The holiday season is a time for us to remember how much our friends and family mean to us. We take the time to catch up with the important people in our lives, whether by organizing special dinners, writing Christmas cards or exchanging gifts. This year though, take the time to be thankful for the planet that provides us with food to eat, water to drink and air to breathe. Here are some ideas for Christmas decorating that are fun for the whole family and don’t waste our finite resources.
Christmas Trees may seem like a waste of resources. However, there are ways to make your tree an eco-statement, rather than an eco-disaster. By purchasing a real tree from a small-scale sustainable grower you are actually helping the environment offset carbon emissions. Christmas trees transform carbon into oxygen while they grow and can continue to do so if you replant the tree after Christmas. In fact, returning your Christmas tree to the Earth in your backyard could become your new post-holiday family tradition.
Replace tinsel. Hanging chains made of brightly colored paper scraps is not only a fun family activity that evokes memories of more traditional Christmases, it is also unique way to decorate your home and recycle old paper. Popcorn and cranberry string are also perfect garland substitutes that can be placed in the compost pile after Christmas. String together beads or buttons for interesting tree accoutrements rather than non-biodegradeable tinsel.
Use old scraps of material to create bows for decorations or for present toppers. Instead of throwing out those sequined pants from the 80s or that beautiful prom dress that fit you in high school, cut it up and refashion it into something new. Cut shiny, sparkley or bright fabric into strips to tie up gifts, to decorate chair backs or to tie on the tree.
Convert to LED. These days LED lights use 80-90% less electricity than their counterparts and are becoming more affordable. By absorbing the one time cost of switching over, not only will you save money on your electricity bill during the holidays, but you will also be doing your part to conserve energy. LED lights now come in most colors and styles, so your holiday spirit will shine just as bright but at a fraction of the cost.