“Renew, Redo,” Ensign, Oct. 1983, 60
Our great-grand-parents may not have heard of recycling, but they were certainly experts at it. My own great-grandmother made clothing from sugar and flour sacks, fashioned quilts from scrap fabric, doused grass and flowers with bath water, and stuffed pillows with chicken feathers.
Even though our circumstances are different today, there are still many ways we can save by recycling our goods. Look around your home. How much paper do you throw away that could be used for the children’s art work? How many leftovers do you throw out that might make tasty dishes? What about the clothing your youngsters have outgrown? Could it be remade for another child?
Add your own ideas to the following list of recycling tips, and see if the dollars don’t stretch a little farther next month.
1. Encourage children to save money on birthday and Christmas gifts by making their own. For a birthday present, children might paint a rock or design a crayon batik. Grandparents will appreciate a homemade wall plaque, and mom and dad are sure to treasure a book of original poems and stories. Children can design their own cards, and the comics section of your newspaper makes a clever wrapping paper.
2. Save small scraps of soap. They can be boiled down and made into a new cake.
3. Make purchases with forethought and planning. Look for clothes that will not soon go out of style. Choose quality, long-wearing fabrics. Coordinate colors and accessories. Don’t forget that dyes can give old clothes a new color lift.
4. Consider reupholstering that faded chair or couch. Much older furniture is structurally of a better quality, and reupholstering is usually less expensive than purchasing a new piece.
5. Before getting rid of orange crates, bricks, and discarded boards, see if someone can use them.
6. Favorite storybooks and music books are expensive. Preserve them by using clear contact paper on covers and ragged pages.
7. If you can’t find a way to recycle old clothing, appliances, or furniture, take your items to Deseret Industries or the Salvation Army. Chances are, they’ll have a customer who can make good use of them.
8. Once a week, plan a supper to recycle leftovers. Make sandwiches from cold meats and poultry. Stir up a delicious soup using leftover vegetables and chicken or beef broth. Recycle vitamins by combining the juice from canned vegetables with cold tomato juice for a refreshing and nutritious drink.
9. Before you go out and buy that new book, check your local library to see if they have a copy or would order it. Instead of buying little-used magazines, plan an afternoon at the library to read your favorite publications. Candace L. Smith, Tempe, Arizona