Here's some thoughts on a less wasteful Christmas season, in plenty of time for you to change your habits starting right now!
GIFT WRAP ALTERNATIVES
From Country Living
- Vintage documents (maps, sheet music, magazines, newspapers, book pages). Look in your attic, the junk drawer, a box in your basement...I'm sure you can find something that will work and look awesome.
- Fabric scraps
- Gift bags from last year (seriously, where do all these go if you don't save them??) or the rest of the roll of wrapping paper you had to have
- Reusable packaging (give a loaf of bread in a bread pan, or cookies in a cute basket)
From Country Living
- Reusable items such as Christmas ornaments, hair bows, or small toys (we do this, especially when we find a cute Christmas ornament that we think would be perfect for the recipient...it gets tied to the top of their gift)
- Natural elements (dried flowers, pine cones)
- Bundled cinnamon sticks (how awesome would that smell? I'm definitely trying this one, though I'm not sure how the dog is going to react to that, and those gifts may go out of her little reach)
TREE ORNAMENTS OR DECORATIONS
- Old jewelry
- Small stuffed animals or toys (how cute would this be in a child's bedroom?)
- Cookie cutters (we hang a bundle of cookie cutters in the kitchen with a pretty red ribbon)
- Toy cars (again, great for a kid's room...my nephew would love this)
- Food stuff...again with the cinnamon sticks, stringing popcorn or cranberries, gingerbread cookies
- Save the discarded gift bags that people don't take home for next year (see above).
- instead of tossing the discarded wrapping paper, run it through a shredder...the shredding makes really great packing material for the next year (and it's coordinated!).
- Recycle whenever you can...cans, paper, plastics, and so on
- Use cloth cleaning towels
- Don't let leftover food go to waste if you won't eat it. We always have too many cookies or an extra pie, so I'll give them to a neighbor who doesn't have much family, bring them to work (a nursing home) to share with the residents, or figure out a family from church or the community who needs a little boost (maybe someone who just lost a loved one, or who has a new baby, or who is recently out of work)
Happy Thanksgiving Monday, all!