WATWB – One Man’s Trash…

One Man’s Trash

There’s an old adage that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure, and we know that’s true, otherwise flea markets, yard sales and antique stores would not enjoy the popularity they do, but trash or treasure, the benefits of reuse and recycling are grand, and Craigslist has the statistics to prove it.  In fact, areas where Craigslist is active have seen a decline in “the volume of consumer-generated waste” of between 3 and 5 percent.”  Clearly, Craigslist is a forerunner of a circular economy where “the goods of today become the products of tomorrow.”

Imagine if we reduced our waste stream to such an extent that we didn’t need landfills anymore.  That kind of pie-in-the-sky thinking may get you laughed out of a boardroom, but there’s money in recycling and an entirely new business model developing around circular economies and upcycling.  One of my favorite EPA slogans is “reduce, reuse, recycle,” and upcycling is the epitome of that.  Waste, what waste?  With the right mindset, we can convert almost anything into something useful.

Here are a few examples of what my sister and brother-in-law are doing with the old wood they find in their backyard and the odd outdated, yet convertible, treasure.  (To be clear, she’s the mastermind of their upcycling foray, but he’s the creative genius.)


Cool, right?  All of it was reclaimed, even the metal rectangular blocks inside the table which were once CD holders.  New life all around!

It’s December, the season of over-consumption in the early part of the 21st century, the era of “take, make, dispose.”  How about taking stock of everything you desire and finding a way to acquire it that results in a smaller carbon footprint.  The planet and future generations will thank you for your efforts.

“No resources have been lost in the making of this material.”


[photo reproduction of a pack of napkins my friend gave me for my b-day, sold at  www.erinsmithart.com]


Welcome to the WATWB, our monthly blog hop to foster good-feeling news, love and positivity!  This month’s cohosts are:
Eric Lahti, Inderpreet Uppal, Shilpa Garg, Peter Nena and Damyanti Biswas


1. Where possible, keep your post to below 500 words.

2. Link to a human news story, one that shows love, humanity and brotherhood (no proselytizing, please).

3. Post your story on the last Friday of each month. No story is too big or small, as long as it goes beyond religion and politics, into the core of humanity.

4. Place the WE ARE THE WORLD Badge on your sidebar, and help us spread the word on social media. Tweets, Facebook shares, G+ shares using the #WATWB hashtag through the month most welcome. More Blogfest signups mean more friends, love and light for all of us.

5. We’ll read and comment on each others’ posts, get to know each other better, and hopefully, make or renew some friendships with everyone who signs on as participants in the coming months.

6. To signup, add your link in WE ARE THE WORLD Linky List below.

Click here to enter your link and view this Linky Tools list…

Have a terrific weekend!

pjlazos 11.30.18


About Pam Lazos

writer, blogger, environmentally hopeful
This entry was posted in carbon footprint, circular economy, recycling, Uncategorized, upcycling and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

35 Responses to WATWB – One Man’s Trash…

  1. Robyn Haynes says:

    Very creative! I remember when necessity made us creative like this. I think we’ve become lazy

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Good stuff! I could use one of those tables in my home!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Reblogged this on A Thousand Finds and commented:
    On Tuesdays I am reblogging some of my favorite authors. I am finished with the Little Women anthology author series and now I want to highlight my friend PJ Lazos from “Green Life, Blue Water,” another We Are the World Blogger. “How about taking stock of everything you desire and finding a way to acquire it that results in a smaller carbon footprint. The planet and future generations will thank you for your efforts.”

    Liked by 2 people

  4. cath says:

    what an imaginative sister and brother-in-law you have, and this is such an important topic. Nice post.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Love the recycling ideas! I had hoped we could convert one of the kid’s cribs into a working desk, buuuuut it didn’t work out. 😦 Way to share the creativity!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. lindasschaub says:

    They sure are innovative and a blessing to our environment … napkins that clever sure won’t get tossed out either – they are too cute to use!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Wow, they made some great items! I especially love the coffee table. We try wherever we can to reuse items. One of the best was my daughter and son-in-law made one of those chic barn doors for inside the house out of our old fence pieces. Looks super.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Not only repurposing, recycling, upcycling (downcycling?) it’s all beautiful too and that is also important. Well done your family!! I recently watched an interview on Gaia with the fellow who leads the Earthship movement, do you know him? (I’m sure you do.) Isn’t he extraordinary!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Peter Nena says:

    Beautiful treasure. It is impossible that the materials used in making them were recycled. Which makes recycling both a life saver and a planet saver. I hope we recycle more and more in the future. As you say, if we only we could be more conscious of our carbon footprints on this troubled planet . . . Thank you, Pam.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Ken Dowell says:

    I seem to remember reading a novel about turning garbage into energy. Hmmmm…what was that?

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Wonderful. Abso wonderful. We live near the sea And we collect a lot of driftwood. I’ve made some things with it. And got bits and pieces in the garden as tables and stuff in the house too. Brilliant to see this.

    Liked by 3 people

    • pjlazos says:

      Of course you also have a crafty, upcycling side, you brilliant woman, you. :0) I have a friend who has a tree that fell in her backyard and she’s been making these amazing sculptures out of the roots. Long live upcycling! Nature is wonderful. Have a great day! oxoxoxo

      Liked by 1 person

      • Nature is amazing. The thing was we brought that wood off the beach originally to burn. AND yes, we do scavenge that way. In 5 winters in this house we have not paid a halfpenny for kindling or wood in the winter. But there’s things | thought…no way..when it came to burning . I made shelves, gothic cabinets, pictures for the house, fairy doors, tables seats for the garden.

        Liked by 1 person

      • pjlazos says:

        I think you’re going to need to showcase them in your blog (or mine, when you guest host!) because they all sound divine. My husband used to make stools out of logs of wood and we used them around the fire pit in our backyard. They eventually deteriorated from being outside for years in the rain and snow, but he put polyurethane on a couple and we have them in the house and use them for plant stands. I’d love to see the gothic cabinets and fairy doors. There was a few years there where my kids were crazy for making fairy houses and they’d build them in all the little secret places around the yard. Would be great to put a door or two somewhere and see how long it takes anyone to notice. Happy Sunday, my friend. oxo


  12. Susan Scott says:

    So great and creative Pam! Yes, upcycling is definitely getting its day in the sun, here in SA as well where articles of beauty and function are fashioned from eg plastic, glass, wood …
    “No resources have been lost in the making of this material.” Isn’t that just great? Reminds me of a music video my son made many years ago called the broccoli song which was prefaced ‘no harm to the broccoli was involved in the making of this video’ – it makes me smile every time.
    Have a great weekend!

    Liked by 2 people

    • pjlazos says:

      Heehee, yes, Susan, I thought that was funny, too. The quote came out of the little video on circular economies that was in the article. I have a friend going to school in London who is studying circular economies so maybe it’s a concept whose time has come (albeit slowly here in the U.S.). It would be so wonderful if we moved off of an “ownership” mentality to a “renters” mentality and thought about all our appliances as just being rented so when they break, we send them back to the company to reclaim what can be reclaimed while the consumer rents another appliance. It’s just a guess, but I bet the overall cost would be cheaper for the consumer given that so much of the product could be used again rather than the company having to source virgin materials. It’s a fascinating concept and it’s based on watching how nature operates, never wasting a thing.
      Have a great day! oxo, Pam

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Recycling everything would indeed save so many of our natural resources. Love the furniture!

    Liked by 2 people

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