Green Holiday Tip #7: Choose to Reuse

reused ribbons

Reusing has become more mainstream in the past few years with the plethora of stylish reusable bags, water bottles and mugs available for purchase.  These are all easy to use and each make a big impact in reducing our dependence on convenient disposables in our society.

But What About at the Holidays!

Often these finely tuned habits go flying out the window when confronted by the busy whirlwind that arrives at the end of each year. Our calendars quickly fill up with social events, long to-do and shopping lists, holiday travel and more.  With all the increased shopping and parties at this time of the year, now is really the most important time of the year to reduce waste, and choosing to reuse is the best way to avoid waste in the first place.

Here’s Your Holiday Reuse Cheat Sheet – Choose Your Own Level

Remember Your Reuse Basics

  • That bag you bring to the supermarket?  They also work at any store where you buy stuff.
  • Have a weakness for fancy shmancy holiday coffee drinks?Then pack a mug just in case.
  • Going out to cut that tree or have a full day of shopping planned?  Remember to hydrate with your own bottle of water.


Holiday Parties Don’t Require Disposables – Throw a Zero Waste Party!

There are plenty of reasons why we fall into this trap.  Let’s problem solve!

  • ” I don’t have enough plates/cups etc. for everyone coming”.

Head to your nearest thrift store and stock up on extra (fill in the blank) for all the parties you throw.  Now is an especially good time if you want to add some holiday flair in your table settings.

  • “I don’t have enough dishes and I don’t want a mismatched thrift store hodge-podge of dishes.  I’m going for a look.”

If you don’t want to buy extra dishes (or whatever you need) to match your current or desired look, look into buying sets of recycled plastic table settings.  These can easily be stored away when not in use and taken out when needed.

  • “I’m afraid the dishes might break”. (kids, rowdy party, etc.)

See above solution.

  • “I don’t have time to wash all those dishes.”

That’s why you have a dishwasher or a gaggle of friends or family to help you out at the end of the party.  People want to help, don’t be afraid to ask.

Think Outside The Box

Wrapping gifts can be a fun adventure in seeking out creative alternatives to the standard wrapping paper fest.  Think reusables like bags, fabric, tins, cool boxes and more.  Then check out the next Tip #8 for more creative gift giving ideas.

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