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! You know you are a "reuse everything" person when....

 
steward & bricolagier
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You know you are a "reuse everything" person when....

You get a mylar balloon for a silly gift, and when it's helium is gone, you look at it and say "My vacuum sealer does mylar, what can I store in a dead balloon?" And then escalate it to "hey, if I put something like rice in it, and got more balloons like that, they are round, and I bet I can stack a bunch neatly in a 5 gallon bucket!"


When do you know you are so far out of the mainstream thought you can't even see the shore? Tell us your weirdest reuses! Inspire the rest of us to greater creativity :D
 
Pearl Sutton
steward & bricolagier
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When you have even corrupted your cat! In 2014 I modified a pair of knee braces to work better for me. The cat took the cut scraps and played with them. They are still, 5 years, 3 moves, and 1000 miles away, being tortured in the kitchen right now. My cat is a reuser! :D
 
gardener
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While riding in the car with my wife something sexy caught the corner of my eye...
Because I was with her,  I shielded my eyes and loudly  announced that I wasn't even looking, but as I peeked through my fingers  I noticed  a woman next to the sexy  dumpster filled with enticing building materials.
She was looking quizzically at me...

I franticly gestured  to indicate that I wasn't not/oogling her,  but rather I was not/oogling the dumpster....

Since there no universal signals to communicate these rather particular concepts,  I just made things worse.

While my wife roared with laughter, my own laughter was a little more pained...
She knows I have a roving eye for salvage, and she is pretty damned cool about it.

She does get a little annoyed  when I drool and catcall over plants, seeds, and rocket stoves...
 
gardener & author
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I save any plastic packets and use them for small grocery shopping items. A few days ago when we went to a dried-fruit and nuts store, my housemate reminded me to use the pasta bags I'd brought, rather than let the shopkeeper use his own bag. The shopkeeper took my pasta bag, filled it with walnuts, and then sealed it with his heat sealer on the counter. I thought that was great!
 
gardener
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We were on vacation and needed clean clothes so we swung into a laundromat to do a couple of loads of wash.  As we were waiting, I noticed a "perfectly good" drier sheet, just sitting there in the bottom of one of those wire-frame cart things that you use when you pull your clothing out of the drier.  I grabbed it.

Then I saw another one, this time still inside one of the driers.  I grabbed it.

Before we were done, I had gone through the trash can and found a dozen or so more.  

Hey, they work for 2 loads of laundry -- you don't throw them away after just one trip through the drier!
 
Posts: 7136
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We did this more in the past...

There's the old huge chicken house we tore down for the boards for the barn...old extremely hard oak! and then pulled and hammered the nails straight to reuse...cans and cans of great nails. The kids got into that project also.

There's the beer can roof on the old outhouse...unfortunately, I let slip to a neighbor back then what our plan was and they dropped off bags of cans...some were steel instead of aluminum so they started rusting after a few years, still a very durable roof that outlasted the structure.

I try to pay attention to any packaging on items I buy at the store for it's reusability...cool shaped jars especially, coffee in a can, etc.

When I recently sold my floor loom I still had odds and ends of equipment...I broke down the warping frame (wooden pegs set into  one by four's and very aged) and now have part of it for towels in the kitchen and the rest as a coat rack in the back room...





 
pollinator
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Judith Browning wrote:
When I recently sold my floor loom I still had odds and ends of equipment...I broke down the warping frame (wooden pegs set into  one by four's and very aged) and now have part of it for towels in the kitchen and the rest as a coat rack in the back room...



I did something similar.  The side panel of an out of date baby crib is mounted on a kitchen wall with IKEA "S" hooks holding all my small necessities.
 
Posts: 110
Location: Central Texas
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Judith Browning wrote:

There's the beer can roof on the old outhouse...unfortunately, I let slip to a neighbor back then what our plan was and they dropped off bags of cans...some were steel instead of aluminum so they started rusting after a few years, still a very durable roof that outlasted the structure.



Very curious to know what exactly a beer can roof is... Sounds interesting. I don't drink any kind of beer, but I have managed to save a decent collection of soda cans over the last year from my family & myself that I wouldn't mind recycling here on the farmstead, if possible...
 
