Was it an email comment of post on Facebook? I cannot recall, but the point made by a friend of mine, who is also the Executive Director of Wisconsin's Sierra Club settled into my mind. Made about children's summer camp programming she said "they sell it as eco-friendly, but then the kids come home with otherwise recyclable items that are now hard to recycle if not impossible!" Yes, I see it all the time. Giving second life to an empty cereal box is nice, and provides an artistic medium for kids at no charge to the school or camp. But when it comes home with paint, glitter and glue....and the weekly showing of art on the fridge expires, can I recycle it? With the new year I also pledge to recycle more items directly, reserving donations to schools and camps to things that would otherwise be donated or tossed in the trash. Recent items given to the Art Gods of Preschool include: holiday cookie tin (minus the cookies); spiral that held together an outdated and now recycled neighborhood directory; and candy that was insanely too sweet for the kids (apparently the teachers love it for their meetings). Gone from the school donation bag are our cereal boxes and paper tube rolls; the first is recycled, the second is added to winter compost.
Frugal living, it is good for your health, your wallet, and planet Earth.....but it is not autopilot, really think things through a few steps before declaring something frugal. Thanks for reading, and tune in tomorrow for an update on our work on purging 2,015 items from our frugal home in 2015.