Well - tis' the season for silly cliche's right?
This Christmas I really wanted to stay in the spirit but was having a hard time being bombarded with consumption advertising, plastic packaging, and rampant commercializing. So I made a vow - I would try to be as green as I could without being a Grinch to those around me. I think I did pretty well! Here are some of the things I did:
1. GIFTS FOR TEACHERS
My children go to daycare and JK and I wanted them to still be able to give that special thank-you to the adults who spend so much time and care on them. Instead of giving another mug or bath-and-body product, my son picked out two books that the teachers could add to their classroom! Win Win:) My daughter has a number of teachers/EAs/helpers in her world so we got them each a cool reusable tote with a fun silk-screen design on it from a shop on etsy http://www.etsy.com/shop/rainbowswirlz
2. GIFTS FOR FAMILY
What's nice about having little children (o.k. - ONE thing that's nice about having them) is that they haven't been shaped by society yet. My little ones don't know what's new, what's old, what's expensive, or what's 'trending'. They just know what they like. And lucky for me two of those things are Sesame Street and Fisher Price toys. I'm talking old school here. So when I saw the Sesame Street clubhouse and cash register at a local thrift/antique store I was super excited! Not only did we save money buying these gifts, but we stopped extra plastic from being created AND they required no extra packaging to be the most played with toys for the last two days. Fisher-Price - your old stuff rocks!
That last image is from another etsy seller whom I've bought a lot of vintage FP toys from and was able to get some coins for the cash register. Check out her shop at http://www.etsy.com/shop/toysofthepast
3. MY OWN WISHLIST
I love it when people listen to me - really listen to me. I've been on this enviro. kick for a while now but I don't expect everyone to jump on board with me. However - my mom and hubby have been the ears to my rants lately and I guess some of my passion has stuck. Not only was my stocking full of Canadian Enviro. bath products (can't wait to try the toothpaste!) but I also got some new literature on being a force for optimistic change and waste-reduction. Thanks guys!
We did a number of other environmentally conscious activities this season: cut up old Christmas cards for gift tags, bake with organic ingredients etc. but I can't list them all here. I couldn't hack a buy-nothing-Christmas http://www.buynothingchristmas.org/ though I love the idea. I am going to try and do 'buy-nothing' days throughout the year though to take stock of my consumption habits. I hope everyone is having a great holiday out there!