Sunday, January 18, 2009

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle


Is that really a word?

Abbie has this wonderful project that she's been working on for school. She was challenged to take four things that would probably end up in the trash if she didn't act quickly -- and turn them into something with a new purpose.

Little did she know just how quickly she needed to act. You see, Abbie had no idea I would spend the entire day Wednesday cleaning the upstairs. And she had NO idea that four trash bags full of paper, plastic and whatever else, were going to head downstairs.

Before I went on my cleaning binge, though, she was already set. Last weekend, she and her Daddy dug out of the trash:
  • One box

  • One water bottle

  • One old dish towel

  • One piece of styrofoam

And here is what she came up with. It's a Webkinz cage. You see, she thought everyone else would pretty much use a flower pot to make whatever they were going to make. And if there's one thing my Abbie excels at, it's being different.

When it comes to repurposing, our girls are masters of the game. As I was cleaning upstairs, I found a Born shoebox that had been turned into a zoo, the Polly Pocket cruise ship that had been turned into a Lil Pet Shop house, and the Loving Family house that had been turned into.... Well, I'm still not sure about that one -- but there was no Loving Family to be found.

And this is why we are overrun with toys. We can't get rid of them.

Most people get rid of their kids' toys when they stop playing with them -- but that's never going to happen at our house. Our kids still play with EVERYTHING. It just all has a new purpose.

The funny thing is.... As I listen to my "new mommy" friends complain about how baby toys get bigger and bigger the first couple of years, I always kind of chuckle. They don't realize that the real trouble is when those toys start getting smaller and smaller. When there are 5,000 Polly Pocket and Lil' Pet Shop pieces all over the house. Wednesday I found toothbrushes and hair dryers and water bottles and hats -- and none of them was over an inch long. AND not one of them was being used for its original intended purpose.

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