Avoiding Waste at Christmas Time

Christmas is such a magical time, and with it fast approaching you may be wondering about how to avoid the amount of waste you make on this special day. With all of the food, drinks, presents and general hype that goes into this time of year, there are quite a few ways that you can think outside of the box and not buy into the pointless gift-giving and disposable mentality that washes over us every December.

In terms of reducing the amount of physical waste you create this year, here are a couple of things to consider:

  • For that fabulous Christmas day lunch/dinner, be sure to either use your regular washable plates, cutlery and glasses, but if that’s going to be a huge hassle, do your best to AVOID buying single use plastics. Look for recycled, compostable paper plates, cutlery, cups and straws!
  • Try to source 100% recycled wrapping paper, or better yet, use leftover paper you already have! Plain, brown, recycled paper can also look cute and simple, and be jazzed up with some ribbon if you are missing the festive flair. If you have children, getting them to do drawings on paper and using that to wrap gifts to loved ones is also a really cute and unique option!
  • Writing your to-and-from directly onto your wrapped presents can also save the need for stickers. A lot of Christmas wrapping paper is not actually recyclable, so be sure to check what you’re buying and what it’s life span is going to be before it hits the bin

In terms of one of the most exciting parts of Christmas (um, of course it’s presents), there are ways that you can avoid the trap of buying-for-the-sake-of-buying, and gifting people things that will sit on a shelf for two months before being turfed out.

I challenge you to change up your gift-giving this year. If you have some stellar ideas about some physical items to give to someone as gifts, that’s great, and bonus points if it’s a practical thing, but I’m going to ask that you branch out this year, and give the gift of an experience.

Giving an experience doesn’t have to be an overly complex thing. It can be as simple as writing in a Christmas card that you would love to take someone out for a special dinner, redeemable by them in the next 3 months. Or it can be a voucher for an experience from somewhere like Groupon, Scoopon or Red Balloon. The opportunity to give someone an experience is widely available and such a unique approach to gift-giving that reduces all of the ‘stuff’, and allows thoughtfulness and initiative to shine through.

If you’re still scratching your head for ideas, here are a few that are local to Perth, but I’m sure are similarly available in your hometown:

  • A lunch cruise along the Swan River
  • A Cabernet & Canvas class.
  • A sunrise hot air balloon ride in Northam
  • Voucher for a massage (there are always loads on Scoopon & Groupon!)
  • Book a weekend near a lovely winery
  • A twilight cruise on the ocean with bubbly
  • Hand-made voucher for a breakfast date in the Swan Valley
  • Book tickets for a day trip to Rottnest for some snorkelling adventures
  • A voucher for indoor rock climbing, laser tag or a trampolining place
  • Book a ‘Boozy Brunch’ at a local restaurant
  • Tickets to a funky Fringe World show or a voucher for an upcoming event

As you can see, there are loads of experiences out there that would be perfect for gifting this Christmas. It will not only help to reduce the amount of “stuff” exchanged, but actually help your loved ones to feel valued in that you want to spend some quality time with them not only on a predetermined day of the year.

The memories made through these experiences are the things that will be held most dear to their heart, and will long outlive a pair of earrings or a bottle of cologne. So consider changing it up this year, I am positive you wont regret it.

Happy Silly Season!

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