More Extra Scratch Paper Ideas

I use junk mail for my bird cage bottom. I especially delight in throwing in those ‘you’re pre-approved for the mega-wonderful credit card’ things I get. Seems very appropriate that my birds answer those. :0)   Another thing I do is use it to start fires in our fireplace -I also shred some and use it for packing. Another experiment I want to try but have not found time yet is to make homemade paper with it. Tear it up, blend it in the blender with a tad of bleach and some water and the next day you can spread the pulp on a screen frame for homemade paper.  Just some thoughts. Mary T.

I take the white paper and selected colors and tear them into pieces, put in a blender with water and pulverize. Pour this mixture over a stretched piece of window screen, spread out with a knife and blot with a sponge to remove excess water. Turn the blotted pulp out onto a piece of towel and when dry I have nice handmade paper that I use for note paper, gift cards, etc.  Gail

I take all those ‘return envelopes’ that we get in the mail and use them!  The ones with plastic windows get used for store coupons, storing seeds for next year, sending notes or lunch money to school, and other miscellaneous tasks.   The envelopes that do not have windows get a blank label over the preprinted address and are used for paying bills, sending rebates, etc.   Just remember to take a black marker and cross out the bar code along the bottom of the envelope before sending.   Scrap paper with one blank side gets put in the paper tray of my computer printer. That ‘shiny’ paper in junk mail makes good envelopes.  You can find a pattern for making your own envelopes under www.makingfriends.com    Lorraine

I also on the envelopes that come without windows on them. Take them apart and turn inside out and re-glue using glue stick . Then I mail them out as new envelopes. The usual is that i make scratch pads also by stapling together to use near the compuuter when I need a quick note, On some advertisements you get really pretty pictures that you hate to throw away I cut these out and file them for decoupage. using as stickers on packages etc/ by using large roll of butcher paper and then placing these on them for decor( birthday etc.)  Pamela

I have taken to shredding mine in my little paper shredder and using it as packing for my eBay mailouts! Betty

Put it threw your paper shredder and use it in your compost pile. Make sure though it is not the shiny kind or has plastic. It also could be use after shredding for packing when shipping things. Another use if you run out of cat litter you can use as a quick fix after it has been shredded. If you collect enough of it, when you make a new flower bed put it down around your plants and put your other mulch on top of it, it smothers out the weeds while becoming compost over time.  Colleen

I haven’t bought a note pad (or anything akin to it) in years!  Not that I couldn’t afford it, but why do it?  Even though I’ve contacted that Direct Mail Marketing Association to cut down on catalogs (and related stuff), there’s still plenty that arrives in the mail box.   Envelopes and the unused sides of the letters and circulars that are often inside are great to use as note paper at home for those neverending "to do" lists. And my husband uses them for grocery lists since he does the bulk of the grocery shopping.   Thank heavens our county has gotten into the non-newspaper recycling business.  Even though we use a  lot of what comes in the mail, we could never keep up if it wasn’t for the weekly recycling program.  Ellen

I love to use the backs of envelops from mail for marketing lists. If you slit your mail open with a sharp knife that back side of the envelope is usually blank. I have a place to put all of the coupons that I have planned for use during my next shopping trip and the long blank side for making my list.  Judie

Our junk mail basically hits the blue recycling bin almost as fast as it come in. I generally tear each envelope in half (esp. the credit card offers). Occasionally I get stickers/kid stuff which I remove for stocking stuffers or homemade wrap paper. I use the paper my son brings home from school and bill envelopes for scrap paper. It is on those I write my lists, notes to dh if we leave before he gets home or, if suitable, use as first drafts on the printer. I save all tests and extra special projects for record keeping/portfolio. He and I go through the portfolio twice a year to cull through. Kathy

Here’s an idea I just learned at the Mothers of Preschoolers International Convention in Columbus, OH:   Take an envelope, here’s where you could recycle all those envelopes you get in the mail, and cut in half.  The business size ones work best.  With the cut edge at the top, fold both sides and the bottom in at about 1/2".  Fold them back and forth several times while creasing the edge each time.  This creates a sharp fold and crease.  Open envelope and push in sides and bottom at the folds, this makes your bag shape.  At the bottom you should have two little points you can fold inwards and glue down.  These can be decorated in many ways.  Paint a base coat and sponge, add stickers, etc.  You can even cut a shape out of one side and add colored celophane or the like (maybe also saved from those junk mail envelopes) and create a little decorative window.  Add a handle with remnant rope, yarn, ribbon, etc.  Use your imagination!  Now you have a cute & FREE package for that little gift you are giving!   After cutting the envelope in half, you will need to lick or glue the flap down so that you have only one open edge!  So, if you are using recycled envelopes, make sure you open them carefully and have an intact flap! Bernadette

I save all of our junk mail for our young daughter. She loves to sit on the floor and open letters. This can keep her occupied for about 30-40 minutes at a time, giving me an opportunity to make a phone call, start dinner, pay a few bills, etc.  Gay

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