Daring to Start the Green Journey

When I was growing up, we really didn’t talk that much about recycling in school or at home.  In Jonesboro, LA, the only time anyone mentioned recycling was when someone had enough aluminum soda cans to take into Monroe, LA for money.  It really wasn’t a priority.  I remember hauling two and three 33 gallon black trash bags full of garbage to the huge garbage bins out by my high school.  I couldn’t believe how a family of four could create that much garbage in a week or two period.

I’ve moved a few times in my life.  I even moved back to Jonesboro for about 6 months.  Living in Las Vegas, NV has been an eye opening experience.  We are living in a very crowded subdivision that has garbage pick up.  Realize that this is the first time I’ve lived in an area with trash pick up.  When we signed up for garbage pick up, I couldn’t believe all the information they gave on how to Reuse, Recycle, and Reduce.  Trash pickup actually gives you the option of having 3 recycling bins.  The Republic Services website actually has a lot of information about what in your household that you can recycle. 

Of course, after viewing the website, I couldn’t believe how many things were were just trashing that we could reuse or at least recycle.  So, I’ve decided that if I at least do a “green” thing a day, I am doing just a small part to help our environment.  I’m one of those people who has to take baby steps to eventually be a pro at something, that includes my goal of becoming more green.

My first attempt at recycling has been to find anything that is cardboard that I normally put into the trash, break it down, and put into a box for recycling on Friday.  Believe it or not, I even went out into the garage and found un-useable cardboard boxes, broke them down, and am ready for pickup for tomorrow.  Not only am I doing my part to recycle, I’m FINALLY getting the garage cleaned up.

Oh, and if you’ve never heard of Freecycle, you need to check it out.  (This is part of that “Reuse” thing I was talking about?)  We needed a dresser for our bedroom since our old one is falling apart.  Fixing this dresser is pretty much out of the question considering that it’s not actually made out of wood.  It’s made out of particle board.  I joined Freecycle when I was in Washington State, so when I moved to Las Vegas, I joined their Freecycle group too.  I waited until I found someone wanting to give away a wooden dresser.  She gave it to us for FREE, but it had writing on it and some of the drawers needed fixing. 

It took an entire $15 for paint, sandpaper, nails, and a piece of wood to fix the drawer track.  After sanding it down, it’s a beautiful dresser.  I’ll be painting it after this weekend.  I can’t wait to have more room to put our clothes.  Freecycle is definitely worth it if you are good with your hands or want to take on a project.  Sometimes you can find things that are in perfect condition and people are just reducing the things in their house!

Remember that it only takes a little bit of effort to become more green.  I challenge each and every one of you to do one of the Three R’s of Recycling:  Reduce, Recycle, or Reuse!  I’d love to hear what you are doing in your house as well!