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#31 of 51 Old 11-28-2010, 09:49 AM
 
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I love the idea of making drawstring bags for presents - wrapping paper is so wasteful!

 

My wackiness:

 

I like to store my dry goods in glass, so I saved a bunch of glass jars and lids from various food items. I painted the lids the same color so it looks like a matched set. If I drop a jar and it breaks, I just put it in the recycle bin.

 

Im using scrap/super cheap fabric to make cloth napkins.

 

I save all the scrap paper from home and from work (the stuff that we dont need to shred).  Ive been making scratch pads out of them.  I did splurge and buy a bottle of padding glue, but its going to last me forever.  Im the type of person that has to make a list for everything, so I dont feel as bad about it when is 'second use' paper.

 

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#32 of 51 Old 11-28-2010, 04:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I use junk mail for scrap paper, and sometimes for printer paper. (Like when I need to print the bank statement - I need to have a paper copy to check off transactions, but I'll shred it when I'm finished. No sense using new paper.) 

 

Our unfinished basement is also the home of our winter clothesline. 

 

Oh! And even though it's not really the season for this, I'll share anyway: for Easter baskets, I use our shredded paper (from bank statements & such) as "grass" for the Easter baskets. It's not green, but nobody cares. The kids just want the goodies! (And I LOATHE vacuuming up that darn plastic grass!) 


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#33 of 51 Old 11-29-2010, 05:26 PM
 
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I buy the self foaming soap dispensers but then I buy the regular method refill and put about <1/4 soap and the rest water. The refill lasts forever and we still have nice clean hands.

 

We don't use conditioner because my hair is actually better without and DH's hair is very short.

 

I buy more expensive foaming face wash (Clinique liquid) because it lasts a LOT longer than anything from the supermarket, including Cetaphil. Ends up waaay cheaper.


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#34 of 51 Old 11-29-2010, 07:01 PM
 
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I missed the post about drawstring bags for presents?  Can the OP of that expand upon the idea a little.  I am really kind aliking the idea of reusuable wrappings.  DH just showed me tonight out of one of his wood magazines that someone made a wooden gift box.  I thought the idea of a reusuable gift box like that was a really neat idea.   As it is, my whole family frequently saves and reuses gift bags.  I wonder if I give everyone's gifts this year in fabric drawstring bags if they would continue to reuse them....

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#35 of 51 Old 11-30-2010, 09:15 PM
 
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I wanted to make dh and my son matching pajama for Christmas so I am going to cut up dh's flannel jammy tops and sew them into bottoms for my 3 year old so they will match dad's bottoms and then make a tie aplique from the leftovers to put on t-shirts they already have to make matching tops.

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#36 of 51 Old 12-01-2010, 09:49 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saoirse2007 View Post

I wanted to make dh and my son matching pajama for Christmas so I am going to cut up dh's flannel jammy tops and sew them into bottoms for my 3 year old so they will match dad's bottoms and then make a tie aplique from the leftovers to put on t-shirts they already have to make matching tops.


CUTE IDEA!!!!!  (sorry for yelling, but I got all excited!)


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#37 of 51 Old 12-01-2010, 11:40 AM
 
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I love all these ideas.

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#38 of 51 Old 12-01-2010, 11:51 AM
 
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I do the same with veggies:  all scraps get used in a stock.

I save tons of money on buying whole chickens.  Then at home we cut it up ourselves into boneless breasts, then leg quarters, and the rest of the carcass with wings.  Then we use that carcass and veggie scraps to make soup stock.  Delicious!  I just can't stand the boxed up broth.  My kids always can tell when I used boxed broth for soup and they don't like it...

We give our scraps to chickens too.

 

Wacky on my part is saving all the egg shells.  I let them air dry, then I grind them into powder and add them to my chickens' food.  Gives them the calcium back for making more eggs. 

 

I use Tshirts for rags.

 

When my girls outgrow their jeans, we use strips of fabric at the bottom to make those pants a bit longer.  Same fabric is made into hair band or other accessory to match the bottom strip of the pants.  Makes old jeans look new again... and so fancy :)

My dd10 came up with the idea of putting a velcro on the bottom of her jeans and making inexchangable cuffs, she can mix and match with hair band and little purse.  A strip can be used as a nice belt (tied up) to match things even more.  Fabric can be from old clothes to recycle.

She wants to put tiny loops on those pant cuffs and hook up beadwork (can be removed for watching).. matching beadwork as necklace.  She is so creative!

