Recycling is even more important now

This year has been a struggle for many countries in the world.  The economy has started to change to keep up with the new pandemic lifestyles that countries are falling into. This is causing lots of individuals to be forced to stay at home and that has led to lots more online shopping.  This means that businesses are buying more cardboard boxes than ever before.  They are also shipping more cardboard boxes more then ever. This has led to a huge issue with extra issues with recycling.

We are now cutting down millions of more trees this year to keep up with the traffic of online sales.  The insane amount of extra paper being needed is causing our world a lot off issues.  Rather you are eco-friendly or not we need to be aware of the waste we are making by using all these paper products.  It is possible to recycle and reuse the majority of these paper products and that can cut down on all the extra waist and belive it or not extra cost.

If you don’t have to plant and cut down all those extra trees then you can simply pay to get your recycled paper products instead. It is much cheeper to use recycle paper products and also cuts down on the actual waste that it causes.  Believe it or not those savings eventually get passed onto the regular consumer.  This can have even more of an impact these days as we are using more and more paper and shipping more and more.  When the costs goes down for us all we all win and the planet wins as well.  So I suggest being as eco friendly as you can be.

For my situation it means that I started to create a pile in the garage that each week I go out and break down boxes to be recycled.  Now personally I am an avid outdoorsman and love to break down boxes. This is because I am able to use my favorite knives and put them to work.  Yes, it is a hunting thing and it is great to practice in the off season for deer hunting and field dressing. I know that sounds a bit crazy, but the more practice makes me safe and helps the environment so that is my choice. 

When it comes to choosing the right knife for the breaking down of the boxes that is a difficult choice.  The first choice of most people is to use scissors.  This sounds safe and easiest but the problem is that cardboard is very hard on steel.  Your sciscors will be dull by the time you are done with a big pile of boxes.  This also leads to the issue of the grip.  You will likely have blisters by the end if you use the regular scissor handles.  So the option is to instead use a knife. 

Now not just any knife.  It is best to use a steel that is good and resistant to hard materials.  This means getting a steel that costs a little more than the rambo looking blades at Walmart. So spend a little more and get a quality knife with a steel that wont dull while cutting the first batch of boxes. Stay safe out there, keep washing your hands ,and try to recycle if you can.

The Pros and Cons of 4 Top Snack Food Packaging

There are so many different packages available for snack food, and it is hardly possible to understand each of them in a vast ocean of the options to package snack foods. The following is to discuss the pros and cons of 4 top snack food packaging.

Flexible Pouches

The flexible pouches refer to the collection of various kinds of single-use containers made of plastics or foils. This kind of packaging is used typically for snacks and drinks. Its popularity rises due to the fact that it is resealable and has less impact on the environment. For snack food packaging, without a doubt, the flexible pouches are one of the most popular ones.

The Pros Of Flexible Pouches

  • Easy to source
  • Affordable
  • Full branding & graphic capabilities
  • Very low carbon footprint
  • Use little space in landfills
  • Resealable
  • Easy to open

The Cons Of Flexible Pouches

  • Impossible or hard to recycle
  • 1,000+ year average to fully degrade
  • Could affect the flavor of food or drink
  • Not viable for the luxury packaging applications
  • Low resistance to the extreme temperature during storage

 Paperboard Boxes

The paperboard boxes are also a popular option for snack food packaging. Paperboard boxes generally come with rectangular or square boxes, but less commonly come with others like hexagons or triangles. They could be made of 100% paperboard or mixed with other materials like small clear film windows to let consumers see the inside.

The Pros Of Paperboard Boxes

  • Full branding & graphic capabilities
  • Easy to source
  • Recyclable
  • Resealable
  • Easy to open

The Cons Of Paperboard Boxes

  • Higher carbon footprint
  • Costly
  • While recyclable, may end up in landfills because of contamination
  • Producing methane when in landfill

 Hard Plastic Container

The hard plastic containers are also another popular snack food packaging. This kind of packaging could come with various shapes as well as sizes, and it usually features the easy to open and pop-off lid. Most of them are made of easy to recycle plastics. The common snack foods packaged in the hard plastic containers are nuts, seeds, dried fruit, candy, chocolates, pretzels, snack mix, crisps, and many others.

The Pros For Hard Plastic Containers

  • Sturdy
  • Easy to source
  • Recyclable
  • Resealable
  • Easy to open

The Cons For Hard Plastic Containers

  • Costly
  • Expensive to ship
  • Higher carbon footprint
  • While recyclable, may end up in landfills because of contamination

 Glass Snack Containers

The glass containers are another top form for snack food packaging, but they are not as popular as the other kinds. Although this packaging has many shortcomings, glass is straightforward and easy to recycle. Also, glass presents an air of sophistication and luxury, which makes it very popular for gourmet as well as luxury snack food brands.

