Christmas is the hardest time of year to be zero waste. Going with the zero waste theme can also help you save money. If you have older kids, tell them to start thinking! What can they make out of other stuff, upcycling can be very fun and rewarding.
There are opportunities for plastic and non-recyclables to enter our lives at every turn. But, if you go in with a plan you can reduce the amount of waste your family produces. The more ways you can create zero waste opportunities, the better is it on your needs for spending.
Have a Plan for Leftovers
One of the biggest ways we waste during the holidays is with leftover food. Have a plan for all of your leftovers or try to only cook exactly what you need during the holidays. Most cooked food will stay good and safe to eat for up to 3 days in the fridge. However, if you grab a set of those freezer to microwave dishes, you can place meals to go in your freezer. It would last a few more weeks doing this, leaving even less waste.
Use Eco-Friendly Biodegradable Glitter
Did you know that glitter is basically just a colorful microplastic? Sadly, this is the case for almost all glitter sold in stores. Only specialty eco-friendly biodegradable glitter is safe for the environment and that can be hard to find except online. So if you can’t get it, go without.
Use Ornaments Made from Natural Materials
If you find yourself in need of some new Christmas ornaments skip the plastic, glitter-covered cheap stuff you’ll find in the big stores and head out into the woods instead. Sticks, pine needles, pine cones, acorns, Ivy, and other things in nature make wonderful decorations.
Avoid Plastic Forks and Knives
If you are not using the silverware you already have in your house this Christmas, do not use the plastic-type. Use bamboo instead of plastic. It looks trendy and nice and you can use them multiple times. Then once done, you bury them as they are biodegradable.
Live Christmas Tree
Instead of using a fake Christmas tree or going to a lot and buying one that has been cut down, why don’t you use a planted tree instead? You can get them when they’re still pretty small and if they’re taken care of you can continue using them for years. So they’re light on the wallet and great for the planet. Plus having this live tree around your home looks and smells nice, while helping to filter out the air too.
Physical gifts might be more exciting to unwrap on Christmas Day but experiences are not only the best gift for the environment, they’re also what people want most these days. So give the gift of a spa day, tickets to an upcoming concert, or even a gift card for Airbnb without fear.
Newspaper Wrapping Paper
If you are giving a physical gift, like toys for children, then wrap them with newspaper. Kids especially love getting gifts wrapped up in the Sunday comics. One way to customize it is to save a newspaper from that person’s birthday
The Gift of Food
Jars full of locally produced honey, homemade jam, and brownie kits are just a few gifts you can give that are zero waste and delicious. Put together everything you need to make cookies in a mason jar and on the tag print out the recipe. These gifts are great for all ages.
When it comes to zero waste, there are so many things you can do to help save money and the environment too. What are some ideas or suggestions you can add?