For such a romantic holiday, Valentine’s Day sure does leave a pretty big mess in its wake! After the gift giving and sweet snuggles, you may find yourself standing knee-high in unwanted flowers, cards, candy wrappers, wrapping paper, and a variety of other waste products. Many of these items are made of more than one material, so how do you dispose of this junk in a green and eco-friendly way?
While some people manage to hold on to every card they receive, others of us have the guilty habit of keeping the special messages while throwing out the rest. Instead of trashing these sentimental items, consider re-purposing them for scrapbooking. If a card particularly catches your eye, put it in a frame to keep on a desk or table. You will always remember the card and its contents this way!
When I decide to eat candy, I rarely enjoy just one piece. That leaves a whole lot of trash behind – much of which cannot be traditionally recycled. Cellophane wrappers are the most difficult to get rid of. This thin plastic can be washed and used for a variety of different purposes: if you’re crafty you can create a collage with a piece of glass and some heat-resistant gloss coating – it will look a lot like stained glass and is the perfect project for the kids. Aluminum wrappers may be recycled with the rest of your tin cans, and paper wrappers can go right in the compost.
Old flowers can be put to much better use than simply being thrown in the trash can. Flowers are the perfect candidate for the compost bin. That's right, your dead flowers can contribute to the health of your garden and freshly planted spring trees. If you don’t want to get rid of them, there are other options available. Hang the flowers upside down and they should try after a few weeks, at which point you can remove the petals and make a charming homemade potpourri.