The Pros for Hard Glass Containers

  • Sturdy
  • Easy to source
  • Luxurious
  • Easy to open
  • Recyclable
  • Resealable

The Cons For Glass Containers

  • Expensive
  • Prone to cracking & breaking
  • Very high carbon footprint
  • Very expensive to ship
  • While recyclable, may end up in landfills because of contamination
  • Use excessive space in warehouse

Cardboard Box Forts for home

One of the most fun and cool things I have seen was a castle built out of the good old fashion moving boxes.  I was instantly brought back to the feeling of being a child and wanted to instantly go play. 

Luckily, I am also able to live those feelings through my family.  But what amazed me the most was the absolute size of this piece and then realizing that many people live in cardboard boxes every day made it very emotionally complicated to realize that what I was thinking of a child’s play toy was actually someones home. So I wanted to make a way for people who had to live in these items to actually have a great template to survive and thrive on the budget they have. 

So first and foremost if you need to live in a your own box fort then you have to have material in order to do it.  I want to make sure people know that they can ask companies for boxes but know that they crush and recycle every day and night so you have to get them at the right time.  Go to your nearest big box store and ask for cardboard boxes and then ask what time of day is best to get them.  Then ask for the shipping boxes specifically.  These shipping boxes are going to be made for corrugated paper and that means it is more insulated and thought than a regular box.

Now where you are going to end up spending some money is the tape or sealant to seal up the boxes in order to make them wind and more waterproof.  I also suggest using plastic bags to create  kind of roof.  But you can also go to hardware stores and find used and broken shingles to help make an actual roof. This is another ask for broken and unsellable shingles in the building supplies department and many of the times you will find they are more than happy to help. Most manager will even make sure you get what you need.

But don’t be afraid to ask and don’t be afraid to be told no.  Not everyone has a heart and many young people simply do not know enough hardship to have mercy.  So you may need to ask at a few different stores. But know that Lowes and HOme depot like to be right next to each other for sales purposes so if you are at one the other is usually close by!

Too Much Cardboard

Are you in the same boat as I am.  Is your house filling up with excessive amounts of Cardboard boxes?  Seriously, I am starting to be at a loss of what to do with all of this extra stuff laying around.  I know the excessive amounts of it are due to the Covid-19 Pandemic and continued riots.  The shutdown of our economy and lockdowns has simply left us with shopping more online than ever before.  I am seriously ordering more from amazon, and other online companies than any other time in my life.  This is leading to up to 2 to 4 boxes arriving at my home each day. The amount of cardboard boxes that is now in my garage needing to be dealt with has reached proportions of 6 feet by 10 feet by 6 feet of boxes in my home.  This is getting insane. The real issue is I am not really too sure on how to get rid of it. But I am going to go through my plan.

First I think the best way to get it out is simply to put it in my weekly trash.  We are not allowed to use recycling again as of the lockdowns.  I am not sure how that is not essential but I would contact your local government and let them know that you think it is just as I have done. 

The fact that all these boxes are going to go to waste does hurt me on the inside and I feel like I am hurting the planet around me because of this.  But my goal is to now just move them out slowly through my weekly trash pickup.  I am however limited to 10 50 gallon bags of trash per week.  The issue is I still have normal trash and extra yard work trash to put out each week and this leaves little left for boxes.

So my next plan is to cut the boxes up into small sections and place them in bags.  I wish there was another way, but my goal is to go into my closet and pick out a fixed blade knife that has the best handle ergonomics.  I want this so I dont get blisters and I also want to match it with the best edge retention steel. This is because cardboard is dense and abrasive then I plan to cut it up in small pieces and place in the bags to trash.  That is my goal and I hope this is something you can do as well.

Real Estate and Moving

The market is about to blow up. That is what we hear every 10 years or so and it is usually run by a credit cycle that our housing market goes through.  It looks like currently is one of the best times to ever buy a home.  The lending industry has negative interest rates on the rise and that means a home could be purchased for the smallest interest rates of possibly all time soon.  So is it time to get the cardboard boxes packed up and look for a new home! I want to go over some of the possibilities that are coming in the market and some things that may affect what you do with your real estate purchases in the future. 

The first thing to know is that interest rates are prime.  This is always a huge part of purchasing a home and that is because most everyone does not pay cash for a home.  The majority of Americans are in mass amounts of debt and that comes homes in a big way.  When people buy a home they end up getting a loan and mortgage to end up purchasing it.  The note is the debt and mortgage is the paperwork that states you will lose your home if you don’t pay for it. 

The extra amount of money the lender makes on interest is the incentive for them to actually give you money to buy a home.  The percentages for lending money these days are going to their lowest amount in my lifetime.  Soon it is actually rumored that interest rates on the federal level will reach less than zero.  This means that banks will lend money at most likely all time lowes.  This ends up in thousands saved over 15 to 30 years of interest accruing during the time living in the house.

This also means lower monthly payments on mortgages.  So if you are ready to get your cardboard boxes packed up and move to a new house you may be paying less for the same size house per month.  Many people are refinancing and saving 200 to 500 a month on mortgage payments.  This allows them to either pay off their house faster or have more income to spend on other things during the same time frame. So if you are thinking about moving or getting into your first house.  Now really is a great time to start looking.