It’s that time of year again. We’re all madly going out and shopping for our friends and family to give them gifts for one holiday or another. Here are some eco-friendly tips to think about this holiday season.
Be a green shopper
When you’re out running around, try to do as much shopping as you can in one day and with as little driving as possible. This is one of the few times I’m going to say this, but malls are great for this. All those stores in one place! And don’t forget to take your reusable bags!
Give the gift of second-hand
If you haven’t already found out, second-hand stores like Goodwill and thrift stores are a great place to go clothes shopping. You do have to make sure the clothes are in good shape, but most places make sure of that before putting it out. You can buy a lot more for a lot less. They also have other items that are good for around the house like furniture, appliances, and even books.
Speaking of books, they are another great second-hand find! My favorite place to go is Half-Price Books. They have books, magazines, CDs, DVDs, even video tapes! All at half the price or less. Like with clothes, you want to make sure they’re in good condition. In going to these stores, you’ll find things that may not have been in stores for a while and really make someone’s day.
Don’t have much money? I understand that feeling! No one says you have to go out and buy things! Homemade gifts have more meaning since you took the time to make it for them. Candles are a great, versitile, and easy gift. Just make sure to use soy or beeswax and lead-free wicks. Baked goods are another great gift. Or you can put together jars with all the dry ingredients ready to go and the recipe attached. I’ve mainly seen recipes for ‘cookies in a jar’, but it would work with bread, brownies, maybe even pie crust.
Wrapping up those goodies
Using gift bags is something I picked up from my mom. She would always take care of the ones she was given and then reuse them for gifts later. She actually has one specifically for family birthdays that gets used for every birthday.
I’m sure there’s lots of eco-friendly and recycleable wrapping paper out there. Check with your local recycling center to see if they recycle wrapping paper.
Another way to go is wrapping it in another part of the gift. Wrapping things in shirts, scarves, and handkerchiefs are a great way to cut down on trash and add to the present.
Or you could do what I’m doing, get reusable bags. I went to Whole Foods and picked up 5 Feed 100 bags to use as presents and wrapping this year. There’s also the added bonus of the fact that profits from each bag are used to feed 100 kids. I have helped 500 kids get fed with just one purchase. So everyone’s getting 3 parts to their gifts from me. The really nice reusable bag, the fact that it’s feeding 100 kids, and whatever I get for them.
Whatever you do, make sure to enjoy the holidays with your friends and family and be safe in all your traveling around!