Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sunday Survey

Personally, I consider myself to be more of a wise spender than a cheapskate! I'm not interested in wasting my money on/for something that (in my book) is unnecessary! *Sometimes* I even go as far as to do something for my family that I wouldn't dare do for a guest in our home... recently my husband saw me pulling a few straws out of our dishwasher and he looked at me like I was the cheapskate of the century! I explained to him that our son 'drinks' yogurt everyday and that I didn't think that it was necessary to get a new straw every single day. (OK, one of my recycled straws may have been from McDonalds...) What do YOU think? Wise or cheaping-out?

Do YOU ever "cheap-out" at YOUR house?



first let me say, watch Crate and barrel etc. for clearance Plastic Straws that are in fact re-usable I got box of 25 last year for like $1.25 and they are supposed to be dishwashed and kept!

Second, yes I cheap out sometimes but I usually find that it wasn't a good idea - I end up paying for it one way or another (time, or money to fix something) so I try to be wise and not so cheap!!


I say not cheap. Ok...maybe because I do similar things, mostly with plastic silverware. BUT I do it because I hate the waste it creates. I'd rather wash and re-use than throw away. Especially with things like straws that are hard to find places to recycle!


Well you are being Eco-friendly by NOT filling a landfill as fast, so I see no problem with it...

I always save extra napkins from fast food restaurants and use them at home, so that's pretty cheap!


If I dry off my sink faucett, I draped the wet or damp paper towel on top of something under the sink to use for another dry. Usuall I use microfiber. I reuse plastic spoons and forks and I wash out zip lock bags and steam bags to reuse for later.


I try not to wash and re-use plastics that were not intended to be washed and re-used, since they tend to break down and there's a chance of increased exposure to toxins. That being said, I try to fill my home with products that can be re-used, eliminating the need to toss a lot of trash and saving money in the long run.

Becky C

I sometimes send yogurt to school in my kids' lunches. I have been known to use a Sharpie to write "Save Me!!" on the handle of the plastic spoon as a reminder to the kids to bring the spoon home to be washed. :-)
I have also been trying to use containers that can be reused rather than bags that get thrown away. Even if the ziploc bags were free after coupons/rebates, it still seems unwise to use 6-9 everyday in 3 school lunches.


My MIL used to get teased my her father whenever he and his wife would come for a visit. My MIL would sit down every few nights with a pair of scissors and cut napkins in half so she would get twice as many per package. She is the most resourceful person I know, in so many ways. I needed a pair of red sweat pants for my sons Halloween costume (he was a big red Lego...turned out super!) and I was telling her how concerned I was that I couldn't find him a pair that didn't cost $20. She asked me if I had any leftover red fabric from a project (which I did) and an old pair of his jeans. She took them home and within an hour and pieced together and sewn on the red fabric onto the leg portion of his jeans. It worked like a charm, for free!!

I'm trying very hard to watch our dimes and to be as resourceful as I can be.

I tend not to put plastic in the dishwasher or the microwaves because I'm concerned with the toxins that can leach out, so I use my steamer for veggies and reusable containers (washed by hand) for sandwiches and snacks. I do use ziplocs for freezer items and I do throw them away... Thankfully I don't freeze a whole lot! :-)

GFS and Costco have boxes of straws that would last you a LONG time, but if your son goes through so many, the "supposed to be reused" straws are what I would go with (less toxins?).


Laura Webber

I've never even thought about toxins in straws... sheesh, its definitely time for a new box!


I never thought about toxins either. We've converted a lot of our household from paper to cloth. I reuse things like straws and plastic bags because it just seems to wasteful to throw them away after one use. I do wash them, so I never figured it was a problem.


Laura, you are not "cheap"....You are "green" and that is much hipper I have been told. My wise old aunt went to her grave saying, "Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without."

I have found that many plastics do not wash well. I can't seem to get the grease off of plastic silverware. Rather, I have box of "garage sale" silverware which I use for parties. People know not to throw it out, but if a fork or two ends up in the garbage...oh well. It washes up great too.

Benjamin & Lillian

I use to put straws in the dishwasher until one slipped out of the basket and got sucked into the motor. It cost $200 it fix, will never put them in the dishwasher again!

Laura Webber

Whoa... OK, I'm officially convinced... $200, yikes!


Honestly.. I hand wash plastic spoons for my sons lunch and plastic zip locks. I would be concerned about plastic components that are built into the dish washer if you everyone is that concerned about toxins!

The Pohl Family

I didn't get to read all the comments because my dear daughter was hitting buttons, but my comment was gonna be about BPA, and I did see a brief comment from you Laura about never thinking of that. So I see someone touched on that.

I also want to say that I do not see it as cheap, I have been washing out zip lock bags myself.

Let me go back to the Toxin thing, you could prolong the life by not using the dishwasher to wash plastics. The hotter the water the more the toxins escape.

I do not wash any of our plastics, including the sippees in the dishwasher. Even if they say BPA free I would just rather not risk anymore exposure then we ourselves had growing up.

My husband thought I was nuts when I started ridding our house of plastics and going BPA Free or glass. But now he is on board.

Good Survey!

Tina C

Hi Laura,

Ever heard of glass straws? They are very durable (you would have to work hard to break them!) and wash up beautifully. They even come with a washable pipe cleaner type item to clean them with!

We try to avoid washing plastics also to minimize toxic exposure. But, we have found great, inexpensive non-plastic items that we can use over and over. Pyrex makes food containers with lids that are great for storing food (I do occasionally get coupons for these!)and for lunch containers, food grade oil cloth makes wonderful little pouches for lunch pails, Ball jars I've picked up at yard sales store many items wonderfully, etc.

Going green is healthier for us and the planet, and cheaper too!! What could be better!