Blue Box Recycling: My daughter’s surprising passion
I’ve always wanted my daughter to take a greater interest in the world around her. She spent most of her time playing with her cell phone, completely unaware of the problems the world is facing around her. As a teenager, she didn’t understand nor participate in politics, even at the local level. But then something happened.
My daughter Ellie came home from school late one evening. At the dinner table I questioned her, and she said she had been talking to her science teacher about the importance of recycling. Naturally, I didn’t believe her, but I pretended I did.
She brought up something called Blue Box Recycling, which I have heard passing by on the news once or twice. But she knew about it great detail.
“It’s simple,” she said. “You get this blue box, and you fill it with recyclables. With overflowing landfills that kind of thing is important, Dad.”
I was astounded. Had she found something important to invest her time in? Will she stick with it? I wanted to encourage her as much as possible to be involved with the world around her.
She explained the program further. “We’re looking for glass bottles and jars. Also, anything aluminum will be nice, like canned food and stuff.”
“What about plastic?” I asked.
She told me they were looking for everything plastic from plastic bags to plastic bottles. I thought about how truly proud I felt in that moment. There was a gleam in her eye, like something hit a passionate string in her mind. I decided right then that I would support her in this, so we got on the program, and it really is as simple as she described it.
She got the Blue Box from the city. We collected plastic soda bottles and glass beer bottles. We collected plastic bags, newspapers, and a few magazines too. I was astonished at the amount of junk I was about to throw away. All of that would have ended up in our landfill. Thankfully, my daughter set us all right.
She told it was simple, and it was. I used to think of recycling as this huge inconvenience, but it really wasn’t. Just fill the Blue Box with your trash and set it by the curb. That’s it. That’s all I had to do.
Recycling with my daughter has brought us closer together. She actually puts her cell phone away when she talks to me, and she actually responds to what I have to say. Not only that, but this is truly a worthy cause for her to be interested in.
Not only are we closer now that we share a similar passion, but we’re making the world a better place. She told me that the average person has about four pounds of trash a day. That seemed about right. None of that is recycled, and it all goes straight into our landfill, which was already overflowing. There are a lot of people in our city, so it’s no wonder they wanted to build another landfill.
I took pride in watching my daughter grow throughout this experience, and I’m also quite prideful that I am helping change the environment one glass bottle at a time.