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Candle wax and dryer lint

January 13th, 2006 at 02:16 am

These two items make the best fire starters. Yes, feeling a little odd confessing to saving dryer lint here, but its part of a larger movement to create less garbage in our household. The volume of trash that we create appalls me and I'm always looking for ways to reduce that, no matter how small it may be.

My Christmas present from DH this year was a reflector for the fireplace. Its a three sided piece of stainless steel that is bent like a U. It is inserted into the fire place along the back and sides, behind the logs and the flames. It arrived today via UPS and we are trying it out at this very minute. I think it is making a difference, reflecting back some of the heat that would normally go up the chimney.

I've gotten into the habit of telling DH that each and every fire we enjoy was brought to us by dryer lint. He rolls his eyes and tells me that's sort of gross. It is extremely flammable and it gets the fire started better than anything else we've tried and its free. Throw in a couple of wax chips from old candles are it really goes. Since I've been dropping the gentle reminders, he's confessed to me that he saves it too when he's done with his laundry. He felt sheepish too.

This all came about one day when I was trying to find uses for the things we had on hand. It was sort of a solution looking for a problem, but I like to think it is a small step closer to putting fewer things into the landfill. Sometimes I think about the pioneers who had to be self sufficient and could not afford the luxury of tossing things into the landfill. Combine that with depression era grandparents and it spurs one on to be a bit unconventional from time to time.

We have friends who are potters and they have used ashes to make glazes for their pots. Its a lot of work and I think that when they put out the call for ashes, they had so many responses, they had to begin refusing the bounty everyone offered.

I was home ill today. Normally a sick day automatically equates into a no spend day, but that was not the case today. I've been looking for some shoes...always seem to be looking for shoes. I want something that is extrememly comfortable, but sporty, that I can wear with pants or a skirt. This is one area where I cannot, will not skimp on quality. When my feet hurt, my whole body hurts. So, off to Zappos.com. I'd been browsing their site a couple of months ago and had about half a dozen things in my basket. One item was no longer available, so deleted that. In the end I placed an order for $289, but I know that one pair is going back for sure. I ordered one style in two sizes so I can compare the fit without having to wait for a replacement. They were Mary Janes and I ordered a third pair in a similar style. So that is two pairs that will be going back. In the end I expect to spend about 100 for two, maybe three, pairs of shoes. Not bad when you consider they were all on sale and the original price for each pair was over 70 or 80. AND, shipping is free both ways, even on returns. Cant beat a deal like that.

I bought some Tevas for $25. We too are planning a trip to Mexico, probably in March for spring break. My MIL is renting an apartment and we'll stay with her. I am looking forward to a break and some time away. We have pretty warm weather and lots of sun year round where we live, but the idea of getting away really appeals to me now. She is on the ocean and water shoes are mandatory. We are in the desert, so the ocean will be a nice change. We are considering driving. Its about a ten hour drive??? Its doable in one day if you leave early and really push. I have the vacation time to take at work. Since they arent paying me anywhere near market value for the work I do, am going to take full advantage of the vacation perk...stoke (sp?) up the sanity again.

The better part of the day has been about lounging around and sleeping in my highly maternal looking plaid nightshirt that I got for $3 at the super cheap store. Its not very flattering, but because it was so cheap, I swear it feels more comfortable than all my other pj's. DH sort of rolls his upper lip in a snear when he sees it. He hates plaid. I think his dislike for plaid is overshadowing any possible appreciation he might have for the amazing deal that I got. But to give credit where its due...he is saving dryer lint.

4 Responses to “Candle wax and dryer lint”

  1. Anonymous Says:

    I'm going to try the dryer lint for our outdoor fireplace in the spring. We tend to use it lots, and I don't like chemical starters, which is what we usually use.

    As for pajamas, I have a pair of nurse scrubs (it was for a Hallowe'en costume) that I love because they are so comfy, and DH absolutely hates them...c'est la vie...I know the sneer you are speaking of!

  2. Anonymous Says:

    Haven't heard about the dryer lint, but very good fire starter is candle wax and sawdust in little dixie cups.

  3. Anonymous Says:

    I tried the dryer lint thing once when we went camping. It scared us a little because it "popped" and threw up sparks. Have you run into that issue?

  4. Anonymous Says:

    Havent had the popping from the lint. I wonder if it might be from synthetic materials? I know we wear primarily cotton. The few synthetic things we do have, I hang to dry so they dont pill. And they dry very quickly. But they shouldnt create much lint anyway. Were the sparks enough to injure someone or start a fire?? That is wild.

    Since we are remodeling, I will ask DH to start saving the sawdust he creates. I can put that into egg cartons (the cardboard ones). Yes, this is coming along nicely. Thanks for the feedback.

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