I will roll in with my Christmas post #1. As the holiday season quickly approaches, we all start to think of the gifts we wish to get for our friends & family. We start planning how our holiday tables will look like as well as what decorations we will pick for this year’s Christmas tree. I love this time of the year. However, there is another, less joyful side of winter holidays. We have mass production, consumerism overflow and endless amounts of waste which most likely will be accumulated throughout the festive period. The question is what can we do? How can we make this Christmas less wasteful. No need to worry, i am not the Grinch here. I will not say cancel all the festivities. Here are simple, but smart tips to make less waste.
1.No more cards. Yes, you heard me. Do not get me wrong, i love writing them. But it is completely a waste of paper. Precious paper i may add. Instead, choose digital cards, or no cards at all. Words are much powerful when you express them eye to eye. If you can’t give up the idea of writing a Christmas card, try re-use your old ones. I have a huge pile of beautiful and close to my heart cards that i have received throughout the years and most of them have one side which is completely blank. Simply cut the side that has words on it and re-use the one with the beautiful image, writing your small message on the back. I hope you got the idea.
2.Your old decorations are perfectly fine. There’s no need to get new ones. We often get attracted by all the shiny new Christmas displays and decorations. We think we need to have new colour baubles and other decorative peaces. This year try to think differently and work with what you have. If you have no stash of Christmas decorations whatsoever, try to find second hand festive decorations and go as minimal as possible.
There is also so much inspiration within the nature:pine cones, tree branches, cinnamon sticks and what not. These earthy materials could perfectly work as table decorations. No cost and no waste as they can be easily thrown back to nature.
3.Re-think your food list and plan ahead to avoid food waste. Food waste is a big issue when it comes to Christmas holidays. Americans alone waste around 45% food during holiday season. I believe you have witnessed this within your home. Nobody wants to eat leftovers 3 days in a row. Make sure to take time and plan ahead all your festive meals and nibbles. Do not overload your trolly.
4.Use Christmas lights wisely. I was guilty of this one for sure. Sparkling lights bring so much cosiness and you just want to keep them on as long as you can. Don’t. Twinkle lights tend to consume up to 90% more electricity than normal lights. Save our energy resources, save your cash.
5. Be creative when it comes to wrapping presents. Better, think, is there any need to wrap them at all? Would a present loose its meaning if you don’t wrap it? I do not think so. If you still would like to wrap your presents, try these ideas: 1.Reusable gift bags that can be used over and over again. 2.Reusing your piles of newspapers or old artwork / documents. 3.Wrapping present in fabric. 4. Use cotton strings for wrapping instead of plastic tape. The other alternative is recycled tape.
6.Do not feel bad for not keeping your gift. If you have received an item that you for sure are not gonna use, make it a priority to find another owner for it. Do not accumulate things that you don’t need or want. Bring back to the shop and exchange for something else (if you have this option), re-gift to someone else or simply donate to charity.
7. Avoid excess shopping. I know shops do a great marketing job by putting beautiful things into their display windows. We think we need this or that. It is easy to fall into this ‘buying’ trap. Be smart this year. Have a list of people you want to give gifts to this year and what you want to get them, stick to it. Do not overbuy.
Being conscious during festive season is harder than ever, i know. There are so many temptations. However, it feels so damn good to know that you can shift your old habits and make this year’s holiday season less wasteful. I hope these tips where helpful. I will be back with Christmas post #2 shortly. In the meantime, you can always check my beginner’s zero waste guide for more useful tips.
Much love ♡
A travel & environmental blog for the adventurous soul.
Aiming to share my globe-trotting life and inspire you to explore this beautiful world with a little bit more compassion…