adventures of an american housewife in the south of france

Don’t Forget the Earth! Holiday Tips from Patty Preachy

Patty Preachy here again. You missed me. As much as I love recycling, I'm going to try not to use any material from my Thanksgiving post. If you're looking for food tips, you can likely find them there. Now tis the season to talk about what you all love to hate to love to do: SHOP. CONSUME. FILL THE VOID. While I can't give you a conscience, I can give you some pointers. SHOPPING/GIFTS Give gifts with a purpose. No, not the kind that have pictures of starving kids on them, but the kind that have the purpose of being useful. If you've seen it on an informercial, you can assume it doesn't fall into this category. Give gifts with a purpose. Yes, the kind that have pictures of starving kids on them. Or animals or trees. Who doesn't feel good about having done something good? Research shows that the same part of the brain that's stimulated during sex is triggered from do-gooder actions. That, for once, is not a joke. Check out Oxfam Unwrapped for some hot inspiration. Give gifts of time. Hard to believe, but some people might prefer an activity with you over a tie or a pair of socks. Some ideas: give a coupon for an organic homecooked meal by you or for 5 nights of babysitting (if your recipient's a procreator). If you're ignoring most of what I've just told you and you still buy a physical gift, wrap wisely, wiseacre. Who says wrapping was intended for one-time use and then a landfill? (Most wrapping paper isn't recyclable and, let's face it, you wouldn't recycle it anyway.) Make some use of that giant noggin of yours and get creative. Wrap your presents in a reusable bag, scarf, magazine or newspaper. Offset your guilt for not being there in person buy purchasing offsets for shipped gifts. If you are there, offset your guilt for your ginormous travel footprint the same way. If you happen to get some snazzy, new electronic item, donate or recycle your old one properly. Seriously, that stuff is toxic. Kind of like your insufferable need to always have the latest model. Just sayin'. DECORATING: The tree. The holiday centerpiece. A dead centerpiece. Why not get a potted one that you can keep indoors or outside after Santa falls down your chimney? They're at your local nursery just waiting to be adopted. You can even rent live ones! Whatever you do, make sure it's a sustainably farmed tree. If you've already disappointed me and have one dying in your home, compost it or sink it in a pond after the holidays. Holiday lights: a beautiful display of energy suckage. LED lights use less energy to show off your subpar holiday decor abilities. Recycle your old ones and you can get a discount! If you already have holiday decorations, reuse them. If you're in the market, make them from natural scratch like popcorn and cranberry strings. That way, when you get into you drunken holiday stupor, you won't choke on the tinsel while performing magic tricks like last year. And the year before that. Still have questions for this genius? Ask them on twitter or facebook. I dare you. Oh and Happy Holidaze!

Yours, Patty

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One Response to “Don’t Forget the Earth! Holiday Tips from Patty Preachy”

  1. SonsiWoman says:

    Glad you liked the picture we used with our article “Be Ever-Green: 8 Earth Friendly Ways to Celebrate the Season”- we fell in love with this wonderful photo too! Thanks for sharing it with your readers and giving SonsiLiving a shout out! Great tips too!

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