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Green Your Holiday Gifts

Being that it is the season for giving, it is the perfect time to start giving green. One of the darker sides of the holidays is the tremendous amount of waste that is an unfortunate byproduct. Literally tons of excess waste is created, and the majority of Americans already have a desire to make gift giving less of a main focus of the holidays. The following ideas can help you create a smaller gift foot print this season:

Greener Candles
Most people don’t think about candles being a major source of pollution and toxins that can be harmful to people. Standard candles are petroleum products and those candles that are scented have artificial fragrances in them that are harmful to people when burned. An alternative would be candles made from 100% beeswax or any other vegetable oil. 

Homemade Items
Making something as a gift can be a thoughtful and personal way to avoid pollution associated with manufacturing. If you know how to crochet or knit, consider making blankets or scarves for your loved ones this season. If you want to make an effort to be even greener, use responsibly produced yarn, such as yarn made from recycled materials.
If you don’t know how to crochet or knit, there are other projects that you may be able to do at home. Projects like canning and soap-making can be done in the privacy of your own kitchen. Homemade jam and soaps make excellent gifts. Making gifts is a good way to avoid the consumerism that is often associated with the holidays, while still showing your loved ones that they are appreciated.

Earth-Friendlier Items
Everyone knows someone who could use greener gear. For that person in your life, consider giving an item like a reusable water bottle or a used book. For other gifts, research the companies that you buy from and make sure that you are purchasing from organizations that take care of their workers and care about the planet.
By Susan Taylor | | Going Green |
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