The latest UN Climate Report stated that personal consumption is by far the greatest contributor to global climate change. If you stop to think about all the raw materials, manufacturing, transportation, and packaging that goes into each and everything we buy, you can understand why this is so. And then there is the long term waste issue. Look around your home, virtually everything will someday end up in a landfill (including much of the house itself).
Christmas is a good time to rethink our consumption and reframe our choices with the earth’s health in mind. For this Christmas and Christmases to come, consider gifting these:
Gift certificate for a nice night out at a local restaurant.
Tickets to a sporting event or concert
A weekend away at a spa or Airbnb
We live in a virtual culinary Eden, wrap up some of our fantastic local cheeses, honey, olive oil, etc. etc.
Subscription to a local CSA
If you’re a baker, what about gifting a pie or cake or a dozen cookies a month for a year?
Gift certificate to a refill outlet.
Make a homemade household cleaner (see Green Tip #10 on the St. Andrew website) or washable scrubby (scrubby yarn can be purchased online or in craft stores)
Live tree or houseplant
Gift certificate to a local nursery
Seeds for a spring or summer garden
Wrap up some Monopoly money for the recipient to select the charity of their choice.
Contribute to local charities such as SOS, FISH, Boys and Girls Club in the recipient’s name
Sign up for a beach or river clean up day (California Coastal Commission Clean up day)
An e-book purchased from a local bookstore.
A gift subscription to an on-line magazine or newspaper
Subscription to a daily devotional or reflective reading
If a toy is plastic, check to see if it’s made from recycled plastic
If a toy is wood, check to see if it’s made from a sustainable forest product
Mattel, Hasbro, and Lego have a used toy return programs. Some returned toys are recycled into new products and some are cleaned and donated.
Here are some resources: Reviewed.com
And finally, reusable wrapping Part 2: Purchase Christmas themed fabric (this will be on sale now or soon) and cut into squares and/or rectangles and use for wrappings that can be reused year after year. Consider ribbon that can be reused or Raphia (which can be put in your compost bin).
The Mission Committee wishes you a Merry Christmas and a Green New Year!