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Inspiring People to Care for the Earth

Blanket Collection Print E-mail

altWarm Wishes has been collecting and distributing blankets and more since 1995.  They are a non-profit organization.  They make donating easy to do!  

You can donate new or gently used blankets, comforters, quilts or sleeping bags.  Call 630-881-4906 to find out where to drop them off or to arrange a pick up. 


Smoke Detectors Print E-mail

How To Properly Dispose of your Home Smoke Detector

Did you know that the smoke detector in your home has a small amount of radioactive material (AM-241) inside of it? Because of this material, it is dangerous to simply throw your detector into a landfill. Proper disposal of your detector is available:
  • For First Alert or BRK:
    • send to:
      • First Alert Disposal 3901 Liberty Street Aurora IL, 60504 (you may want to confirm with USPS any special label for mailing smoke detectors)
  • For Other Brands: Curie Environmental in New Mexico will take any smoke detector back for a small price
    • $8.00/detector
    • specific instructions on how to send the detector to them at
    • you will need: quantity & microcuries (found on the back of detector)
    • pay online (using PayPal)
    • print out the shipping label (USPS or UPS)
    • For questions (505) 888-9392
Each company takes apart the detectors to recycle the plastic and other re-usable materials. The radioactive material is then separated and sent to a landfill that is
specially designed to take in radioactive waste.
Working Bikes Print E-mail

Working Bikes is a nonprofit that donates used bicycles to humanitarian organizations around the world. Donate bikes, parts, and accessories in any condition at one of their 50 drop off locations around Chicago, or for 5+ bikes call to schedule a pick up. Located at 2434 S. Western Ave., Chicago, IL 60608. For more info visit

Paint Recycling & Disposal Print E-mail

Oil Based Paint, Varnishes, and Solvents

Take these to the Hazardous Waste Drop Off facility.


Used Latex Paint Disposal Alternatives


IEPA's Household Hazardous Waste Program is a widely accepted and acclaimed system that works with local governments to divert residential waste materials with hazardous characteristics out of local solid waste landfills. The demand for this service far exceeds state resources available to deal with the wastes. A number of cost-containment features have been implemented over the years to increase efficiency, but demand continues to accelerate.

At every collection, in every part of the state, paint is the most common material delivered by Illinois citizens. Encouragement to use up leftover paint or give usable paint to a neighbor has not decreased the amount of latex paint significantly. Today's latex (water-based) paint has a very low level of toxicity. Disposing of it at a household hazardous waste collection day is very expensive. Therefore, the Illinois EPA encourages people with unwanted latex paint to use other options.

Disposal Alternatives

After your painting job is done you may have some leftover paint. The question now is: "What should you do with it?" Here are some alternatives:


Keep Painting!

This may sound simple, and it is. What better place to put that last pint or so of paint but right up there on the wall where it blends in perfectly with all the other paint you just put up there. Sure, it's a little extra work - and right when you thought you're done for the day - but you'll be rid of that extra paint for good. Simply let the can dry and then recycle or dispose of it.

Paint Something Else!

It doesn't even have to need the paint. Use an old piece of cardboard, some scrap lumber, or the inside of your garage. Just about anywhere would probably work to use up that last bit of paint. Again, let the can dry and recycle or dispose of it.

Use an Absorbent like Kitty Litter!

Kitty litter, sawdust, shredded paper or just about anything else that will absorb moisture and let the paint dry out should work here. Depending on how full the can is, you can just add the absorbent to the can and mix it up. When the liquids are absorbed, dry the mixture out or dispose of it directly. You may be able to empty the can, dry it out, and recycle it.

Give it to Someone!

Look around and you may find somebody who needs to paint a small area. Some schools or local theatres will take some small amounts of paint for scenery.

Store it for Later!

Everyone has good intentions to use half-filled paint cans for "touch-ups" that never come. Also, many people have saved paint that becomes unusable over time before it's called into action. If you do save your paint for later, follow some easy tips to make the paint last longer. Just cover the opening with plastic wrap, and make sure the lid fits securely so the paint doesn't leak. Then turn the paint can upside down! This creates a tight seal, and keeps the paint fresh to use again.

Kids Recycling Page Print E-mail

Thank you to Ms. Gracie Lee and her 6th graders for showing us this new site!  It's loaded with information for kids, a great research tool!


Teaching Kids About Recycling link

Resources Print E-mail

Savor Stores - drop off for clothing


Christmas and All Occasion Cards Reuse

Send used or new greeting cards to St. Jude's Ranch for Children. 

Card Donating Tips:

  • All types of greeting cards, including Christmas are used.
  • Only the card front can be used (please check to be sure the back side is clear of any writing, etc.)
  • We can not accept Hallmark, Disney or American Greeting cards.
  • 5" x 7" size or smaller is preferred.
  • Mail donations to :
    St. Jude's Ranch for Children
    Recycled Card Program
    100 St. Jude's Street
    Boulder City, NV 89005


    It's Our Earth, Inc. Collections

    Fabric/Upholstery Remnants
    Coffee Burlap Sack
    Mens Neck Ties
    Record Albums
    Nonelectric Typewriters
    Any Vintage Items - clothing costume jewelry, hats, purses,etc.
    Aluminum can tabs & bottle caps
    Floppy Disks
    Bike Inner Tubes
    American Flags
    License Plates


    Mary's Wholesome Living
    Mary will take any canning jars, lids or canning equipment or 630-776-4604




    DuPage County A Guide to  Safer Household Cleaners



    Recycle your Old Fridge or Freezer for FREE and Earn Money!


    ComEd offers a $25 ($35 until December 31, 2010) rebate for recycling your old working fridge or freezer.  Make an appointment for ComEd to pick up your fridge or freezer for free and receive your rebate.  Schedule today at or call 888-806-2273. 

    This program is part of ComEd's Smart Ideas® energy efficiency programs.  Since the program launched two years ago, they have helped residents save the amount of energy required to power about 75,000 homes for one year.  The numbers have exceeded goals set by ComEd in June of 2008!

    FREE Plexiglass for teachers

    Pick up at Carlton Mirror & Glass
    312 W. Front Street
    Wheaton, IL  60187

    Freecycle Recycling Network

    Have household "stuff" cluttering up your home or office? Sign up for a local newsgroup to help you declutter without using the landfill. Post "stuff" you want to get rid of and if someone wants it, they respond to you directly and you can make arrangements for the transfer. You can also request "stuff". The idea is to keep it out of the landfill. Everything is free - resellers not invited.

    Sign up or get more information at:


    Sports Equipment


    • Rebound Sports collects inflatable balls and ships them to other countries.



    Styrofoam Recycling


    • Dart Corporation in Aurora is now accepting foam foodservice packaging for recycling. For more info, go to this press release.
    Recycle Lights