One way to recycle a plastic milk container is to turn it into a homemade Easter basket. The jug is the ideal container, as it can be cut, painted and decorated, and It already has its own handle. This is an inexpensive craft project which you can make at home or at Sunday school. Start saving the jugs a couple of months or weeks before the Easter holiday if you want to make the project in a group, or use a variety of designs and colors as holiday decorations. Wash out the empty gallon container and the cover and place in a safe place where it can dry upside down. Unlike the traditional basket, this one will have its opening in the front, not on the top.
Cut a rectangle out of a piece of plain paper or construction paper. The rectangle should be approximately 5 inches by 3 inches. Place the empty milk jug in front of you, with the handle away from you. Tape the rectangle to the milk jug. This is the shape you will cut out to make the opening.
Cut the plastic jug, using the construction paper as a guide. Poke a knife or blade through the plastic. Use a sawing motion to cut out the shape. Cut carefully around the corners. Sand the rough edges with sandpaper to make the edges smooth. To ensure that all edges are safe, fold a piece of felt and glue it over one of the edges. Cover all edges of the opening with felt.
Pick a design for the Easter basket. Holiday images, including a bunny or a duck, would look great on the milk jug. For a bunny, go to Step 4. For a an Easter chick, go to Step 5.
Paint the entire outside of the jug white or pink to make a bunny. Combinations of white, brown, tan and black may also be used. Cut out two bunny ear shapes from construction paper. Cut out a second color to make the inner ear color. Glue the ears to the top of the jug. Glue a cotton ball on the back, under the handle. Paint on two big eyes, a nose and a mouth. Attach a pipe cleaner to make the bunny whiskers. Go to Step 6.
Paint the entire jug, including the handle, yellow to make an Easter chick. Make an orange beak out of felt or construction paper, and glue that onto the jug, above the opening. Cut out or paint on eyes. Add two little wings by cutting up construction paper. Glue orange or yellow pipe cleaners to the bottom of the jug, with the length of the pipe cleaner extended out in the front, under the opening. Twist a smaller piece of pipe cleaner around one of the attached pipe cleaners, to make three toes. Repeat for other foot.
Let the painted and decorated basket dry completely. Resist grabbing it by the handle. Cut up strips of construction paper and crinkle them up. Place the paper in the bottom of the basket to make grass that is safer than strips of plastic. Leave the basket out for the Easter Bunny.
Kids can help with the decorating and painting. Make a smaller hole and then make it bigger later, if you are unsure of the size you want for the final basket opening. The jug may also be decorated to look like a basket, or a more abstract design could resemble an Easter Egg.
An adult should cut the plastic with the knife. Do not paint the inside of the basket, as candy and treats will go inside.