It's the holiday season! Although it's the best time of the year, it's easy to get overwhelmed with buying the perfect gifts, making sure there's enough food (always!), and being present with your family. With all of the sugar plums, gumdrops, and to-do lists dancing around in your head, it's far too easy to overlook your sustainable values. That's why we're here to help! Here are 10 easy ways to add a little more green into your Christmas!
1. Use The Staheekum Gift Box
Most of the time you focus so much on what is inside of the box that you totally forget about the box itself! The next few tips are all about what you use to keep the gift a surprise. Our customers LOVE buying slippers for their friends and family so much that we wanted to offer a gift box. They are made entirely of recyclable materials while being customizable with a handwritten note inside - yes, we do handwrite them for you!
BONUS - if you didn't know, each pair of slippers you buy from our website is a tree planted around the world with our friends at Trees For The Future. What more could you ask for?!
Shop our gift boxes: https://www.staheekum.com/pages/gift-box
Shop men's collection: https://www.staheekum.com/collections/men
Shop women's collection: https://www.staheekum.com/collections/women
Shop kid's collection: https://www.staheekum.com/collections/kids
2. Reuse Newspaper
This is a classic one. Not many of us are still running out to the driveaway to get the newspaper each morning, but if you do (or know someone who does), this is a great way to reuse it! Simply choose your favorite pages (the comics section is always a good choice) and use it as you would any wrapping paper. Your presents will stand out under the tree, and maybe your friends and family will get a laugh out of it too!
3. Make Your Own Wrapping Paper
This one lets you get a little more creative. First, you need to buy butcher paper in bulk. It's typically inexpensive and can be found at almost any store that sells craft items. Next, visit your local thrift store and find the stamps - yes, stamps! You'd be surprised at how many they will have. Third, take everything home, wrap your gifts, and get stamping! So customizable and a great way to show off your creativity to your friends and family.
4. Make Your Gifts At Home
Christmas has become more focused on getting and giving than what is really important: family and connection. It's hard to not spend hundreds of dollars (even though you can't afford it) just so you can give the perfect gift. However, that's not what this season is about! Your people will be thankful that you got them anything at all, and they mostly just want to spend quality time with you anyway. Save your money, invest in crafts or ingredients rather than another electronic, and give them something homemade this year. If you don't know where to start, Pinterest has it all!
5. Shop Local
We've been hearing this for years, but it's even more important in 2020. Small or local businesses are relying on their customers to survive this holiday season. They put their heart into each item they sell, and they love what they get to do each day. (Fun fact: we are a small family owned business!) Most of the time, you can find one of a kind things that will make perfect present for the people you love. Even Google is prioritizing small businesses this year to help you find ones near you- so cool! Search online, or wander around your favorite shopping center. Find that perfect present and support someone's dream!
6. Use Thrifted Or Homemade Decorations
We usually think about going to the thrift store for clothes, but they have tons of great home decor too! Buying secondhand decreases the amount of waste in landfills and the amount of new items that need to be made. These decorations will come with love and character, no matter what you find! You can even make garlands from your favorite dried citrus fruits. Looks cute and you might already have them in your house! BONUS: this will help you save money too!
7. Christmas Tree Alternatives
This is an important one. The Christmas tree tends to be the center of all the gatherings - besides the kitchen. It's the focal point of your home during this time, and everyone notices it! Here are a few sustainable ways to have a tree this year...
If you are in the Seattle area, buy from this sustainable, family owned business: https://www.picktheperfecttree.com/
If you are in the New York City area, you can rent a tree and other decorations: https://www.rent-a-christmas.com/
Search for similar businesses in your area to get your sustainability on!
OR if you don't need a full sized tree, just turn any houseplant you already have in your home into a Christmas tree. Add some lights and a few ornaments, and you're done!
8. Christmas Card Alternatives
With the Facebook/Instagram/social media era in full force, the Christmas card is mostly unnecessary at this point. However, it's still nice to keep the tradition alive, so here are a couple options for you...
Plant-able Christmas cards:
https://www.bloomin.com/product-category/cards-gifts/seed-paper-holiday-cards/ (They even have seed gift tags!)
https://shop.freetheocean.com/products/plantable-greeting-card-sending-hugs (each purchase removes 10 pieces of plastic from the ocean!)
OR if you don't like sending physical cards, create e-cards or just stick to updating your friends on social media. No waste!
9. Go Meatless
Usually the bird or roast beast is the center of attention on the dinner table, but 2020 is changing things up, so why don't you? Fun fact: if each person cuts just a quarter of the meat out of their diet, we'd save 82 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions per year!
Try some of these recipes this year: https://www.delish.com/holiday-recipes/christmas/g3140/vegetarian-christmas-dinner/
10. Don't Waste Food
This shouldn't be too hard. Eating leftovers is almost as satisfying as eating the meal itself. If you aren't into leftovers, consider donating them!
Check out our Thanksgiving leftover blog for some recipe ideas: https://www.staheekum.com/blogs/news/5-creative-thanksgiving-leftover-recipes
Keep up with us on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/staheekum/