During the holiday season, which is full of festivities of all kinds, let’s keep our relationship to the earth in mind. There are so many legitimate options nowadays to go green; everything from buying live Christmas trees we can later plant, to choosing biodegradable, compostable, or even edible dinnerware to serve our holiday party treats on. No matter the ilk of your holiday celebration, if it involves gift giving, use your imagination. There are many options for purchasing or creating unique, sustainable gifts that won’t end up in a landfill.
The Gift of Your Time
If you don’t have a lot of buying power, or you just don’t feel like contributing to the rampant consumerism that has coopted the spirit of the holidays, consider giving the gift of your time. Create festive coupons for your time, be it an hour, a day, or a weekend. The time can be spent supporting a charity, helping with a household project or any other imaginative way you, or the receiver, chooses.
Support a Cause
Consider gifts that directly support a cause you believe in. Purchase gift memberships to organizations that are dedicated to preserving and protecting the environment, wildlife, or another cause that you and your family and friends want to endorse. Many of these organizations have online gift catalogs with products and unique options, such as adopting an endangered species animal in someone’s name.
For friends and family who don’t want to accumulate more stuff, think about providing them with an experience they would enjoy. Holistic treatments such as massage, acupuncture and chiropractic help loved ones with self-care. Movement classes such as dance, Nia, Pilates and rock climbing are popular options. How about a cooking class, throwing pottery, or painting together? Instead of just purchasing a bottle of wine as a gift, consider giving the experience of a wine tasting. For family and friends that want to be active perhaps kayak school or sailing lessons.
There is also the time-honored tradition of giving food. Any kind of homemade goodies are always well received. If you are not a cook you can still give food gifts, such as baking jars or potted herbs that can be grown indoors from seed. How about giving a membership share in a CSA or paying for a year of a pick-up composting service?
If you are purchasing physical products, consider buying recycled or upcycled versions. Everything from clothes, to jewelry to household items to sustainable tech gadgets can be found in eco-friendly versions. Think about supporting local artists and businesses or purchasing from B corporations and companies who engage in giving back to the community in some way.
These are just a few ways to stay in alignment with the values of sustainability during the coming holiday season. Share your creative ideas on our E.P.I.C. Social Media Links or leave a comment below. Happy Holidays!