Have a greener Christmas and
save some green too!
Millions of greeting cards are getting prepared as we read! All of those cards will be sent and recieved and displayed. But what about after the Holidays? If your like us, we used to bundle them up and save them until the next year so we could send to those that sent to us the year before. Then we would toss them! Holy Moly the amount of waste that creates! Why not send e-cads instead? There are alot of free and paid card sites online. You probably have all the email addresses you need anyway! Why not save the paper? Although, I do still send paper cards to my crafty friends who recycle the fronts of them for craft projects. (Save from $15 - $60 a year!)
Looks pretty under the tree but not so pretty at the dump! Although some paper is recycled and can be recycled, some cant. Why not use a earth friendly version? The old standby of the Saturday comics works in a pinch. Of course bags are great as well! Especially the non holiday decorated one that can be reused for birthdays and more through the next year. Of course theres newsprint. That works even better! Its recycleable and goes great with the White, Red and Black Holiday theme. A friend of mine uses handkerchiefs and sheets to wrap odd shaped gifts. (Save about $20 - $50 a year, depending on how much you wrap!)
Ribbons and bows:
Get creative! How many uses does that ribbon and bow get after its torn off? Probably none! How about using fake twigs with berries or twine that can be reused? Even better, sprigs of fresh greenery off the tree outside? Not only pretty but smells good too! I read recently that if every family saved 2 feet of Holiday ribbon, 38,000miles of it could be saved a year! Thats enough to tie a bow around the planet! (Save about $15 - $25 a year!)
Use LED Lights:
Yes they cost a few dollars more but your checkbook and your electric bill will thank you later on! They use about 85% less electricity than the "other" lights. I actually think they are prettier and if 1 goes out, they all stay lit.
Buy a real tree (if you can!)
Most towns and cities have tree recycling at the end of the Holidays. Some reuse the chipped up tress as mulch and some use it to add to the soil that get eroded during the winter. As long as you keep the tree well watered and trimmed, you shouldnt have problems. They smell great and help reduce the amount of air freshners you use. Of course, this isnt an option for some. Some landlords wont allow it and some may have allergies to the tree. In that case make sure you buy a tree that has been made from recycleable materials and has energy efficient lights. We have been using the same tree for almost 5 years now and with good care, it should last a few more years!
Exchange services with friends:Does the guy down the street have a plow truck? Do you notice that he and his wife never seem to get out for lack of a sitter? Offer to watch their child/children or elderly parent for them so they can go out in exchange for a plow out after the next big storm or storms. That is a lasting gift that keeps on giving!
If all else fails, give gift cards! I know teachers love them! Mail carriers do too! Saves on not only wrapping paper but it a gift you know they will like! Most are reloadable and there are a few craft sites that reuse them to make into cool jewelry! Plus, you can send them electronically and avoid all the paper and the stamp!
I welcome comments and any other ideas to have a greener Holiday!