 

My dh takes paper from recycling bin home.  Only one side is printed on, the other is clean.  My kids draw and write all day long (homeschooled).  We recycle the paper this way and get it for free.  To my surprise, kids really don't care about back being printed already.  When they want to make something more special (gift etc) that is when they use new paper.

 

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#39 of 51 Old 12-01-2010, 12:29 PM
 
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So many great ideas! I was peeling an orange today and was thinking to myself that I should keep the peel for some reason and now I have a reason! Thanks!

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#40 of 51 Old 12-04-2010, 07:58 AM
 
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I am desperately needing some new dish towels and have a big towel with big rips in it- I am totally stealing that idea!  I am not crafty enough to think of that on my own. 


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#41 of 51 Old 12-05-2010, 08:58 PM
 
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I use the mesh bags from apples and onions as kitchen scrubbies.  They work great--and when one gets super nasty from a big job (like the turkey roaster,)  I just toss it without regret.

 

We have  a huge stack of napkins I made from a thrift store tablecloth.

 

I often buy clothes from the $.50 rack at the thrift store just for the fabric.  My son has several pairs of fleece lined corderoy pants that I've made from repurposed fabric.  His homemade pants are far warmer than what I could afford to buy--and they're fabulously funky!

 

 

 


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#42 of 51 Old 12-05-2010, 09:37 PM
 
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Some great ideas!!

I started making my kids pj's. During the summer I found some soft flannel sheets for under a dollar that I am using to make their jammies out of. I also had 2 pairs of adult flannel pj pants that had torn, but I was able to reuse them and make pj pants for my kids. I also made some pj tops that are sort of patchwork and have a few different flannel prints on it so they can match multiple pairs of pj pants.

 

I have several cotton tops I am going to make simple summer shorts out of. It’s not very hard to make simple kids pants and shorts, I can barely follow a pattern (sometimes I don’t at all) and they hold up just fineJ

A parenting group I am in is having a :stuff” exchange/mno next week were we are bringing toys/books/clothing/etc that our kids no longer use. We get to declutter before the holiday and find some free 2nd hand x-mas gifts!!
 

Ok, I'm a very embarrassed to share this idea!! When we get invited to a birthday party I always try to stay late and help clean up, there is almost always lots of food left over and every time the host insist that we take some of it home. I feel like such a mooch, but I do help clean up!! Last time we came home with fruit salad, half a pizza, and some pretzels!! I struggle with staying within our grocery budget, so every bit counts, right!!


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#43 of 51 Old 12-06-2010, 02:50 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nitenites View Post

Oooh! I've got one! I turn paper grocery bags inside out & use them for wrapping Christmas gifts. I have lots of ribbon from crafting, so I use it to tie & decorate the packages. So pretty under the tree. (And I reuse the ribbon year after year! Woot!) 

 

dakotablue, I have tried so many times in the past to use leftover veggies for soup, but it never turns out. Can you give more details? 


Nitenites - Love the idea of brown paper packages with ribbon under the tree! 50 Bonus Points for reusing the ribbon over and over--I have to try that!


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#44 of 51 Old 12-06-2010, 01:12 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by *green*faery* View Post

 

Ok, I'm a very embarrassed to share this idea!! When we get invited to a birthday party I always try to stay late and help clean up, there is almost always lots of food left over and every time the host insist that we take some of it home. I feel like such a mooch, but I do help clean up!! Last time we came home with fruit salad, half a pizza, and some pretzels!! I struggle with staying within our grocery budget, so every bit counts, right!!


Uhm, that's every family gathering I've ever been to!!! I see nothing wrong with this. As long as you're not stashing it in secret or begging there's nothing wrong with accepting generosity. And, as someone that hosts things from time to time, it's a big help to keep things we won't eat out of my fridge!


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#45 of 51 Old 12-06-2010, 01:39 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mamallama View Post

I use the mesh bags from apples and onions as kitchen scrubbies.  They work great--and when one gets super nasty from a big job (like the turkey roaster,)  I just toss it without regret.

 

We have  a huge stack of napkins I made from a thrift store tablecloth.

 

I often buy clothes from the $.50 rack at the thrift store just for the fabric.  My son has several pairs of fleece lined corderoy pants that I've made from repurposed fabric.  His homemade pants are far warmer than what I could afford to buy--and they're fabulously funky!

 

 

 


Ok, I LOVE this idea of using the clearance rack clothes just for the fabric and can't believe that I didn't think of that!  Man, that's way cheaper than Joanns!  I am totally going to start doing that!
 

