After looking around my house this morning, I realized one of the biggest challenges a "green" mom has is keeping her home uncluttered. With one or two... or three or four little ones, pets, and (and who could forget the biggest challenge to a clean home) a husband, it is hard for a sophisticatedly green mom to keep her home clean and organized (the way she likes it!). And, that is only the first part of the challenge. Since we are "green" moms, we have the challenge of what to do with the extras that we no longer want or need in our home. So, I thought I would share some solutions I have used to "recycle" these items and avoid adding to the already full landfills.
One of the great solutions is to post your items on www.freecycle.com . This is a network I found through my very resourceful mother. Go to the site and find a group nearest your home, sign up for the group, and post your item as an "offer". Believe me, you will have more responses from people interested in your item than you even know what to do with! You will feel so good about recycling your items and it is a great way to show your kids the value of giving away as opposed to throwing away.
If you do not have a freecycle group near your home or if your item is still in excellent condition and you would rather sell your it, look to www.craigslist.org . There is a Craigslist for every location, so just choose the one that services your area, go to "For Sale", and post an advertisement for your item. If you do not know what your item is worth, search the ads, first, to see if similar items are for sale and price accordingly. This is another free and easy way to recycle your no longer used or wanted items.
Ebay is a fun site you can use to list any items you want to sell. This solution will market your item(s) to a national/international group rather than a local audience. I do recommend only using Ebay for smaller items, since you will have to pay for packaging and shipping. But, this is a great way to bring in some green while staying green! I have sold unused items on Ebay for as much as $400! Not bad for the 20 minutes it takes to snap some pictures of the item, upload them onto the computer, write the description, and hit "Start Selling". So, checkout www.ebay.com (it is also a great place to sell or purchase that adorable Halloween costume that your little one will only wear for 2 hours!).
My last easy solution for those clutter items is to bring them to a consignment shop. This is an excellent way to give new life to clothing. Check out local consignment shops in your area, choose one and bring in your never worn or gently worn items. These shops take clothing seasonally, so, for example, if you have a large grouping of summer clothes call the store around March to schedule a drop-off. Most consignment shops give your clothing 90 days to sell. At the end of the 90 days, you go back to pick up any unsold clothing and your check for your portion of the sales. It is so easy and it is a fun way to get some green to shop for your next wardrobe! Take all of the unsold clothing to a clothing drop box or to a thrift shop to insure your clothing reaches it full use!
These are just a few of the ways I have found to keep my home sophisticatedly green and uncluttered. So, unclutter your home and show your children the value of recycling and giving in a way only a sophisticatedly green mom can!