I saw a joke on Facebook today that was about how today's younger generation are more in touch with saving the environment or, as the elderly woman calls it, "green thing." The older woman goes on to school the teenage upstart that recycling has been around for years, we just didn't call it that, we were being thrifty.

Back then, we returned milk, pop and beer bottles to the store. They were sent back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled, in order to use the same bottles over and over. We washed baby diapers because we didn't have the disposable kind. We dried clothes on a line, instead of an energy-gobbling dryer, using both wind and solar power. Kids got hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always brand-new clothing. Instead of Styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap, we used wadded up old newspapers to cushion a fragile item we were sending in the mail. We drank from a water fountain instead of a plastic bottle of water and we replaced the razor blade in a razor instead of throwing away the whole razor just because the blade got dull.

Those are just a few of the ways people use to do the "green thing." Sadly, with the advancement of technology, throwing things away became the norm and now we have landfills filled with things that will take hundreds of years to break down. To find out more about recycling in Rice and Steele counties, click on the buttons below: