Someone has to update Elvis’ Blue Christmas. We’re in the Green movement and it would be nice to have a rendition crooning, “I’ll have a Green, Green, Christmas with you.”
Even without a theme song, we can certainly find some ways to be more conscious during the holidays. Sometimes we get so wrapped up (unintentional Christmas pun) in tradition that we let bad habits take over, like cut trees and paper plates. We have to find a way to celebrate the end of the year while still increasing our green commitment.
Who better to give us advice than the Green Moxie herself, Nikki Fotheringham? Living in Muskoka for the holidays, Nikki spoke about how there was “already so much snow” in November. Her Christmas may end up being white, but she helped us look at many of the aspects of the holidays where we could stand to have a little green inspiration.
1. O’ Christmas Tree.
Nikki had a ton of ideas for how to get your tree fix without cutting down a tree and discarding it come January. The carbon footprint of trees is huge, but this doesn’t mean you have to be without your tradition. She suggested getting a potted tree, calling it the “fashionable” thing to do: “When they get too big for the pots, you can plant that tree. Obviously, it’s more expensive, but when you factor in the cost of five cut trees, it’s worth it.”
As a bonus, the needles won’t fall off. If you think you’re in the clear for buying a plastic tree, note that it takes six years to offset the carbon and that it will off gas in your house. If you keep it for longer than six years, great.
If you like a new look every year, try making one of Nikki’s amazing upcycled trees. We were especially grooving on the tree made out of books. Nikki laughed, “It’s still made of wood, technically!”
2. Winner, Winner, Christmas Dinner.
3. Getting to Christmas.
4. Make Your Own Christmas Decorations.
5. Use Pinecones & Cedar to Decorate the Table.
6. Wrapping Goes Beyond Paper.
7. Christmas Cards Can be Brought into this Century.
8. Use Your Drippings for a Greater Good.
Turkey drippings that are normally added to gravy can be halved or cut out entirely. Nikki suggests mixing the fat with birdseed and putting it outside: “They really need that fat in the winter.” Just call her Cinderella.
If you find some familial resistance with your green intentions, Nikki suggests explaining these tweaks will save money. You just might sell your most defiant aunt on your book tree.