Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Simplify pledge for holiday
PLEDGE TO SIMPLIFY THE HOLIDAYS
This year, I pledge to use the following strategies to simplify my holidays (choose FIVE or more!):
To complete the Challenge, commit to at least FIVE actions. Feel free to write in your own under "Other" as well!
GIVE THE GIFT OF TIME by creating your own gift card for a service (e.g., babysitting, carwashing, petsitting, chores, making dinner, organizing an outing).
GIVE A HANDMADE GIFT like a memoir of cherished memories with that person, a book of family recipes, a collage of pictures and mementos, or a calendar filled with the birthdays and anniversaries of friends and family.
OFFER TO TEACH A SKILL YOU POSSESS (e.g., knitting, photography, computer skills, financial planning, a foreign language, music lessons, canning tomatoes, cooking a favorite recipe).
CONSIDER LESS GIMMICKY, LESS COMMERCIAL GIFTS for children, such as arts/crafts supplies, books, a magnifying glass, or building blocks.
CREATE A PAPERLESS HOLIDAY LETTER on the computer and email it to friends and family. If you do send cards by mail, make your own cards or buy cards made from 100% recycled materials.
HAVE A WHITE ELEPHANT PARTY at the office instead of a traditional gift exchange, where each person brings a wrapped secondhand item in good condition, or do a cookie exchange.
DRAW NAMES IN YOUR FAMILY FOR GIFT-GIVING (for extra fun and surprise, make it "Secret Santas"), so that you can put more time and thought into one gift instead of having to give to several people.
SHOP FOR USED ITEMS for all or most of your holiday gifts (e.g., local thrift store, Craigslist, Freecycle, used products on Amazon or eBay).
SHARE THE GIFT OF MUSIC by caroling, and include visits to elderly neighbors or a nursing home. Or, gather friends and family for an in-home holiday sing-a-long.
GIVE BACK TO YOUR COMMUNITY by preparing care packages for the homeless, or volunteering at an organization to help those in need during the holiday season.
ADOPT A "LESS IS MORE" ATTITUDE toward holiday decorating. Opt for natural trimmings such as clippings from local evergreens and holly bushes.
SAVE PAPER by wrapping gifts in newspaper comics, junk mail, paper bags decorated with markers, old maps, phone books, or other reused paper.
PREPARE YOUR HOLIDAY MEALS with as many seasonal, locally grown, and/or organic foods as possible.
REDUCE JUNK MAIL by removing your name from mailing lists of unwanted holiday catalogs. For more tips on how to do this, go to http://www.newdream.org/programs/beyond-consumerism/avoiding-advertising.
CELEBRATE BUY NOTHING DAY on November 25 (see http://www.adbusters.org/campaigns/bnd) and spend that day doing community service, visiting an elderly friend, or helping a neighbor.
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