Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Reducing Waste - Paper Towel

My apologies for being away for a while, I've been having trouble with Blogger.  I can't seem to reply to comments, or post comments on other blogs.  I'm also having some problems uploading photographs.  I'm working on it, so once again, sorry I haven't been around!

I'd like to do a little series of posts on the next few Tuesdays (tip day!) on reducing waste in the household.  These things affect a few areas- economic, environmental, and spiritual. 

Over the years I have noticed that those of us primarily in charge of the homemaking side of our families are being constantly targeted by marketers with a dizzying array of cleaning supplies.  Stuff to clean windows, stoves, floors, laundry, bathrooms, kitchens, you name it, there are dozens of products out there.  If you believed that all these things were absolutely necessary to keep a clean house, you could spend a small fortune of your monthly budget on cleaning supplies.

However, a lot of these things are wasteful, harmful and unnecessary.  The first item I'd like to discuss is paper towel.  I very rarely buy paper towel.  I find it really expensive, and my kids yank off great reams of it to wipe up a little spill.  It's also a disposable product.  Let's just make this clear right now, because I feel pretty strongly about it.  If you are buying a single use item (something that you use once and then toss) you are throwing away your hard earned money.  There are some things that you have to buy that are single use, like garbage bags.  That's just the way it is.  The trick is to try to eliminate as many single use items as you can.  Paper towel is one of those things. 

So, what do I use instead of paper towel?  Any old face cloth, dish towel, dish cloth, or old towel that has seen better days.  I rip up old towels to a size I like for cleaning.  I also (back in the baby days) used old flannel diapers or receiving blankets when they were no longer serviceable.  Old t-shirts are good too, there are endless possibilites for the rag bag.  Then you just toss them in the laundry hamper and re-use, re-use, re-use!  This is actually the triple threat of reducing, reusing and recycling.  Yay!  Add up how much you'd spend on paper towel in a year, and compare it with spending nothing on rags.  Money in your pocket is a good thing, my friends.  You're saving trees and reducing garbage in the landfills, and are exercising good principles of thrift, stewardship and provident living. 

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