10 Steps to an Eco-Conscious Holiday Season

The holidays are upon us! While this is absolutely my favorite time of the year, there is a lot of…everything coming our way. From shopping to hosting to traveling to baking to eating and more, it is game on from now through New Year’s. This year, while we’re celebrating it all, let’s take a moment to consider some easy steps we can take to reduce our carbon footprint and enjoy a more eco-conscious holiday season.

I’ve gathered inspiration from evee Life, an eco-conscious lifestyle platform that helps people make more purpose-full choices. With their current #ChargeforChange campaign, evee Life seeks to help consumers find things they can do every day that are better choices for a greener earth through education, motivation and support. And there is no better time to be a conscious consumer than during the holiday season! Read on for ideas and inspiration.

  1. Reusable Shopping Bags. Headed out for Black Friday shopping? Us too! This year I’m packing a bigger purse and stashing a bunch of soft reusable bags (like these nifty ones from BeeGreen) in it so we can fill them as we cruise the mall.
  2. Refillable Coffee Mugs. Speaking of Black Friday shopping, the only way I power through the early morning (and actually pretty much all of the busy season!) is with the help of caffeine. I keep two of my beloved leak-resistant Yeti mugs in constant rotation so if one is being washed, I can grab the other for my car and errands.
  3. Carpool with a friend. Speaking of errands, don’t live in a place where walking your to-do list is an option? Consider grabbing a buddy and going together. Our closest Costco is a decent distance away, so I love making the trek with a friend–a chance to catch up on chatting AND our shopping lists while saving on gas? Win-win-win!
  4. Gift bags, or better yet, those fancy Japanese Furoshiki wraps that can be used again and again. No need to waste wrapping paper and tape. BONUS TIP (take the time to fold and resuse tissue paper…it’s worth it!)
  5. Think experiences over items. Rather than gift someone an item they don’t really need or want, consider giving them a coupon or voucher for an experience. We have started doing this far more with tween and teenager, as there are very few things they actually need. This year we bought them tickets to a special show (it’s a surprise, so I can’t spoil it!). For a friend, you might let her know you are taking her for lunch in January after the hustle and bustle of the season die down. Meaningful time together is always a win over more stuff in my book.
  6. Go ahead and lower that thermostat. I know…as someone who is always cold, this can be a hard sell. But the holiday season is the perfect time for grabbing a cup of hot cocoa and snuggling under blankets to watch a movie. I’ll just be keeping my stash of cardigans at the ready 
  7. Hosting a holiday gift exchange? Consider making it an exchange of items you already own. This can be silly gifts (like the 80s-style fanny pack you will never again touch) or items that would genuinely be appreciated–in either new or good condition (the hot best-selling book you loved but are happy to pass on).
  8. Go homemade. I am NOT suggesting this is the time of year to pick up a new hobby, but if you have one you enjoy that is soothing and crafts something giftable…go for it! Knitting scarves relaxes me and makes great gifts. This could also be something cute and easy with the kids that doubles as an activity for them and a gift on your list. I will never forget the year my sister made a canvas wreath of my kids’ handprints!
  9. Buy eco-conscious brands. This will take more work and planning, but the value of reducing your carbon footprint is worth it. See EveeLife for some great brand ideas!
  10. Don’t buy Christmas ornaments. You can make your own easy ornaments and garland (popcorn and cranberries!), or just hang small candy canes, other treats, or even little gifts that will be eaten or used. Going back to my knitting hobby, one of the coolest trees I’ve seen was decorated with balls and strings of yarn–all of which could be used after Christmas was over!

Inspired? Listen, friends, I am the most holiday-overwhelmed ilk of person I know, but so many of these things are not only super-easy swaps that take little to no time but actually kinder to your budget (always a concern come this time of year!)–you can do this!

About the Author

Meredith blogs at The Mom of the Year, where she dedicatedly earns her title one epic parenting fail at a time, offering quick, relatable laughs for fellow parents and all their empathizers. She has been part of several best-selling anthologies, featured on prominent sites such as Huffington Post, In the Powder Room and BlogHer, and loves her role as the Executive VP/Operations Manager of The BlogU Conference. When she’s not breaking up fights over Legos and juice boxes, she remains fully committed to sharing a less serious look at the world of parenting.

By evee Life Contributor

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