Share Your Story

Texas is a big and beautiful state and it's important we protect and conserve its natural resources for future generations. Across the state, Texans are finding fun, creative ways to do their part, and they're garnering impressive results. The following are excerpts of the most innovative, successful ideas submitted.

We invite you to share your story on the ways you Take Care Of Texas. Bragging is encouraged and now you can show us by uploading a picture.

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Share Your Story

Don D from Montgomery

I ride my adult three wheeled bike in the country for three miles and, while riding, I pick up litter and put it in a five gallon bucket I carry with me.


I have 32 years of teaching Bilingual /ESL students in the Texas Public School System. I have thought and learned that to grow personally , emotionally, and personally.... one must be passionate about what you do and enjoy it with a sense of adventure. I have explore many ways to make a difference and at the end it is me who has learned a new strong life from my students ! Yes, I am Blessed ! J. M.

Andrea C from Midlothian

My eight year old, Jack, was so interested in learning recycling and the value and impact it has at school in his recycling club that he does our recycling at home.

Carrie L from Heartland

My students having been collecting plastic water bottles and creating Chihuly inspired sculptures. They have also been using recycled cardboard and other odds and ends to create other art projects!

Doris P from Buffalo

We sell aluminum cans, recycle all plastic bottles at Walmart in Bryan, tires to pickup at Leonco. Papers to fill gullies on property. Batteries to Lowe's. Ink cartridges to HP.

Andrea R from Manvel

When we moved into our home, our neighborhood did not have the option to recycle. You had to load it all up and drive it to the recycle center in Pearland. Our MUD would not add it without a petition signed by at least 51% of the homes in favor of it. I led the efforts and got 54% of homes to sign. We now have recycle pick up weekly. It's been amazing to have 814 more homes with the opportunity to recycle.

Toni E from Millican

I struggle with creativity at times, so social media has been a great resource to find great ideas for reusing items. One quick search on Pinterest and I've been able to re-use cardboard boxes to organize drawers, plastic bread clasps and cardboard tubes to organize cords, etc.

Betsy P from Fort Worth

Our household is serious about recycling! Until two weeks ago we lived in an apartment in Dallas. We had four different recycling stations in our apartment: one for general recycling, one for clothing donations, one for electronic recycling, and the last for plastic bag recycling. Each month we'd drive the recycling and donations to their respective destinations.

Thankfully now we live in Fort Worth, so we don't have to drive the general recycling anywhere, but we still have three stations for clothing donations, electronic recycling, and plastic bag recycling.

P J C from Austin

Growing up in the 50's with European immigrant parents and having 5 siblings, we recycled long before there was a word for it. Everything got composted, used and re-used until it fell apart or broke.

Abbey F. from San Antonio

I reuse black nursery trays and pots for plant divisions and seedlings that I pass on to neighbors or trade at an annual plant swap. If I get too many containers to use myself, I take them to Lowes for recycling. You can give the black plastic containers to any employee in their garden center and they give it to a vendor to sterilize and reuse or recycle at the end of the pot’s useful life. I’m so glad this program exists because the black plastic is not accepted in my city’s curbside recycling.

Cynthia B. from Fort Worth

At my home:
We support buying items at local farmer’s markets & use our own bags or bottles & jars for items we purchase to cut back on plastic bags or styrofoam or other packaging that doesn’t easily decompose.
Plastic bags that do arrive in our house are repurposed in various ways such as trash can liners in our bathroom trash cans then are re-used for that several times until they get yucky. Any type of plastic bag that does leave our house is knotted to prevent them from entangling wildlife & lessen the chance of the bag becoming airborne if it is windy & they somehow get loose as the garbage is picked up by our city refuse service.
Old cooking oil is used as lubricant for gardening tools, squeaky doors, or even as moisturizer for dry hands, elbows & feet.
Plant based food scraps are composted.
Egg shell halves, cardboard egg cartons & paper tubes are used as seedling starters for the garden.
Non-glossy Paper is shredded & composted or used in crafts.
All other cardboard & glossy paper advertisements are either used in crafting projects or placed in the city bin for weekly recycling.
Plastics & glass items are crafted or repurposed as much as possible, donated for crafting, or are placed in the city recycling bins.
Clothing is donated, swapped, resold, or repurposed & used for crafts or even as cleaning rags.
Electronics are resold, swapped, or donated to charity.
Many organizations & churches use items for craft activities so we regularly supply them with recyclable items for this purpose.
We don’t have a dryer, but rather hang everything outdoors to dry on a clothes line.
Use caught rainwater to supplement watering the garden & do not use chemicals to rid the garden of pests.
Wash dishes by hand in a sink full of soapy water & one of clean water to rinse.
We use LED or low energy bulbs & turn off lights when not in a room & also use natural daylight for illumination when available rather than artificial lighting.
We do not use a central heating or cooling system but rather have window units & heating towers & zone our rooms, closing off unused rooms so they are not heated or cooled until actually being used.
We do not run the water when brushing our teeth.

Daniel X. from Allen

Our family has always been big on recycling. Whenever we take out the trash, often times our recycling bin is as full as our trash bin. Filled multiple times a week with paper products, plastic bottles, cardboard, bulbs, and batteries, I believe my family does a pretty decent job of recycling. I believe being a good steward of the environment is man's duty and everyone should try to protect the earth whenever and however they can. Together, we can make the earth a greener place by recycling.

