I hope you're well and enjoying the gorgeous sunshine this week. Hubby & I had both booked this week off from work to carry on de-cluttering our home. This week we're concentrating on finishing up our guest/craft room (now all but done yaaaay) and our front bedroom which is Hubby's den/man cave :)
There is such a lot to do in this room since it's been used as a storage room while we've been working on the rest of the house. Now though I am determined that Hubby should have the man cave he so definitely deserves :) Now much as I would so love to be able to kit out a proper man cave with luxuries like a full size juke box etc, well we just don't have the budget that would need, but that doesn't mean I can't make it look pretty cool and still be a cozy place for him to work in.
I promise I'll share as we go along honeys but for today......
Hubby and I are not obsessed "save the planet" (collect the whole set :) people, but we do recycle. A lot. Every single bit of excess paper, cardboard, (suitable) plastic, tin cans & packaging finds its way into our blue wheelie bin, supplied by the local council. Grass cuttings from the garden and food waste such as egg shells, fruit peels etc likewise all go into the brown wheelie bin.
We don't have glass recycling facilities here but Hubby bags any glass jars or bottles and takes them to work with him in the mornings because on the way to work he passes a huge glass recycling bin, again provided by the local council.
The key to turning recycling into a regular habit is incredibly simple. Just make it easier to recycle than not :) I'll show you what I mean.
Do you remember our lower hall honeys? I shared how we had set up a system to deal with incoming mail which prevents clutter gathering on surfaces. Basically we have a three pocket system, using the PYSSLINGAR pockets from Ikea, which splits mail into 1. to be actioned (ie: needs a reply or a bill that needs to be paid) 2. to be filed and finally 3. to be shredded. Identity theft is a constant danger these days so it's always best to shred anything with any personal details before it heads to the bin.
So mail arrives, gets picked up from the mat behind the door and taken straight to our little recycling area which is just inside the door. Mail is filed into the appropriate pocket and whatever else is left, ie: empty (window) envelopes, junk mail, and currently any election bumpf is all thrown into the little bin immediately adjacent.
You can see this little bin sitting on the floor, by the shoe storage unit in the above photo. It's a VARIERA bin from Ikea. We get a lot of junk mail and who knows how many poor wee trees are being sacrificed for the current general election nonsense. I mean really, knock on the door and lie to our faces, don't just pop 3lbs of paper through the letter box!
When this bin needs emptied it has a handle which allows it to easily be taken to the back door, outside which sits our blue wheelie bin, where it can be emptied and returned to its place. This system has been working great for quite some time now and recently I had an idea :)
What if we had a similar system in the kitchen for all of the packaging that gathers on the counter top waiting to be taken outside? It is never a lot but it still bugs me. We worked so hard on our kitchen makeover and wee piles of cardboard packaging & plastic milk bottles were occasionally spoiling our hard work and bugging the ears off me :/
Thing was, I really didn't want to clutter the floor with another bin, even a small one like the variera. I'm clumsy honeys, or rather I am unstable on my feet. I worry about falling when I'm home alone and having things lying about that I can trip over didn't appeal to me. Especially since our kitchen floor is concrete... ouchie waiting to happen. The bin for our mail sorting is safely tucked away out of harms way, so it's fine where it is. What could I do about the kitchen though....
Once I'd decided I really wanted to have a bin to coral any packaging clutter though, I knew I had to find a way of making it happen. Then, the penny dropped and it's such a simple solution!
I got two large plastic "command" style hooks and attached them to the ceramic tiles, over by the door which leads out to our back door. This is directly above our normal kitchen trash bin and it's so easy to lift the bin off the hooks it hangs on, take it to the back door and empty it into the blue bin :)
The cabinet it's hanging next to is our tall larder cabinet. Neither bin stops me from getting into this cabinet because all I do is to move them. They are both light and in the case of the recycling bin I just lift it off it's hooks. It's such a joy to have constantly clear counters, and a designated recycling station to immediately pop packaging into when I'm cooking :)
The variera bin is not the only recycling station we have in our kitchen though. Over by the kitchen sink sits a little green kitchen waste or composting bin. We got it from Home Bargains for around £2 and it's paid for itself many times over. It has a very securely fastening lid and we use biodegradable or compostable liners in it so that when it needs emptying we just tie the bag and out it goes and straight into the large brown recycling wheelie bin outside.
This little bin has been such a blessing! It really has. Potato peels, banana skins, orange peels, etc etc go where they belong. Into the brown recycling wheelie bin. The reason they do that every single time? Because dear ones, this bin lives right by the kitchen sink. Right by where the veggies are washed and peeled, so it's easier to pop peels & skins into the wee green bin right at your elbow than to carry the basin over to the main kitchen trash bin across the room :)
All of these systems have one thing in common honeys, they make it so much easier to recycle than to not recycle. If you have a method to recycle right where it will be used most, used it will be. Before you know it, you have a well working system on your hands and suddenly your poor grey wheelie bin, which goes to landfill, is being used less & less and only needs to be emptied once a month instead of once a fortnight :)
Do you recycle honeys? Why not share some of your systems? Have you blogged about them? I'd love to read if you have. Well I'm off to make Hubby a cuppa and then we're off back to sorting, purging and organizing. Know what? I'm actually really enjoying seeing bags filling to go out of the house :) Till next time dear ones, hugs always xx