Kc Simmons
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I love this topic.
As someone with moderate obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), I can sometimes go a bit overboard with my reusing/recycling.
I use old soda (or bottles with the same cap-thread) as replacement water bottles for the rabbits. I save milk jugs for storing water to carry to the rabbit barn to refill the bottles.
I've also saved large, food grade jugs to serve as temporary ollas for new trees/plants by drilling a few holes in the sides and burying it up to the neck.
I have garbage bags full of aluminum cans saved up (because the closest place to recycle is an hour away).
I save glass jars/lids from things like salsa, spaghetti sauce, pickles, etc, and use them to can other things (the lids usually have a good enough seal left to safely reuse another time or two.
Prescription/OTC pill bottles make great little seed savers.
Then, of course, anything paper/cardboard-based is composted.

While it's not a terrible behavior for someone with OCD, I have to keep myself from taking it too far; or else I will find myself digging through the garbage to sort out the reusable stuff after I have people over.
 
master steward
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When the ice pack in your kid's lunch pail is one of those "one-use" ice packs used to transport medical supplies (your husband brought them home from the trashcans at work). Just in case it leaks, you contain it in the plastic bag that your cocoa butter came in. .... And this is what you offer up to a kid who bonks their head at recess, and you don't really care that it looks weird!

When you make boiled duck eggs for your kids lunch, but don't want to fill up the lunch pail with another mason jar, so you grab the plastic bag that their almonds came in, and put the eggs in that.
20191127_095452-1-.jpg
Fancy ice pack :D
Fancy ice pack :D
 
pollinator
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...when you have a whole overhead cupboard filled with nested plastic yogourt and takeaway container bottoms and lids that never seems to empty, no matter how many leftovers get given away.

-CK
 
gardener
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... when you bring your own re-usable containers to the restaurant to bring home any left-overs. It's a double win, because it means we don't end up with dreaded Styrofoam containers that aren't very re-usable or recyclable where I am.
 
Judith Browning
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Kc Simmons wrote:

Judith Browning wrote:

There's the beer can roof on the old outhouse...unfortunately, I let slip to a neighbor back then what our plan was and they dropped off bags of cans...some were steel instead of aluminum so they started rusting after a few years, still a very durable roof that outlasted the structure.



Very curious to know what exactly a beer can roof is... Sounds interesting. I don't drink any kind of beer, but I have managed to save a decent collection of soda cans over the last year from my family & myself that I wouldn't mind recycling here on the farmstead, if possible...



Kc, any aluminum soda/beer can will do, they are 'soft'...we cut the cans open with tin snips, removing both ends and cutting up the side so that each can could lay flat as a 'shingle'.  The aluminum ones were pretty easy to cut, the steel not so easy but doable.

Then just nailed on as you would any shingle, overlapping.  I'm pretty sure the roof had a solid wood surface to nail them too and we might have used actual roofing nails for at least some of it.   The edges are sharp so be careful cutting and handling... once on the roof not a problem.

I don't have any photos...no camera back then or any other electronics so not so many pictures.
 
gardener
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You know... when...

Your spouse won't throw away trash that even you would, for fear of getting chewed out, for tossing something you had plans for.

Your soul-sister drives over an hour (each way) to help you accumulate and put to use your hoard.

All your critters are housed and/or maintained entirely/mostly by things that used to be something else.

You have a craft room filled with mostly reclaimed bits of things never intended as craft supplies or tools.

You drive an old convertible because you love it, not just for the fun of the wind in your hair, but also because with the top down, it becomes almost a little pickup truck, to haul your pallets, and other re-useables in!

 
pollinator
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You open the cupboard under the sink and get annoyed when you see someone has used rubbish bags for the rubbish. We use 2x20kg bags of pellets in the furnace every day, the bags they come in are thick plastic, not only "free" but also better quality than the rubbish bags!
 
Jay Angler
gardener
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... when your farm coat has 5 mis-matched buttons on it because the zipper died before the coat was quite done, and buttons were a quick and cheap fix.
 
