Boxes full of bags

I love my re-useable grocery bags and have used them for years (my mother, Roberta, makes wonderful bags) but the other day as I was taking cardboard to the recycling bins I realized there was a problem.

A bit of history for young folks, memories for those my age. First there was the brown paper grocery bag. Great for grocery shopping, covering your books (required) and lining your trash bin. Then someone had the great idea to attach little handles and you had an instant suitcase as well. Somewhere along the line we had to pay a nickel or bring bags back to re-use them and that was fine.

Enter plastic bags…better for when it rained, but often very thin and the handles broke so most stores double bagged. Useful at home for picking up dog poop, lining the bathroom trash can (not big enough for the kitchen can) and you could search and find a place to recycle so that they could be made into warm polar fleece sweatshirts (or maybe that was soda bottles, I forget.)

Fast forward to an ocean filled with plastic bags, not to mention mountains of land fill. AND the idea of the bring-you-own-use-it-over-and-over bag. Hurray, I said….love my bags. I even have produce bags, hand-made from netting or some super great bags that were a gift from my cousin Rose.

Enter 2-day delivery….or overnight…or even practically instant in some cases. Which led to the sight that welcomed me at the recycling bins.

Sometimes I order something really, really tiny and it comes in a smallish box, which still contains way more material than a brown paper grocery bag. Lots of times I order multiple items which come in a bigger box. Every once in a while I order something big which comes in a huge box.

The other day I happened across a post which told about a way to re-use your Amazon box by filling it with donation items, printing out a pre-paid label and sending it cost free to a donation center. I am sharing a link (, having just tried it for the first time. I felt a bit guilty about sending things to the Salvation Army on someone else’s dime because there is a drop off center in my town. But then I went by four times and it was closed each and every time. So I packed up the box and took it to the post office….but of course the print it yourself label was for UPS, not USPS (although I swear I checked)…so I had to load it back in my car and chase down our nice driver. He only complained a little about how big and heavy the box was.

Anyway, the whole thing seems like a good idea.