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Green Holiday Ideas

December 20, 2011

Winter Farmer's Market, photo from http://www.eatlocal.org

We’ve put together a list of ideas to help keep your holidays green. We would love to hear what you and your family do to make the holiday season a little more sustainable. Send them to us and we’ll be sure to share them on the blog!

FOOD

Many holiday celebrations have food as the centerpiece. Here are some ideas to keep your holiday (and everyday) feasts green!

Eat local! Did you know that the Vancouver’s Farmer’s Market runs a Winter Market? It runs every Saturday from 10 am to 2 pm until April 28, 2012. Closed December 24 and 31. For more details, check out www.eatlocal.org.

Compost your scraps! Many communities in the Lower Mainland have curbside food waste pickup programs. Check out the programs for Vancouver, Burnaby, the North Shore, Richmond, and New Westminster, or check your city’s website for details.

Salvaged wood Christmas tree via http://www.woodwoolstool.com

DECORATIONS

Alternative Christmas trees! Rona has a great list of green holiday tree ideas, many of which are made of recycled materials.  Bonus: some of the ideas are perfect for small spaces that can”t accommodate a traditional tree.

Do It Yourself! Make decorations out of recyclables and other items that you find in your home. Some ideas to get you started can be found at No-Waste Holiday Ideas.

Newspaper wrap via http://www.countryliving.com

SHOPPING AND GIFTS

Reduce emissions! Make a list of what you need before going out, to avoid repeated drives to the store. Walk, bike, or take transit whenever possible. Or, shop online.

Give experiences! Gift certificates or tickets for outdoor adventures, concerts, restaurants, or classes are all fun gifts that won’t end up in a landfill.

Donate! Make a donation to a charitable organization in the recipient’s name, or buy products that support environmental organizations. Charity Village has an extensive list of gifts offered by Canadian non-profits. (You can always make a donation to Growing Chefs!)

Go vintage! Second-hand shops are great places to find one-of-a-kind treasures, and buying second-hand is a greener option than buying new. Most neighbourhoods have a few charity shops — why not check them out?

Get creative with wrapping! Use newspaper, fabric scraps, old maps, magazine ads or other found items instead of store-bought wrapping paper. PlanetPals.com has several templates for making cute gift boxes out of old cereal boxes.

MORE GREEN RESOURCES

The Internet has tons of ideas to make your holidays greener! Some links with helpful tips: Use Less Stuff and No-Waste Holiday Ideas

Happy Holidays!

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