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I used the pages from unsalable books to make paper mache for a while. Gave it to the neighbors kids...before you jump all over me, let me tell you some things just arrived at the bookstore in unsalable condition:1/2 a book, water damaged, bug eaten... etc.

I have an idea to reuse the boards from hardcovers, but it’s in development.
 
gardener
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Jennie Little wrote:pages from unsalable books


I have two books someone gave me that I simply cannot read or give away (yes, that bad). I use them to make seed envelopes. Some books are much more useful as papier mache or envelopes!
 
Jennie Little
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My Dad took the international version of the Manchester Guardian when I was a kid. This arrived made of heavy duty tissue paper. We tossed it for years. Someone who was known for their paper mache moved nearby and we gave her the discarded papers after that. She loved them! That's where I got the idea for the discarded book pages.

 
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I work in Halifax/Dartmouth.  I make it a point to drive to early to work in the pick-up 3 days a week so that I can shop the garbage that people put in front for collection.  Our house is furnished in what what my wife laughingly calls CCC, "Canuck Curbside Castoff".   In fact, we actually have matching chairs in the kitchen which were collected over a 3 year period.

In the basement we have a wall of microwaves that we use as mouse-proof storage bins where we put small sacks of herbs, grains, seeds, etc.   Most of our building and fencing materials come from curbsides.  We take a horse trailer to collect Christmas trees which become feed for the goats then heat for the barn.   5-gallon buckets never make it to the Nova Scotia dump.   We get toys and even homeschooling materials as well.  

I make a nice side income by repairing appliances, lawnmowers and other things we collect then re-sell at swap meets.

My sister-in-law is rather uppity and looks down on us.   But our bills are paid, we have savings in the bank, and our property is free in clear.  

We either compost, recycle, re-sell or burn for heat almost everything.   If we throw something away, it really is beyond any semblance of use.
 
Wesley Kohn
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Judith Browning wrote:

Kc Simmons wrote:

Judith Browning wrote:

There's the beer can roof on the old outhouse...unfortunately, I let slip to a neighbor back then what our plan was and they dropped off bags of cans...some were steel instead of aluminum so they started rusting after a few years, still a very durable roof that outlasted the structure.



Very curious to know what exactly a beer can roof is... Sounds interesting. I don't drink any kind of beer, but I have managed to save a decent collection of soda cans over the last year from my family & myself that I wouldn't mind recycling here on the farmstead, if possible...



Kc, any aluminum soda/beer can will do, they are 'soft'...we cut the cans open with tin snips, removing both ends and cutting up the side so that each can could lay flat as a 'shingle'.  The aluminum ones were pretty easy to cut, the steel not so easy but doable.

Then just nailed on as you would any shingle, overlapping.  I'm pretty sure the roof had a solid wood surface to nail them too and we might have used actual roofing nails for at least some of it.   The edges are sharp so be careful cutting and handling... once on the roof not a problem.

I don't have any photos...no camera back then or any other electronics so not so many pictures.



Here is a link to make beer can shingles.  


I use a dutch style cheese press to make them & sell them at swap meets.   As long as you only use aluminum, they last forever.   I collect the cans from work and by scavenging.   Brings in a few hundred $$$ a month in sales.  
 
master pollinator
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You know you are a reuses everything person when you get bullshit mad at the simplest of stuff.

For me it is chainsaw chains. Logs, branches, lumber, sawdust, bark...everything; yeah I have places for all that, but what about that !@##$%^ chainsaw chain? Have you ever looked at one? I file down a VERY Teeny-Tiny part of the chain, and yet in a matter of a week that entire chain is toast. ALL of it! I looked at one today and as close as I can tell, I use about 10% of the steel that makes up a chainsaw chain. The other 90% is fine even after the rakers and teeth have been filed off.

Really...in 60 years of having chainsaw chain we have not figured out how to replace just the saw teeth and rakers? At $24 a chain we have not figured out how to replace just the teeth and rakers so a replacement cost would only be $10?

