A recycling tip:

I just received my punch in the mail yesterday, and was astonished by the difference between the lovely levenger paper that came with my fancy notebook, versus the crappy copier paper of my printed-out forms.

However, when I went in to work today, they were THROWING OUT a huge stack of outdated letterhead, printed on beautiful heavy creamy paper. So I scooped it up, and now I can print out my google calendar on the flip-side, without spending the money for better paper.

Nice, huh? Something to keep your eye open for...

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Yes indeed


I myself have a box of almost 450 outdated business cards that are now available to be used for pocket-sized notes. I think the company is, or has already, tossed forests worth of letterhead, envelopes, and business cards since we were acquired. Not even mentioning outdated signage, wall art (mission statements and the like), and old awards.

*sigh* Just the cost of doing business, I guess.


I hover

I "casually" walk past the office recycling bins in the mail room several times a day to see if any good stuff has made its way in. We're a small company that deals mostly with standard copier paper, but I've rescued many a folder or binder from the Big Green Box for use as covers and tabs for my mini Rolla army.

I'm sure I look like quite the crazy, too -- there's no being subtle in rummaging through a bin of paper.


We moved into a brand new building and in the process everybody was cleaning out 20 years of files/supplies/storage rooms/etc. We had some very large trash bins brought in (think big enough that 10 people could stand inside) for office trash. Through the big toss days I went by quite frequently and salvaged file folders, binders, hanging folders, binder clips, pocket folders, etc. I just grabbed the stuff I could reach without stretching, the stuff that was semi-buried or out of reach was boggling to my frugal oriented mind. The other person who scavenged as much as I did was a curator who just turned 80 who remembers days when things were hard to come by so you reused and used up.

Annual purge

Once a year we throw a "cleaning days" event at work. Management pays for two days of lunch (pizza and or subs) and we all come in jeans and t-shirts to clean out all of our stuff in cubicles and shared storage. All the items that are re-usable go on the "treasure table." ("One man's trash is another man's treasure.") Emails go to colleagues around the company to visit the treasure table for office supply goodies they might be interested in. Other re-usable items (e.g. binders, old letterhead/envelopes, etc), are donated to the local schools in disadvantaged districts. I also can be found lurking with others near the dumpsters...we've had to help a vertically challenged co-worker who dove into the dumpster just a little too deep...

My department has a re-use

My department has a re-use policy. Everything that can be used more than once is, binders, folders, papers, etc. Paper is systematically recycled. Sensitive material is shredded and recycled. Stuff is re-circulated. I have brought many many binders with the old logo home over the years for my husband to use. Old letterhead, if it has the right address, is used until the pack is through. If not, recycled. The university has a pretty good recycling policy too. Not as all incompasing, but ok.

Wow, I love that. I was

Wow, I love that. I was horrified at the amount of waste at my last job (bank data department). There'd be stuff like "we misprinted 300 forms, throw them out" or "order 500 tax forms, I know we only need 300 but we might mess some up and need to reprint" or "oh, that's our old stationery/tickets/forms that we changed [X] on and no longer use, toss it"

Made me want to cry at times...I hate waste (the other amount of waste I'm horrified at is restaurants and the amount of food that is tossed. Things like pickles automatically included with sandwiches that most people don't eat [why not just ask if they want one rather than automatically including it?], things picked off sandwiches and out of salads because people don't think to just ask not to have it in there in the first place [I've been guilty of this in the past when I've forgotten to ask them to leave something off or didn't realize that it came with something I didn't like, but it's usually just a few small pieces of onion, not big slices of tomato and such], lemons plopped in water glasses and then just tossed and you can tell they didn't even squeeze the lemon into the water so what was the point, hotel banquets where people don't say 'no, please don't give me a piece of cake' but just take it and then don't eat it [plus hell, when you're serving all this wonderful food and your mouth is watering over it, then see that there it is, untouched and you wish you'd just run off cackling with the plate to eat it yourself rather than give it to the person in the first place, lol], or they eat two bites of their meal and then throw out the rest....okay, rant over!).