The song says, “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.” But some argue that commercialism has overshadowed the true meaning of the holidays. Sure, spending time with family and friends certainly makes the holidays special, but how can we also find time to do good — especially for the planet? Consider sharing your sustainability practices from the rest of the year during the holidays with your family and friends. Here are some other ways you can keep the spirit of sustainability alive:
- Get crafty. Instead of purchasing cards and gift tags, make them yourself. Cut interesting designs out of last year’s cards to make gift tags. Or paste old family photos of holidays past onto construction paper to make holiday cards more personal and creative. It’s also an activity the whole family can do together.
- Wrap it up. Consider alternatives to wrapping paper to be more environmentally friendly. Colorful magazine covers, comics from the newspaper, shopping bags, and interesting fabrics can add a special touch to gifts for family and friends.
- Carry on. When shopping for that perfect holiday gift, choose a reusable shopping bag to help reduce plastic bag waste. It’s also a nicer way to carry around the groceries for that big holiday dinner.
- Make it real. Give holiday parties a fancy flair. Ditch the paper and plastic dishes, flatware, and glasses, and replace them with reusable ones.
- Keep it light. LED light, that is. Those lights on the Christmas tree and outside of your house can significantly increase your electricity bill, but LED lights can help cut down on costs and, best of all, will last for many Christmases to come.
What tips do you have for keeping the holidays sustainable? Do you worry that your family focuses too much on the “stuff” and not enough on the “spirit” of the holidays? How do you keep your celebrations balanced?