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  • Writer's pictureSecond Opinion Magazine

Balanced Living » July/August ‘13

You’d Like to Recycle Your Plastics, but Which Ones Are Recyclable?

First of all, look on the container for a number, 1 through 7, most often on the bottom of the package. Second, consult the chart below. Third, find out from your garbage and recycling service which ones they accept. Veolia Garbarge Service in the Chippewa Valley takes the cake — they take all of them!

#1 Polyethylene terephthalate (PET): This includes things like fizzy drink bottles, meal trays you can put right in the oven, and water bottles.

#2 High-density polyethylene (ADPE): This category includes containers like milk bottles, food tubs, soap and detergent bottles, and grocery, trash, and retail bags.

#3 Polyvinyl chloride (PVC): Included here are such things as plastic food wrap, cooking oil bottles, loose-leaf binders, and even plastic construction pipes.

#4 Low-density polyethylene (LDPE): This group includes dry cleaning bags, produce and bread bags, frozen food bags, and bottles that are squeezable, such as mustard and honey.

#5 Polypropylene (PP): This group consists of non-squeezable bottles, medicine bottles, drinking straws, and the caps from aerosol cans.

#6 Polystyrene (PS): Included in this category are compact disc jackets, grocery store meat trays, foam packaging peanuts and plastic tableware, and egg cartons.

#7 Other: This group includes things like three- and five-gallon reusable water bottles, certain kinds of food containers, and Tupperware-like products.

New Uses for Old Things

• Transform a six-pack holder into a condiment tote that’s ideal for summer picnics. • Forget unruly plastic bags that seemingly regenerate under your sink. An empty tissue box keeps them neatly corralled and ready for use. • A giveaway shower cap becomes the perfect wrapper for shoes when traveling, preventing them from dirtying clothes packed in your suitcase • No more worries of camisoles and sundresses slipping off hangers when you wrap the ends with rubber bands. • Save a countertop with an old mouse pad turned trivet. (Make sure it has a nonplastic coating.) • Rubber bands give little fingers a better grip on a chilly or slippery glass. • Shower-curtain hooks provide sturdy storage for heavier items, like purses. • Attach a magnet to the inside of a metal medicine cabinet, and you can promptly pluck tweezers (or nail clippers) when needed.

Help Prevent Plastic Bags from Ending Up in Landfills.

Go on a mission to bag all your plastic bags and all that plastic wrap that seemingly everything comes packaged in. When you’ve accumulated a few bags full of other bags and wrapping, drop them off at a grocery or retail store that is participating in a plastic bag recycling program. All grocery stores in Eau Claire have them.  Find the bins in or near the entry and exits.

What Else Around the House Can Go into the Compost Bin?

Any cotton-pickin’ cotton you might have around. Cotton balls, cotton swabs (but make sure the handle is cardboard and not plastic), lint from the dryer’s lint trap or from that one pair of slacks that is a lint magnet, and even old shredded cotton and wool clothing can all go in your compost bin (but don’t try shredding it in your office paper shredder!).

Sleep Patterns

The sleep-wake cycle is a complex system involving a number of chemicals.  The major chemical of sleep is melatonin which is manufactured in the pineal gland of the brain.  Melatonin brings on sleep, is enhanced by darkness and inhibited by light.  Even small amounts of light from clocks, night lights, TV and computer screens can reduce the production of melatonin, thus can disturb sleep.

Seratonin is the wake-up chemical.  It is found in the brain and gut.  Reduction in serotonin can result in the sluggish feeling in the morning or after a nap as well as depression or anxiety.

These neurotransmitter chemicals do not have an easy one-way relationship just like sleeping and waking do not have clear cut boundaries.  For most of us most of the time, we are either awake or asleep and the chemicals are doing their jobs.  Then there are the times when we struggle with sleep or we struggle with being awake or both.  This then is the time to explore, to examine, to watch your patterns.

By Dr. Linda Capra, DC, Helios Chiropractic, Menomonie, WI

Protection from the Ground Up

You should expect more from your bug repellent.  Most people think to get effective protection; you have to settle for chemical sprays, or worse, clip expensive units to your pocket and try not to inhale the fumes.  And to find a good smelling repellent; well, there isn’t any.  Nature Barrier® is for the outdoor lover who wants to sit and enjoy the sunset.  We’re the original granular repellent for ground application using pure essential oils for 95% repellency and a gentle fragrance.  So when you’re ready to relax and soak up the great outdoors, sprinkle Nature Barrier® first and expect more from your outdoor experience.

• Amazingly sweet soothing scent • Long lasting – Up to 24 hours • EPA exempt – Surpasses EPA standards • No clean up required – 100% biodegradable • Safe around free range chickens • Safe around free range children • Use on any dry ground surface, including sand

Made and sold locally in Cornell, Wisconsin.

Tips for Water Conservation: Making Every Drop Count

Washing Machines & Dishwashers It is strongly recommended that when washing clothes and dishes that only full loads should be used. If doing a partial load of clothes, simply adjust the machine’s water levels to match the size of the load. If your washing machine is old, replace it. The amount of water (not to mention electricity and money!) saved in the long run will be well worth it. New Energy Star rated washers consume 50 percent less energy and 30-50 percent less water. Frontload washers are also an excellent choice for water-conserving washing machines. As for dishwashers, it is a good practice to forgo pre-rinsing dishes, as it will help reduce water use.

Did you know that using the permanent press cycle on a washing machine will use an extra 5 gallons of water for the extra rinse?

Much to Mulch You can easily cut back on outdoor water use by using mulch around trees, plants, and gardens. Since mulch is great for retaining moisture, it is an environmentally savvy and cost-effective way to ensure your lawn is getting the water it needs without draining your bank account. While mulch slows down moisture evaporation, it can also cut down weed growth. Just use 2-4 inches of organic material, such as bark mulch or compost, around your plants to increase the amount of moisture that can be retained. To minimize or prevent water runoff, press mulch down around the drip lines of each plant.

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