Spring cleaning the green way

As spring approaches and the weather warms, many people decide it’s time to do a spring cleaning in their home. I have to tell you, my husband laughed when I told him I was going to write about this – he says I don’t know anything about it because I’m not very good at it! And, he’s right!

While I may not be good at getting things cleaned out during a certain season, I think I am good at slowly clearing things out of our home over the course of the year – and when we do this, I like to make sure we are disposing of everything in the most environmentally friendly way possible. I’m going to suggest ways for you to get rid of those things in your house you just don’t know what to do with!

Donating used clothing, toys, furniture, housewares, shoes, books, small appliances, etc. is always a great idea. There are many services that will come pick up your items from your home, such as AmVets, Easter Seals and Volunteers of America. It is easy to Google these organizations and check their websites for how to schedule up a pick-up at your home. Donations are also tax-deductible so keep track of how many bags you are donating and their estimated value.

Another great way to get rid of items you have but do not want is to check out the Bay Village Freecycle Facebook page. This is a great way to give away or sell items that you do not want anymore and to keep things from the landfill. It is a private group, so you have to request to join, but it currently has over 1,600 members and items listed range from T-shirts to baby strollers to furniture to appliances. Some of it is free, and some of it is for sale.

Different from the Bay Village Freecycle Facebook page is The Freecycle Network (freecycle.org). The Freecycle Network is a world-wide nonprofit organization dedicated to keeping stuff out of landfills by offering an outlet for people to give (and get) things for free. You can go on the website and register, and then you are able to see what’s available in your area and post items you no longer want.

A few years ago we had some work done on our home and I had some doors and windows that we did not have use for anymore. I posted them on freecycle.org and everything was picked up. I just left the stuff on my front porch for pick-up. If you have something that you are not able to get rid of using the Bay Village Freecycle Facebook page, I guarantee you can find a place for it using Freecycle.org.

Do you have things that you think are not worthy of donating or selling? Such as socks with holes or very worn clothing? Broken toys? Worn backpacks or a broken coffeemaker? Shoes that are falling apart? There is a place for these and it’s not the trash! Residents of Bay Village are able to place all of these unwanted items in their Simple Recycling bags that are provided to every household free of charge.

It is estimated that 85 percent of clothing does not get donated or recycled, it gets trashed. Simple Recycling helps us keep these items out of landfills. If you need more bags or would like a full listing of what Simple Recycling will take, visit simplerecycling.com. Personally, I keep a Simple Recycling bag in my hall closet at all times, so when I find items in my house that are no longer wanted (such as the socks with holes, etc.) I place them in the bag. When the bag is full, I put it out on the tree lawn on trash pick-up days. 

Lastly, there are many other ways to keeps things out of the trash, such as selling them on Craigslist, having a yard/garage sale, and dropping off at Goodwill or Salvation Army. Anything you do that keeps stuff out of the garbage makes a big difference in keeping our world beautiful!  

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Volume 8, Issue 5, Posted 9:35 AM, 03.01.2016