Sunday, 2 November 2008

Day 7 - feeling deflated, and a dastardly duck

Oh dear - nobody wanted the balloons on Freecycle. One person asked for them, but when emailed back she never replied. They are looking rather sad now.

However, perhaps all is not lost. A bit of an experiment shows that I can actually untie the balloons so they can be reused (employing two dessert forks and some cooking oil - let your imaginations run wild...). There are also some more balloon reuse ideas on How Do I Recycle This? The ribbon can certainly be reused too.

The rest of the day has definitely not been up to the standard of the rest of the week. This is partly due to finishing off various food bits that have non-recyclable packaging: a ham packet and superfluous bag (see last Saturday), a cereal bar wrapper and two plastic bottle caps. Finally, I made some flapjacks for munching in the week, so there's a plastic butter wrapper too (I'll spare you the recipe this time!). Away from food-related waste, I might also have an inner tube to deal with, but hopefully the puncture I got this morning isn't catastrophic and can be fixed. If not, I will have lots of rubber bands :) I did find a use for knackered old toothbrushes and washing up sponges in cleaning my bike after the ride though.

Back to food waste now because this is the big let down: we had roast duck for dinner (not bought this week) - it had a plastic tray and wrap for packaging, not to mention that fact that there was a lot of unavoidable food waste in the form of bones, skin, and fat. Really, I could have thought that one through much better (d'oh), but I didn't twig until it was already defrosting and too late to put it back and keep quiet about it.

To be fair, it was already bought and we would have eaten it some time (otherwise there'd have been even more waste!) but it was a bit stupid of me to get it out during waste free week. So, I've done everything I can, stripped every ounce of leftover meat off the bones, even made stock, but now it's sat there in the bin resolutely pushing up my weekly total. Quacking hell! We'll measure the damage tomorrow.

A couple of notes: you can make stock but you still generally chuck away the same amount of bones and stuff afterwards; and poultry fat doesn't seem to solidify so you can't make fat/seed balls for the birds like you can with meat fat (and of course it should never go down the drain!). So I am wondering whether to go for a bokashi bin, but have just seen the price - £65 for 2 bins and 3 bags of bran (eek) - and wonder where I could fit it in my kitchen. Come on bokashi fans, convince me?


  1. Hi Katy - you could try cutting up your balloons and putting them in the compost bin. Apparently it takes about 6 months to break down. I was told you can compost latex balloons by someone who went on a master composter course in York. I'm waiting to see the results of mine to see if it's worked :-D

  2. It's good to hear someone else say that - there was one lone comment suggesting it on the How Do I... article I linked to, but nobody else agreed or disagreed!

    If I burst any while untying them, it's good to know there is an alternative to the bin. Thanks!

  3. LOL - I'm glad you said that too. People look at me pretty oddly when I say I compost balloons :-D