Then what do you do with the worn out chain? I have a friend that makes metal sculptures, and so he uses some of it, but gracious, 10% use means the whole thing is junk? Yes, this...I get bullshit mad at the simplest of stuff.
 
pollinator
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… when you re-purpose scrapped water-valve handles.  By the way, ideas above in this thread are often entertaining, not to mention ingenious too. Thanks for the new ideas, (and in our household we do use some of what are mentioned).

I made two of these magnetic ground-connectors (for electric welding) from a scrap water-valve handle, a piece of scrap steel rod, and two stacked spare magnets. Made one for myself, one for a friend. These enable our welders’ ground clamps to be attached to awkward-shaped steel/iron surfaces. Because the magnets have stamped-steel “cups”, the whole little assembly transfers electric current.

I’d saved some valves that had cracked from water being trapped in them when unpredicted very-cold snaps occurred; the valves then sprayed out water from the cracks when they outside temperature thawed them! So for each of these thingies I used a handle along with two stacked (very strong) “cup magnets”, a little over 1” diameter — held together onto the handle by a bevel-headed screw & nut. I welded the tightened nut onto the screw to make the thingie solid. I also welded a short piece of 1/4” steel rod to the underside of the handle, because that allows a welder’s ground clamp to have a much better bite onto the handle portion of this device. (Two angle views shown...)
Mag-connector1.jpg
[Thumbnail for Mag-connector1.jpg]
Mag-Connector-2.jpg
[Thumbnail for Mag-Connector-2.jpg]
 
Wesley Kohn
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Travis Johnson wrote:You know you are a reuses everything person when you get bullshit mad at the simplest of stuff.

For me it is chainsaw chains. Logs, branches, lumber, sawdust, bark...everything; yeah I have places for all that, but what about that !@##$%^ chainsaw chain? Have you ever looked at one? I file down a VERY Teeny-Tiny part of the chain, and yet in a matter of a week that entire chain is toast. ALL of it! I looked at one today and as close as I can tell, I use about 10% of the steel that makes up a chainsaw chain. The other 90% is fine even after the rakers and teeth have been filed off.

Really...in 60 years of having chainsaw chain we have not figured out how to replace just the saw teeth and rakers? At $24 a chain we have not figured out how to replace just the teeth and rakers so a replacement cost would only be $10?

Then what do you do with the worn out chain? I have a friend that makes metal sculptures, and so he uses some of it, but gracious, 10% use means the whole thing is junk? Yes, this...I get bullshit mad at the simplest of stuff.



I chained 6 1.5m heavy pipes together, sort of looks like a chain ladder.   Then bolted & later welded about 30c of used chainsaw to each of the pipes every 6c.   I drag this contraption behind a mule to level gravel and weed our driveway or to clear paths.   The chainsaw makes short work of every weed.

The bolting didn't work because the bolts created too many weak spots in the pipes.   I ended up replacing all the pipes and welding the chainsaw lengths to them.
 
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Skandi Rogers wrote:You open the cupboard under the sink and get annoyed when you see someone has used rubbish bags for the rubbish. We use 2x20kg bags of pellets in the furnace every day, the bags they come in are thick plastic, not only "free" but also better quality than the rubbish bags!



YES! I can't remember the last time we bought garbage bags.

Like others, I also save little plastic bags from purchased food. I use them to put soiled diapers in when we're out and about, wrap up potentially stinky things like meat before throwing them in the trash, carry sandwiches etc.

Plastic containers can become crafts with the kids or leftover containers for guests, glass jars are good for storage or giving away homemade edible gifts at Christmas etc.

I save gift wrap if it's still reusable, and I have a big collection of gift bags, ribbons, and tissue paper.

All of this is a bit in conflict with my attempt to be more of a minimalist, so I think the solution is in creating less trash in the first place....
 
Wesley Kohn
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Olivia Hall wrote:
I save gift wrap if it's still reusable, and I have a big collection of gift bags, ribbons, and tissue paper.



