Repurpose this holiday season

60% off holiday decorations! How can you pass up those savings? But, if you’re like most of us, you already have an attic full of boxes of cards, lights, and ornaments. They might be worn but they still have life. Consider repurposing them into something new this holiday season. Don’t know where to begin? Here are some tips to get you started.

Holiday Cards

Many of us are guilty of keeping piles of holiday cards from loved ones. Too difficult to toss out warm wishes and photos of the family in matching outfits. Bring those memories out of the box and give them new life.

  • Coasters  Perfect for your ugly sweater party. Check out this great tutorial here.
  • Tree Garland  With a little rope and glue you can turn those cards into garland for your tree or mantel.  Here’s how.
  • Gift tags Personalize gifts with a handmade gift tag by following these simple instructions.  

Trees

Real or artificial, trees are an essential part of the holidays.  After presents are opened and ornaments packed away, what will you do with your tree?  Before you toss it to the curb, or buy a bigger, better version, consider one of the following.

Recycle Natural Trees Donate it to The Woodlands Township. The Recreation Center at Rob Fleming Park will have a designated area in the parking lot to drop natural trees from December 26, 2019 through January 7, 2020. Donated trees will be ground into chips to help refurbish the forest floor. Trees must be completely clean before drop-off. Remove any tinsel, decorations or any other materials that would litter the forest floor. Flocked (white) natural trees and artificial trees will not be accepted.

Natural trees are also available for curbside pickup by Waste Management. Remove all decorations, lights and tree stands and place at the curb on your service day. Natural trees will be composted, just like your yard trimmings that get picked up every week.  If you have a flocked tree, please call 1-800-800-5804, at least two days before your service day to schedule a bulk pick up. Flocked trees must be landfilled. 

Or, check out these creative ways to use your tree year round.

  • Log Wreath Perfect for Fall. Cut your tree into thin wood slices and follow the tutorial here.
  • Branch Tree From the Queen of Craft herself, Martha Stewart shows you how to reuse branches to display ornaments beyond the life of your tree.
  • Bird Feeder Stick your tree in the ground or keep it in the stand. Decorate your tree with stale bread, pinecones rolled in peanut butter and bird seed, or strings of popcorn and cranberry seeds.

Repurpose Artificial Trees If you have a broken artificial tree or have upgraded to a bigger, better version don’t kick it to the curb without trying one of these simple crafts.

  • Garland with Lights With a little elbow grease, some ribbon and a strand of lights, your artificial tree will transform into beautiful garland to trim your doorway, mantel or windows.
  • Snowflakes It may not snow much around here, but this step-by-step guide will show you how to create a winter wonderland with your very own snowflakes using two branches from your artificial tree.
  • Holiday Swags Upcycle your artificial tree and create beautiful swags to hang around the house.  This video walks you through how easy it is to make these festive decorations.

Lights

It’s inevitable, you finally finish hanging all the lights, plug in the tree and nothing happens. Loose wiring? Broken bulb? Bad extension cord? Do you check each light, one by one, or just run to the store and buy more? If you find that you have accumulated a few years’ worth of lights, try some of these DIY projects and shine a light on the joys of upcycling this season.

  • If you’ve upgraded to LEDs and have a strand or two of the old incandescent lights, save those torpedo-shaped bulbs and turn them into glitter-adorned ornaments. Watch this video and don’t forget to recycle used ribbon to hang your new ornament from the tree.
  • Hula Hoop Chandelier Have you found yourself with too many strands of lights? Get creative and personalize your home with this handmade chandelier.
  • Light Repair Why not try to fix something before throwing it away? This article will help you get your lights back in working order.
Strands of lights are not recyclable through your curbside service but can be taken to Precinct 3 to be recycled

Many of these repurposed items also make wonderful gifts. So when you are cleaning out the garage, attic or storage unit, take some time and consider if you can turn old into new again and repurpose your holiday decorations.

Already a DIY’er? Leave a reply at the bottom of the page and let us know how you repurpose or recycle your holiday decorations.

In with the new, out with the old

Refer to these guidelines and reminders to help you sort through your holiday throwaways.

Trash and recycling curbside service

There will be no trash or recycling service on Tuesday, December 25 or Tuesday,
January 1. All services are affected—trash, recycling, yard trimmings, bulk pick-up, and Simple Recycling (orange textile bags).

Holiday trash day

Regular pick-up schedule will resume Monday, January 7.

The holidays can push your recycle bin to its limit. Put your extra recyclables in a cardboard box or paper bag and set it out with your recycle bin. They’ll be picked-up on the the service day immediately following Christmas.

Follow these guidelines with your recyclables to ensure service:

  • Break down boxes to consolidate into one box.
  • Put extra paper wrappings in a paper bag or small box.
  • Place bags and boxes at the curb next to the recycling cart.
  • Remember, these items are NOT recyclable:

Plastic bags
Styrofoam™
Bubble wrap
Ribbons, decorations, Christmas lights or other tanglers.

Cut, unflocked tree recycling

  • Remove all decorations and lights from tree.
  • Remove tree stand.
  • Place the tree at the curb on your regular service day.
  • Green trees will be picked up by the yard trimming truck as part of your regularly scheduled services.
  • Another Option: Natural trees can be dropped off at The Recreation Center at Rob Fleming Park, 6464 Creekside Forest Drive, between December 26, 2018, and January 7, 2019. Please deposit trees in the Christmas Tree Corral in the parking lot at any time of day.

Flocked tree disposal

  • Schedule as bulk/heavy pick up by calling Waste Management Customer Service at 800-800-5804.
  • Call at least two working days before your regular service day.
  • Flocked Christmas trees are destined for the landfill.

Extra trash

  • Requires purchase of a pink extra service tag for $1.75 per tag.
  • Purchase tags from The Woodlands Township offices, Kroger (Cochran’s Crossing, Alden Bridge and Sterling Ridge) and Randalls (Grogan’s Mill and Panther Creek).
  • Attach one tag per bag.
  • Each bag must weigh less than 40 pounds.

The Woodlands Recycling Center

The Woodlands Recycling Center on Research Forest Drive is not affected by the holiday and is open every Wednesday from 4 to 7 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

To report missed pick-ups, please call Waste Management Customer Service
at 800-800-5804.