As the festive season draws closer we would like to take this time to give you our tips on making this season a wholesome period whilst minimising your impact on Earth.
I have always loved Christmas however it is concerning that a time with so much joy, happiness & love can create such a negative impact on our natural environment. As early as October we begin to see the influences of the Christmas marketing creeping in around us, and by December I feel as though we bombarded with things we "must have" on or before Christmas. With the festive season so commonly being associated with excessive consumption & a push for consumerism, here are our tips to bring your festive back to a time to slow down, cherish your time with family & friends and be kind to yourself & Mother Nature.
Gift giving is essentially a gratuitous action & throughout the festive season it often feels as though we need to buy 'things' to show your gratitude to those around you. Offering thanks should be a meaningful exchange & as we begin to get closer to Christmas it can be easy to get caught up in buying gifts that don't truly convey this message. Before you buy a gift always ask someone if they need something, or if you want to keep it a surprise ask someone close to them. Because let's be honest we've got at least one of those presents that we just don't know what to do with. If you don't want to ask but still would like to give something why not try something a little more personal like writing a hand-written letter telling them why you are grateful to have them in your life or baking them something you know they love.
If you receive a gift but you feel as though it's not something you need in your life then please don't just throw it in the trash, either find a way to repurpose it or give it to someone you know will truly appreciate it.
If you are giving gifts over the festive season we suggest swapping out your paper wrapping for fabric scraps, old clothes or fabric from the op shop. Sometimes wrapping with fabric can be tricky or not necessarily look as pretty as you would like. Here's a little video that will hopefully help:
Not everything is a perfect shape to wrap either, if you have something that is an odd shape I like to find an old box & put the gift in there. Then you can either just tie some jute string around it & add some dried flowers or wrap the box in your upcycled fabric. With your fabric you can also make bags that you can put your gifts into & keep using them for years to come. Our grandma still has her beautiful fabric bags from when we were babies!
With our celebrations & festivities often being focused around food (no complaints here!) we can often end up with excessive amounts that end up going to waste & lots of plastic packaging. So firstly with your food Keep. It. Simple. I cannot stress this enough! Growing up I remember our Mum putting on huge spreads for Christmas and not only was it always too much food but she also seemed to spend most of the day cooking & cleaning. We still love to a great spread for Christmas lunch & dinner but not at the expense of our relaxation time. Take the time to make a good plan of what you're going to eat over the day/s so you can buy as much as you can in bulk to reduce your packaging waste. In your plan try to make as much of your foods as you can, again this will reduce your packaging waste & everything is better when it's homemade! When choosing your fruit & veg think about what's seasonal & local to your area, this means you'll reduce the food kilometres & associated carbon footprint of your delicious meals! Here's a great resource if you live in Australia http://seasonalfoodguide.com/ or go to your local markets & buy your fruit & vegetables directly from the buyer. Don't forget your cloth bags & reusable shopping bags!
Kel & I hope these will help you create a sustainable & wholesome festive period, please remember that we're always here if you need any help or more tips.
With love & positivity,
Kel & Em x x
Cover image courtesy of @classbento