My wife saves all the artwork from our kids.   Her family is big on gift giving and they are also big on gift wrapping.   None of them has the courage to call us cheap when we use our children's artwork to wrap their gifts in.
 
pollinator
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When almost every Christmas and birthday present you've given out in years, comes from the stuff that people have left behind in vacant houses that you work on.

When the shampoo and laundry soap that you used today, were found in someone's cupboard. Your Rockport shoes were left in a closet. You harvest the fruit trees and gardens that have been abandoned. When you poke your head into every crevice, hoping to find useful loot.

When you decide to run the fireplace, only because a fence needs to be disposed of. Then you cook a steak on the coals. The fire was started with old cotton curtains.

If this wasn't my job and I was just doing it, they'd lock me up.
 
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*I go out to my car after work and there are bags of food scraps next to it from the co-workers/community contacts that know I'll feed them to my chickens
*I have a weekly trade deal where I give a guy 2 dozen pullet/unsellable eggs and he gives me 3-6 boxes of dry pine scraps that he garners from a local carpenter (kindling for the fire to heat the house)
*My students (I'm a teacher) call me "Mr. Raccoon" when they see me grabbing good stuff out of the trash at school (thursday it was a pair of oven mits... I think I can use them as winter mittens)
*I visit my alma mater during exam week to get stuff the college students pitch when they move out.  All food and cleaning items find a home with me, as does much of the clothes.  Other items - books, etc get donated.
 
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Recycled shower door fire pit wood storage
9F0E315D-59CA-47F5-A441-86C52CE84416.jpeg
outdoor shower
outdoor shower
 
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What is the joy that I feel from reading this thread?

I don't know any of you but you are my people!
 
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Loving this post- and your/our common attention paid to reusing stuff.  My recent idea to reuse the soft plastic ring from a Quaker oatmeal cardboard tube: pull off the two rings from the lid and the top of the canister, pull one ring through the other a-la how I would double the length of a rubber band by looping two together, and continue this looping until a large net is woven together.  What use for the net?  Maybe a soccer goal for my son...? A trellis for climbing vines...?  Meanwhile the remaining cardboard is fire starter, etc.
 My next large bit of plastic waste to find re-use purpose for is the darn heavy bags our dog food comes in. I keep saving them... one a month. Why can’t they come in burlap like coffee bags? Maybe I can cut in strips and weave into a produce basket-?? I did that with brown butcher paper one year- from packaging padding- and the brown flex baskets were well received by my family.👍❤️  Although I confess to using a hot glue gun to adhere /secure the ends.
 
pollinator
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... when:
-you have a drawer full of used plastic bags, elastics and other things to close bags, skewer sticks, etc.  
-you have a shelf full of used paper, cardboard, small boxes, large envelopes, etc. to use when you need to pack something.
- you have large bags filled with old clothes, sorted by material (linnen, cotton, wool) to use for repairing or even making new clothes.  

These and other things I do!
 
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We are in the process of building our new home.  I get goose bumps looking at all the wrapping and metal bands that come on the lumber!  I can never have enough of that type of stuff.

Just glad we purchased 10 acres where I can "collect" my stuff, as my wife puts it.  When we moved here it took an extra rental truck just to bring my "collection" with us.  It is amazing how much of that stuff has come in handy already.  I think the only thing I didn't bring with us was a bunch of wooden pallets.  One can get them for free almost anywhere.

We are "renting to own" a 40' container which will become my "man cave" next year.  (it is full of 40 yrs worth of marriage right now)  Will cut in a door and a couple windows, nice large work bench, wood stove.  Then I can spend a few days sorting out the 50 or so containers of screws and bolts and nails and washers and misc. I have collected.  (I did have them sorted about 20 years ago)

It can be frustrating when you know you have what you need but can't find it, but on the other hand it is fun to "find" all the other things you had forgotten about.
 
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A farm near me gets huge grain bags for their chicken/turkey feed. I grabbed some of the empty bags and am using one for a bar-b-que cover and am using another one for a large "garden-in-a-bag"--no raised bed wood required! My husband used them to rake leaves into to transport them to our compost piles. They are extra heavy duty and have handles as well.
 
