Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Wordless Wednesday Featuring Peg and an Upcycled Nest

Okay, so this isn't exactly wordless.  But this definitely needs a caption or something!  My lovebird, Peg, has recently taken to nesting in her food bowl.  And as luck would have it, her rear end hung out over the water bowl so it was constantly being soiled.  So, I took and old parrot sized food bowl, flipped a take-out ramekin upside down inside of it to create a higher floor and stuck a wad of dryer lint on top of it.  Well, it took her day to figure out what it was, but she loves it!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

What are you Upcycling in Your Compost Bin?

Slowly but surely the little critters who have taken up residence in my compost bin are eating and pooping their way through my table scraps and garden clippings.  Sometimes it's a challenge to come up with compostable trash when you live alone, one certainly doesn't produce the waste that a family of four does.  If you have the same problem or simply want to compost more here are some things that maybe you haven't considered before:

1.  Dryer lint - or that disgusting wad of lint you pulled off your refrigerator coils

2.  Pet hair - Although I live alone, there is certainly an abundance of pet hair in my apartment

3. Wine - though you'd have to leave some in the bottle (or box, if you prefer) to compost
4.  Burlap

5.  Fish bones

6.  Cotton balls/swabs (with cardboard sticks, not plastic)

7.  Egg Shells - or crush up and spread them around your plants to keep snails and other would be predators from chomping on your plants

8.  Coffee Grounds/Tea Leaves - Coffee grounds are also terrific added straight to the soil surrounding acid loving plants such as azaleas, rhododendrons, and roses.

9.  Jello

10. Old Pasta and rice - plain and cooked

11.  Elmer's Glue

12. Cage Droppings from your herbivorous pets (birds, bunnies, guinea pigs) - don't forget the bedding, it's an excellent source of carbon for the pile

13. Crustacean Shells (shrimp, lobster, crab)

14.  Wool Socks or any other natural fiber clothing; cotton, hemp, etc.

15.  and my favorite...Toenail Clippings!  Seriously....Google it!

And for a little bonus, I couldn't quite bring myself to add this to my list but this article is really a funny read.

Happy Composting!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Five Other Uses for a Starbucks Cup

I know it's terrible, but my dirty little secret is (cue the scary music)...I have more disposable Starbucks cups than any one human should ever collect in a lifetime!  Of course, I've rectified the problem by now with reusable beverage containers.  But every now and again when I don't have my cup with me or I just have to have a VENTI when my reusable will only hold a grande, I add to my collection.  So what's a girl supposed to do with all those left over cups?  Here are five ways to upcycle those cold cups:

1.  Make a bird feeder
2.  Use them glues or to mix paints in.  They are great for crafting!
3.  Plant an herb or succulent garden.  You could even wrap scrap fabric around them and tie it in place with some raffia or hemp to jazz them up.
4.  Make a wreath for the mantle or the door.
5.  Make a canopy...Okay so you won't make much shade with the clear Starbucks cups but you'll start a conversation or two.

And don't forget:  If your local recycling program doesn't take #5 plastics you can collect them and deliver to your local Whole Foods, Target or other retailer with a collection box.  You can find your closest location on the Preserve website.  And now, you can go enjoy your favorite iced venti whatever with a little less guilt.

Starbucks Blonde
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