Did you know that half of the paper used in the U.S. is used for wrapping and decorating products? Unfortunately this is just one aspect of what can be a very wasteful time of year. While the holidays bring joy to everyone, along with that joy often comes an awfully large amount of waste. In order to reduce that and try some new tactics this year, check out the 100 Year Lifestyle’s guide to doing so.
Recycle Your Christmas Tree
One of the most beautiful aspects of the holiday season is the decorated Christmas tree that resides in a warm cozy home. A symbol of a wonderful holiday, there simply cannot be a Christmas if we don’t have one of those on every street. That being said, the aftermath of the Christmas tree can become wasteful if not disposed of properly.
A surefire solution to cutting down on tree waste is by using an eco friendly fake tree. This is one that can be used year after year with no harm done to the environment. If your favorite scent is the one given off by Christmas trees, there are plenty of balsam-scented candles, air fresheners, and incense to make you feel like you have the real thing.
If you insist on using a real tree, however, find other uses for it once you’re done with it. This could be turning it into a birdhouse or other lawn creation, turning it into compost for the compost pile, drying it out for firewood, or even donating it to a local farm. You might even be able to rent a live tree depending on where in the US you live. There’s always another way instead of simply throwing something away that was once contributing on this planet.
Turning Off Lights
Another mainstay of the jubilant holiday are the classic Christmas lights. Whether you prefer a whimsical burst of blinking multicolored lights, or an elegant all-white look, you must remember to turn them off during the day. The lights don’t do anyone any good while the sun is shining. Not only do they use up a lot of energy, but keeping them on could also lead to frequently changing out bulbs. You guessed it–bulbs are trash. Let your lights shine bright for the dark night ahead!
Send Electronic Christmas Cards
As stated earlier, half of all paper use comes from the holiday season. We live in what could be considered an entirely digital world, so sending physical Christmas cards seems like a waste of time. Your friends and family will appreciate your sentiment just as much if you send them a thoughtful eCard. Not to mention they’ll actually receive it in time for Christmas, unlike years past when cards get delivered by mail!
Donate Leftover Food and Gifts
As unfortunate as it is, there are some people who simply can’t afford an extravagant Christmas dinner, or even presents for their families. If you’re lucky to have enough leftover of both, consider donating them to local shelters in your city. There are plenty of organizations who welcome leftover food and unwanted gifts. Christmas really is all about loving one another and being the best version of yourself. Why not try making the holiday a little brighter for those who need it?
The 100 Year Lifestyle encourages those participating in holiday activities this year to keep the same energy going into 2021. We only have one planet; once it’s gone, there’s nowhere else for us to go. Keep our resources strong, keep our fellow neighbors healthy, and have the happiest holiday season yet.
Find other Moms Across America holiday tips here for great ideas on creating a sustainable holiday!