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Location: Brendansport, Sagitta IV
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Kc Simmons wrote:Very curious to know what exactly a beer can roof is... Sounds interesting. I don't drink any kind of beer, but I have managed to save a decent collection of soda cans over the last year from my family & myself that I wouldn't mind recycling here on the farmstead, if possible...



Me too. I mean, just stepping on the can and nailing it up couldn't be it...  So I went looking, and here's the first thing I came to:
https://www.instructables.com/id/Make-Shingles-and-Siding-Out-of-Aluminum-Cans-Bee/

I've used newspaper print plates for roof repair (big aluminum sheets, very cheap, perfect to fix trailer skin) but beer cans didn't occur to me!
 
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All organic food and garden scraps are reused. The only organic thing to go to the dump is chicken feathers from butchering and bones that have been boiled to get the stock out of them . If I bury them the dog will dig them up. I guess I could ground them and scatter them before I till in the garden. All organic matter from the kitchen is sorted into garden compost. Some goes directly into the garden plot. Some scraps go to the chickens and dog scraps may or may not get cooked before they are fed to the dog. The egg shells are dried and ground to be mixed with the chicken food. Coffee grounds are put into the greenhouse beds directly. Paper and boxes go into the outdoor wood furnace for our home's heat and the ashes from the furnace go into the gardens and greenhouses. Our kitchen island and refrigerator has 4-6 bowls of various materials that go out daily to the designated animals or garden. Some bulky garden items go to the cattle or donkeys to be turned into pasture fertilizer. We have no compost pile. What would typically go to a traditional compost pile is directly added to our garden for the birds to pick through before it is tilled under.
 
Thomas Dean
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Michelle Bradley wrote:Loving this post- and your/our common attention paid to reusing stuff.  My recent idea to reuse the soft plastic ring from a Quaker oatmeal cardboard tube: pull off the two rings from the lid and the top of the canister, pull one ring through the other a-la how I would double the length of a rubber band by looping two together, and continue this looping until a large net is woven together.  What use for the net?  Maybe a soccer goal for my son...? A trellis for climbing vines...?  Meanwhile the remaining cardboard is fire starter, etc.
 My next large bit of plastic waste to find re-use purpose for is the darn heavy bags our dog food comes in. I keep saving them... one a month. Why can’t they come in burlap like coffee bags? Maybe I can cut in strips and weave into a produce basket-?? I did that with brown butcher paper one year- from packaging padding- and the brown flex baskets were well received by my family.👍❤️  Although I confess to using a hot glue gun to adhere /secure the ends.



Re: Dog food bags: are they the solid plastic ones or the woven plastic mesh ones?  I also compulsively save feed bags.  
The dog food ones that are solid plastic I use to "shingle" chicken coops, etc.  I lay them out like shingles, with broad overlapping sections and use a staple gun to hold them down.  Not sure how they will hold up long-term exposed to the elements, but I have a set that have been out for almost a full year.  I've also tacked them up inside of the barn to make it more wind-tight.
The mesh bags that the chicken food comes in... I use for a few things.  I fill them with composted manure to sell (Using 1/4 of a used piece of baler twine to tie it shut).  When I need to transport a big turkey, see https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4409492/Blue-peacocks-covered-bags-breeders.html here, but how many times a year does that happen? only a handful! I use them to hold metal until I can get to the scrap yard, and I use them as trash bags... and I still have too many at the end out the year.  I've given some away to a lady who makes tote bags out of them as well.  
 
Thomas Dean
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gary calery wrote:All organic food and garden scraps are reused. The only organic thing to go to the dump is chicken feathers from butchering and bones that have been boiled to get the stock out of them . If I bury them the dog will dig them up. I guess I could ground them and scatter them before I till in the garden. All organic matter from the kitchen is sorted into garden compost. Some goes directly into the garden plot. Some scraps go to the chickens and dog scraps may or may not get cooked before they are fed to the dog. The egg shells are dried and ground to be mixed with the chicken food. Coffee grounds are put into the greenhouse beds directly. Paper and boxes go into the outdoor wood furnace for our home's heat and the ashes from the furnace go into the gardens and greenhouses. Our kitchen island and refrigerator has 4-6 bowls of various materials that go out daily to the designated animals or garden. Some bulky garden items go to the cattle or donkeys to be turned into pasture fertilizer. We have no compost pile. What would typically go to a traditional compost pile is directly added to our garden for the birds to pick through before it is tilled under.



