Going Green Step 2: Reuse

reuseReusing products instead of using disposable ones is a good start, but buying used items instead of purchasing new is a terrific way to become a “reuser”. We’ve never been good at buying used cars, but John doesn’t shy away from used boats. My Dad has helped me realize just how many quality items can purchased used. Furniture, clothing, bicycles, tools, and sporting goods are readily available every week at garage sales. Why buy new when you can get quality used items significantly reduced prices?

Reuse products instead of using disposable products:
Use real dishes instead of paper plates or plastic cups. There is certainly a time and place for disposable products but don’t use them on a daily basis. I have a friend who won’t even use paper napkins or paper towels. I admire her commitment, but I’m not there yet.

25 plastic plates for $5 replace the need for paper plates
25 plastic plates for $5 replace the need for paper plates


Reuse shopping bags:

Bring your own bags to the grocery. This saves trees and reduces the use of plastic. Be the crazy lady (funny how she’s the norm now) John hated to see coming in his checkout line at Publix and whatever you do, don’t follow Uncle Bill’s advice and ask for double bags!
Reuse lunch bags:

Lunch bags or “old school” lunch boxes and water containers should be used instead of paper lunch bags and plastic water bottles. I know I buy bottled water sometimes (not a good use of resources) but I use and refill the same bottle for days and sometimes for weeks – a little better.
Reuse Furniture:

Used furniture can serve the same purpose as new. We’re pretty good at this. Meghan has a bed and patio furniture that belonged to Grandma and Grandpa (things they bought used). Emily has our couch, the brass bed that was purchased in the 1800s by Grandma’s grandmother (not new then), and a bed that was Grandma’s and then Meghan’s; and Sarah’s made good use of several a hand me love seat, dining table and chairs, and a recliner when she moved to Jacksonville. Meghan recently bought a used patio set, and Emily reuses both furniture and signs for events. Consider at least some second hand furniture to furnish your rooms – a way to save money and go green.

Reuse Clothing, Bikes, Tools, and Other Items:

Donate clothing and other items to charities or sell them at a garage sale so someone else can reuse things you no longer need or want. There are numerous organizations that would love to have the things you no longer want or need. And if you’re patient, you can find items you want being discarded by others

Be a “Reuser”

Check out 50 Ways to Reuse Everything


4 thoughts on “Going Green Step 2: Reuse

  1. Don’t forget curb finds. About 1/4 of my home furnishings came to us that way. Just don’t get in argument with another perspective picker like Bobby did over patio furniture. Bobby not only won the furniture, but the young couple brought it to our house in their truck so Bobby wouldn’t have to make too many trips to get it to our house. Oh my goodness. I kept apologizing to the couple, until the young man said. “Oh forget it, I think it just meant more to him. We will find another set, another day.” I was mad at Bobby for a while, telling him the couple let him have the furniture because they felt sorry for us. By the way, we are still using the furniture!

    1. We bought the plates over a year ago at SAM’s Club. I think they are sold by Dixie and were very inexpensive. They can even withstand going through the dishwasher.

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