Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Environmentally Friendly Christmas

Holiday Seasons are upon us and as an Anglo-Saxon American, I celebrate Christmas with my family.  The holidays are a time of excess and consumption here in the United States.  It's extremely unfortunate, because the bedrock of Christmas is the Christian holiday, but all of that has changed.  People eat tons of unhealthy food, max out their credit cards to buy gifts, and drive all over the place to get to sales, malls, and various parties.

All of this is a shame and it hurts our precious environment.  Here in New England, where I live, we are having an extremely mild winter so far, which one of my favorite bloggers, An Affordable Wardrobe, touched on this week.  This thrift shopper extraordinaire laments the lack of snow and bone chilling cold of the days of yore, and although it can't be definitively proved that global warming and our pollution is at fault, it can't help.

We do not necessarily need to go as far as Leo of Zen Habit's who is advocating his Buy Nothing Until 2013 Challenge.  There are however some things you can do to limit the impact you have on the environment this holiday season.
  • Consider second hand gifts, such as from a thrift store or eBay
  • Green gifts
  • Make things yourself, people love a personal touch
  • Bring your own bags when you go shopping
  • Support a local business and buy a real Christmas tree and adorn it with homemade ornaments
  • Buy local food in bulk for meals
  • Have a fire with your family, and turn off the lights
  • If Grandma gives everyone ugly Christmas sweaters (or not), turn down the heat!
  • Drive less often, and when you need to go to malls or parties, drive slower!
  • Be careful with waste, always recycle
Obviously, we all can't do all of these, but we should do our best to enjoy the holidays responsibly!

Merry Christmas/Happy Hanukkuh!

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