Guest Blog By Allisha Heidt, Founder of Chickpeace Zero Waste Refillery
Parenting is an adventure that makes you basically drop all your expectations. You never really know what the next day has in store for you, with children’s wants, needs, and behaviours changing on a whim.
So, how do you create a holiday to remember for your family, while also keeping it sustainable and hassle-free?
Read on for my simple solutions that'll up your sustainability game, minimize your stress-level, and maximize the fun you have with your family this festive season.
Coming from experience, there’s no easy way to meander the holidays, however, what you can do is set some intentions and strong boundaries with how you are going to choose to consume. Here are some things to keep in mind:
Think long term. Many toys and children's products are made in a way that's unsustainable and often out of materials that are not only terrible for the environment but full of chemicals that slowly off gas once you remove the item from packaging. Consider buying items that are made out of wood, rubber, or other sustainable materials.
Normalize second-hand gifts. Instead of shopping on Amazon consider shopping your local Buy and Sell and check out GO's huge list of pre-loved shops across the Okanagan. Second hand gifts are a great way to reduce your carbon footprint!
Be creative. Invest in products that create play-based experience for your children. Whether that is arts and crafts materials, lessons or other types of group activities. Gifts like these, provide entertainment and learning opportunities. In our family, we love spending our hard-earned dollars on family adventures. The memories last a lifetime and the best part is they don’t end up in the landfill afterwards.
Smart wrapping. Children are more excited about what’s inside the box than what’s on the outside. So, be creative (and a bit frugal) with how you choose to wrap. Reuse newspaper, old boxes, and gift bags. Visit your local thrift store and find some cute fabric. I promise your little ones won’t even notice the difference.
Tell yourself it's ok. You don’t need to do it all. All that counts is that you’re trying your best and your intentions and actions are in the right place. Every year, be a little greener and make more conscious choices. You don’t need to do it all right away or at once.
The reality is, all your children really need is your love. It’s the best package free, local, and handmade thing you can gift them. Everything else, only enhances their experience so choose wisely, choose sustainably, and remember that you’re just trying your best throughout it all - and that's something to celebrate throughout the season and beyond.