Friday, December 5, 2008
Green Light, Recycle Light
I remember growing up how much fun it was to decorate for Christmas...an enormous amount of jolly music, a great deal of laughter, so many yummy holiday treats, and just a ridiculous amount of fun. All of that is still true, but now I get to decorate my own nest with my Love and it's even more enjoyable!
In order to green up your holiday decorating, if you need new lights for your tree or outside, go get some LED strands!! They are WONDERFUL...we've had ours for 3 years and have never had a single bulb go out or break!!! Of course, proper storage is key once decorations come down, but our LEDs are "fade/chip/peel/break resistant" and so far so good. LEDs also use about 10% less power than traditional incandescents, are cool to the touch, and they will last much longer! PLUS, if one bulb does go out, it won't affect the whole strand! Now, THAT is a huge plus, isn't it?
I was first introduced to LEDs as an event designer when we switched from traditional lights to LEDs for event lighting and the difference was huge!! The quality of the light, the options we had with them, but mainly how much less power they use! They might be more expensive up front but they will end up saving you money as they will last you longer and lower your electricity bill. Three years ago we got ours (Philips Indoor/Outdoor Set) at Target but I know they're even more widely available now at home improvement stores and whatnot. Our LEDs burn brighter and have a cool look to them that we really enjoy, but I know they also have "warmer" toned strands now as well for those of you who would prefer that.
Holiday LEDs is a wonderful website that sells a TON of different options, so you should check them out as well...but what is REALLY amazing about them is they offer FREE Christmas light recycling!!! Well, the recycling is free but you have to pay for shipping obviously. Here is all of the info with details of how they go about recycling the lights. It's just so wonderful because with traditional incandescent strands, it seems people are constantly having to get new ones (I know we did growing up) and those strands which contain PVC, glass, copper, and lead are just ending up in the landfills which isn't so great for the environment. SO instead of just tossing your old strands, send them to Holiday LEDs and in return, they will send you a 15% off coupon! Pretty cool...
They prefer the light strands sent in a cardboard box (so it can be recycled) and they ask that you include your name and email address so they can send the coupon to you! For more details, check out their website...
Attn: Recycling Program
2500 W. Argyle St.
Jackson, MI 49202
As another option, I had heard Home Depot was collecting any type of holiday lights for recycling as well but only for a limited time. I called my local one and they ARE still accepting them, so maybe check them out first as a local option.
Please do keep in mind though that whether incandescents or LEDs, all light strands contain some amount of lead as a stabilizer for the PVC. So wash your hands thoroughly after handling lights and keep little kids away from them!
WELL, this weekend is going to be busy...got my 10K I've been training for tomorrow and then Lovebug's birthday party on Sunday - YEA! I'll let you all know how they go...Have a wonderful weekend!