Monday, January 24, 2011

Being "Green" is hard sometimes

My husband likes to joke that he is all for saving the planet, but couldn't somebody else do it?  It's a joke.  Don't worry.  We recycle.  Have you seen Tapped?  Scary stuff.  We live in Seattle where going to a bus-your-own-food restaurant is the most confusing experience ever since we are now faced with *THREE* garbage receptacles: garbage (which you are basically not supposed to put anything in), recycle (you know, the traditional cardboard, plastic, glass) and now compost (food waste, used paper products and these amazing plant-based fake-plastic products that are being used all over the place including my younger son's yogurt containers).  I think we all have a love-hate relationship with these garbage choices, but since I have young children who are someday going to grow up, I like the idea of reducing the amount of plastics being created and garbage being hauled to landfills.
That was me making a short story long.  Getting to my point:
See?  It even looks sparkly-clean!
Today is supposedly National Peanut Butter Day.  I'm not sure what this means since November is apparently Peanut Butter MONTH, but alas, today is a good excuse to post this somewhat lame but actually very helpful tip.  My preschooler consumes an unbelievable amount of peanut butter.  It's a good thing because he's a really skinny kid, but it leaves me with this huge moral dilemma at the end of the jar.  Do I get lazy and just throw it in the trash because it's such a pain to clean that peanut butter out of the jar (particularly plastic ones)?  Or do I take the time to scrub out the peanut butter like a good citizen of Mother Earth and recycle that plastic jar?
Yesterday, I tried something that maybe everyone else knows about, but it's new to me.  Maybe it's new to at least one other person out there.  I filled the jar up with soapy water, screwed the lid back on and left it over night.  This afternoon, before removing the lid, I shook up the water inside for about a minute, then dumped it out and guess what?  ALL THE PEANUT BUTTER WAS CLEANED OUT.  That's right, folks.  I didn't have to scrub anything but the upper rim of the jar.  Environmentalism made easy.  You're welcome.


  1. that's a great tip! But I learned a year or so ago that you don't have to clean all the food out of the stuff you recycle- they have the technology to manage a little leftovers now . . . hope I am right because I haven't been scrubbing anything since!

  2. I looked it up. Here's the deal:

    They at least request it to be cleaned. I'm not sure what happens if it's not. I would just hate to see it get thrown away at the recycling facility because it's dirty and they can't deal with it.