You CAN burn chicken feathers.  I burned the feathers from 6 turkeys (thanksgiving and freezer birds) in a barrel.  It takes a while, and you might argue that the energy input is not worth it.
After making stock, you should let the bones air-dry and then burn them in your wood furnace.  We burn ours in the fireplace.  The bones mostly burn up, adding calcium to the ashes that you are putting on your garden.  You might have little bone shaped bits in the ashes, but if your fire is hot enough, those bone shaped bits will just crumble to nothing.  Our barn dog has a habit of bringing old bones home (roadkill, probably) and he doesn't want to chew them, just collect them.  They accumulate in the yard, so in the fall, I gather them up and burn them when there is a hot fire in the fireplace.  Deer femurs, skulls, etc.  They all burn down to basically nothing.  Smoke smells funny... but not an issue for us.  Dog doesn't even notice they are gone.
 
gary calery
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Thomas Dean wrote:

gary calery wrote:All organic food and garden scraps are reused. The only organic thing to go to the dump is chicken feathers from butchering and bones that have been boiled to get the stock out of them . If I bury them the dog will dig them up. I guess I could ground them and scatter them before I till in the garden. All organic matter from the kitchen is sorted into garden compost. Some goes directly into the garden plot. Some scraps go to the chickens and dog scraps may or may not get cooked before they are fed to the dog. The egg shells are dried and ground to be mixed with the chicken food. Coffee grounds are put into the greenhouse beds directly. Paper and boxes go into the outdoor wood furnace for our home's heat and the ashes from the furnace go into the gardens and greenhouses. Our kitchen island and refrigerator has 4-6 bowls of various materials that go out daily to the designated animals or garden. Some bulky garden items go to the cattle or donkeys to be turned into pasture fertilizer. We have no compost pile. What would typically go to a traditional compost pile is directly added to our garden for the birds to pick through before it is tilled under.



You CAN burn chicken feathers.  I burned the feathers from 6 turkeys (thanksgiving and freezer birds) in a barrel.  It takes a while, and you might argue that the energy input is not worth it.
After making stock, you should let the bones air-dry and then burn them in your wood furnace.  We burn ours in the fireplace.  The bones mostly burn up, adding calcium to the ashes that you are putting on your garden.  You might have little bone shaped bits in the ashes, but if your fire is hot enough, those bone shaped bits will just crumble to nothing.  Our barn dog has a habit of bringing old bones home (roadkill, probably) and he doesn't want to chew them, just collect them.  They accumulate in the yard, so in the fall, I gather them up and burn them when there is a hot fire in the fireplace.  Deer femurs, skulls, etc.  They all burn down to basically nothing.  Smoke smells funny... but not an issue for us.  Dog doesn't even notice they are gone.



I know a butcher that burns fat in his outdoor furnace year round to heat his shop in the winter and his hot water in the summer. He throws the fat in with the burning wood. He has massive quantities that he collects in 55 gallon drums.
 
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....one of my mini-blinds bit the dust, so.....;

1. I remove all the strings,

2. Stack/nest them neatly, then,

3. Mark them for cutting, oh and it helps to band them together to keep them from moving while cutting.  The strings from the blinds are great for this too.

4. I use a hack saw to cut them.

5. Great garden plant labels.  I use a carpenters pencil to write on them.  The writing will not fade at all!  Even years later they are just as clear as the day I made them.

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Don't make-um like they used to!
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De-stringed
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Marked for cutting
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Hack Saw works well
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Yep! These are ready!
 
Anything worth doing well is worth doing poorly first. Just look at this tiny ad:
Chinese Chestnut Trees of Quality Cultivars 50 for $199 +FREESHIP
https://permies.com/t/127392/Interwoven-Nursery-Groundnuts-Chestnuts
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