Elizabeth C from Copperas Cove

Our 14 year old daughter has inspired us to recycle and compost in our home. She has dedicated this next year to teaching youth how to and the importance of recycling and composting in our community as part of her title as Young Miss Copperas Cove Five Hills. She is persistent on encouraging others to recycle, use reusable products, compost, and take care of their community/state. Our city has a curbside recycling program in which we participate bi weekly by putting our full recycle bin at the curb. We are part of a compost program in which we fill a compost bin and it is picked up weekly and brought to a local farm to help grow crops, feed animals, etc. Our family feels it is important to help in this way in order to maintain a beautiful environment for the future generations. As a family we participate in local trash cleanups around our area. We would like to spread this important message across the state and encourage others to recycle and compost.

Susan H from Fort Worth

I keep leaky faucets repaired.
Use low watt light bulbs when I can. When walking on Texas beaches I pick up trash left by others on the waters edge to keep it away from the birds and from being washed into the ocean.

Angie W from Missouri City

How does my family NOT take care of Texas!? We can always do better, but I am pretty proud of these facts:
- We have a rain barrel that we use to collect water to water our veggie garden and other backyard plants.
- We compost with a bin outside, and worms inside.
- We recycle religiously - even our two and four year old daughters know what to do!
- We pick up litter along the trail behind our house regularly - with the kids when possible.
- We have been in leadership positions for our local Trash Off event for years.
- We don't leave water running or lights on unnecessarily.
- We use reusable bags to go grocery shopping.
Hey, we're not perfect, but every little bit helps!

We're trying to not only take care of Texas, but also Mother Earth!

Erin F from Lucas

After months of the Lucas recycling pick-up being cancelled and multiple city council meetings, the program has been reinstated effective the second week of April. Despite the temporary lack of convenience regarding recycling, my family, and others, deposited recyclables directly to the recycling fill every other weekend. The community's commitment caused a visible change with the reinstitution of an important aspect of helping preserve the environment's vitality one plastic container at a time.

Marjorie C from Dallas

I started recycling when The City of Dallas started. I recycle both at home and work, I turn off the lights, take short showers, I have several compost piles, use native plants, have a radiant barrier, solar attic fan and I FOAMED my walls which has a fire protection with in the foam, at work I recycle as much cardboard, shrink wrap, shrink wrap cord rolls, wood, and all types of hard plastic as well as scrap metal and paper as well as electronics which I turn over to our IT guy, we have plastic bags that are used to protect product when being transported. In other words I am the queen of recycling at work.

O from Waxahachie

To help keep Texas clean:
I recycle paper/cardboard.
I recycle all plastic,glass,styrofoam.
I recycle all metal, batteries, aluminum, including old appliances.
I try and reuse repurpose what I can. I burn what I can keep out of dump.
I know there is more I can do and working on it.
I truly believe we can do so much better. Can't be lazy. Takes a little bit of effort and time. To me, it's worth it to keep our waters clean our dumps less full.

Michaela D from Waco

I've been trying to donate or recycle everything I possibly can this past year.
I keep old shoes out of landfills by donating them to Soles4Souls.
I keep fabric out of landfills by shipping it to Houston's American Textile Recycling Service.
I keep old home decor out of landfills by donating it to Habitat For Humanity.
I keep medications out of our water and landfills by waiting for Take Back Day.
I keep old stuffed animals out of landfills by donating them to Gleaning For The World.
I keep dvds, cds, and books out of landfills by donating to the local library.
I keep old medical equipment and medical electronics out of landfills by donating it to Project C.U.R.E.
I recycle aluminum cans at Waco's M. Lipsitz & Co.
I have started composting my scraps.
I have donated old wigs to Houston's Tiffani Chanel Luxury Hair for cancer patients.
I have donated old but wearable clothing to the needy in person when possible, or Goodwill when all other options have been exhausted. I've also donated old kitchenware and dishes to Goodwill.
I always put my junk mail in the recycle boxes at the post office.
I randomly throw wildflower seeds around my apartment complex and cemeteries. I refuse to use harsh chemicals to clean with. I feed birds from my patio, and hang up a hummingbird feeder at the appropriate times.
I paid for the two stray cats that live at my apartment complex to be spayed/neutered. I feed them and provided a cat house as well.
I'm always on the lookout for new ways to use my old items or repurpose them.
Doing this makes me feel so wonderful, I'll never stop! It's not always convenient, but knowing that you are helping people in need and our earth makes it all worth it!

Calshondra W from Grand Prairie

Me and my family recycle and conserve whenever possible. The lights are turned off when not in use and the thermostat is set at least 70 degrees.
Older working electronics are donated and I purchase refurbished items when I can.
My family loves to fish, camp, and go to the park. We always pick up our litter and others as well.
When shopping I always use recyclable bags.
I carpool or walk when I can to reduce gas.
When weather permits I hang my clothes out on the line to dry. Also, we donate our clothes to the local shelter.
We check out books from the library or purchase them used.
My family take showers instead of baths.
I donate non-perishable foods to my community food pantry.

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