Or actually, even better, I think I might start snagging the free bags of clothes that people list on Freecycle for that!

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by *green*faery* View Post

 

 

Ok, I'm a very embarrassed to share this idea!! When we get invited to a birthday party I always try to stay late and help clean up, there is almost always lots of food left over and every time the host insist that we take some of it home. I feel like such a mooch, but I do help clean up!! Last time we came home with fruit salad, half a pizza, and some pretzels!! I struggle with staying within our grocery budget, so every bit counts, right!!



He He, that's one of the reasons I host thanksgiving is for the leftovers. 

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#46 of 51 Old 12-08-2010, 04:25 AM
 
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Doesn't seem so wacky  to me - pretty standard (re-use old bathing towels in kitchen). I don't even bother to hem them :)

 

 I also re-purpose old shirts for dish-rags and cleaning rags. Every house should have a rag-bag. :)

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Alright, this one seems a little out there.  I had a fairly new towel that had developed a large hole right in the middle.  I cut the towel up into pieces roughly twice the size of a kitchen sponge, folded each piece in half and zig zag stiched around the edges and voila, a reusable kitchen sponge for washing dishes.  I preferred that size to dish clothes and because I had so many of them, each one got thrown in the laundry at the end of the day (or sooner!).  Washed in hot water.  Cheaper than a sponge, more sanitary than a sponge, and they lasted forever.  Even after I didn't use them for dishes anymore, I still use them for other jobs like cleaning the tub. 



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#47 of 51 Old 12-08-2010, 04:30 AM
 
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After I mended the old pillow cases several times, I've "retired" them to gift-bag duty. They sit in my wardrobe and then I bring them out at X-mas and on birthdays for "wrapping".

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by celerydunk View Post

I love the idea of making drawstring bags for presents - wrapping paper is so wasteful!

 



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#48 of 51 Old 12-08-2010, 04:33 AM
 
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The various drafts of my thesis kept my family in scrap paper and drawing paper for years . Only this year (5 years after thesis submission) have we finally used it all up.
 

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My dh takes paper from recycling bin home.  Only one side is printed on, the other is clean.  My kids draw and write all day long (homeschooled).  We recycle the paper this way and get it for free.  To my surprise, kids really don't care about back being printed already.  When they want to make something more special (gift etc) that is when they use new paper.

 



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#49 of 51 Old 12-08-2010, 04:42 AM
 
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I hope I don't raise too many eyebrows with this idea, as by most standards, it's considered "wacky."  BUT - the last old towel we had got repurposed into family cloth.  I just cut it down to size and I toss them in with my son's diapers every other day or so. 


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#50 of 51 Old 12-08-2010, 04:47 AM
 
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Not really "whacky" - but things I've done or do

 

Buy a chicken w/ gizzards inside - save up the livers in the freezer for chopped liver at a later date.

 

If a chicken or duck comes with feet & heads - save for soup or porridge. Same with fish heads.

 

Left-over rice = rice porridge for breakfast & fried rice for lunch the next day

 

Don't pour dressing on entire lettuce salad - let individuals dress their own portions. That way any left-over lettuce keeps better overnight to be used the next  day.

 

Go to the market late in the day/evening when the vendors are ready to go home - often you can get good bargains, although the produce might not be as pretty.

 

If buying from an owner-proprietor, try bargaining. Can you get something cheaper if you buy in bulk? Can you get a discount for cash?

 

Making your own yoghurt is cheaper than buying, especially if you use powdered milk instead of fresh.

 

Save bacon grease for gravy base when you want gravy but don't have other drippings. It's also nice *for a treat* to use it to grease a pan for fried eggs or scrambled eggs.

 

If someone you know smokes tobacco - the un-smoked tobacco shreds of a cigarette butt can be used as part of a pesticide. Soak the tobacco in warm water for a day (~1 part tobacco to 16 parts water) until light brown & add some dishwashing soap. Spray it on your plants.

 

Another good home-made not too poisonous pesticide -  1/8 castile soap, 1/4 rubbing alcohol,  5/8 water. Especially good against spider mites and scale.

 

 

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#51 of 51 Old 12-08-2010, 10:47 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nitenites View Post

Oooh! I've got one! I turn paper grocery bags inside out & use them for wrapping Christmas gifts. I have lots of ribbon from crafting, so I use it to tie & decorate the packages. So pretty under the tree. (And I reuse the ribbon year after year! Woot!)



I do the same!


SAHM to my DS born 12/5/07, DD born 3/21/11

 
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