling’s page on Facebook. Become a fan and support the recycling efforts of this environmental leader.


10 Will

Hey Nick – I’ll leave up the comment/advertisement for your company for now and I’ll try to check into it a bit. Your company sure does look different and above board. I sure hope IR is a legitimate recycler of electronics. We all sure know many of these companies have received a lot of bad press lately.


11 Carmen

Will someone out there tell me where can I sell cardboard boxes, here in Florida? With the economy sooo bad I need to make a little extra money.
I get hold of lots of cardboard. Please help !


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