This is the season to be jolly, so why not make the planet more jolly, too! From gift ideas to being waste free and minimising waste during festivities, we share our favourite tips for making sure your Christmas is environmentally friendly and thoughtful.
With so much joy, food, presents and celebrations, it’s no wonder that rubbish volumes spike over 30% during Christmas – yikes! A pleasant side effect of cutting down on waste is that you also cut on costs.
- Eco conscious gifts
The ultimate anti-consumer’s gift… doesn’t necessarily involve a gift. Give an adventure, an experience, something that you’ve bought tickets to or plans tailored to the person you’re gifting. Here are some non-material experiential gift ideas:
Day hike, massage voucher, concert tickets, camping trip, dinner & movie, day spa voucher or for those who have done everything – you can sponsor a child or donate to a charity on their behalf.
Other Eco gifts include, potted plants, home made jams and baked goods, hand made gifts such as a framed photograph, painting or something from the sewing machine or tool shed!
- Live or Fake tree?
Either option can be conscious of the environment. If you do choose fake tree, purchase a good quality one you will reuse for many years to come. When buying a live tree, either buy one in a pot you can plant somewhere after Christmas, or ensure the chopped tree is from a sustainable source and that you compost it after use.
- Wrapping paper alternatives
Old clothes and fabric cut to size, newspaper can be styled up beautifully with sprigs of rosemary and hemp string, use kids drawings or paintings, pages from an old book or magazine.
- Minimise waste at meal time
Use the good china and crockery, not the throw away kind! Offer guests to take home leftovers (packed in reusable containers), use plants and cuttings to decorate the table rather than store bought items.
Making your own, or having your children make the decorations can be a very special and fun ritual for the family. If you do choose to buy decorations, again, choose quality over quantity so that you can reuse them for years to come. Choose LED decorations and also switch off any lights when you go to bed.
Happy Holidays & Merry Christmas!
Your Gaia Retreat & Spa family