Recycling Made Easier

20110124-recycle

Today was recycling day in our neighborhood, and all of my neighbors proudly rolled their Big Blue trashcan recycling thingy to the curb.  If you are unfamiliar with this thingy, just picture your huge curbside trash can, but blue.  And please know that I am grateful to the City of Charleston for this and hope that it actually cut costs (not too sure how considering it is the same amount of pick up days but bigger receptacles, but I digress).

The reason I even noticed this, other than the Kate Middleton-engagement dress-blue enveloping me for blocks, is because it is like the 10th time we have failed to recycle.  I looked inside Big Blue today and sure enough there wasn’t even one single milk carton.  This made it even more glaringly obvious that we are the losers of the block.  It is like we are rolling our eyes at the next generation and saying that we don’t care if the earth warms to a boiling point within the next 10 years as a result of our boycott.

The truth is, I truly love Mother Earth and really want my children to be able to breathe clean air. I have the same problem with my recyclable grocery bags.  I always mean to use them but seem to forget to bring them into the store every single solitary time.  I need to work on that, too.

But for now, I’ll chip away at this nagging problem.   However easy that bin is supposed to be, for me, it isn’t!! Here’s the deal.  In the old days (several months ago), I had a system in place that was fool proof and made recycling easy.  I simply opened up the back door and threw out the discarded items into my perfectly open recycling box.  Some jars were still dripping with spaghetti sauce, but hey, I was doing my part and trying to hug a tree.  And then on every other Monday or Tuesday (I still cannot remember the day) I would drag my blue box to the curb, excessive amount of wine bottles and all.

And yes, you can practically fit a small elephant into Big Blue, but I can never seem to execute the transfer from the small bins to the big one.  For one, we keep the small bins by the back steps and the large bin on the side of the driveway.  This creates a whole other step for me.  And secondly, whenever I do bother to make the transfer, inevitably the lovely concoction of liquids and grime and who knows what else has a way of spilling on me to the point at which I gag.  I really do.  Ugh, just thinking about it is gross.  Anyway, there has to be a better way for people like me!  I know what you are thinking, I should ask my husband.  Nice try.  He’d probably put that on the list right next to laundry.

So here is what I propose….If I put an esthetically pleasing recycling bin in my kitchen and actually bother to rinse the items before tossing them, then I will be more inclined to take out the cute little recycling box when I take out the trash.   It won’t be as heavy and it will be a lot cleaner.  Now, to find the right box to use…..here are a couple of ideas:

1.  STORAGE BIN by Scout- Cute, right? Comes in tons of patterns and a bigger version.

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2. DISPOSABLE BIN by Home Depot- How cool are these?  Keep one in a 2nd kitchen trash can and simply throw the whole thing into Big Blue when you take out your trash!

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3.  RATTAN BIN by Pottery Barn-  I really like this one, especially for newspaper or old grocery bags.

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4. 3 STEP-ON by Fixture Universe- You definitely need a bit more room for this, but it is pretty sleek. And I bet the disposable bags from #2 would work well with this!

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So you see, by eliminating the nasty old blue bin in the backyard, I am forcing myself to keep my recycling clean enough for the kitchen.  And it will be less of a hassle to get it into Big Blue since I am headed that way on a daily basis with a garbage bag.  I feel better already.  In two weeks my neighbors are going to be so happy that I finally got my act together.  I might even celebrate my win tonight and add a wine bottle to the bin!

Have any better ideas? We would love to hear about them.

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