Monthly Archives: December 2015

How To Keep On Top Of Recycling This Christmas

Christmas Recycle
Christmas creates a lot of waste that takes up space in landfill sites so the socially-conscious and environmentally-aware thing to do is recycle as much Christmas rubbish as is possible. Using recycling packaging and wrapping paper is a start and some people opt to send the digital equivalents of traditional Christmas cards known as e-cards. Shredding and composting Christmas trees is better than sending them to landfill while plastic trees should be resused each year.
Separate the recyclable from the unrecyclable.

While some of the waste accumulated over Christmas is unrecyclable a lot of the rubbish gathered over the holiday can be recycled. A way to determine whether or not Christmas waste can be recycled is to see if it has the recycling symbol, the triangle-like shape consisting of three chasing arrows, although in the absence of the symbol there are some rules of thumb to say whether the rubbish should end up in landfill or at the recycling plant.

What can be recycled?

Much of the packaging materials used for Christmas presents can be recycled. Empty glass bottles that accumulate over the holidays from the consumption of soft and alcoholic drinks and these can be recycled although they need to be clean and have the labels removed. Aluminium and steel containers, including cans and tins, can be recycled as can cardboard and paper as well as certain varieties of plastic.

What cannot be recycled?

Some recycling services do not accept laminated wrapping paper or non-laminated wrapping paper if it has sticky-tape or plastic ribbons attached to it and the same can be true of Christmas cards which are, more often than not, laminated. While much of the plastic used as gift packaging material is recyclable some plastics cannot be recycled and so should be put into the rubbish bin, or reused in the home if possible.

What do do with Christmas trees?

When choosing a Christmas tree it is best to get a real tree, usually some variation of fur or pine grown specifically for that purpose, than the plastic variety. For those who do decide to get a plastic tree it should be used each Christmas rather than disposed of after the holidays. Real Christmas trees can either be taken away by local authorities after use or taken to a recycling site where these biodegradable items can be chipped and composted.

Do I Need To Hire A Skip?

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We all want to do our bit for the planet and recycle whenever we can, but sometimes items are only good for being thrown away. And you can only fit so much in a dustbin! So if you have a lot of things to discard, and they can’t be recycled, save yourself a lot of trouble and hire a skip.

You may need a skip:

When moving house

A house move is the perfect opportunity to have a thorough declutter and get rid of things you neither want nor need. It’s amazing how many possessions we accumulate, and there’s no point spending time, money and effort moving things you don’t really need. Getting rid of as much as possible will make the move so much easier, and mean that you have less to unpack in your new home!

When renovating

If you’re carrying out home improvements or garden renovations, you’re going to have a lot of waste to get rid of. So unless you want to make dozens of trips to the refuse tip, a skip is a must! You’ll be discarding things like rubble, soil, kitchen units, old furniture, and doors, so make sure that you order a skip with sufficient capacity and don’t overfill it. Do check what you can and can’t place in a skip; some items may need to be disposed of separately.

When clearing the house of a deceased person

If you’ve never had to clear the house of a deceased relative, you’ll be unaware of just how difficult a task it is, not just because of the emotional demands, but because you are having to sort through a lot of possessions. Sadly, many of them will be of no value to anyone else, and the best option may simply be to hire a skip to dispose of them.

Things that can’t be recycled or of low or no value

Are you guilty of hoarding items of little or no value that ‘might be useful one day’ or that you still haven’t got round to repairing? Chances are that you’ll never find a use for them, so before you disappear under a pile of possessions toss them into a skip. Make sure to clear out your attic while you have the skip at your disposal; don’t think that because those boxes in the attic are out of sight that you can leave them out of the clearout!

10 Simple DIY Christmas Decorations

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Make Your Own Advent Calendar
A homemade advent calendar will get everyone talking. Decorate a selection of pretty little jars with coloured tissue paper or glitter glue and number stickers. Hide a treat in each one and stack them on the mantlepiece.

Celebrate with Paper Angels
Paper angels are a great craft project for children and adults alike. There are many designs to choose from online, but the simplest only require a paper plate, a pair of scissors, glue, and a hole punch.

Presents Everywhere!
So you have plenty of presents under the tree, but why stop there? Use wide ribbons or shiny fabrics to tie bows around the cushions on your sofa or to bundle piles of towels, making them look like Christmas presents.

Sweet Glassware
Candy canes evoke old-fashioned Christmases, but you can give them a modern twist by creating a candy cane vase. Simply glue the candy canes all around the sides of a clean can, and finish with a red ribbon.

Everlasting Mistletoe
If you want your Christmas kisses to last all year round, make your own mistletoe. Use a template to cut a mistletoe shape out of felt, then glue on imitation pearls to mimic berries.

Make a Fairytale Forest
If natural decor is your thing, emulate posh design stores using clean pinecones, twigs, and branches from your garden. Dip them in gold or silver paint or use spray paint and glitter.

Restyle Your Christmas Tree
For a sophisticated look, give your artificial Christmas tree a new lease of life by spraying it white all over. Alternatively, you could re-colour your tree to match your other seasonal decor. The only limit is your imagination!

Lighted Wreath Centrepiece
Wire wreath frames, for making your own festive wreaths, are widely available. Create a lightshow for your Christmas party – or the whole holiday season – by threading strands of large multi-coloured bulbs through the wire frame.

Ribbon Wreath
This fantastic craft project transforms a plain wreath frame into a colourful, festive decoration. Buy a large bag of ready-made fabric rosettes, or make your own, and glue them to the wreath frame in whatever pattern you like.

Revamp Clear Baubles with Inner Glitz
Transform clear or semi-transparent baubles by opening them up and filling with clear floor wax and glitter. You can even add tiny toys or spare nail art shapes into the mix. Watch the colours swirl!