Give Back Box: Giving a Second Life to the Cardboard Box.

imageFile this away in “Things I’ve Been Meaning To Do But Haven’t Yet”: Give Back Box.

I try not to buy a lot of things online—both for environmental and clutter-phobe reasons. But when I do, now I can give the corrugated box a new life by filling it with things I want to donate, printing and slapping on a postage-paid shipping label and sending it off to a charity organization who could use it.

When I first heard about Give Back Box, I thought it was a special box you had to request from Amazon (or REI or wherever you ordered). And Ward knows, there’s about zero chances of me remembering to do that. But it turns out, you can use any ol’ cardboard box you have lying around the house. Here’s how it works.

According to the Give Back website, not only are the boxes reused, but they’re recycled too.  Donating with Give Back Box helps charities carry out their missions and provides more options for people who like to buy used (or have to because of economic reasons). And it makes de-cluttering and donating convenient and hassle-free!

Next time I get a cardboard box, I’m going to set it in the corner and little by little, fill it with things I’m no longer using. (And if a couple of my husband’s 8 billion tools scattered randomly throughout the house happen to fall in said box, so be it.) Wanna try it too?

Pretty Up Your Pasta Sauce: How to Turn an Ugly Jar Into a Pretty Jar in 8 Easy Steps.

In the past, every time I opened a glass jar of something I would always think, I could totally use this for something! But then, said jar would sit on the counter for weeks before I finally tossed it in the recycle bin. If only I could get this stupid label off it! If only there was a resource of information at my fingertips that would tell me how to do such a thing!

Turns out removing labels from a pasta sauce jar is easier than I thought (Thank you, Google!). And now that I know how to do it, I can’t stop. The more I remove labels, the more uses I find for my clean beautiful glass jars: Vases for quick flower drop-offs (no returns necessary!). A paper/binder-clip holder for my desk. An attractive receptacle for my bulk-food purchases. A container for soup delivery for a sick friend. Pasta sauce jar with a label? Not so pretty. But a clean glass jar? Girl (or boy), please!

Here’s how to easily remove a pesky label from your jars, so you can become an obsessive label-removing freak like me!

  1. Fill a bowl with warm water and stir in about 2 tablespoons of baking soda.
  2. Completely submerge jar in water for a few hours.
  3. Remove jar from baking soda/water. The label may automatically come off. Most the time it will require step 4.
  4. Create a paste of equal parts vegetable oil and baking soda (you really probably only need about 1/2 teaspoon each). Spread it all over the label (I just use my fingers, but you could probably use a pastry brush if you’re fancy).
  5. Let the pasty substance sit on the jar for an hour or so.
  6. Scrub it with your scrubby of choice while under warm running water. I find a wire scrubby works best. (Don’t worry, you won’t have to scrub too hard.)
  7. Hand wash your new beautiful jar with dish soap and water.
  8. Pat yourself on the back. Look how crafty you are!
bottle container cream creamy
Share some of that crockpot yogurt you’re making!