Waste Not When Moving

Todd and I sold our house on Wednesday and left Broomfield, Colorado, on Thursday. We put some things in a 10 by 15 storage unit, but most of what we owned ended up being given away, sold, or recycled.

And what a recycling job it was!

For our technotrash, we used Green Disk, headquartered in Sammamish, Washington. When we mailed them CDs and VHS tapes and cables and diskettes and other unusable electronic bits, we sent them to Missouri. We sent them over 100 pounds of technotrash.

For less esoteric items, we went to Eco-Cycle’s Center for Hard-to-Recycle Materials (CHARM)  in Boulder, Colorado. There we recycled Todd’s huge box of cables, which cost only the $3 entrance fee, since cables are free to recycle at the CHARM; at Green Disk, it would have cost a lot more. We also took in 4 boxes of papers to be shredded, styrofoam, scrap metal, shoes and clothes and fabrics, books, and compostable items.

Hazardous waste could be disposed of at Boulder County’s facility behind the big blue recycling center at 63rd and Arapahoe. We took in compact fluorescent light bulbs, paint, spackle, shoe polish, expired medicine, and lots of batteries. One cool thing about this place: the staff saves items that still have some use (like half-full cans of varnish) and lets people check them out and use what they need. That is so great!reuse, hazardous waste, recyclingIs my BlackBerry taking crappy photos, or what?

And, of course, we used our curbside recycler, Waste Connections, for the regular stuff. They have single-stream recycling, so we can throw it all in one bin. We had to schedule an extra collection, though, because we had filled up our bin a week before we were supposed to move.

If you ever want to downsize, or even get rid of most of your stuff, as we did, I suggest you start a year or two in advance. We did most of our downsizing in a month, and it was painful. Even now our old neighbors are probably still mocking us for all the stuff we tried to palm off on them.

How is this restoration?

It’s preventive. The less we use, the less we need to extract.

Where are we going?

Check out 12 Cities, 1 Year to find out.