Saturday, June 21, 2008

Green Cooler Chic

Those of you who read regularly know I spend a lot of time hanging out at baseball fields, in the dirt, chaos and heat. This requires lots of cold, cold reusable water bottles. How do I keep them all cold you ask? We tried the re-freezable ice blocks, but alas they melt quickly and the just don't keep things icy-cold. Any boy coming straight out of the catcher's gear in 92 degree heat will tell you, that's just not cold enough, mom.

We loathe buying bags of ice in plastic and even that melts rather quickly, so we came up with what we think in a great idea. Take empty plastic containers - our local butter comes in the perfect, round size - and fill with water the night before. By morning, they are solid cubes of ice which I load into the cooler of drinks. Even today, after7 hours outdoors, there were still disks of ice remaining.

We take the leftover ice disks, toss them into the gardens to melt and trickle water the plants. We take the melted ice water and dump it into the flower pots. Trust me, this water is GREYWATER after dirty boys have had their hands in and out of the cooler all day. And, it means that a tired mom can squeak by without watering parts of the garden today!

So, if you have all sorts of weird plastic containers you can't bear to throw away, but are upset at yourself for buying, don't beat yourself up, they have a second use. And, if you have very thirsty boys, you will never be without a cold drink again!

7 comments:

klj said...

Thanks for the tip! I am going to try it with our gazillion quart size yogurt containers. (Yes, I am working on making my own, but until then...)

Joyce said...

Very practical! Thanks!

Green Bean said...

Awesome idea! I have a few plastic juice and honey bottles that I fill with water and stick in coolers to keep things cold but have never thought about doing it with a yogurt type container and then taking the ice out! Brilliant, per usual.

HomeandHearth said...

Excellent tip; thanks for sharing!

I *do* actually have a couple of containers taking up space in the kitchen because I haven't wanted to toss them out :)

Jena said...

We use the large size cottage cheese containers to make ice blocks. One block fits perfectly in a round Thermos container and keeps your drinking water cold all day. :)

Chile said...

When my sweetie gets on a soda binge, I save all the liter plastic bottles for ice. I use them like the blue ice in the cooler. The nice part is they can be re-used over and over, with the same water refrozen each time. And, they keep the freezer running more efficiently because it is kept full.

One additional benefit to this is emergency preparation. In an emergency, it provides a nice stock of water - initially keeping frozen food frozen a little longer and then defrosting to provide needed water.

Kathryn B. said...

Wow, simple yet brilliant. Definitely one of those "why didn't I think of that?" ideas.