Single Use Plastics

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Single use plastic bag

I’m pretty vigilant about not using single use plastics, but they still find their way into my home, most commonly via food packaging.

I take my cloth bags to the grocery store, my stainless steel tumbler to the coffee shop or just filled with tap water when I am out and about.

Shopping second-hand eliminates some of this single use plastic influx, but I still end up with a distressing amout of plastic in my home.

The above plastic bag arrived in my home, wrapping a house-warming present from a beloved friend. So rather than a rude, “Eeewww! Plastic!” response to my gift, I took both the present and wrap as a gift and began the process of recycling/reusing/repurposing the single use plastic bag.

I’m not sure when/where I will need a plastic bag, but I will make this one useful by making it small and locatable. First, I fold it neatly.

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Bag, folded in thirds.

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Then you start a triangular fold.

And keep going until you have this end product:

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Sometimes you have to tuck in an odd shape to the triangle at the end of folding.

And this little bitty plastic thing can be tucked away in the car glove box, the back pack, the mud room sorting bin, the yacht, the preschool diaper bin, the homeless shelter…[you get the idea] until the need for this type of plastic is superior to using cloth or wood or metal for the situation at hand.

Then you pull it out, and give it a second life. And hopefully after that, a third and fourth, before it’s inevitable recycle.

Because it is not about being 1000% perfect, it is about moving the needle in a healthier direction.

 

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Kitchen Before and After

Some of you may have noticed there were no posts during the month of February. That is because my youngest son boomeranged home. Since my apartment was a studio, this was a snug fit with son, me and the guinea pig. So we moved to a larger, two bedroom apartment in the same neighborhood.

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The kitchen before we moved in.

There were two main problems with the kitchen. It has no natural light, so these old, dirty and dark cabinets soaked up what little light there was.

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Amazing what three or four coats of paint and some new hardware can do.

The other big problem was the pantry/stove/fridge configuration.

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There was no elbow room to cook or turn a pot handle away. Pantry wall on left, fridge on right.

I asked the building manager to remove the fridge and I bought a half fridge. This works for me because I shop and cook more like a Parisian than an American and I do not need a large amount of refrigerated space.

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Here is the new configuration with a microwave on top of the refrigerator. [A project for the near future is to create a wood counter top between the top of the fridge and the microwave.]

It was a lot of work taking the cabinet doors down, removing the hardware, painting them and reinstalling everything, but I am very pleased with the result.

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Cabinet doors in process of being painted.

More projects to come.