After my last entry, you may possibly have guessed that my family and I have had an occasion to take to the road! We took a an educational field trip which took us to several old forts and other historic sites, but also required us to travel and find lodgings each night. We have found state park cottages to be a wonderful option for overnight stays. The biggest selling point in this option is the kitchen, completely stocked with pots, utensils, and dishes. It is this last feature that makes the extra price doable. By staying in a cottage, we are able to pack our own meals. Besides being expensive, restaurant food really does not appeal to us after about the third meal we have to eat out in succession. But packing all the food that a family can eat in a given time frame can prove difficult due to space constraints. If you have ever tried to purchase the smaller sizes of things like salt and pepper, mustard and mayo, or Parmesan cheese, you know that they can be ridiculously more expensive than their larger counterparts! Here is where recycling comes into play. Since spaghetti is a fairly inexpensive and easy meal to prepare, it makes it a wonderful meal for taking on trips such as this, but my family feels that Parmesan cheese is a must for this dish. I did not have space in the ice chest to take the entire container of cheese for one or two simple meals, so I came up with the idea of using an old spice container. In the above photo, the container on the left is what the original spice container looks like, complete with shaker top! The container on the right is what the new Parmesan cheese container looks like, cleaned up and labeled with a portion of the original label. It looked so professional that my husband wanted to know when they started selling the cheese in that size! And it worked as well as the larger version. Also things like my free denim pot holder are sized for packing and are not a major loss if I forget them. Instead of buying a small cardboard salt and pepper shaker set, I took the set that I had recycled from small glass jars, which are better at resisting moisture. I simple placed some tape over the holes in the lids to keep them from spilling.

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