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Tips to Green Your Holidays
What is most important to you during the Holidays? Family & Friends is the answer heard most often. If we focus on Family & Friends we will likely have a fun and loving Holiday experience. It is also I time to think of others. In the spirit of generosity to our fellow man, here are some ideas on how you can “Green Your Holidays.”
Remember all the stuff you throw away after unwrapping the gifts? All that packaging is wasted material and wasted energy. Of course, we try to recycle it but better if we can jump ahead a few steps by buying gifts with less packaging to start. Here are some easy tips to help you GREEN your Holidays while having fun with Family & Friends:
1) Bring reusable shopping bags with you.
2) Consider buying reusable gift bags. Many of these are made out of recycled materials.
3) Homemade baked goods are a great alternative to nick-knacks.
4) Use the Sunday comics to wrap presents for kids. Plain newspaper with a re-used ribbon work great. Old paper charts work well for the mariner in your family. The 2013 calendar’s pretty pictures wrap small boxes well.
5) Save those red ribbons, Valentine’s Day is just around the corner.
6) Make sure that your Holiday cards & wrapping paper are made from post-consumer recycled content.
7) A Fishing Charter, a Dive Trip, Concert, Museum or Sporting Tickets are great gifts for someone on your list. There is next to no waste and not a lot of wrapping required AND they have the added benefit of time shared together.
8) Buy a live tree and plant if after the Holidays. Your family will always remember that tree. Note: if you live above the frost line make sure to dig the hole while the ground is soft.
9) Turn off your Holiday lights before you go to bed. Upgrade to LEDs when replacing lights.
10) If you are leaving town for the Holidays, turn off your water heater and lower your thermostat to save on heating costs.
AFTER the Holidays
1) Recycle all that paper and cardboard.
2) Cancel any catalogs you do not want to receive.
3) Check with local waste managers to dispose of your tree so that it can be mulched rather than sent to the landfill. Avoid plastic tinsel as it can not be mulched.
Christmas Sailfish courtesy of David Cartee Photography.