Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Green for the Holidays

Well, the time has come again when the leaves are off the trees, there's a nip in the air, and the pressure to consume has reached a level where, if we were all charcoal, we'd turn into diamonds where we sit. But I'm here to tell you there's a better, and more green way to enjoy your holidays, so take a deep breath, sit back in your chair and relax. Everything is gonna be alright, mon!

First off, the most green thing you can do is to NOT consume. Each new gadget, toy, and As Seen on TV gift you buy adds to your carbon footprint (and you know what mom said about leaving footprints...) While this might not sound easy, it IS possible. Back in January of 2006, a group calling themselves The Compact set out to see if they could stop all consumption. Nearly 4 years later, they're still at it. Even if you don't want to go that extreme, every item you make or re-gift is a gift you didn't drive to get or have shipped to your door--besides, you saved everyone's favorite green, money.

If you can't avoid the pressure to give a purchased gift to your friends and family here are some ideas to lessen the environmental impact of your giving ways:

1) Do a gift exchange where each person gets one special gift for one other person. We do this with both my family and Stace's family and we keep it fresh by drawing names out of a hat each year so we don't have to get gifts for or from the same person every year. This cuts down on the total number of gifts and their impact.

2) Bake or cook something. Nothing says happy holidays like something made from scratch. We make salsa every year and give each person a red salsa and a green salsa to keep in the holiday spirit. This year, we planted a garden to harvest many of our ingredients. Muy Verde!

3) Buy locally, save globally?! OK, I realize that's not quite right, but you get the idea. The suggestion here is not to go to your local Wally World, but to buy from local artisans and stores. Whether you go to the farmer's markets and buy from crafts vendors or go downtown and frequent a local gallery or artisan, you'll be doing your community and your planet a favor by not buying items shipped across the globe.

4) Give the gift of your time and presence. In this fast-paced world we live in, one of the most awesome gifts you can give your friends and family is yourself. Give freely of yourself during the holidays and it will be a Green Holiday season to remember!

4 comments:

Julia said...

I love your ideas! We're actually making almost all our gifts this year. We're still being some for the kids in the families, but we're greening up those ones as well.

If you want to know what we're making I'll be writing about them, you know you want to read about it! ;)

framebyframe said...

Cool--glad you liked it! I just checked out your blog--LOVE IT! I'm going to start following and will share with my 'community'!

Andy said...

Or, if you really, really, really want to shop but still want to see the global temperature drop, then you can shop your sustainable heart out and buy NothingTM (available exclusively at Amazero ;-)
http://www.dothegreenthing.com/buynothing

framebyframe said...

Nicely played, sir, nicely played!