The Gerber Life Parenting Blog

Going Green for the Holidays

November 15, 2014

pinecone used as holiday decorationThere’s never a better time to start teaching children about going green than during the holidays. You’ve probably already discussed with your kids some of the basic ways to be environmentally friendly, such as recycling glass and paper.




Here are some more ways toward a greener holiday season for you and your family to try:


Donate toys to a charity. Children inevitably clamor for new toys even though they may have a bucket of “old” ones, so use this opportunity to teach your kids about donating toys to charity. The added benefit: reducing clutter in your home. Also, remember to recycle toys that aren’t  in good enough condition to be donated.


Put empty milk cartons to good use. Instead of tossing them out with the recycling, try reusing the cartons by turning them into bird feeders to attract winter birds or by re-purposing them in other creative ways.


Use “green” gift wrapping. Newspapers have long been a go-to green solution for wrapping paper. Another green solution is to hide an unwrapped present somewhere in your home and give a treasure map for finding it to the recipient. For a more traditional approach, reuse empty cookie and popcorn tins as gift containers.


Create holiday cards on your handheld tablet. Drawing apps abound for iOS, Android and Windows-based tablets. iOS users rate Sketchbook Express and Concepts: Smarter Sketching among their favorites. You can use such programs to create holiday eCards with your child. And, in the process, you can teach your child about color schemes, technology and saving paper.


Make nature-based ornaments. You can use glitter, glue and paper to decorate a tree without spending a bundle on glass ornaments. For example, coat pinecones with glitter to make sparkling ornaments or table decorations.  Also use fallen leaves as stencils for ornaments by outlining the leaf, filling the inside with glue, and coating it with glitter. Be sure to shake loose glitter off over a trash bin to avoid a mess.


Happy green holidays!


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