Green & Well Christmas

For you, your family and mother earth

In these challenging times for our little planet, we all try to think about creating less festive waste, so we believe, some inspirations for a more conscious Christmas celebration won’t go astray. But what about our bellies? At a time when so many dietary rules head out the celebration window, how can we look after our own and our guests’ wellbeing?

Avoid the bloat and belly kickback

Before planning your Xmas fare, think about your own, your family’s and guests’ dietary differences. Can you source everything you need fresh, natural and organic form local farmers with enough pre-ordering and planning? Organic meats are still in short supply, especially at this time of year. Who needs gluten free? Anyone dairy free or nut free on your guest list? Anyone particularly sensitive to preservatives and non-natural food additives? Don’t forget the wine, can you buy organic or biodynamic with no or low preservatives? Anyone need non-alcoholic wine? Be careful with visiting children. Children climbing the walls from sugar, colourings and preservative highs do not necessarily help to create a relaxed Xmas time!

For some natural, biodynamic, organic recipe inspirations our new ‘Gaia Spa Cuisine Celebrated Recipes might just come in handy around this time of year. Enjoy!

Wrapping sense

It is so easy to grab fancy wrapping paper at the last minute. Be determined not to this year!

Plain brown papers and bags without inks and hemp string handles or ties look great with a sprig of green. If simple brown paper carry bags are kept throughout the year, you will often have enough good ones of different sizes for Xmas gifts. They can be recycled easily by being used again; can be torn up and go into the compost or paper waste. For keen gardeners they work perfectly for suppressing weeds and making permaculture garden beds. There is always the option when receiving fancy gift bags to carefully store them away and keep them for another special occasion. The #1 rule is, saving the trees and waste processing input and output.

What About the Xmas Tree?

Buying plastic Xmas trees is pretty well an environmental no-no we all know! But buying a pre-cut living tree or a mature tree’s branch, so that we can hang tinsel on it and then work out what to do with the dying pine is not a good option either, especially as burning adds to pollution. So what are our options to indulge our own and our children’s tree fetish for all the good reasons.

Buying potted Xmas pine trees is a great no-harm positive solution. If you have a lot of land, you can plant the new tree every year, creating a wonderful memory wall of green for your children’s future. But most of us with a smaller garden will need to donate the undressed trees to a planting project or keep them trimmed as a potted tree to use each year. To keep a pine at the desired size, cut the growing core stem a few inches under the height you want it to grow to for next year’s use at a 45o angle. Cut the branch closest to it to a similar height and bind the two gently together to discourage the tree from developing forked growth. Then trim the branches further back than you ideally want next year, keeping the cone shape as you go. Look after the pot with water, fertiliser and a quick trim during the year and your potted tree should be looking beautiful and ready to be decked with goodies again when Xmas comes around.

Another great option for small spaces is to nurture your favourite style of potted bush or shrub year round and when it comes to Xmas forget the pines and love up your own Xmas special ‘tree’ with its sparkling décor, voila – a personal interpretation. No hassle no waste. Or get creative, express your own style and invent a totally new tree alternative to suit your space and life. Your tree your way.

Wishing you Well and much Joy this Christmas,

Your Gaia family

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