Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Giving Great Gifts is GREEN

SO! I thought I had it all sussed for this Christmas, it was going to be the greenest one yet!

Well it was, but I was still sickened by the waste created by the holiday!

The positive green actions we achieved:
  • The majority of Butterfly's toys were hidden in gift boxes or set up for her to find, ready to play with, on Christmas morning!
  • Her presents were green... wooden toys, upcycled containers for her kitchen, we supported WAHM's also (buying wooden toys online = less plastic packaging)
  • Didn't buy any new decorations, we made do with the ones we had
  • Used the crockery and cutlery on the day, instead of disposable shtuff
  • We only turned the Christmas tree lights on for an hour before Butterfly went to bed for her to enjoy

  • Wrapped gifts for the grandparents in Butterfly's drawings (scribbles?)

  • Made my own bonbons using upcycled materials

BUT I have learnt the following lessons...

  • The relatives LOVE to wrap presents (and to be honest B loves to tear them open!) so next year I am going to suggest newspaper. YES newspaper. They can present the gifts in a sack or gift bag (which they usually do anyway, we sent Grandma home with her giftbag for next year), and she can still have fun opening. I mean, it was OBSCENE this year! BOTH sets of grandparents and BOTH aunties rocked up with sacks full of wrapped gifts. She opened from 6.30am until 2.30pm!

  • Only put out about a third of the nibblies you think you will need. If you pour the whole bag of chips, the whole bag of choc coated peanuts and the whole bag of cherries on the table, most will be uneaten and by the end of the stinking hot day, uneatable. AND thrown away. Best to err on the more frugal side, you can always top up if you need to.
  • HALVE the amount of salads you made last year. I ate salad, pasta salad and potato bake for 3 days straight and still threw away half of it!
  • Be honest with people about what you allow your children to play with. I was lucky this year, the wooden toy issue had sunk in! There is no point in letting the grandparents buy plastic rubbish that you then have the dilemma of either throwing away OR giving to charity... knowing the toys are potentially toxic to another child.
And remember...

  • its always great to buy gifts that encourage green living... Organic body care (organic ANYTHING!), Eco Toothbrushes, Wild Soapnuts, Modern Cloth Nappies, Handmade gifts, a plant?

  • Giving great gifts is green. Buying something that will be used or treasured is sooo much better than getting something that might end up in landfill unused. I LOVE gift certificates, everyone does! I also love donations to charities in my name.
  • REGIFT. This is a touchy issue, but I think its eco friendly! If someone buys you something you won't use, but know someone who will, why not pass it on? In the past I have had a cupboard full of beauty products that I never EVER used, and threw out after a few years collecting dust. Selling on ebay is another option. Can be considered rude, but so is putting no thought into a gift IMO.

  • Gift packs are a great idea, but they usually come with a LOT of unnecessary packaging. Why not make your own?

So whats GREEN about dressing your cat up in your child's new dress? Nothing. But its fricken HILARIOUS!!

----> Buttefly wouldn't let me try it on HER

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas, and have some ideas on how to make your next one GREENER!


1 comment:

  1. aahh,you always inform me+make me laugh,you are such good value!+yes,the cat is freaken hilarious!!