The glass IS half full… but broken, it’s trash!

glass halfThe other day a friend of mine mentioned that she recently had a horrible bout with “fumble fingers”… while emptying her dishwasher, she managed to wipe-out four glasses from her countertop.

Knowing that I am Mom Goes Green, she commented:  “Well, at least I put them in the recycling can!”

Oh, beloved friend, I appreciate the gesture, but wrong! (… and I mean that with lotsa green love!)

In actuality, drinking glasses CANNOT be recycled.  The content is a bit different than glass jars, bottles, and containers. These glasses are, unfortunately, trash.

The same goes for windows, mirrors and glass cookware.  While other glass can be recycled indefinitely, these cannot.  Adding them in with your recycling risks ruining an entire batch of recycled glass and you certainly want to consider the danger created when your recyclables are being sorted… glass shards everywhere don’t make for a great work environment at your recycling facility and they can seriously damage equipment.glass brkn

Years ago I managed to completely destroy a door on the front of our entertainment center.  It shattered to small bits and I actually used the pieces to fill the bottom of some clear vases for floral arrangements. (See, some creative license to upcycle still exists!)

So, while I agree with the idea that we should go through life with a “glass half full” mentality, if fumble fingers strikes you too, don’t risk it.  Thank the glass for its service, but you’ll need to put it in the trash.

Simple tip: aluminum blinds are wise window treatments!

alum blindzSo lately I’ve been hitting some serious topics… toxic mattresses and destructive palm oil (yikes!).

Today, we’re going to keep it nice and simple… as simple as this…

Did you know that purchasing aluminum mini blinds for your home is a wise environmental choice? The fact of the matter is that many manufacturers like Levolor and Hunter Douglas are using recycled aluminum to make their mini blinds… about 90-95% recycled content actually!

And the beauty of it all is when you need to replace them… they can be recycled too! A few snips of the strings and you’ll be loading slat after slat into your recycling can instead of your trash can.

See… nice and simple.  Aluminum blinds ARE wise window treatments!

MGG’s energy efficient investment: new windows!

So, we did it!  We made our first major energy efficiency investment by purchasing new windows for our home… and despite having spent some cash, I’m actually very excited.

ht escapeHome heating can account for approximately 27% of our carbon footprint and 25% of a  home’s heat escapes through windows… pretty significant, I’d say.  Our installation technician told us that he’s had customers that literally saved half on their home heating bill after installing new windows.  Sure, the windows that had to be replaced were probably a disaster(!) but I’m excited to see what kind of savings are in store for us.  It’s hard to forget that heating bill of $533 not so long ago.windows

We always put the most productive heating and cooling tips in place, (for my best home cooling tips click here or my best home heating tips click here) but I believe this is the final significant step of putting it all into place. The windows are Energy Star, Argon-filled, Double Glazed Low E glass and although those are a lot of fancy-schmancy terms, their combined definition is “efficiency!”

tx creditWith the tax credit we’ll receive and projected annual heating and cooling savings, I’ve figured that the windows should pay for themselves in about five years.   In addition, we purchased from a local owned and operated manufacturer so a minimal footprint was created to get those windows as well. I’m feeling mighty green today!

So, have you ever made a major replacement to “conserve”? What was the result? I’d love to know!