Monday, December 8, 2008

Green Gift Guide

December 2008 could mark just another holiday season—relatively indistinguishable from the last… Except for the fact that you might be entering the season with a little more motivation to be green and little less cash in the gift-giving reserves.

Which gives you all the more reason to alter—then heed—an old adage: it's the quality of the thought that counts.

This year, spend a little extra time thinking about what you give, how you decorate, and what you serve. Your thoughtfulness will pay dividends, not just to you and your family, but to the planet.
When brainstorming gift ideas, think quality over quantity. Money’s tight, so don’t buy just to buy. Sure, fall-back soaps and candles for her and a T-shirt for him are fine, but why not give quality gifts—ones you feel good about buying and giving?

Buy Local. Look in locally-owned stores for gifts. Shopping at mom and pop stores sends your money right back into your city’s or town’s economy. By doing so, you’re encouraging a vibrant and diverse marketplace right where you live rather than supporting a big box store. Bonus points if the gift you buy is also made locally.

Buy Green. Commit to knowing where the gifts you buy come from, what they’re made of and how they’re made. Plastic products, for example, release harmful toxins into the air in production, leach chemicals into our body when we use them, and stick around for several thousand years once discarded. Try to buy gifts made from sustainable materials that are safe for the gift’s recipient and the planet. Trust us: You’ll feel good about it.

If you’re looking for green toys, check out these Green Toy Company Recommendations.

Still out of ideas? If you can’t think of a good gift to give, could it be because the intended already has too much stuff? If so, why not skip buying him more things he doesn’t need. Give the gift of wellness.


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