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Real Simple magazine came up with one hundred “new use for old things” ideas for kitchen items.

Here are a few of my favorites:

Lemon as Table Decoration

Aluminum Foil as a Funnel

Cake Stand as Candle Holder

Aluminum Foil as Fixture Protector

Egg Slicer as Strawberry Dicer

Colander as Ice Bucket

Dish Towel as Wine Bag

A while ago I read the book “Cleaning plain & simple”, by Donna Smallin, and found it to be very useful. It gives direct and easy to use cleaning tips and everyone can benefit from it.

As most of  professional organizers recommend, “Organization must be incorporated into your daily life, one space at a time. It is not a one-shot deal”. This book gives you steps that you can take for 15 minutes a day – and that’s it!

I highly recommend it (and I secretly hoped I’ve written it…)

Do you want to clean your closets for a good cause and a green city from the convenience of your own building?

If so, check out re-fashion NYC, a brand new partnership between the city of New York and Housing Works.

Every electronic device that I own has its own case. I have cases for my cameras, laptop, iPhone, Kindle, iPod.

I love  and recommend cases not only for the protection from scratches and dust but I also think they add some fun to our

sometimes dull stuff.

Take a look at these cases and I’m sure you’ll be inspired too! Define your budget and get your self one, I’m sure you’ll be happy to see how much longer your electronic will last. Also, cases come in hand as great and useful gifts for friends!

Air Mac envelope cover from Amazon.com

iPhone 3 and 4 cases and films from Iqase.com

Kindle cover from Amazon.com

iPad cases from Louis Vuitton


This is not brand new news, but it’s good news indeed! HomeGoods opened a new branch  located at 795 Columbus Ave. (99th and Columbus) and the store is huge!

I’ve always liked HomeGoods products and prices, but it was a hassle to rent a car and drive far away to find one. Now this problem is solved with just one cab ride!

Regular store hours are Monday through Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.; Sunday 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. For store locations and additional information, please visit www.homegoods.com.

 BOTTLES, CANS, METAL & FOIL

  • milk cartons & juice boxes (or any such cartons and aseptic packaging for drinks: ice tea, soy milk, soup, etc.)
  • plastic bottles & jugs only
  • glass bottles & jars only
  • metal cans (soup, pet food, empty aerosol cans, dried-out paint cans, etc.)
  • aluminum foil wrap & trays
  • household metal (wire hangers, pots, tools, curtain rods, knives, small appliances that are mostly metal, vehicle license plates, etc.)
  • bulk metal ( such as furniture, cabinets, large appliances, etc.)

Empty and rinse containers before recycling. Place all together in CLEAR bags, or in any bin labeled with BLUE recycling sign or marked “BOTTLES & CANS”.

Remove caps & lids. Place METAL caps & lids in the recycling bin; put plastic caps & lids in the garbage.

Wrap knives or similar sharp metal objects in cardboard (such as a piece of cereal box) and secure with tape. Label the package “CAUTION: SHARP” and place with other designated metal.

Don’t include the following with your bottle and can recycling:

  • trash canPlastic items other than plastic bottles and jugs (such as deli and yogurt containers; plastic toys, cups, wrap, etc.)
  • Any glass items other than glass bottles & jars (mirrors, lightbulbs, ceramics, glassware, etc.)
  • Styrofoam (cups, egg cartons, trays, etc.)
  • Batteries
  • Plastic Bags

We call it junk mail, the US Postal Service calls it third class bulk mail, and advertisers call it direct mail. Whatever its name, we all get lots of unsolicited materials. These unwanted deliveries include advertisements, credit card applications, donation solicitations, catalogs, phone directories and numerous other pieces of mail that are sent to thousands of potential customers at once. The US Postal Service delivers more than 80 billion pieces of direct mail each year. That’s 4 million tons of paper that is ultimately discarded, annually. There are several ways to try to stop or reduce the flow of unwanted mail.

– Reduce

Avoid putting your name on mailing lists. When you enter contests or sweepstakes, subscribe to magazines, and fill out warranty cards, your name and address often are added to mailing lists that are given or sold to other organizations.

Contact companies directly to ask them to cancel duplicates or remove your name from a mailing list. Simply call or write to customer service and ask to be removed. Remember though, the next time you order something from the company, your name goes right back on the list, so tell companies not to rent or sell your address: write “Please do not share my information with other lists” next to your name.

Tell banks and credits card companies not to send you credit card checks by mail. If you know you are never going to use or need such checks, then call your bank and credit card companies and ask them to stop sending these to you. These checks can be forged and you could get stuck with the bill so if you don’t want them, make sure you don’t get them.

Stop Delivery of your Yellow Pages. If you use the internet to find services you need, then you may no longer need to receive your yellow pages. Use the Yellow Pages industry Consumer Choice program to opt out of receiving all, or some of the Yellow Pages products.

Stop receiving unwanted advertisements on your doorstep. The Lawn Litter Law, passed by New York State and enforced by New York City, allows property owners to post a sign to let advertisers know not to leave any unsolicited circulars and solicitations.

Try shopping online. Most catalog companies also have their product line available on their website. You may get more e-mail, but you probably won’t get more catalogs.

– Reuse

Share catalogs with a friend or neighbor if you really want to see the latest products that you can order. There’s no need for everyone to get the catalog, especially if you just look and rarely order.

– Recycle

All New Yorkers are required to recycle white and mixed paper, including envelopes and catalogs.

Sort mail directly into a paper recycling bin. Also place a recycling bin near your desk or wherever you do the most paperwork, to make recycling easy and convenient.

Shredded paper can be recycled. You may prefer to shred (or tear up) personal documents containing data that might be used to gain access to your current accounts or open a false account in your name. Opting out of credit card offers also prevents personal information from landing in your mailbox. Though be aware that the vast majority of identity theft occurs through sophisticated computer hacking, rather than papers stolen from your wastebasket.

Text from The Bureau of Waste Prevention, Reuse and Recycle website.