Greening your holidays
As we unpack and update decorations, purchase gifts, and replace electronics, it’s not easy to determine how to appropriately dispose of the things we no longer want. I am going to provide you with suggestions about how to discard of some of these things in ways that are earth-friendly.
Do you have old Christmas lights that no longer work? Please do not toss these into your trash. Rather, bring them to the Bay Village Hazardous Waste Collection on Dec. 18. On this date they will accept light strands for recycling. Please drop them off at the Service Center, 31300 Naigle Road, between 7:30 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.
Are you purchasing new holiday lights? Please buy energy efficient LED light decorations to cut down your use of electricity during the holiday season.
Need a Christmas tree? Buying a real tree is the way to go. Christmas trees are grown on Christmas tree farms specifically for the purpose of being cut down. Real trees placed on the curbside after Christmas will be shredded into mulch for use again. Fake trees, even though they last years, will eventually end up in the landfill. Real trees do not.
When holiday shopping for gifts, look for earth-friendly or recycled gifts. Seek out local vendors, such as BAYarts. The internet is also a treasure chest of very cool items that people are making out of recycled things! Check out Etsy.com for ideas! You can shop locally on Etsy as well: when you enter in what you are looking for, a menu pops up on the left. Toward the bottom you are able to choose “shop location” and enter in your city so that vendors near you pop up and you are able to give them business. Shopping locally keeps money and jobs in our area, which is extra important this year.
For gift wrapping, purchase recycled wrapping paper or better yet use fun fabric for wrapping with ribbon for bows! You can reuse the fabric and bows year after year after year, and so can your recipients.
If you are replacing electronics in your home, please recycle them instead of throwing them away. Visit cuyahogarecycles.org to find out where to recycle specific items using the “What do I do with” search.
Donate unwanted holiday decorations. Recycle packing plastic (air bubbles) and peanuts at the UPS store. Recycle or reuse cardboard boxes. Gift experiences rather than things. Support local restaurants by purchasing gift cards for use in the future.
Remember the 5 R’s this season: Review, Reduce, Reuse, Repurpose, and finally Recycle. If you go through these R’s when you are determining what to buy new and what to do with something unwanted, you are starting at the right place with the earth in mind.