Top 10 ways to be green at home

All it takes is a little bit of imagination to create a green space that is your home. Get the family involved in making little changes that will do a lot of good. There is a multitude of choices to make about climate control, energy utilization, food preparation and making sure that yours is a green home.

1. Eat in season: Buying fruits and vegetables grown by local farmers is a great way to reduce food bills. Poultry farms and dairy farms can be found on the outskirts of even the largest towns. Buying products grown near home supports regional agriculture.

2. Control the climate: Take a walk around the house during the day and observe what rooms are too sunny. Pull the shades on the sunny side of the house to keep the entire structure cool. It is a simple procedure that can help reduce the amount of time air conditioners are needed to be operational.

3. Bag it up: Bread bags and other sacks purchased to restock the kitchen’s food supply can do double duty in may ways. Use them to contain fruit peelings and the wet refuse left behind after making a salad. Let the kids cover the sides of aluminum cans with colorful paper or paint and use the container for storing pencils and such. Rip paper towels in half and use a small portion instead of a full sheet.

4. Pad that paper: Accumulated paper builds up so fast. Instead of discarding paper that is printed on one side, use it to make small note pads. Just cut a full sheet or several sheets into four quarters and staple one corner to make a handy stack of note paper.

5. Divide and conquer: Almost everything today is tossed into the recycle bin. Dividing that refuse into separate piles according to its content is time consuming and messy. Instead of enduring that hassle, why not label separate bins according to their contents: soda cans, glass bottles, newspaper and such.

6. Dare to decorate: Home decorating can be a costly activity. Spruce up a room at no cost at all. Consider crocheting a colorful throw rug from strips cut off old denim dungarees or other fabric of similar weight. It’s an activity that is creative and quick. Beware, however, for everyone who sees your creation also will want a rug of their own.

7. Light the lamp: Many household items such as sports trophies, hefty old wine bottles and various collectibles of somewhat substantial weight can be made into attractive lamps. Kits that have all the essential components are available at almost any hardware store or home center. Many things can be made into lamps. And the completed conversation pieces are guaranteed to be unique.

8. Grow a garden: Seeds from oranges, lemons, pumpkins and the strawberries served after dinner well may sprout when planted in the spring. Select plump seeds and spread on a paper towel. When dry, gently lift and place in a small envelope or other container. Include a label with details. A second harvest is in the making, free from the kitchen.

9. Drain the last drops: Invert bottles of ketchup, salad dressing and other semi-solids to get the last few drops of product into position for one last serving. Use the same technique in the garage for draining the last bit of motor oil. A folded piece of tin nailed onto a board will hold an inverted quart. Just angle the tin so contents run into a larger container.