Thurston County Connection Newsletter
Thurston County Connection
Thurston County Connection
December, 2014
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This Month's Articles

Changes at Thurston County Superior Court

(More) Changes at Thurston County Superior Court

County Benefits from “JBLM Day of Service”

It’s official!

Health Systems Doing a Good Job of Tracking Illnesses

Families Welcome New Members

Perfection is Reality for County Waste Water Treatment Plant

Less Leftovers, More Joy

The Klondike Kings and the telegraph to nowhere

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 ‘Tis the Season for . . .

Recycling and Reuse!

The holidays are upon us. Along with the incredible joy comes……garbage. An extra 25% of trash is generated between Thanksgiving and New Years and gift giving is a huge part of that. . With a few simple ideas, you can create a greener holiday season:

Let’s begin with some creative wrapping ideas that can start a fun tradition with your family and friends. Reusable gift bags are always a good choice and can be used year after year. You can even wrap packages in holiday fabric. Stock up during after-holiday sales. Wrap presents in maps, posters, sheet music, paper samples, wallpaper remnants, kids’ drawings, and even colorful magazines or Sunday newspaper comics. Avoid foil and plastic coated wrapping paper since it’s not recyclable. Decorate packages with sprigs of evergreen or reusable items like hair bows, ornaments, shoe laces, toys, and buttons. To ship presents use an old brown paper grocery bag instead of buying shipping paper.

There are many gift giving ideas that don’t involve packaging. Giving an experience rather than giving stuff is a thoughtful idea. Maybe tickets to a sporting event, concert, or live theatre would be appreciated. How about an outdoor adventure, art or cooking class, or even a gym membership. Gift certificates and cards are waste free options that always are the right size. The possibilities are endless and can be as unique as the person that you’re giving the gift to.

Maybe Santa will bring you that new computer you asked for. Then what do you do with the old one? Or after the gift giving frenzy is over, you have a mountain of the dreaded Styrofoam. With a little planning and thought you can avoid sending more stuff to the landfill. The database at Where Do I Take My? lists locations to take a whole host of items and materials for reuse or recycling. The online materials exchange sites at or Craigslist are great places to list items to sell or give away.

The above items are just a few ways to reduce trash related to gift giving but the idea can extend to greener get togethers and decorating as well. Get the whole family involved in trying to find fun and creative ways to have a waste-free holiday season.

Here are a few websites that offer more ideas:

By Loni Hanka

What can you recycle this holiday season? What can you recycle this holiday season?