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If you’re like me, you have a drawer or cupboard overflowing with extra jars, containers and bottles.  In my home, we live by the old-fashion philosophy of REUSE, RECYCLE and MAKE DO, so when it comes to throwing away perfectly good containers, I always think twice.

10 Things You Should Never Throw Away

Go to that dreaded container cupboard …you know the one …the one that is bursting at the seams and ready to spill out when you open the door.  Take a good look at what’s inside and challenge yourself to get creative, there are so many useful ways to use your collection.

Consider some of these possibilities:

  1. Ice Cream Buckets – I never throw this size container away, it so versatile and can be used for so many things! My favorite use is to hold all my cookie cutters. They are perfect for just about anything. Visit Craft Alternative to see how Mod Podge can even make an ice cream container look pretty.
  2. Old Canning Jars – They can be used for storing anything and not just in the kitchen. My favorite one are the old blue ones I find at yard sales. As soon as I come home from the grocery store I pour anything that comes in a box into an airtight glass jar. My dream is to have a collection like this one I found on Apartment Therapy!
  3. Baby Food Jars -My all-time favorite way to use baby food jars is to paint the lids with chalkboard paint. They are the perfect size to store dried herbs. The DIY Mommy has step-by-step instructions on how to recycle baby food jars.
  4. Cat Litter Buckets – These rank right up there with the ice-cream buckets, but I tend to use these more in the barn.  They are great to store bird seed, lime or anything else that usually would come in a bag. My hubby was all over all seeing all the different ways he could use these buckets on makezine.com.
  5. Tin Cans –We don’t have many cans come into our home anymore since I home can just about everything, but when they do I love to dig out the contact paper and spray paint and make them beautiful! I love to bring flowers inside and found some great inspiration to decorate my cans at craftdayisthebest.com. 
  6. Holiday Popcorn Tins – Each of my grandchildren have their own can.  I painted the top of the lid with chalkboard paint and wrote their name on it.  They all know that whatever is in that can no one else can play with.  The contents are always a secret to everyone but the can owner.  They love it! Don’t you just love how Crafting Rebellion Mod Podged their tins with paper napkins in the picture above?
  7. Plastic Containers – I am not a big fan of using plastic containers for food storage, but I do use old cottage cheese containers for many other things.  I have covered the outside with contact paper and use them all over my house.  On my desk, by my sewing table, and even on my washer to collect loose change.  The possibilities are endless. Who would think a trashed yogurt container could make this lovely little thread hold in the picture above I found over at A Petite Cottage.
  8. Parmesan Cheese Containers – My all-time favorite use for these containers are to catch butterflies.  I take the snap lid off so the holes are open and hand them to my grandkids. They are also great for anything that you might just need a “dusting” or a “sprinkling” of.  I always have one under my sink filled with baking soda for quick cleanups or pet accidents on the carpet. My favorite carpet deodorizer recipe I found on iamthelady.com  Mix 4 tablespoon of Baking Soda with 10 drops of orange essential oil and store in a clean used cheese container.
  9. Plastic Milk Jugs -When my freezer gets low I fill old milk jugs with water to fill empty holes.  It helps to keep my freezer running efficiently.  We also cut the bottom off and use them to cover tender plants in our garden. We found this idea a few years ago on WikiHow.
  10. Maple Syrup Jug – I just love old syrup jugs…they are so cute I never throw them away. I found a great use for them in my garden.  We turn them into a thumb controlled watering jugs. Found this great idea at FunInTheMaking.net.

I hope you spend some time in your container cupboard and get creative with your collection. A true homesteader reuses, recycles and makes do!

Tracy Lynn

 

 

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About 

Tracy Fredrychowski lives a simple life in a modern world. She strives to preserve the art of homemaking and homesteading on her South Carolina farm.  Join her as she shares the ways she has found to slow down and live a quiet stress-free life. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.