November 23, 2012

Green Holiday Gifts Ideas

Need some help with your holiday gift list? Why not think green this holiday season? Even if your gift recipient isn't very eco-conscious, you can still give a gift that they'll find useful and that you can feel good about.

Here are some green gift ideas:

Experiences. Sometimes the best gift you can give is your time. You can plan a sporty adventure like cross-country skiing or rock climbing, take someone to a concert, sporting event or show, or offer to teach something you're an expert at (cooking, knitting, computers, etc.).

Provide a service. Offer to green clean their home, babysit for a day, or cook them an organic dinner.

Classes. Give your foodie friend the gift of a cooking class or the fitness fanatic in your life a session of their favorite yoga class. If your loved one is really into a sport like tennis or golf, buy them a one-on-one consult with a pro to help them improve their game.

Charitable donation in the person's name.

CSA Farm Share. Give the gift of local, seasonal food that comes straight from the farm. A Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is basically a membership to a farm that includes a parcel of seasonal produce each week throughout the farming season. Find a CSA near you at www.localharvest.org/csa.

National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass. For $80 this pass provides up to four adults access to federal recreation sites that charge an entrance fee for a year. Learn more at www.nps.gov/fees_passes.htm.

State Parks Pass. Many states offer some sort of pass that grants access to most or all state parks. Click here for a list of all fifty states with a link to their official state park website and information on their state park entrance pass program.

Plants. Give an air-cleaning plant (some of the most effective are philodendron, English ivy, spider plants, dracaena, Chinese evergreen, bamboo or reed palm, and peace lily) or herbs in decorative pots.

Clothing and accessories made of organic cotton, bamboo, or hemp.

Sheets or towels made of organic cotton, bamboo, or hemp.

Cast Iron Skillet. This durable and versatile cooking tool can be a great replacement for questionable non-stick cookware.

Food containers made of glass, ceramic, porcelain, Pyrex, bamboo, or stainless steel to replace plastic containers which may be unsafe.

Home Water Filter. Filtered tap water is purer than bottled water, not to mention less expensive and better for the environment.

Fair-Trade, Organic, Shade-Grown Coffee. Eco-friendly coffee, a reusable coffee filter, and/or reusable coffee mugs would make a great gift basket for the coffee lover in your life.

Organic, Fair-Trade Chocolate

Biodynamic Wine

Organic Beer

Organic bath and beauty products made without synthetic fragrances, dyes, parabens, or pthalates.

Jewelry, accessories, artwork or housewares made from recycled materials and/or made by local artisans.

Kids' books with a eco-conscious message.

Eco-Friendly Toys


Once you've selected your green gift, opt for wrapping paper made of recycled paper. Even better, wrap gifts in materials you already have on hand like fabric or the newspaper comics. 



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