Christmas is a complicated beast. So much expectation and pressure - so much waste and guilt... What happened to the magic? This year in particular, we have financial burdens: Increasing costs of everything; worries about fuel and heat; the cost of petrol for visiting family and friends. The planet is struggling under Consumerism's rule and Capitalism's buy, buy, buy culture. BUT fear not - we're here with some eco-friendly tips to help you have a Christmas that even Ebeneezer himself would feel merry about!
Try paring it back. Make a list of what you actually enjoy about the season? It might be simply mince pies and cream, chilly dog walks with a Santa hat on or watching Love Actually with the cat and a friend who won't moan all the way through like your partner would (can you sense the voice of experience here?). For my kids it is apparently all about advent calendars and waking up and feeling that your stocking is full. None of this needs to cost much or be a burden on the planet. For years Father Christmas has sourced our stocking gifts from charity shops or from the snack section in the grocer's - and there MUST be a clementine at the bottom! You can make or buy zero-waste, zero-plastic, felt advent calendars which you can fill yourself - these are so much nicer than the single-use plastic ones.
A festive feast can be less expensive than you think. Bulk up on the veggies. These are cheap and filling, and to be honest, I think it's more about the trimmings than the centrepiece anyway. Bread sauce is easy to make and will save the planet some extra plastic if you avoid the ready-made stuff. Consider a smaller main dish or go veggie or vegan this year to lower the carbon footprint of the day even further.
If it all gets a bit much, balance yourself by taking a mindful moment and stepping out into nature. A dog is a fantastic excuse to escape the intensity of the day. Don’t forget your Green Poop Bags… we don’t want Rudolph tripping over any yule logs on the pavement 😊
Photo by Amber Aquart