When the whole world is talking about climate change, why should we give it a miss? And because it is the holiday season, there is ever a more reason to use our imagination and make Christmas eco-friendly, fun and thus all the more special.
The possibilities are immense. Small steps can make a big difference. If one million people switch off a 60 watt bulb for one hour, think of the enormous amounts of electricity this would save! And this in turn would help in burning of less coal and wood to produce that electricity and hence less carbon emission, less energy involved in mining activity, less felling of tress….and so on.
Wow! That sounds impressive…and I actually decided to implement it myself before writing a blog on it, and though I cannot see the direct impact of my small gestures, they give me a lot of satisfaction and also fill me with a sense of pride.
Now be warned, Christmas is a time when we tend to splurge. In the euphoria of celebrations, we often indulge in mindless spending, waste and extravagance. Unintentionally we cause enormous harm to mother earth and its climate.
Don’t be perturbed. Follow some of my interesting tips and motivate yourself to gift mother earth a green Christmas. Gifts and Wrapping
Don’t buy gifts, make them. It is not just healthy for our environment, but also creative and interesting. Take out old cards, ribbons, crayons and scissors and create your own signature cards and decorative items.
Either buy local handcrafts and knitwear as gifts, or make your own ones at home. Totally ban plastic from your gift items. You can make different types of home made candies and charm your friends and relatives with your imagination and also save some money! For delicious home made candy recipes click here>>
Make a candle holder out of a tin can or recycled soup and coffee cans. You can use a stencil similarly to carving a pumpkin.
Plant fresh herbs in pots and gift or buy an earthen flower pot, paint some flowers, plant a sapling and gift it to your friend.
Take a discarded cane basket, line it with a soft cloth, fill it with organic fruits and gift it to a friend.
Take an old glass jar, colour it/paint it/ fill it half with marble balls/sea shells that you have at home, put a candle in the middle.
Use newspapers and magazines for wrapping gifts. You can make a collage by sticking together 2-3 types of paper and then use. It looks trendy.
Bake home made cakes and pies. Wrap them in colourful paper and gift them to your near and dear ones. For yummy cake recipes click here>>
Decoupage someone’s favourite photo over a box/container. You can use it as a pen stand.
Create a cookbook of your family’s favourite recipes. You can include your grandma’s special touches, your mom’s favourite tips along with their pics.
Create a photo album full of favourite family photos.
Use discarded jigsaw puzzle to make a photo frame.Food and Party
Miss one party, buy one gift less, switch off a couple of lights. Instead spend a quiet evening with your family in your lawn.
Try to use solar ovens and give barbeque a miss this time. And if you can’t do without it, marinate your food for a longer period for faster cooking.
As a lot of emphasis is on food during the celebrations what is being cooked and how it is being cooked makes a lot of difference. Make sure you only make use of local, fresh, organic and sustainable-sourced ingredients.
Do not use disposable plastic cutlery this Christmas. Plastics are non bio-degradable and take thousands of years to decompose besides polluting water reserves, and entering the food chain and giving rise to many diseases.
Tree and Decoration
Do not buy an artificial Christmas tree. Most of them come from China, are made of petroleum-based chemicals -- some even contain lead -- and they can’t be recycled.
Decorate a living outdoor tree or bring a potted tree indoors. But please, treat it with love and tend it with care.
Make a paper mache Christmas tree out of newspaper.
Re-cycle last year’s decoration material. You can make some attractive hangings for the Christmas tree from discarded gift wrapping papers.
Use new LED lights as they are environment friendly.
Use Soy candles as they do not give soot like paraffin wax candles. You can also use honeybee wax candles as well.