More on Going Green…

I have always been a big supporter of going green and recycling. I remember when I was in the fifth grade our Science teacher took us to McDonald’s so we could protest their use of Styrofoam containers for their big macs! So, yes, that seed was planted early!

My kids are also big into recycling…they are also very creative and recently started making these bracelets from pop tabs. p4170134p4170135You can find a good tutorial HERE. I think they are so great. Very funky.

A few other things we do to recycle, reduce, reuse:

1)we try to separate our trash…taking aluminum, cardboard, newspaper, glass, and plastic containers to the local recycling center.

2)we donate our toys and clothes to charity when we no longer need them…we also shop thrift stores and garage sales! We only buy new if we have to!

3)we walk as often as possible…to the park, the library, the gym, and school.  We love to take walks

4)we USE our library…we have lots of readers in our house and we are always checking out new things to read!

5)we have lots of house plants around to improve our air quality, and we try to plant a garden every year. This year we are planting tomatoes, green beans and strawberries! We love to feed the birds too!

6)we use reusable grocery bags as often as possible, and on the chance that I forget them, or I don’t bring enough and we get plastic grocery bags, we use the plastic bags to line our small trash cans instead of buying trash bags.

If you stop and think about it…there are a lot of things we just do naturally every day that help to keep our world cleaner, and our lives healthier. And, if you’re not already doing these things…then just start today! Its not so hard if you take it one small step at a time! and I wouldn’t get too discouraged,  the earth is like our bodies…in that, it has the ability to repair and rebuild itself…and any little thing that we can do to help will make a huge difference! Good Luck!

Happy Earth Day! ~Reuse your old T-shirts!

Paper or Plastic? How about neither. It takes as much petroleum to make 14 plastic bags as it does to drive a car one mile. These grocery bags are made from rescued T-Shirts. They are similar in size and shape to your average plastic grocery bag and can be used anywhere! They are quite durable, keep them in your purse or your car, it just takes a little at a time to get in the habit of recycling. It’s all about making a difference one small step at a time.

So, what do you do with your favorite T-shirts after they are too small, or worn out? Why, make reusable grocery bags of course! Here’s how I do it:

First choose a t-shirt…p4170162p4170153I find that small to mediums work best. If you want to use larger T-shirts you would either have a very big bag (not a bad thing!) or you would need to cut and sew the side seams. (Confused?) You’ll see in a minute.

Lay your T-shirt out on a hard flat surface (I am using my kitchen table), p4170154then lay your template…(any grocery bag will do. Pick one that has a size and shape you like.) on top pf your T-shirt.

Match the top of the bags handles with the shoulder seams.

Trace the opening around the neckline, and around the sleeves. (don’t worry, the chalk comes right off!) :)You are basically cutting out the neck and cutting off the sleeves to make your handles.p4170155

I usually fold my shirts in half, matching up all the seams and then do my cutting…this way both sides match. We leave the original side seams intact. (One less seam to sew!) 🙂 p4170157When that is done, cut off the bottom of the shirt. Again I use my walmart bag as a guide but, remember, your bag can be as big or small as you like.  When you have decided on a good length, cut it, then turn the shirt inside out, Sew or serge the bottom seam shut.p4170159 (If using a regular sewing machine do a straight stitch and a zig zag to make it nice and sturdy) If desired, you can also sew or serge around the handles.

Then take the bottom seam of the bag and fold it against the side seam like will have a little triangle, measure about 1 1/2 inches from the point and place a pin. (do this for both sides) sew a straight seam from pin to pin. You can leave this on or cut it off, its up to you. When you flip your bag right side out, you should have a nice squared bottom to your bag. And, its done! Nice job!p4180001Here is your finished product! p4180003You can roll them up and keep them in your purse or under the seat of your car. You can tie them with hemp cord and give them as gifts! They’re great! Have a happy day!