Christmas is known by many as the most wonderful time of year, but it’s not always the best time for our planet. From food waste to unwanted presents – our Christmas cheer often comes at a price for our precious planet.
Want to enjoy the holiday while doing your bit for nature too? Here’s five ways you can make more mindful choices during the silly season. Because bringing about more cheer this season shouldn’t cost the earth.
1. Green your gifts
When it comes to gifts, it’s important to think outside the box. Want to steer clear of crowded malls and long queues this year? Give these ideas a go:
- Gift experiences (we're talking bungee jumping, lunch dates, massage voucher... the list goes on)
- Homemade baking - like these delicious Mindful Gifting Recipes!
- Locally made and sustainably sourced gifts. Need help getting started? Choose local with these 10 best-loved Kiwi brands
2. Wrap creatively
These 5 sustainable wrapping options made a great alternative to single-use non-recyclable wrapping paper:
- DIY wrapping paper with newspaper and brown string.
- Making Christmas cards from scrap pieces of using materials from your favourite second-hand shop
- Sending e-cards
- Reusing old wrapping paper
- Steer clear of cello tape – Instead use ribbons strategically to fasten the wrapping paper around the gift
3. Get cosy in the kitchen
Cutting back on plastic? A homemade gift is the way to go. Try these helpful tips:
- Buy ingredients from your local bulk bin store
- Choose local vendors that let you bring your own food containers – great for avoiding single use packaging
- Reduce waste by storing leftovers in your fridge or freezer
- Keep separate bins for compost and recycling – to ensure you’re disposing your waste appropriately
4. Deck the halls with bells of (reused) holly
Every year the theme is red and green, twinkling lights, and Santa Claus. So why not choose to reuse? While decorations maybe important for creating the Christmas ‘feel’, there’s plenty of ways to light up your space with the planet top of mind. Give these options a go:
- Purchase sturdy, durable decorations that will last
- Repair your decorations
- Reuse what you have
- Purchase decorations from second hand stores (or swap with friends and family)
- DIY decorations – we love foraging rosemary and lavender for sustainable decorations that smell oh so Christmasy too
5. Bike, bus, or offset your transport
Reducing your carbon emissions this Christmas? Whether you’re seeing loved ones who live nearby or travelling overseas, get from A to B guilt-free with these transport methods:
- Offset your carbon emissions when you fly (I recommend Ekos and Cool Effect)
- Bike or walk to Christmas events (if it's possible)
- Carpool with loved ones
- Use public transport (if available on Christmas day)
Whether it’s shopping local, going DIY or switching up your transportation, there’s lots we can do for our planet’s sake this silly season.
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