I wonder how many people received kitchen appliances and gadgets for Christmas that will end up shoved at the back of the cupboard.

You know the type of thing I mean — pasta makers, popcorn makers, ice cream makers, juicers.

I've had several of the above items over the years and then some. I remember the filter coffee makers that sat plugged into the stove simmering away all day. By the time you got round to drinking the last cup it was so strong there was no chance of sleep that night.

But apparently they were a great thing to have going if you were selling your house.


Buyers would walk in and the aroma of coffee would make them feel at home.

Nowadays it's bread I think that sells houses — you also need a lot of "bread" to buy one.

A colleague told me about 10 years ago he bought a donut maker. "The children were so excited when I bought it home. They couldn't wait to try it. It sat in the cupboard for years — not once was it used and it eventually ended up at a charity shop."
Sound familiar?

I was actually thinking recently that I haven't used the electric frying pan in ages. More than a year in fact.

I used to use it nearly every night, now I find it easier to use a pan on the stove or the stove itself. Do people still use electric fry pans?

I think one of the best inventions in recent "kitchen" history is the crock-pot otherwise known as the slow cooker.

They are brilliant in summer and winter, especially if you are working full time.
I love putting it on in the morning and returning home to delicious smells and a meal ready to go.

The one thing I have never owned, and have no desire to, is one of those big flash coffee makers that use the coffee plastic pods.

There's enough rubbish going into our landfills now without me adding to it.

Thanks to a Napier company more than 5000 of these capsules have been diverted from our landfills. Apple on Lighthouse took part in a recycling programme, collecting the capsules from the community that would otherwise have ended up dumped
Good on them.

There's been lots of talk about banning plastic bags but, as I've said before, they are just the tip of the iceberg,

There are so many little things out there — like plastic coffee capsules— that add to the burden on our environment.

This year I'm sure our councils will be working hard to clean up our rivers and find solutions to the growing amount of recyclable waste dumped in our landfills.

However, it's not their problem alone The entire community needs to get behind them and think about what we are buying and what we are going to do with it when it either breaks or is past its use by date.

I've ranted about this before but I think it's something we should all rant about often and loud.

We've seen what state our rivers and lakes are in — it's taken us a while to get them like that and it's going to probably take a lot longer to clean them up.

Let's all work on it.

■Linda Hall is Hawke's Bay Today's assistant editor.