- Get a real tree. Ideally, one grown locally as opposed to say... shipped to a Home Depot near you. Not only will your home smell like lovely pine without any artificial sprays or candles, but you are contributing to a business that is good for the planet. I know, I know: Instinct dictates that cutting down trees = bad. But that isn't exactly the case in the business of Christmas trees because higher demand = more trees planted. Christmas tree farms are a big business. We're talking about 56 million trees bought each year that grew and absorbed carbon dioxide for 5-16 years before gettung tied to the roof of your car. Read all about it in an earlier year's post, "Purchase the Pine, People." (By golly gosh, those are some cute sisters in that picture!)Of course, purchasing the tree - roots and all - to be replanted after the holidays is the absolute greenest of the green but not everyone has the land for that.
- Make your own gift tags from last years Christmas cards. Or email me to receive a bag full of them for free in exchange for donating your old cards. Each year, JustSaying gives our home-made, re-purposed tags to friends and family and they are always a hit.
- Consider purchasing gifts that give back through organizations like the World Wildlife Fund. Not only will you be donating to an important cause, you'll get on the mailing lists for similar organizations that send out holiday-themed return address labels and wrapping paper made from recycled materials (and a request for a small donation).
- As far as online shopping,Amazon is one of our favorites because of their eco-friendly frustration-free packaging. If you can't find what you are looking for on there, be sure and sign up for an account on your favorite sites so that you can save items in your cart until all your purchasing is complete and can be sent in a single shipment. Save yourself the shipping fees and save the packing materials and shipping miles.
- Use LED lights and put them on a timer. If you aren't fond of the bright-white, grab a colorful strand instead.
If you've got any tips for the season, please feel free to share them in the comment section as this is the first of several holiday posts.